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City Without Baseball
Country: Hong Kong
Director: Lawrence Lau, Scud
Starring: John Tai, Ron Heung, Leung Yu Chung, Jason Tsang, Monie Tung, Gia Lin, Anjo Leung
Synopsis: The members of a baseball team in Hong Kong come together to overcome life's difficulties and play well at a tournament for Asian teams.
Quick review: I debated if I should include this film or not, because the gay content is minimal. Still, it's obvious this film was intended for gay audiences (and teen girls). There is a lot of nudity, often full frontal. And there are some gay undertones at play in the plot. But what really decided me in favor of doing this review, is that it's very different. And after 700 gay films, different is always welcome.
First, it stars the actual members of the Hong Kong National Baseball Team and they are playing themselves. Second, I don't know how much of the story was true and home "enhanced" for dramatic effect, but to have a group of young baseball players willing to share this much of their lives openly and honestly, is not common. And to top it off, the boys can act much better than you might expect from a group of baseball players.
Oh, and of course, they are running around naked for a good chunk of the film.
Ron is the key to the story. He's not the most popular guy on the team (that would be Chung), but he's trying to fit in, both with the team and his new girlfriend. But his girlfriend develops an attraction to Chung, and that leads in unexpected directions. Chung has his own story line, including an encounter with a suicidal girl. There's also the coach from Taiwan who is brought over to help this team play better.
The film earned a lot of buzz in Hong Kong, mostly because of the baseball players performing nude. But it helped a team that few in Hong Kong knew about get some notice. If the events depicted are even 80 percent true, it's a hell of a story and those baseball players deserve a lot of credit for being willing to share their lives to this extent.
Drama : Comedy
: Romance :
Suspense : Musical :
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