Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie (2012)

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Naruto_the_Movie-_Road_to_Ninja's_main_poster

One of the questions that apparently many Japanese are asked – at least if you go by the awesome pre-recorded Q&A session that ran before the Gold Coast Film Festival’s screening of Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie and featured the voice actors for both Naruto (Junko Takeuchi) and Kakashi (Kazuhiko Inoue) – is why do foreigners like anime?

It’s an interesting question, in fact. Why do we like anime (well, those of us who are fans at least)? The … (read more)

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This week in cinemas: ‘That Demon Within’ (Hong Kong)

That Demon Within

This week in Aussie cinemas we have the latest thriller from Hong Kong director Dante Lam (last year’s Unbeatable, The Viral Factor, Beast Cops).

It’s a psychologically fraught cop-vs-criminal number starring Daniel Wu and Nick Cheung — who’s just won best actor at the HK Film Awards for his role in Unbeatable, incidentally. This review from Maggie Lee at Variety suggests that it’s director Lam’s darkest work yet, which is definitely quite a call. (You don’t … (read more)

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Unforgiven (2013)

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unforgiven_poster

It’s nice to see some turn about being fair play in Lee Sang Il’s Japanese remake of Clint Eastwood’s 1992 cowboy eulogy, The Unforgiven, and in some historical sense it is in fact satisfyingly apt. The samurai period film and the American western have a long history of inter-relatedness, both thematically and as a matter of record. In 1954, inspired by the early films of American western directors like Howard Hawks and John Ford, Akira Kurosawa made what is … (read more)

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Canopy (2013)

Canopy (Australian poster)

With its Australian premiere this week at the Gold Coast Film Festival, Canopy is an Australian-Singaporean co-production that was a passion project eight years in the making for director Aaron Wilson and producer Katrina Fleming.

Set during the days of the Battle of Singapore in 1942, the film opens with the plane of WWII RAAF pilot Jim (Khan Chittenden) being shot down over the island. He parachutes out to safety, only to find himself in the thick of a … (read more)

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The Raid 2: Berandal (2014)

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The Raid 2 (Australian Poster)

Three years ago, director Gareth Evans’ second film, The Raid arrived in Aussie cinemas with a bang. It’s the first Indonesian film I can remember ever getting a wide release here (and in North America, where it was first retitled The Raid: Redemption and given a soundtrack workover), and it won a great deal of attention from critics and dyed-in-the-wool action cinema fans. Evans had managed to craft a taut, focused genre film fusing well-trodden Hollywood tropes with the harder … (read more)

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GCFF 2014 on now!

The Unforgiven

With the weather the way it’s been (warm and muggy when not raining) it’s not like you need an excuse to go to the beach, but if you do, the great Gold Coast Film Festival is one of the best. It kicks off tomorrow, and again the GCFF’s partnership with Supanova and their commitment to regional and cult film means that there’s some great Asian cinema to be had!

From China, the most recent rendition of that timeless classic The (read more)

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From Vegas to Macau (2014)

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From Vegas to Macau

Sequels, Prequels, Send-ups and Spin-offs: Director Wong Jing finds Chow Yun Fat a new tuxedo amongst his usual box of tricks.

The recent release of From Vegas to Macau harks back to Hong Kong’s gambling fad of the early 1990s. Wong Jing, director of the original God of Gamblers series, offers up a super-silly pastiche of recycled gags that should appeal to fans of classic Hong Kong gambling films. Unfortunately, this time Chow Yun Fat does not play suave gamesman … (read more)

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This week in cinemas: ‘The Raid 2′

The Raid 2 (Australian Poster)

Alright, so everyone who reads Heroic Cinema regularly knows this one is due out soon; we’ve posted trailers, given away double passes…. but this week’s the week.

Indonesian martial arts film The Raid 2: Berandal (Indonesian for “Thug”, according to Wikipedia) arrives in Australian cinemas this Friday, March 28, and it looks like it’ll make a lot of action cinema fans sit up and take notice.

Directed by Gareth Evans, it’s his follow-up to low-budget locked-building actioner The Raid(read more)

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