- This week in cinemas: 'Firestorm' (3D, Hong Kong)
- Interview: Director Anthony Chen on 'Ilo Ilo'
- 'The Raid 2: Berandal' (Indonesia) teaser released
- Japanese Film Fest: Full Syd/Mel program
- This week in cinemas: 'The Act of Killing'
- This week in cinemas: 'Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon' (China)
- This week in cinemas: 'Out of Inferno' (Hong Kong, China)
- International Chinese Film Festival 2013 (Sydney, Melbourne)
- This week in cinemas: 'My Lucky Star' (China)
- Japanese Film Festival 2013
Reviews by Country
From the outset, Cold War is an ambitious effort. Its big budget execution sets a bar that the narrative tries – and in some respects fails – to achieve with its high-scale intrigue and cast of dozens. For a non-Chinese speaking audience it’s not the easiest thriller to follow (I couldn’t even guess at what it’s like for the Chinese speaking one), which detracts a little from the overall enjoyment of the tense and tightly paced drama.
To set the … (read more)
It might be safe to say that the late 80′s and the early 90′s was possibly the high point for Hong Kong crime cinema. Sure, there’s been a lot of brilliant flicks since then (Johnny To probably responsible for more than his fair share) but the hey day of John Woo and Ringo Lam just somehow stands out as some of the freshest, most electrifying cinema around. True, the fairly standard criminal betrayed revenge story Full Contact wasn’t the most … (read more)
Johnny Mak’s powerful 1984 crime film Long Arm of The Law was a film for its time and a big box-office hit that year. Nearly thirty years later it stands the test of time extremely well and looks to be having a new lease on life, with recent incarnations on Blu-Ray, DVD and theatrically.
An entertaining, family-friendly mishmash of martial arts picture and Indiana Jones-style treasure hunt, Wu Dang shows off some serious talent both in front of and behind the camera, coupled with a stunning setting way up amongst the Taoist temples in the Wudang Mountains.
Vincent Zhao returns to the role of leading man after 2010′s True Legend, which was his first cinema appearance in quite some time, after spending most of the decade prior in television in Hong Kong and … (read more)
Wong Yuen Yeung (Nick Cheung) gets a get-outta-jail card after doing 20 years for the rape and murder of a teenage girl called Yi Wan. He comes across Tsui Suet (Janice Man), a classical pianist who looks the spit of Yi Wan, and, like wow, crazy, she has the same father, Tsui Hon Lam (Michael Wong). So naturally Yeung follows her to her luxury home in the hills she shares with her parents and goes all creepily stalker, spying on … (read more)
From Melbourne With Love
A survey of the modest collection of obsolete optical media in my apartment reveals 32 Stephen Chow titles, a ratio of at least 5:1 over any other actor or director. Rather than being an irrelevant humblebrag on my part, this elucidates the fact that there is a global audience for Hong Kong’s popular cinema and — more importantly — Chow, whom I still consider its shining star. My take on his most recent film, Journey to … (read more)
As if we needed confirmation that Jackie Chan has been drinking Beijing’s Kool-Aid, the one-two punch of his recent remarks in the Hong Kong media and the ghastly and cynical CZ12 should put any queries to rest. Right before the film was released, Chan started shooting his mouth off about how Hongkongers complain too much and about how they’re just too quick to exercise their right to free speech and protest. He suggested the government look at putting some kind … (read more)
A solitary man in a white fedora weaves his way among dozens of nameless fighters as a silver rain cascades down around them. The slick street is illuminated by a single lamp, which casts off an ethereal glow. A blur of fists erupts and the bodies start to fall — elegantly in slow motion. We hear a comment that summarises the martial arts in two words: horizontal and vertical. Whoever remains standing, wins. The solitary man walks into the rain … (read more)