The Great Pretenders is a movie made in Hong Kong in 1991. It is a comedy and stars Raymond Wong and Amy Yip.
The story of the Great Pretenders is all about a swindler from Taiwan called Mr Giant, who loses in a poker match against a fellow swindler from Hong Kong, Wong Seung-chin. They duly become sworn enemies. In the meantime, Wong’s apprentice Snake Wai meets a widow called Susan and who has recently returned to Hong Kong from Singapore. Snake Wai plans to con Susan out of a good sum of money, and conjures up a plot together with his friends Yam Sai-sung and Yip Mei-mei.
Susan, however, turns out to be a con artist as well, and they are unable to make any money from their plot. In fact, Wai, Sung and Mei become indebted to Susan, losing quite heavily. Wai seeks help from his master Wong, to win back all the money they have lost to Susan. Susan then cooperates with Wong and his apprentices to swindle Lung Cho-tin, which they manage to do. In fact they obtain two million Hong Kong dollars from Lung. Lung then hires Mr Giant to battle against Wong. Poker is the game played in the Great Pretenders, and indeed poker has been the subject of many films and movies over the ages.
Different Forms of Poker
All forms of poker involve betting as an intrinsic part of play. Winners are determined according to the combinations of cards held by the players, some of which may remain hidden until the end of the game. Poker games do vary in the number of cards dealt to players, as well as the number of shared or community cards. In different games there will also be a different number of cards that remain hidden, and betting procedures will also differ.
In modern poker games, the first round of betting can begin with one or more of the players making some form of bet, and in standard poker each player will bet according to what he believes his hand is worth, compared to the hands the other players hold. The action then proceeds clockwise, as each player in turn must either match or call the previous bet, or fold. Then he loses any amount he has bet so far. If more than one player remains in contention after the final betting round, all hands are revealed and the player with the winning hand takes the pot.
An Extremely Popular Game Worldwide
Poker has gained in popularity since the beginning of last century, and has gone from being a recreational activity to a worldwide game, with many professional players, and multimillion dollar tournament prizes offered. There are certainly many ways for swindlers to cheat in this game, like the swindlers in the Great Pretenders managed to do, like collusion and sleight of hand, or by using physical objects like marked cards.
The film, the Great Pretenders, was not given many good write-ups, and although is not one of the best examples of Hong Kong cinema, it is still worth watching.