What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of 5

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by grim_tales »

Zhou Yu's Train: 4/5

Charming, dreamlike romantic drama with an occasionally fractured narrative that jumped backwards and forwards in time. Gong Li is so cute in it and it reminded me of In the Mood for Love in places :)

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by HungFist »

Ringing in Their Ears (Japan, 2010) – 3/5
Saitama rapper Yu Irie reaches towards bigger audiences. Ringing in Their Ears takes the same semi-fiction formula as Custom Made 10.30 (2005), but replaces Tamio Okuda with Shinsei kamatte-chan as the real-life center of a fictional story. The film plays several, fragment-like storylines simultaneously before climaxing with Shinsei kamatte-chan live gig at Tokyo’s Shibuya AX. It’s an entertaining ride, even if not as energetic as Irie’s earlier works, with some parts coming out a bit preachy. The gig footage, however, is great, ex-AV-star Kurumi Morishita gives a decent performance in her big screen debut, and the closing is just lovely. For a film of this type one could do much worse.

Under the Flag of the Rising Sun (Japan, 1972) – 4.5/5
Kinji Fukasaku’s criminally ignored war film deserves a mention among the classics. Opening almost like a sappy nationalistic war tale, it soon becomes clear the opening frames are little more than cruel sarcasm. Fukasaku’s vision of Japanese soldiers in New Guinea is disturbing and visceral enough to make his famed yakuza films pale in comparison. With a mixture of Rashomon style storytelling, real photographic evidence, and present day footage and flashbacks, Fukasaku draws a gripping pacifist statement and an image of the industrial 1970’s Japan where pre- and post war generations clash. A hugely important film that puts much of Fukasaku’s yakuza filmography into a perspective.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by HungFist »

Zombie Ass (Japan, 2011) – 2/5
Ass fetishist Noboru Iguchi returns to his roots with a lackluster crap-comedy. With an Evil Dead esque premise the film sets a group of teens against crap-covered zombies with sharp teeth not only in their mouth, but also in their asses. Add parasites, a cabin, and a shotgun, and you’ve got a movie. Unfortunately Iguchi, back on his bad humoristic habits, ignores the opportunity to play it outrageously straight. Zombie Ass, while high on bad taste, is neither very funny nor truly offensive. Yoshihiro Nishimura’s skillful gore work, though marred with less than delighting CG effects, and basic exploitation value, provide modest entertainment in a movie that is far more in the Robo-Geisha alley than anything resembling a genuinely mean splatter piece.
- in more detail: http://sketchesofcinema.wordpress.com/2 ... ombie-ass/

Live Tape (Japan, 2009) – 4/5
Tetsuaki Matsue’s one take wonder proves "all it takes to make a movie is a singer, a guitar, and sunglasses". Shot with a single 72 minute take, Matsue follows musician Kenta Maeno as he wanders the streets of Tokyo on a new year’s day and performs music. From a brilliant opening to good music and bits & pieces of something real captured on camera it’s an inspiring film that deservedly made it to almost every J-Film top-10 list of 2009 and 2010. Followed by an even more interesting Tokyo Drifter, which throws Matsue and Maeno on the streets of the post-Fukushima Tokyo, in 2011.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Outrage (2010-Japan) *½

More Kitano yakuza shenanigans... more aggressive shouting... more slapping faces... more grisly violence... yawn.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Xenon »

Markgway wrote:Outrage (2010-Japan) *½

More Kitano yakuza shenanigans... more aggressive shouting... more slapping faces... more grisly violence... yawn.
o.O You can't be serious...

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Xenon wrote:
Markgway wrote:Outrage (2010-Japan) *½

More Kitano yakuza shenanigans... more aggressive shouting... more slapping faces... more grisly violence... yawn.
o.O You can't be serious...
Why? It's not a patch on Violent Cop or Sonatine or Fireworks.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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The Raid (2012) - 7.5/10

The fighting, oh my God :o

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Markgway »

Confessions (2010-Japan) **

Clever, interesting and VERY dark drama... but also jumbled, pretentious and lacking in clarity. What is the film trying to say? The film SCREAMS deep and meaningful and is loaded with irony -- but is it really deep? Do we truly feel these characters? I'm not convinced. You have to accept that pretty much every character is fucked-up in some way and no one behaves in a believeable fashion (unless Hung can confirm that the Japanese really are like this...). This is one of those films that is either better than it appears on first glance or far less impressive than it's been taken for. A second viewing might help... but I don't care enough to bother so I'll let someone else figure it out.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Lourdes »

Markgway wrote:Outrage (2010-Japan) *½

More Kitano yakuza shenanigans... more aggressive shouting... more slapping faces... more grisly violence... yawn.
This one really failed to work for me. It was definitely his style, and I love most of his films, but it was missing the 'quaint' elements the others have and taking the violence and his shooting/editing style too far.

---

13 Assassins - 3/5
Watchable, until the final events drag on forever, but there just isn't anything stand out about it. It's completely predictable jidaigeki that copies from all the rest.

REDLINE - 2.5/5
Watch it a bit intoxicated with a big screen and big sound and it's okay. Same comments as those on the above would apply.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by HungFist »

Lourdes back at rating/commenting movies :thumbs:

I assume that's the 13 Assassins remake you're talking about?

Lourdes wrote:
Markgway wrote:Outrage (2010-Japan) *½

More Kitano yakuza shenanigans... more aggressive shouting... more slapping faces... more grisly violence... yawn.
This one really failed to work for me. It was definitely his style, and I love most of his films, but it was missing the 'quaint' elements the others have and taking the violence and his shooting/editing style too far.
My comments from another another forum where someone called Outrage a homage to Kitano's old films like Sonatine:

I wouldn't use the word "homage". Sonatine, for example, is a very beautiful film which, despite its violence, has a certain humanist undertone. Like Hana-bi, Sonatine is all about life (though many of the characters are tired of it), with violent outbursts setting ends to some people's lives. It's like nature and blooming flowers. It's directed by a man who enjoys the beauty of the world, but is also that much of a pessimist (with wicked sense of dark humor) to acknowledge it will probably come to an abrupt end before soon, especially if you're a yakuza. Flowers and fireworks are indeed an excellent metaphor in these movies.

Outrage on the other hand, is an outburst of pessimism and black humor. In this film nature and beauty do not exists - there are only guys in black suits driving black cars and killing each other left and right. Unlike the old Kitano characters who existed to live and die, these guys only exist to kill and be killed. It's a film best labeled as "violence movie" and, to some extent, a parody of yakuza movies and Kitano's own old films. As such, I must say its a very stylish and "bad-ass" effort, though I would not expect Mark to like it as he generally dislikes "violence movies"

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Markgway wrote:Confessions (2010-Japan) **

Clever, interesting and VERY dark drama... but also jumbled, pretentious and lacking in clarity. What is the film trying to say? The film SCREAMS deep and meaningful and is loaded with irony -- but is it really deep? Do we truly feel these characters? I'm not convinced. You have to accept that pretty much every character is fucked-up in some way and no one behaves in a believeable fashion (unless Hung can confirm that the Japanese really are like this...). This is one of those films that is either better than it appears on first glance or far less impressive than it's been taken for. A second viewing might help... but I don't care enough to bother so I'll let someone else figure it out.
I also found it over-rated, though I did give it a generous ***½

I wouldn't say the characters necessarily act in an unbelievable way - the film is pretty much a fantasy piece like Kill Bill or Oldboy to begin with - but yes, the characters were my problem too. As usual, traumatized characters are very one dimensional because they are driven by the trauma only. In this film I love the character of the high school girl (ehm...) because she's the only one who acts without clear motive and hence has some psychogical depth (accidental, pseudo depth perhaps, but it works regardless) that makes her interesting. None of the other characters have this.

On the other hand, the cinematography is amazing - some may be put off by the slow motion, but just try the screenshot button and you've got yourself an infinite source for wallpapers. And the soundtrack is quite terrific, too.

Some favorite shots from the film:

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more: viewtopic.php?f=19&t=5925

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by grim_tales »

I didnt know there'd been a USA remake of 13 Assassins already Hung (if thats what you meant) :? I only know of the Japanese versions (the full one and international one).

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Miike's film is a remake of the famous Eiichi Kudo film 13 Assassins

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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HungFist wrote:My comments from another another forum where someone called Outrage a homage to Kitano's old films like Sonatine...
Sound observations, Hung.

To me it's the difference between violence used as a tool for expressing human emotion and violence for violence's sake. In 'Outrage' sometimes it's shocking, sometimes numbing... but too brutal to be entertaining on its own terms. And really that's all there is. I could take nothing else away from the experience. Kitano's previous movies are also 'violence films' (to put a label on them) but they work (for the reasons you outline).
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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HungFist wrote:I wouldn't say the characters necessarily act in an unbelievable way - the film is pretty much a fantasy piece like Kill Bill or Oldboy to begin with - but yes, the characters were my problem too.
Right. It is like a fantasy version of school and home life (not once are the Police mentioned despite the volume of murder and threat) and the worst aspects of human behaviour (every character is adept at genius-like vengeance) combined.
In this film I love the character of the high school girl (ehm...) because she's the only one who acts without clear motive and hence has some psychogical depth (accidental, pseudo depth perhaps, but it works regardless) that makes her interesting. None of the other characters have this.
I found it difficult to accept that THREE students from the one smallish class were so screwed-up. (And that's only the three we're told anything about - the entire class could be crazies for all we know?). I survived high school for six years and never met anyone remotely like any of these psychotic, angst-ridden specimens. We desperately needed at least ONE normal, relatable character; and that ideally should have been Ai Hashimoto - the object of your schoolgirl affection. But instead she's a killer-worshipping deviant who's turned on by a child murderer and longs to commit murders of her own. She's not deep just strange enough to be slightly interesting.
On the other hand, the cinematography is amazing - some may be put off by the slow motion, but just try the screenshot button and you've got yourself an infinite source for wallpapers. And the soundtrack is quite terrific, too.
I agree that the film's visual sense is strong.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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HungFist wrote:Image

Miike's film is a remake of the famous Eiichi Kudo film 13 Assassins

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I didnt know that, thanks Hung :D

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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HungFist wrote:Lourdes back at rating/commenting movies :thumbs:
Out of money for the next month so it's back to watching films!

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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The Raid (2011-Indonesia) **

I was actually kinda bored by the lack of story and non-stop action (which was OK but not as amazing as I'd been led to believe). The standout scene was the 2-on-1 fight against 'Mad Dog' but otherwise this was distinctly average and really no better than any of those Thai movies popularised over the last decade. Again, to emphasise, I didn't DISlike it. I was just seriously underwhelmed. Comparisons to John Woo's finest hours are ill-advised to say the least. Two things I wasn't enamoured with: the handheld camerawork (not shakycam but too much too often) and the CGI blood (can't seem to escape from it).


The version of the film I saw (in the UK) had no outtakes and the new score (and a shitty song at the end). The score seemed adequate. The title on screen was simply THE RAID.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Hmmm.
Perhaps when its out on DVD it will have outtakes? I've never seen the film obviously so dont think I'd notice a different score.

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Forgot to post my review for The Raid.

With all the hype I was expecting something AMAZING, but was disappointed when it wasn't quite that. To your average film fan this was probably something fresh and new. But, for me as a fu fan I wasn't that impressed. I actually got quite bored towards the end. I've seen better and I've seen worse.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Tom Yum Goong (2005-Thailand-Australia) **

Exceptionally stupid movie saved (to a degree) by incredible action sequences.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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@ Mark: Tom Yum Goong or The Raid, which is better and why? I'm guessing The Raid despite the same rating.

I almost went to see it last night but decided I'd buy or download it. A big portion of the so called martial arts classics in my opinion are rather average. I suspect I'll be disappointed making the trip to the cinema to see it. If it's on next Tuesday still I may change my mind (cheap night).

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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I would have checked it out at the cinema if it would have had the original soundtrack, but I'll wait for the BR release now, which will have the choice for that original sountrack, as Evans promised.

I haven't been to the cinema in ages btw. Hopefully I'll go more often when I'm in HK.
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I was there, the big BNB blackout of november, 2008. We lost many that day...

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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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bradavon wrote:@ Mark: Tom Yum Goong or The Raid, which is better and why? I'm guessing The Raid despite the same rating.
The Raid is a better film (the story is simple but makes sense)... Tom Yum Goong has better action (although The Raid has one outstanding fight near the end). Neither is a classic.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Rouge - ★★★★★

Anita Mui is always a delight to watch. Absolutely loved it!
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