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

Film Reviews and Release Comparisons
User avatar
grim_tales
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 21757
Joined: 25 Oct 2004, 18:34
Location: St. Albans, UK

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

Post by grim_tales »

The Raid: 3.5/5

I enjoyed it :D The plot was quite simple and easy to follow (like a cross between Ong Bak and Die Hard) and I certainly didnt dislike it - the action was good and very violent (reminded me of Ong Bak a bit), and some scenes stood out a few times, really grabbing you by the balls - the fight between the Mad Dog character and 2 cops in particular was amazing :o and some good tension filled moments like a bit when a machete goes through a wall where the cop is hiding and cuts his face :o , but at the same time, as a fight fan of Ong Bak, (but not its sequels) Bang Rajan, City of Violence etc, I had a feeling I'd seen it all before in some cases. It WAS good, but maybe not as good or AMAZING as the hype said. The soundtrack was generic metal/rock/techno which I could have done without. But the director isnt a big Hollywood filmmaker so well done to him for making a film like this and getting it released in cinemas.

User avatar
HungFist
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 10964
Joined: 14 Dec 2005, 15:50
Location: Japan
Contact:

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

Post by HungFist »

Red Tears (Japan, 2011) – 2.5/5
Action legend Yasuaki Kurata celebrates his 100th screen work with a self financed vampire / horror / martial arts hybrid. Violence director Takanori Tsujimoto makes a fitting pairing, though the outcome doesn’t live up to the expectations. The film spends too much time flirting with flat romance and comedy, lacking the visceral style of Tsujimoto’s earlier action diamond Hard Revenge Milly: Bloody Battle (2009). Yoshihiro Nishimura’s monster masks and CGI-free gore work are pleasing though, and action scenes have a bit of kick, especially towards the end. Kurata himself plays a (major) supporting role and owns the film with his badass charisma. For fans of the star and director, Red Tears makes a rather passable viewing.
- in more detail: http://sketchesofcinema.wordpress.com/2 ... red-tears/

Genocide (Japan, 1968) – 2/5
Cheap B-horror movie with insects attacking people while the Americans and Japanese argue who or what killed American pilots and what happened to the A-bomb they were carrying. Aside from its modest b-charm, the film is quite a poor effort with lazy special effects and slow moving storyline that steals the attention from killer insects.

Inferno of Torture (Japan, 1969) – 4/5
Teruo Ishii’s quality exploitation with beautiful cinematography, various atmospheric moments and plenty of eye candy in form of Toei’s attractive young female stars. Occasional violence shocks are included, though the real focus is on epic tattoo competition between Ishii regulars Teruo Yoshida and Asao Koike, and frankly ridiculous romance melodrama. Comic relieves and sloppy structure that makes one wonder whether the reels were played in the right order add their spice to the soup.

Seeing the film on 35mm in Tokyo’s most atmospheric movie theater (Laputa Asagaya, a charming 47 seat retro theater run by two lovely ladies who play old Toei soundtracks non-stop in the waiting room / mini-café) was a treat, though, even if the film did not receive such a boost from cinema presentation as some other exploitation movie do.

oldeschool17
Pedicab Driver
Posts: 217
Joined: 22 Sep 2008, 00:38

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

Post by oldeschool17 »

HungFist wrote: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"
Good viewpoints. This movie had potential to be really good but it went into parody mode really quick. This movie damn near reminded me of the Yakuza Papers series in that it was a constant barrage of double crosses which would have been great for a Benny Hill skit. Sonatine and Hana Bi were 10x better than this movie.

gasteropod
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 6868
Joined: 03 Nov 2004, 18:16

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

Post by gasteropod »

The Face of Another (1966) - 4.5/5

This was great, the side-story was a bit disorienting but I guess that was intentional, I need to see Woman in the Dunes now...

User avatar
grim_tales
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 21757
Joined: 25 Oct 2004, 18:34
Location: St. Albans, UK

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

Post by grim_tales »

Very good film :)
I found the creepy ending very effective, when the guy sees all the crowd wearing masks (like his at the start) - so now who is "normal"? Everyone who wears a mask and is the same as each other, or the one guy who is different?

gasteropod
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 6868
Joined: 03 Nov 2004, 18:16

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

Post by gasteropod »

grim_tales wrote:Very good film :)
I found the creepy ending very effective, when the guy sees all the crowd wearing masks (like his at the start) - so now who is "normal"? Everyone who wears a mask and is the same as each other, or the one guy who is different?
Yeah that was ace and unexpected, I also loved all the trippy bits, like rear projection background (and inexplicably through a doorway) and the design of the lab :cool:

gasteropod
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 6868
Joined: 03 Nov 2004, 18:16

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

Post by gasteropod »

The Burmese Harp (1956) - 3.5/5

An endearing war film with the music from Godzilla (!). I couldn't help thinking that it would have been better to leave the audience wondering along with the troops whether or not the monk was Mizushima until it's confirmed when he plays his harp to them, but anyway, good film.

User avatar
luckystars
Royal Tramp
Posts: 1893
Joined: 12 Sep 2005, 09:01

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

Post by luckystars »

The White Dragon 5/10
A not unentertaining, but generic 'wirefu idol romance comedy' - if there is such a thing. A much stronger story could've really helped here.

Sonatine 8.5/10
Brutal and touching, simple but well observed, superbly executed art film/oddball comedy drama. I actually found the humour spot on and laughed out loud often. Really clever and enjoyable stuff. :)

Sonatine is one of those films that stays with you after watching - it really deserves the Blu-Ray treatment too.
2010 - The return of the HK movie industry :)
Image

User avatar
HungFist
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 10964
Joined: 14 Dec 2005, 15:50
Location: Japan
Contact:

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

Post by HungFist »

Ai to Makoto (For Love’s Sake) (Japan, 2012) – 1.5/5
The latest by the wildly uneven mainstream talent Miike is colorful pop-culture mess. An adaptation from a popular manga, Ai to Makoto unfolds the street fighting filled non-romance of a hooligan boy Makoto (Satoshi Tsumabuki) and sweet girl Ai (Emi Takei). Set in 1972 and complete with 8 musical numbers, the pseudo-tribute unfortunately comes with modern, supercharged visuals and showa era soundtrack marred with sappy modern trash to make the kids feel more at home. At 134 minutes the film is terribly overlong with a screenplay that achieves very little. Occasional clever gags and an amusing supporting performance by Sakura Ando do not redeem the film. It’s a tiresome effort by Miike.

Kotoko (Japan, 2011) – 3.5/5
Bullet man Shinya Tsukamoto refuses to settle down. While the new film Kotoko is another addition to his expanding sub-catalogue of psychological films, it’s also a movie loud enough to escape full critical acclaim. The drama of a single mother falling into madness is covered with touches of cyberpunk Tsukamoto, from gory make up effects (the Japanese pg-12 rating is a sick joke) to hectic camerawork. Yet, it’s the emotional impact and strong performance by singer / debut actress Cocco that makes Kotoko a such a hard viewing. In contrast, the digital HD cinematography comes through beautifully. What separated the film from Tsukamoto’s best works is the slightly conflicting mix of psychological themes and overtly aggressive filmmaking techniques.

Image Image

User avatar
grim_tales
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 21757
Joined: 25 Oct 2004, 18:34
Location: St. Albans, UK

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

Post by grim_tales »

Cub Tiger from Kwang Tung: 1/5

Almost impossible to watch thanks to an atrocious print and transfer - unreadable burnt in subtitles that are so small, white on white AND THEN seem to be chopped off by the black bars.

User avatar
Keung
King of Beggars
Posts: 886
Joined: 23 Jan 2005, 01:18
Location: England
Contact:

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

Post by Keung »

Re-released German DVD is remastered and looks amazing!

Image

Old German DVD:
Image

Canadian DVD:
Image
Image

User avatar
luckystars
Royal Tramp
Posts: 1893
Joined: 12 Sep 2005, 09:01

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

Post by luckystars »

Fucking WOW!

Is the German DVD English friendly?
2010 - The return of the HK movie industry :)
Image

User avatar
Keung
King of Beggars
Posts: 886
Joined: 23 Jan 2005, 01:18
Location: England
Contact:

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

Post by Keung »

This is all I can find:

The German DVD-re-release

Since May 20th, 2011, there is a re-release available in Germany by small label Voulez-Vous, which steals all the previous German and international releases' shows.
While the really catastrophal old German DVD by M.I.B., which was also released by several associated labels, comes with a strongly zoomed aspect ratio of 1.56:1 and lowest VHS-quality including soiling and other inelegances, the Voulez-Vous-release is available in remastered, really incredible image quality, anamorphic and in the original aspect ratio of 2.35:1. As a sidenote, the master was apparently taken from the new Spanish DVD.

What makes this release stand out in comparison to said Spanish DVD (aside the for local audiences probably important German dubbing) is the nice choice of versions in the bonus section. To get into more details, the following alternatives are offered:

- Main film: Asian version
The remastered and thus quality-wise by far best version. Footage, that was until now not available in Germany was fortunately dubbed.

- English version
All the old German DVDs were based on this version, but were additionally cut for about 5 minutes. Scenes that were up until now not released in Germany resp. were not dubbed for the DVD-release in the first place are, contrary to the main film, kept in English language with optional subtitles.
As a master, it is probable that either the Japanese DVD by Pioneer or the US-DVD by Videoasia has been used. Either way, the film is also presented in the original format (unfortunately not anamorphous, though) and is superior to the M.I.B.-version by far, but compared to the main film, the quality is worse.

http://www.movie-censorship.com/report.php?ID=649560
Image

User avatar
grim_tales
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 21757
Joined: 25 Oct 2004, 18:34
Location: St. Albans, UK

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

Post by grim_tales »

The Rarescope print looked about the same as the Canadian DVD at times, lol :D :( :o

User avatar
luckystars
Royal Tramp
Posts: 1893
Joined: 12 Sep 2005, 09:01

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

Post by luckystars »

Listed here

http://www.ofdb.de/view.php?page=fassun ... vid=319925

Perfect print, uncut, mandarin audio...no English subs? :(
2010 - The return of the HK movie industry :)
Image

User avatar
grim_tales
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 21757
Joined: 25 Oct 2004, 18:34
Location: St. Albans, UK

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

Post by grim_tales »

The back of the box doesnt seem to list them either (not sure) :(

Came across the German DVD of Drunken Master - does it have a complete Cantonese track? :?

http://www.amazon.de/Drunken-Master-Beg ... pd_sim_d_1

User avatar
HungFist
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 10964
Joined: 14 Dec 2005, 15:50
Location: Japan
Contact:

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

Post by HungFist »

Tokyo Drifter (Japan, 2011) – 4/5
After the inspiring one shot wonder, Live Tape (2009), Tetsuaki Matsue and folk musician Kenta Maeno are back on the streets of the post Fukushima Tokyo. Shot in a single rainy night, Maeno walks the darkened streets of the once so colorful metropolis and performs an album full of great music. The irresistibly energetic musician is never brought down even by the nightmarish combination of dark, rainy night, and his trademark sunglasses that remain on throughout the film. He is left without audience in every location he travels (in the film), but in the comfort of cinema his show is one not to be missed.
- full review: http://sketchesofcinema.wordpress.com/2 ... o-drifter/

Let's Make the Teacher Have a Miscarriage Club (Japan, 2011) – 3.5/5
Japanese school girls go nasty in Eisuke Naito’s cheap and attention seeking, but effective exploitation drama. Based on true events, the film pretends a social commentary, but comes out ballsy genre cinema that celebrates its little devils in school uniforms. Tech credits are above average J-trash, and the heavy soundtrack is used to a great effect. Gore is missing, but the topic and dealing alone push the film to borderline horror. Bits of pitch black humor provide minor relief. Clumsy drama comes as part of the package, as goes with the genre.
- full review: http://sketchesofcinema.wordpress.com/2 ... iage-club/

Image Image

User avatar
Markgway
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 19972
Joined: 18 Feb 2005, 02:04

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

Post by Markgway »

Detective Dee... (2010-China-Hong Kong) *½

Gravely disappointing. I've finally given up on Tsui Hark.
Image

User avatar
HungFist
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 10964
Joined: 14 Dec 2005, 15:50
Location: Japan
Contact:

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

Post by HungFist »

*½ from me, too. Had hard time sitting it through.

drees5761
Jackie Chan's Little Toe
Posts: 20
Joined: 23 Sep 2011, 10:19

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

Post by drees5761 »

Detective Dee wasn't that bad, geez i think you guys are getting ultra fussy... :D
I would give it 7 out of 10

drees5761
Jackie Chan's Little Toe
Posts: 20
Joined: 23 Sep 2011, 10:19

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

Post by drees5761 »

Tiger On The Beat Blu ray. 6 out of 10...True HD for a change, comedy spoils a lot of it but the fights, especially the end make up for it.
The Raid: 8.5 out of 10. Great balls to the wall action, if you didn't like this then i suggest you find another genre to follow!
Lady Hermit. 6.5 out of 10. Good old fashioned swordplay with some bloody confrontations. Saw the USA release which was mono not like the awful 5.1 remix of the HK disc.

User avatar
Markgway
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 19972
Joined: 18 Feb 2005, 02:04

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

Post by Markgway »

drees5761 wrote:Detective Dee wasn't that bad, geez i think you guys are getting ultra fussy... :D
I would give it 7 out of 10
That's very generous of you. Maybe you're just easy pleased?

I really wanted to like the film. I prayed for a return to form from Tsui Hark (who between the mid 80s and mid 90s was one of my favourite directors).

But the plot was drivel, the CGI relentless (and lousy). Even the normally charismatic Andy Lau was bland.

Huge disappointment.
drees5761 wrote:The Raid: 8.5 out of 10. Great balls to the wall action, if you didn't like this then i suggest you find another genre to follow!
I didn't much care for it. Wasn't awful by any means. But like most modern films the hyper-edited action and CGI bloodletting left me cold.

I'm perfectly happy following the action genre, thanks.
Image

User avatar
HungFist
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 10964
Joined: 14 Dec 2005, 15:50
Location: Japan
Contact:

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

Post by HungFist »

Hanging Garden (Japan, 2004) – 4/5
The final and best film Toshiaki Toyoda, who was one of most important Japanese discoveries of the 2000’s, made before the drug bust that set a temporary to his career. A family film satire disguised in visual poetry, but pulsing with pure punk, it’s very much The Family Game for the 2000’s. Toyoda even recreates the famous dinner scene – and tops it. A remake Hanging Garden is not, though, but a fully independent work by a director with a usually strong sense of own style and social commentary. It lacks the rock music of the director’s earlier works, but comes with a wicked screenplay and excellent performances.

Salvage Mice (Japan, 2012) – 1.5/5
Mitsuki Tanimura in a karate movie! Well, that sounded too good to work out. Tokusatsu veteran Ryuta Tasaki’s masked hero movie is a lazy effort, with sloppy technical execution leaving it several notches behind last year’s effective cheese karate burger K.G. The villain of the latter, Richard Heselton, dubbed in English here, is the film’s only convincing fighter. Newcomer Julia Nagano has potential, but the sound and visual department fail to insert enough iron into her little fists. Storyline and action choreography are second grade with no redeeming b-qualities, and the catchy Momoiro Clover song Contradiction, used in the film’s stylish trailer, is not found in the film.

Image Image

Yi-Long
Bruce Lee's Fist
Posts: 8616
Joined: 26 Oct 2004, 13:46
Location: Alkmaar, Holland

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

Post by Yi-Long »

Markgway wrote:
drees5761 wrote:Detective Dee wasn't that bad, geez i think you guys are getting ultra fussy... :D
I would give it 7 out of 10


But the plot was drivel, the CGI relentless (and lousy). Even the normally charismatic Andy Lau was bland.
Andy Lau is pretty bland in most of his movies, TBH.

Sometimes, a role fits that blandness, like Infernal Affairs, but usually he's just an extremely boring actor to watch.
Image
I was there, the big BNB blackout of november, 2008. We lost many that day...

User avatar
luckystars
Royal Tramp
Posts: 1893
Joined: 12 Sep 2005, 09:01

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

Post by luckystars »

Yi-Long wrote:
Markgway wrote:
drees5761 wrote:Detective Dee wasn't that bad, geez i think you guys are getting ultra fussy... :D
I would give it 7 out of 10


But the plot was drivel, the CGI relentless (and lousy). Even the normally charismatic Andy Lau was bland.
Andy Lau is pretty bland in most of his movies, TBH.

Sometimes, a role fits that blandness, like Infernal Affairs, but usually he's just an extremely boring actor to watch.
True. Andy Lau has pretty much zero appeal as a leading actor for me. He was good when working with Wong Kar-wai though, so maybe he needs more direction.
2010 - The return of the HK movie industry :)
Image

Post Reply