Mountains Meet. Starring Deborah Lee, Wong Wun-see and Pauline Yeung Po-ling. Directed by Lawrence Ah Mon. A Category II picture on the Regal circuit. Flirting Scholar Starring Chiau Sing-chi and Gong Li. Directed by Lee Lik-chi. A Category II picture on the Newport and Empire circuits. LAST summer's sleeper '92 The Legendary La Rose Noire spawned a mini-trend: nostalgic spoofs of 60s-era Cantonese movies. There have been many to follow in the Black Rose's footsteps and with Even Mountains Meet, one that matches the ''original'' in originality. Like its predecessor, it possesses a disjointed script and some slow patches. But these are more than outweighed by a sharp sense of camp, making the picture a special delight to fans of an era when mini-skirts, beehives, and a-go-go ruled Hongkong's screens. I never could figure out the significance of the phrase ''when mountains meet''. The Chinese title, which loosely translates as ''Thunderclap in a Clear Sky, Part II, the Conclusion'', is a jestful parody of the old black-and-white and Eastmancolor days. Which pretty much describes the movie as a whole. The plot is a skewed amalgamation of late late show cliches, set largely in a spooky mansion. The dwelling doubles as a time capsule for its two eccentric residents: Ding Ling-ling (Deborah Lee), the queen of the Hongkong screen until her abrupt retirement a quarter of a century ago; and her personal secretary, Mo Ching-ching (Wong Wun-see, who also starred in '92 The Legendary, La Rose Noire. When Ding suddenly dies, her ghost orders Mo to go back to the movie studio in search of former matinee idol Prince Charming, whose disappearance precipitated Ding's own seclusion so many years earlier. Mo's journey puts her in contact with a group of kooky characters. There's Kin (Dicky Cheung Wai-kin), a young props man in love with a starlet (Lau Siu-wai); and Kin's uncle, Cho Tat-wah (Ng Mang-tat), who spends most of his time spurning the advances of a beautiful sex bomb (Pauline Yeung Po-ling). They are involved in a multitude of sub-plots, the weakest of which is the young love story. Even Mountains Meet is a case of the older cast members teaching the younger generation a thing or two about comic delivery, scene stealing, and musical performance. Songs form an integral part of the proceedings. Though some of the numbers could be pruned, most are spot-on in their sense of satirical nostalgia. The middle-aged Mo and Uncle Cho, decked out like 60s teen idols Connie Chan Po-chu and Lui Kee, dash off in a red sports car as they sing a humorous duet entitled Yummy Yummy Yum; a late-night snack at a dai pai dong involves most of the cast in a raucous dance number reminiscent of the old Shaw Brothers spectaculars. These are topped by an a-go-go/twist/cha-cha contest between Mo and the sex bomb, complete with appropriate outfits and hula-hoops. Non-musical moments also have their share of cinematic touches: conversations held through telepathy; fight scenes played largely through shadows; and a search for gold in which even doorknobs and chandeliers come under oral scrutiny. The three female leads are worthy of the memory of the silver shadows they emulate. Pauline Yeung and Wong Wun-see make for wonderfully wacky rivals, and Deborah Lee has mastered the art of taking a bubble bath while eating grapes, holding a bouquet of roses, and singing opera. The chief problem lies with a script that has trouble culling the weeds from the flowers. This is director Lawrence Ah Mon's first comedy, and one that would have benefited from the old ''sneak preview'' system in which audience reaction was gauged to fine tune the pacing and eliminate excess baggage. No amount of fine-tuning could help Flirting Scholar. This is one of Chiau Sing-chi's weaker burlesques but one that is nonetheless destined for popular success, thanks to the presence of Hongkong's box office golden boy. The Ming Dynasty comic tale of painter/playboy Tong Pak-fu who tries to woo the beautiful and clever servant girl Chau Heung is a staple of the Chinese screen - there have been at least a dozen versions produced in Hongkong and Shanghai since the 1930s. But even though this is a story with which every viewer is familiar, director Lee Lik-chi and the scriptwriters fail to utilise this familiarity to deliver a sparkling satire. Smutty dialogue is a poor substitute for wit. At first it may seem mildly amusing to view such classic characters spouting Cantonese curses, but even the funniest off-colour joke tends to get dull when it is extended to 100 minutes. Gong Li's talents are totally wasted as Chau Heung. She is called upon to do little more than look beautiful and talk dirty. The picture is so ripe with possibilities that the final result is especially disappointing. The opening sequence features a cinematic ''touch'' worthy of Lubitsch, beginning with a camera pan across a wide array of calligraphy brushes. Master Tong selects a large brush and dips it in an ink-like solution, whereupon the camera pulls back to reveal the scholar basting a rack of squabs cooking on a spit. Alas, Flirting Scholar goes downhill from that point on. A 1964 Mandarin operatic version of the Tong-Chau battle of the sexes, entitled Three Charming Smiles, was screened at this year's Hongkong International Film Festival and proved superior in virtually every respect.