Chinese New Year 2021 is rapidly approaching. Here’s to wishing everyone a happy and auspicious year ahead, especially since the last one had left much to be desired. But of course, just wishes are not enough! Here are the 8 best movies that you have to watch, or watch again, this Chinese New Year! (Yes, I know that they are not red packets but they do still bring tons of joy)

Fat Choi Spirit (2002)

Fat Choi Spirit (2002) - MyDramaList
Source: MyDramaList

How can any Chinese New Year movie list be complete without movies about gambling? And what better way to start than with this mahjong-centric film? Starring Andy Lau as an extremely lucky mahjong player who loses all his luck and fortune when his girlfriend leaves him. He and his brother, performed by Louis Koo, is pit against the skilled and devious mahjong player Lau Ching-wan. This comedy shows how Andy earns his luck back and turns the tables using his actions and mindset. It’s definitely a film to watch again, and perhaps even learn from, as you celebrate.

God Of Gamblers (1989)

Source: IMDb

Next, we have the iconic God Of Gamblers, the spark behind the Gamblers franchise. Even before Stephen Chow was added into the mix, this film already had an all-star lineup. Starring big-time actor Chow Yun-fat as the God of Gamblers, a legendary gambler who becomes amnestic after being involved in a plot on his life. Not to mention Andy Lau‘s involvement in the film as Knife, a mediocre gambler that idolizes Chow Yun-fat’s God of Gamblers. With such memorable soundtracks and strong casting, it is truly a movie that was beyond its time.

From Vegas to Macau (2014)

Source: MyDramaList

Featuring another film starring Chow Yun-fat, this time we have the more recent From Vegas To Macau. This time we see him as “Magic Hand” Ken. Also an extremely talented gambler, he is enlisted to assist in the arrest of the ruthless leader of a large crime syndicate. Accompanied on his mission by the vigilantes Cool (Nicholas Tse) and Ngau-Ngau (Chapman To), he must find a way to bring down his adversaries.

Ip Man (2008)

Source: IMDb

Changing away from the theme of gambling, we now have an action film starring Donnie Yen. The first of the series, this film shows Donnie Yen’s Ip Man in his home town of Foshan during the 2nd Sino-Japanese War. Recognized as the most skilled master in the area, he faces several foes through the course of the film. This film also contains the iconic 1v10 fight scene by Donnie Yen. Unlike the other more comedy focused films on this list, Ip Man is a lot more serious and action-focused, however, it is definitely still a movie that should not be missed during this festive period!

Aces Go Places 2 (1983)

Mad Mission Part 2: Aces Go Places (1983) - IMDb

We now head right back into the comedic section with this old but gold film. Perhaps the only movie in this list to not contain any extraordinarily popular stars due to the year it was released, this film is still nothing to scoff at. Starring Sam Hui as a James Bond-type burglar with Karl Maka as his bald police detective partner, they must work together to track down a set of stolen diamonds. This film has crazy car chases and other hilarious bits, safely securing itself a spot as a truly iconic film.

City Hunter (1993)

City Hunter | The Asian Aperture by Jason Fetters | Jackie chan movies, Jackie  chan, City hunter
Source: Pinterest

Not to be confused with the South Korean drama based on the same Japanese manga series. City Hunter is a film starring Jackie Chan as the main lead Ryo Saeba. Follow Jackie Chan as he attempts to protect his client and the cruise ship from a terrorist attack. Though it is considered a weak adaptation of the manga, Jackie Chan really brings his role to life with many comedic sequences and action-packed scenes. Not quite as popular a film compared to many of Jackie’s other works, this film still shouldn’t be slept on. Including hilarious scenes like Jackie Chan as Chun Li, one should not give this movie a miss.

All’s Well, Ends Well (1992)

Source: JustWatch

The first of a franchise you are undoubtedly familiar with. This hilarious film stars Stephen Chow, Maggie Cheung, Leslie Cheung, Sandra Ng, and many others. With lots of good-natured humor and slapstick humor, this comic romance is a definite must-watch. Follow the misadventures of the 3 brothers as they realize the err of their ways and learn from them. A fun and funny film for the whole family to enjoy, it is also followed by 7 sequels that each have their own appeal.

Kung Fu Hustle (2004)

Source: Wikipedia

Would any list be complete without this masterpiece by Stephen Chow? This comedic film changed the landscape of the film industry for martial arts. Meeting with wild praise from its release and its continued success to this day, this is one of Stephen Chow’s legendary works. Kung Fu Hustle references several other films during its runtime and often puts a comedic spin to it. With Stephen Chow starring as Sing, a loser in life who becomes the greatest hero in times of need, Kung Fu Hustle shows the story of his personal growth and ideals in a world that’s unkind to him.

That’s all for the Top 8 Movies that you have to watch over Chinese New Year! Of course, this list is non-exhaustive and many, many more films deserve more attention. From gambling to comedy to action, what movies never fail to get you into a festive mood? And if you don’t know, maybe one of these may be the one that you’ve been searching for! So what are you waiting for? Start hyping yourself up for Chinese New Year today!

For more Chinese New Year ideas, check out our recommendations on the 10 Best Chinese New Year Dinner Ideas for 2021!

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