Blog Archives

Vulgaria (2012)

Director Pang Ho-Cheung is one of Hong Kong cinema’s chameleons. If you’re unfamiliar with his work, he is well worth discovering. In just over a decade he has made quality and sophisticated dramas like Isabella and Beyond our Ken, which sit comfortably with his cunning and often ground breaking (and at times violent) satires such as You Shoot, I Shoot and Dream Home. His recent RomComs Love in a Puff and Love in the Buff are intelligent and … (read more)

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Isabella (2006)

Isabella was a pleasant surprise of a film for me. Perhaps it was due to my expectations. I didn’t expect to like it, and I admit that’s because the minute I find out a film is about an older guy and a beautiful young girl, I’m a bit bored; I’m in the wrong demographic to see the appeal. So no, I didn’t really expect to like it. But Isabella surprised me because it wasn’t really what I expected after all. … (read more)

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Men Suddenly In Black (2003)

Men Suddenly in Black is a one-joke yet consistently funny spoof of Hong Kong gangster movies. I should probably make it clear from the outset that I have virtually no standards when it comes to the send-up comedy genre, as I find the jokes that don’t work frequently funnier than the ones that do. So if you load your movie with transparently stupid references to other movies and genre conventions, you’re unlikely to get an entirely bad review out of … (read more)

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Beyond Our Ken (2004)

I’ve watched this film twice now, and it’s still difficult to find something appropriate to say about it. That’s not because it’s a bad film: it isn’t. But it is a film that defies pigeonholing, like an extremely knobbly peg in any sort of hole. But as it’s fallen to me to review it, I’d better give it a try.

For starters, there’s a lot here that’s reminiscent of other directors. The opening credits, block characters on hot pink background, … (read more)

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AV (2005)

Ah hah! Porn. Ain’t it just wacky. No matter how much we try to deny it exists or think we’re above it, there it is – in our face.

Of course, this is the internet and it takes a serious problem of denial to not believe the vast majority of hard drives contain some pornographic material.

Not being one of those (in denial – not with a clean hard drive) I still approached AV with a bit of trepidation. After … (read more)

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You Shoot I Shoot (2002)

The film gives a knowing nod to the ice cool school of hired killer flicks from Le Samourai to The Killer, and then promptly drills it right between the eyes – even the hitman’s mother-in-law has someone she wants wacked. Edmund Pang directs his own screenplay with first-time director energy, simultaneously skewering almost every crime film ever made as well as the whole film-making process. The gags roll as often as the heads, thanks to the perfect comic timing … (read more)

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