- 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
When Gus Van Sant remade Alfred Hitchcock’s slasher masterpiece Psycho in 1998, I have to admit to a certain level of bemusement. Why, when the original film was perfect in both pitch and execution, would anyone anywhere feel the need to remake it almost shot for shot? It seemed like an exercise in redundancy and in the end I walked away from that film with the only opinion that made sense to me — Van Sant was such a Hitchcock … (read more)
Satoshi Miki’s Adrift In Tokyo ranks rather high on my to-see list of films. Why? Well, I have heard so many good things about it and it seems to be a fan and critic favourite, which to me is a sure sign of a good movie. While I am still waiting to tick that film off my list, I have had the chance to see the director’s new film, Ore, Ore, at this year’s Japanese Film Festival. My thoughts? … (read more)
If you have seen Chef Of The South Pole (JFF 2009’s Opening / Closing Film, in Melbourne / Sydney respectively) and thought it was nice, then you should definitely check out the latest from the film’s director Shuichi Okita - A Story Of Yonosuke. This nicely made film will give you that very nice feeling, and may even urge you to be nice to everybody around you. You see, I have crammed in as many ‘nice’ words as possible … (read more)
It’s been a while since I last saw a film coming out of Japan that I have found truly inventive, truly exciting and truly satisfying. Perhaps not since Love Exposure, the 4-hour masterpiece from Sion Sono, way back in 2008. So I can’t express how grateful I am to the Japanese Film Festival for the opportunity to see The Brain Man, the latest film from Tomoyuki Takimoto, director of JFF 2011’s crowd favourite Star Watching Dog.
Any … (read more)
Shield of Straw is the closest thing to a Hollywood blockbuster that prolific director Takashi Miike has ever made. Working with a large budget, Miike has created something big, bold and at times beautiful. Unfortunately, like many Hollywood films, Shield of Straw also suffers from issues of implausibility and often it simply feels overblown.
When the granddaughter of a wealthy man is brutally assaulted and murdered, he offers one billion yen to anyone who kills the alleged perpetrator, a known … (read more)
For those who enjoyed director Gareth Evans’ impressive debut with Indonesian action film The Raid (2011), Madman have posted a treat to their YouTube channel. Here’s the teaser for the sequel, The Raid 2: Berandal:
The sequel picks up right where the original left off, with martial artist Iko Uwais reprising the lead role — and I suspect from the looks of this they’ve scaled up the mayhem considerably. No official release date yet for Oz, but it’ll be … (read more)
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)