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

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According to the HKFA, The Skyhawk was originally released in Cantonese.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Masterofoneinchpunch »

Markgway wrote:According to the HKFA, The Skyhawk was originally released in Cantonese.
Interesting (I'm not sure I like the newer format of the searching for HKFA; thanks for the info.) I was suspecting that. They have a VCD in holding so it must be on there. Makes me wish they had all three dubs on that release as I would have preferred watching it in Cantonese.

In the synopsis on HKFA they call him The Shyhawk :).

I like the 黃飛鴻少林拳 (Wong Fei-hung Shaolin Fist) title better.

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Yeah, the new HKFA search is a pain in the ass. Why can't they leave well enough alone??
I believe that the Joy Sales DVD of The Skyhawk contains the Cantonese track.
It's worth having if only because Kwan Tak-Hing dubs his own voice (someone else on the Mandarin track).

The Skyhawk was only one of three (that I know of) martial arts films to be released in Cantonese in 1974. The other two were Rivals of Kung Fu (old school Shaw Bros) and The Crazy Instructor (piece of shit starring the odious James Yi).
The Tea House (modern day Shaws) was also Cantonese, but it's not really a martial arts film, more a triad action-drama.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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(not related to anything discussed recently but) Did Nora Miao ever do anything even remotely sexy in her HK movies? I was just surprised by the generous cleavage in Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok Drug Triangle...

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

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HungFist wrote:(not related to anything discussed recently but) Did Nora Miao ever do anything even remotely sexy in her HK movies? I was just surprised by the generous cleavage in Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok Drug Triangle...
The uncut version of Clans of Intrigue had Nora in a lesbian kiss.
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Post by Ivan Drago »

HungFist wrote:(not related to anything discussed recently but) Did Nora Miao ever do anything even remotely sexy in her HK movies? I was just surprised by the generous cleavage in Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok Drug Triangle...
She does get down to her undergarments in Snake & Crane Arts of Shaolin, but Jackie chickens out...
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Ivan Drago wrote:
HungFist wrote:(not related to anything discussed recently but) Did Nora Miao ever do anything even remotely sexy in her HK movies? I was just surprised by the generous cleavage in Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok Drug Triangle...
She does get down to her undergarments in Snake & Crane Arts of Shaolin, but Jackie chickens out...
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She's supposed to have a kissing scene with Sonny Chiba in the Hong Kong version of Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok. A rumor based on a HK still in which they are about to kiss. It's not in the JP print. Maybe Sonny chickened out, too.

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

Post by grim_tales »

Markgway wrote:
HungFist wrote:(not related to anything discussed recently but) Did Nora Miao ever do anything even remotely sexy in her HK movies? I was just surprised by the generous cleavage in Tokyo-Seoul-Bangkok Drug Triangle...
The uncut version of Clans of Intrigue had Nora in a lesbian kiss.
Is the HK DVD/BD uncut? Intriguing... :)
I looked that up on IMDB and apparently Legend of the Bat is also known as Clans of Intrigue.

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grim_tales wrote:
Markgway wrote:The uncut version of Clans of Intrigue had Nora in a lesbian kiss.
Is the HK DVD/BD uncut? Intriguing... :)
No, the Celestial remasters are cut.
You'll just have to imagine it, unless you have that rare camjob boot.
I looked that up on IMDB and apparently Legend of the Bat is also known as Clans of Intrigue.
No, Legend of the Bat is a sequel to Clans of Intrigue.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Masterofoneinchpunch »

Moonlight Sword and Jade Lion (1977: Karl Liao: Taiwan):

Not many comments on this film on this site. A couple of notables is Morgoth calling this “a real stinker” (which it is) and Golden Dragon Yin-Yang considering it a masterpiece (not even close.) Mark Pollard wrote a review on it. He also is not a fan of it (he gets the year of the film wrong.)

There are good films with meandering plots like The Big Sleep and To Have and Have Not. They keys are to keep things interesting. When this Taiwanese film is at its best is when there is exploding weaponry, fancy knives that shoot and Angela Mao’s elongating and shortening spear (could there be a Freudian context, nah.) There is two scenes I did like: one involves a showdown early between Mao and Don Wong Tao (this one is particularly aggravating because it teases you that you might see more shapes and you might get more action than you do; it is also a little goofy which does not fit the tone of most of the film, notice that Mao works with Don Wong on several films in 1977) and the other between Mao and the Doris Lung led exploding flower commandos which are ugly guys who are supposed to be girls. But with too many new characters in a scriptless film, no budget, an obvious bad guy and an obvious ruse with not enough action this is as Mo would call it “a real stinker.” This movie is a real good example of make-it-up-as-you-go-along.

HKFA entry (synopsis is wrong)

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

Post by Yi-Long »

Watched The Man from Nowhere again last week, when my girlfriend stayed over. She hadn't seen it yet.

Korean pawn-shop guy befriends a little girl, who's got a mother who fucks up and pisses off the wrong people. Kid gets kidnapped. Pawn-shop guy turns out to be ex GI-Joe, and goes after the bad guys, while the cops are trying to figure out what the hell is going on.

It takes a while to get going, and of course the story is a bit silly and the bad guys come straight out of a comic book, but it's still a hugely entertaining and bad-ass movie, with some great gruesome action. Won Bin does a good job as the cool guy, although the role isn't that demanding, acting-wise.

8/10
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Markgway »

Masterofoneinchpunch wrote:Moonlight Sword and Jade Lion (1977: Karl Liao: Taiwan):
Saw it years ago... didn't like it.

Gave it *½
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Masterofoneinchpunch »

Markgway wrote:
Masterofoneinchpunch wrote:Moonlight Sword and Jade Lion (1977: Karl Liao: Taiwan):
Saw it years ago... didn't like it.

Gave it *½
Even that might be generous. It is one of those films where I felt better time could have been spent (I hate feeling that way :D).

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Post by Masterofoneinchpunch »

some comments on:

Eat Drink Man Woman (1994: Ang Lee: Taiwan):

This is a nice tale of three sisters and a widowed dad in the third of the “Father Knows Best” trilogy (Pushing Hands and The Wedding Banquet are the other two; I have seen the second but not the first). The dad Chu is a famous chef, however he has lost his taste and relies upon his friend and coworker Old Wen (Jui Wang.) He makes an elaborate dinner for them every Sunday which they refer it as the “torture chamber.” His dinners look quite good, but it is seems almost blasphemous how the daughters react to all his work for them. It is with his food that he tries to communicate his love for them, though you can see his stoicism (Confucian ideal) in dealing with his daughters or least his ineptitude in that area.

This is a well-made film, but it is not always successful in its approach with dealing with the daughters. The youngest one is almost an afterthought except for one pertinent moment at the dinner table. There is an irony with several of the relationships, sometimes making certain announcements force-fed. Lee thinks he is going to trick you one way, but leads you another. It did not always work for me (as I could see it coming and it just seems forced; it is a major plot point at the end so I will not spoil it.) When it does as with the eldest daughter Yang Kuei-mei’s Christian character Jia-jen and her clumsy but burdgeoning relationship with a gym instructor or Chu’s friendship with Old Wen this is a wonderful film. A movie I should have seen years ago.

This was remade in 2001 as Tortilla Soup.

I did not realize until today that the MGM R1 was OOP. I hope this gets picked up by Criterion. This probably has one of the more misleading taglines on the cover “It’s hard to tell where sex stops and food begins.” It is also probably best not to read the box cover either (must learn to stop doing that) because it gives away too much information.

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

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Masterofoneinchpunch wrote:“It’s hard to tell where sex stops and food begins.”
:lol:

Wasn't that 9½ Weeks?
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

Post by Masterofoneinchpunch »

Markgway wrote:
Masterofoneinchpunch wrote:“It’s hard to tell where sex stops and food begins.”
:lol:

Wasn't that 9½ Weeks?
Close. I think that was "It’s hard to tell where sex stops." I never got around to the sequel though.

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Post by saltysam »

Wu Xia 2/5 Donnie Yen effort sort of inspired possibly by A History Of Violence, great to see Jimmy Wang Yu back in action but the film as a whole was rather dull i found. i watched the 115 min NZ blu-ray,i believe the uk/usa releases are 96 minutes
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Some comments and small spoilers (third paragraph):

A Simple Life (2012: Ann Hui: Hong Kong)

If I happened to have viewed this on time it would have been in my top 10 movies of 2012. I have only viewed a few Ann Hui movies, something I hope to remedy in the near future, and her July Rhapsody was in my top 50 Hong Kong movies of all-time. But her reputation is quite large within Hong Kong critic circles and has been expanding over the years. This film seems to have done more for her reputation with western critics than any of her previous movies.

It is a moving tale about the interdependence of Roger Leung (Andy Lau) and his amah Ah Tao (Deannie Yip Tak-han: The Owl and Dumbo). Ah Tao has taken care of Leung and his family (who have moved on elsewhere including immigrating to the United States) for several decades. Leung has relied on her all of his life. But she has had a stroke, not a completely debilitating one, but one where she expects to get back 80 percent of her strength. Instead of relying on Leung she goes to an elderly home (reminding me of the phrase of Mike’s Dad in the tv show The Middle “I don’t wanna be a bother.”) There is mention of the juxtaposition in the film because Ah Tao had taken care of Leung through his heart issues and now Ah Tao needs taken care of. But it is not a complete juxtaposition because Ah Tao will not allow herself to be a burden to Roger (and he might not be capable of taking care of her.)

There is an interesting and effective use of ellipses similar to the use of Jane Campion’s use in An Angel at my Table. Sometimes it is startling as in the second stroke here. But we are given enough information to understand what has happened and at that point more scenes would have been repeating unnecessary information. The second stroke was foreshadowed in several statements throughout the film so it was expected.

There are a lot of cameos here. The most interesting are Sammo Hung and Tsui Hark pretty much playing themselves. I can easily see Tsui use that tactic for dealing with Mainland budget money he describes in this film.

The acting between Andy Lau and Deannie Yip is superb. It is a touching symbiotic relationship. Ann Hui’s cinematic direction is quite good and an underrated facet of hers. She captures all facets of the nursing home in a realistic style and yet intriguing in the camera work with its composition and often use of reflecting light and objects in the foreground. It is as superlative movie.

David Bordwell on A Simple Life (some spoilers).
Roger Ebert’s Review.
In Film Comment May/June 2014 Grady Hendrix article “Milestones list: Key Hong Kong Movies 1996 – 2013”

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Post by Markgway »

Agreed. The best HK movie of 2012.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Caught two films in the Yuzo Kayama retrospective in Jimbocho in Tokyo

Contract Killer (Japan, 1968) [35mm] - 2.5/5
Two professional killers battle in a highly stylized and very 1960’s action drama. The film opens quite well and can get pretty trippy along the way, including a bizarre dance sequence set in a hotel room, but the ending doesn’t live up to the expectations. Despite the two men being top sharp shooters, the film concludes with them running on a beach and shooting at each other from close distance. Yuzo Kayama stars, former Nikkatsu starlet Ruriko Asaoka plays his girlfriend.

The Creature Called Man (Japan, 1970) [35mm] – 3.5/5
Here’s a Toho action film John Woo has probably seen more than once. It follows a policeman who is determined to stop a professional killer who has been hired to assassinate a political figure. The killer then, unexpectedly, falls in love with a lonely American woman. It all leads to a heroic bloodshed finale in which both men put half dozen bullet holes into each other. Add slow motion, freeze frame, jazz tunes on the soundtrack, mutual respect between two professionals, and a car that is (nearly?) identical to the one Tony Leung drive in Hard Boiled. The film starts a bit slow and does have its clumsy moments, but it keeps getting better and better. The last 20 minutes is superb. There’s also a lot of English dialogue. Lead actor Jiro Tamiya either had some skills to begin with, or the common courtesy to learn to pronounce his lines. The same can’t be said about many Japanese actors these days.

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

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Moosic Lab 2014
Moosic Lab is an indie cinema movement which brings together young filmmakers and rising bands / artists. I’ve seen a small number of quite interesting works at Yubari, such as Fuck Me to the Moon and Idol is Dead, so I went to a couple of screenings when the event was held in Tokyo. Big mistake! From now on I will leave it to Yubari to find the gems.

Nobidorando (Japan, 2014) – 1/5
Music documentary featuring mostly talking heads and Shinjuku footage filmed from a moving car. Cinematic merits are non-existent.

Ankoman (Japan, 2014) – 1.5/5
Low budget indie drama features surprisingly much sex, but is frustratingly amateurish. Dialogue is often difficult to hear and director Yutaro Nakamura tries to steal the show with an endless rant in his supporting role. The main characters are two female roommates, both pretty and going naked countless times. As a slice of life drama it starts alright, but becomes irritatingly loud with constant screaming and crying towards the end.

Iruka sjoho da, watashi wa (Japan, 2014) – 1.5/5
A girl with psychic powers battles an evil schoolgirl with similar powers. Over-stylized and flashy mini-budget Japan “cult” cinema resembling the works of Tetsuya Nakashima (Kamikaze Girls) but far more amateurish and with added CGI splatter. A pretty miserable film with amazingly cool animated opening and ending credits sequences.

Koibun X (Japan, 2014) – 2.5/5
The first film in this the 2014 Moosic Lab set that didn’t suck. The storyline features a young man with no memory waking up in a park naked, then knocking out another man and stealing his clothes and identity, which starts a chain reaction of misunderstandings among young people who are dating each other and preparing for a rock concert. It’s a bit too cleaver on its own right, and has the feel of a film school work, but it’s actually rather enjoyable. Visually a bit bland (but not ugly), acting is not bad, music is kind of good, the girls are cute, and the film’s got heart. I went in expecting the worst, but this kind of won me over little by little.

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

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Masterofoneinchpunch wrote:Some comments and small spoilers (third paragraph):

A Simple Life (2012: Ann Hui: Hong Kong)

If I happened to have viewed this on time it would have been in my top 10 movies of 2012. I have only viewed a few Ann Hui movies, something I hope to remedy in the near future, and her July Rhapsody was in my top 50 Hong Kong movies of all-time. But her reputation is quite large within Hong Kong critic circles and has been expanding over the years. This film seems to have done more for her reputation with western critics than any of her previous movies.

It is a moving tale about the interdependence of Roger Leung (Andy Lau) and his amah Ah Tao (Deannie Yip Tak-han: The Owl and Dumbo). Ah Tao has taken care of Leung and his family (who have moved on elsewhere including immigrating to the United States) for several decades. Leung has relied on her all of his life. But she has had a stroke, not a completely debilitating one, but one where she expects to get back 80 percent of her strength. Instead of relying on Leung she goes to an elderly home (reminding me of the phrase of Mike’s Dad in the tv show The Middle “I don’t wanna be a bother.”) There is mention of the juxtaposition in the film because Ah Tao had taken care of Leung through his heart issues and now Ah Tao needs taken care of. But it is not a complete juxtaposition because Ah Tao will not allow herself to be a burden to Roger (and he might not be capable of taking care of her.)

There is an interesting and effective use of ellipses similar to the use of Jane Campion’s use in An Angel at my Table. Sometimes it is startling as in the second stroke here. But we are given enough information to understand what has happened and at that point more scenes would have been repeating unnecessary information. The second stroke was foreshadowed in several statements throughout the film so it was expected.

There are a lot of cameos here. The most interesting are Sammo Hung and Tsui Hark pretty much playing themselves. I can easily see Tsui use that tactic for dealing with Mainland budget money he describes in this film.

The acting between Andy Lau and Deannie Yip is superb. It is a touching symbiotic relationship. Ann Hui’s cinematic direction is quite good and an underrated facet of hers. She captures all facets of the nursing home in a realistic style and yet intriguing in the camera work with its composition and often use of reflecting light and objects in the foreground. It is as superlative movie.

David Bordwell on A Simple Life (some spoilers).
Roger Ebert’s Review.
In Film Comment May/June 2014 Grady Hendrix article “Milestones list: Key Hong Kong Movies 1996 – 2013”
This was on Dutch TV a week orso ago, so I caught a few glimpses of it, plus I know it was a big hit in Hong Kong. I believe my GF's dad even has a copy of it on DVD.

However, I absolutely can't stand Deannie Ip. And that's because of Crying Heart. And she's just one of those actresses who is always so 'suffering' in her roles, but really going OTT with it. Whever I see her face, I just zap away.
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Yi-Long wrote:Some comments and small spoilers (third paragraph):
However, I absolutely can't stand Deannie Ip. And that's because of Crying Heart. And she's just one of those actresses who is always so 'suffering' in her roles, but really going OTT with it. Whever I see her face, I just zap away.
:(

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

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Yi-Long wrote:However, I absolutely can't stand Deannie Ip.
Chi sin!! :geek:
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Re: What asian film/series have you just seen.. marks out of

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Yokai Monsters (Japan, 1968) [35mm] – 3/5
An entertaining family monster film. The Japanese title Yokai daisenso (The Great Yokai War) is the same as the 2005 Takashi Miike film which, however, isn’t much of a remake. Considering the title, there is very little in terms of yokai war except for the last 10 minutes.

Young Beast: Secret Pleasures (Japan, 1980) [35mm] – 1/5
A lousy attempt at arthouse Roman Porno by Kazunori Takeda. The true story follows a student who is bothered by his parents who keep fucking while he’s trying to study for entrance exams. He eventually goes crazy. Misery drama with unattractive people done without much skill. The erotic value is below zero as well.

Tokyo Tribe (Japan, 2014) [DCP] – 4/5
Against all expectations, Sion Sono’s battle rap musical is a pretty damn badass film for most of the time. The film is set in the dystopian Tokyo which is ruled by violent rapper gangs. The production design is breathtaking, the film is packed with stunning tracking shots and there’s pretty good HK and Thai influenced martial. Sono also doesn’t forget about ridiculously masculine mayhem and frequent female nudity. Unfortunately the film also comes with too many characters and too little story, which burden the film towards the end, and miserable CGI one must wonder why on earth does Sono keep putting it in his movies? Even then, the film is a blast!

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