Enchanting Shadows: The Films of the Shaw Brothers

Shaw Brothers logo

The recent passing of Chinese business tycoon Run Run Shaw was an event well covered by the world’s media. The obituaries for the 106 year old entrepreneur mainly concentrated on his business acumen and life-long philanthropy.

Like many successful industrialists, Run Run Shaw’s public largess would not have been possible without the profits generated by his companies, in particular the Shaw Brothers movie studio.

For more than a twenty year period from the late 1950s, Run Run Shaw helped create … (read more)

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Giveaway: Tickets to see ‘The Raid 2′ (Closed)

The Raid 2 (Australian Poster)

Arriving in Aussie cinemas (twin hammers at the ready, from the look of the poster!) on March 28 is Indonesian film The Raid 2, director Gareth Evans’ follow-up to his 2011 action flick The Raid.

The original film was an impressive piece of martial arts cinema given its tiny budget and cast of relative unknowns, and Evans suggested in interviews at the time (like the one we did) that the sequel would have the wider scope and … (read more)

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The Wind Rises (2013)

(from , dir: )
The Wind Rises

The Wind Rises is Hayao Miyazaki’s first return to the director’s chair in five years (since Ponyo) and — if his statements in interviews are taken at face value — his final feature film in a career spanning six decades in Japanese animation. If that is indeed the case, it is in many ways a fitting swansong: it’s a layered, nuanced film that tells a story that is definitively Japanese yet universal, rooted in history yet filled with flights … (read more)

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Harlock: Space Pirate (2013)

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Harlock: Space Pirate

The Nordic premiere of Harlock: Space Pirate at the last Stockholm International Film Festival packed a full house. This futuristic, intergalactic pirate caper, set around the turn of the 3rd millennium, finds the infamous and (thought-to-be) immortal Captain Harlock (Shun Oguri) commandeering the mysterious spaceship Arcadia, the last of its kind and powered by dark matter — a self-generating energy based substance that comes in pretty handy in spaceship battle damage predicaments.

Earth has been declared a sanctuary in this … (read more)

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This week in cinemas: ‘The Wind Rises’ (Japan, anime)

The Wind Rises

This week in Aussie cinemas we have the long-awaited new film from famed Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki, The Wind Rises (風立ちぬ, Kaze Tachinu). The story follows an aircraft engineer in pre-war Japan, loosely based on Jiro Horikoshi, the designer of the Zero fighter plane used in WWII, and Miyazaki had said at one point that it would be his final film.

(I believe I’ve read somewhere that he’s since decided not to retire quite so soon — here’s hoping … (read more)

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More King Hu screening in Canberra

A Touch of Zen

Hot on the heels of Melbourne Cinémathèque’s screening of King Hu’s classic A Touch of Zen comes three screenings of films by the great director in Canberra, at the National Film and Sound Archive’s Arc Cinema.

The films on display are:

Dragon Gate Inn on Sat 8 March: the original film, remade by Tsui Hark twice and one of the classics of Chinese action cinema.
A Touch of Zen(read more) on Sun 9 March: unarguably King Hu’s most revered film, running

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This week in cinemas: ‘From Vegas to Macau’ (Hong Kong)

From Vegas to Macau

Opening tomorrow, Thursday 6 February, is the fourth installment (depending on how you count!) of Wong Jing’s God of Gamblers film series, starring Chow Yun-fat — the first time he’s returned to the character since 1994. (Chow fans are spoilt for choice right now, what with this film and The Monkey King in cinemas!)

Rounding out the cast are Nicholas Tse, Chapman To and Jing Tian, and it’s in cinemas in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

Here’s an absolute … (read more)

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Giveaway: Tickets to see ‘The Wind Rises’ in cinemas! (closed)

The Wind Rises

It’s our first competition of the year!

Courtesy of Madman Entertainment, we have five double passes to give away to anime maestro Hayao Miyazaki’s latest film, The Wind Rises, when it hits cinemas on February 27!

Intriguingly, this film is more of a historical piece than usual: it’s a fictionalised biography of Jiro Horikoshi, designer of the Zero aircraft used by the Japanese in World War II. It’s already done extremely well domestically, and it has been nominated for … (read more)

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