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  • 北斗無雙 Hokuto Musou

    Monday, Jan 11, 2010 6:55AM / Standard Entry

    being a hokuto no ken fan for almost 20 years, really look forward to this one!!


    Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=21brrk1MHuk


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  • AK100... should I?

    Wednesday, Dec 2, 2009 12:56PM / Standard Entry


    http://www.criterion.com/boxsets/678

    Should I...? My wallet has been bleeding nonstop recently... I do own most of the AK films on DVD or VCD and I have seen most of his films before, but this set looks too tempting...

    What makes thing worse, in addition to the dvds I mentioned last time, I did take advantage of a sale and got another box set of Cassavetes for about $45 (normal pricing is around $80~120)



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  • Some recent films and thoughts

    Wednesday, Nov 18, 2009 4:33PM / Standard Entry

    I've been spending more time at the cinema and on dvd recently, well, sometimes when you realize you are at the lower point of your life, and everything you do end up in vain, the best thing to do is probably just to sit back and enjoy a few movies and read some books to enrich your life, right?

    It's interesting that the last few movies I saw are all very good, I mean, usually I only get one good film out of nine or ten I see in a row, but somehow the last six I saw are all not bad.


    1. United Red Army (dir: Koji Wakamatsu)

    It's a docu-drama about the radical Japanese leftist student organization in the 70s and the outrageous Asama-Sanso incident. Listed as the no. 3 domestic movie of 2008 by the Japanese kinema journal (right after the oscar winning "departures" and my favorite "all around us", followed by "tokyo sonata" and "still walking"), i think it shows a really cruel yet sincere depiction of the red army. Although the film is more than 3 hours long and most of the scenes happen in merely a couple small cottages in the mountain and a holiday lodge, it never makes you feel boring as the drama is so absorbing and performance is so engaging.


    2.  City of Sadness (dir: Hou Hsiao-hsien)

    City of Sadness is always my favorite HHH's film. In terms of artistic achievement, perhaps "the Puppetmaster" is a better film that I admire more, but talking about viewing pleasure, this is definitely the one I enjoy most. Still remember the first time I saw it was many years ago in a cinema class, but I wasn't really a HHH fan at that time, so it didn't leave much an impression, later when I gotta learn to appreciate his cinema, I only gotta buy the dvd (which unfortunately is full screen and the image quality is quite mediocre), so I really felt great that I could see it again on the big screen... oh and btw, this is the 20th anniversary of "city of sadness", not sure if there's any special screening in taiwan too?


    3. Onibaba (dir: Kaneto Shindo)
     
    This is a really old Japanese period thriller from the 60s. I personally took advantage of a criterion dvd sale and this is one of the dvd I bought. Shindo's independent films are always interesting, what I like about his films is his rich cinematic language, he's always able to convey his ideas with very limited use of dialogue and through careful framing, composition and lighting, symbolic images and inventive use of music, there are so much to learn from his films. Onibaba is definitely one of his best, sure the dialogue-free "naked island" is another one shouldn't be missed...


    4. The Children are watching us (dir: Vittorio De Sica)

    I always enjoy De Sica's films, "Bicycle Thieves", "Umberto D" are all so unforgettable, and so I ordered this dvd as well. Even though it isn't part of his neo-realism series (this film was made during the war, before the neo-realism movement), but still, the story and acting are very good, just like his later films, it's told from the perspective of a kid (which somehow reminds me of Ozu's films), it tells how the failure of a marriage can impact the heart of the children, well not exactly anything new, but I dunno, it just left a very very strong impression on me after viewing.



    5. Nigt and Fog (dir: Ann Hui)

    I just saw it on DVD. Another nice drama by veteran director Ann Hui. The only complaint is that Simon Yam is too smart looking as the fuked up father, I know his performance is very good, but still...Anyway, I like the film, but then I like "The Way We Are" even more...



    6. The Message (dir: Chen Kuo-fu, Gao Qun-shu)

    Very entetaining commercial film, better than I expected. The beginning setup reminds me of Kindaichi a bit. Acting is superb, Zhou Xun, Li Bingbing, Zhang Hanyu and even Alec Su are dynamic, the only weakness is probably the ending, which is too explanatory and preachy...


    As I said, I just ordered a box of criterion dvd, films still waiting to be viewed are:
    Mouchette (dir: Robert Bresson)
    Empire of Passion (dir: Nagisa Oshima)
    2 or 3 Things I know about her (dir: Jean Luc Godard)
    Patriotism (dir: Yukio Mishima)
    Salo (dir: Pier Paolo Pasolini)
    Bergman Island

    Hopefully all of them would be good too...

    Now I am stil thinking if I should make a second order, considering if I should get the John Cassavetes five films box set.......but I am going broke....



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  • Cinespot on Facebook now!

    Monday, Nov 2, 2009 12:03PM / Standard Entry


    Cinespot on Facebook!


    Some of you may know that apart form making films, I am also a writer and admin of Cinespot.com, a bilingual Asian cinema website. I just set up a fan page for Cinespot.com on Facebook. The purpose of the page is to connect friends and fans of Cinespot. If you happen to be a supporter or reader of Cinespot, please join the fan page.

    Actually, I am kinda new to this fan page thing, so I am still wondering what can be done through the page. If you have any good idea, let me know. As of now, I think it provides a good venue for our reader to discuss films. I am also trying to get the writers of Cinespot to join in, so if you have comments or questions about specific writers' reviews or articles, you can talk to them directly.

    Since Cinespot sometimes get gift offer from film company, the fan page can be used for giveaway offer in the future as well... anyway, in the mean time, just join and see how many fans we can gather!

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cinespot/194672246367

    部分朋友可能都知道﹐我除了拍短片外﹐也是雙語電影網站Cinespot.com的作者和管理員。近日我剛為Cinespot.com在Facebook架設了一個Fan Page。這個Page的目的是希望加強和Cinespot讀者及朋友們的聯繫與交流。如果您是Cinespot的支持者或讀者﹐記謹立即加入喇!

    話說回來﹐對於Fan Page這個玩意﹐其實我仍處於摸索的階段。究竟能夠透過Fan Page做什麼﹐也在研究中。目前來說﹐我想這提供了一個不錯的互動平台﹐讓Cinespot的多位作者和讀者交流電影心得。所以如果您對Cinespot的文章有何意見或問題﹐也可在Fan Page的討論版提出。

    另外﹐Cinespot不時會獲得一些和電影公司合作送禮的計劃﹐或許也可利用Fan Page幫忙籌劃送禮吧。無論如何﹐有興趣的讀者或一直支持Cinespot的朋友﹐歡迎立即加入Fan Page。

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cinespot/194672246367

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  • Back from Philadelphia

    Saturday, Oct 17, 2009 11:37AM / Standard Entry


    me with other fellow filmmakers from the short film program

    I'm just back from Philadelphia, had a great time there looking around and attending the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival.

    I spent a day traveling around the downtown, visiting places like the city hall, Chinatown, Museum of Art (the Rocky steps), UPenn and more... Check the photo album I just uploaded for pics.

    The film festival was great, it's a growing fest (this year was the 2nd one) but everyone was passionate about the screenings and cared about the films, so I definitely enjoyed it!



    Rocky is like legend in Philly..


    You can still feel his influence today, these kids're running up the steps, imitating Rocky...

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