A Taiwanese light romancer with more than just love on its mind, “Fishing Luck” fails to hook the viewer in the way the filmmakers seemingly intended. Evidently sincere attempt by former documaker Tseng Wen-chen to create a quality mainstream feature suffers from minimal chemistry between its leads and scant script muscle to go the distance. Film performed softly on local release mid-October.
Yarn is set on picturesque Lanyu (Orchid) Island, off the southeast coat of Taiwan and inhabited by the Tao race, descended from Filipinos. Unlikely set-up has big-city Chinese girl Lee Ching-ching (singer/VJ Linda, stiff) flying in to do an analysis of, uh, cell phone reception and becoming stranded when she loses her wallet. Staying at the home of her skirt-chasing guide, Behong (aboriginal singer Biung, OK), she appreciates the simple pleasures of Tao life and, especially, her happy-go-lucky host. Brightly lensed pic could have worked as a retro ’70s Taiwanese romcom if the leads had been livelier and the script busier. Unfortunately, it increasingly has the feel of a tourist promotion pamphlet-cum-ethnically correct ad for the noble virtues of aboriginal life. Tech package is professional.