9th February 2016, 05:29 PM
Excuses for a late reply ...
Yeah did watch a few asian films. I propose 2 Fantasy films & a Tony Jaa starrer which I liked.
9th February 2016 05:29 PM
9th February 2016, 06:08 PM
Two Chinese Fantasy Adventure Films
These two movies are adapted from the same source, a Chinese novel by the name 'Ghost Blows Out the Light'. Different directors & actors, the movies narrate the adventure of a trio grave hunters. Just like the modern dark age cinema, the directors try to mix in the reality to the myths. 'Movie 1' has a bit more Drama and self realisation sprinkled inside it, while the 2nd movie is pure fun with lot of action mixed with comedy. The effects were outstanding. The biggest problem is to follow the film with subtitles, but still they both are highly enjoyable, esp. with kids around - the fantasy parts are too good.
Eventhough adapted from a same source, the films are identical and are not by any chance continuations. I watched the 3D versions which was awesome.
Chronicles of the Ghostly Tribe [2015 : Mandarin : 2h]
Directed by Lu Chuan
When an archaeological site mysteriously explodes, a team of soldiers are sent to investigate. The group find themselves been guided by catastrophes to a place that existed only as a myth. Soon they discover that the happenings are real, and the attacks of the unknown had just begun, those which could be put to an end only by the chosen one, Hu Bayi. But the demon that the group unleashed had already chosen Shirley, the love of Hu Bayi, as it's assosiate. Torn apart on the living world, the prime struggle of Hu Bayi and his friend Wang is to close down the portal that should not have been discovered in the first place.
If you have played Resistence or Dead Space some images would be very similar. The beasts looks like the Chimera from Resistence Series, and the "Glowing Towers" resembles a lot the Dead Space Extraction's Red Markers. The film starts briskly followed by a wonderfully conceived Avalanche sequence. It holds a bit of mystry and suspence even in the proper living world. Its here the Drama installs itself and with the subtitles, it could be a bit hard to follow the motive behind the characters. And finally a stand-off with the beasts.
Chronicles of the Ghostly Tribe - Amusement Park
Mojin: The Lost Legend [2015 : Mandarin : 2h10m]
Directed by Wuershan
The adventurers Hu Bayi, Shirley & Wang live in exile when an unrefusable contract falls on to their hands - Quest to find the Equinox Flower. Divided by several personel reasons, the Grave Hunters should unite themsleves to crack the codes that lead to their destiny.
Mojin is more fun that Ghostly Tribe. There are many tickling moments in the film and the lead characters did a wonderful job.
Mojin: The Lost Legend - Mirthy Myth
Last edited by mappi; 9th February 2016 at 06:30 PM.
9th February 2016, 06:54 PM
SPL II: A Time for Consequences [2015 : Cantonese (Mandarin & Thai) : 2h : Action (Thriller)]
Country : China
Directed by Cheang Pou-soi (The Monkey King 1 & part 2 under production; both with Donnie Yen)
[The Monkey King (2014) motion picture & the animated picture - Monkey King: Hero Is Back (2015) - are a must for Kids, but as an adult it bepends how much the 'child' is still hopping inside oneself. I liked both the films and waiting for the Part 2 (2016), but can't really recomend it to everyone. Give it a try, maybe you will like them too.]
Starring : Tony Jaa & Wu Jing
An undercover cop, Chan, is tricked and as a result lands himself in a Thai Prison. A prison gaurd, Chatchai, is a victim of corruption as he engulfs it to save his dying daughter. The efforts of rescuing Chan goes in vain, when he is sold to the human organ trafficking international network. When Chatchai finds out that the prison is involved in anything other than law & order, he decides to join hands with Chan to stop a rich lord from accuring an object that could keep him alive.
The film is loaded with suprises and emotions. The action sequences are dry and raw which easily demands for viewer discretion. The way the characters are webbed together is wonderful and the film briskly advances to a 'fisty-fighty-final'. The major disappointment is the presence of Tony Jaa, he is more like an extended cameo. Even though Wu Jing does some extreme stunt sequences, the eyes are hungry to feed on Tony Jaa Karate. But there are couple of martial arts sequences in which Tony Jaa participates.
SPL II: A Time for Consequences - Gravity of Illness
Last edited by mappi; 9th February 2016 at 06:59 PM.
15th February 2016, 02:37 PM
Films From South Korea
Ha Jung-woo Double Dhamaka (Actor & Director)
[Other films : Kundo, Chaser, The Berlin Files (they are making Part-2 of this espionage thriller)]
Assassination [2015 : Korean : 2h20m : Thriller (Period Drama, Suspence, Action)]
Note : Should not be confused with The Assassin (2015) Chinese film.
Writen, Directed & Produced by Choi Dong-hoon
Starring : Jun Ji-hyun (The Berlin Files), Lee Jung-jae (New World), Ha Jung-woo
The South-Korean Film is identic to Inglourious Basterds, yet it's different as both the films are handled by different directors. Just like Hans Landa in the former, Assassination has Captain Yeom (Lee Jung-jae) and the scarificing Shosanna is played by Jun Ji-hyun as Ahn Ok-yun. Other characters draw huge similarities too, like Hawaii Pistol (Ha Jung-woo) who resembles The Apache and his side-kick The Bear Jew is reminded by Hawaii's Pistol's partner. And both films deals with Resistance group in an occupied country. Where Assassination is different is when the director, Choi Dong-hoon, sprinkles in double & triple agent espionage scenarios and covers occupied South Korean during both World Wars. And the incidents are ofcoarse different from the American film.
Year 1911, an ambitious Korean industralist Kang sets a deal with the rival Japanese who have occupied South Korea by force. The buisness-man learns about a resistence group member in his family, and in the chaos his twin childs get seperated. An assassin fails to kill his target, the Japanese Governor General. The present is actually 1949, post 2nd World War in independant Korea, where an invetigation on War Crimes is been interrogated. Cut to 1933, Assassination narrates the plans and executions of three freedom fighters to assassinate the Japanese Army General Kawaguchi and the Korean Buisnessman Kang. Admist the obvious dangers, a spy leaks their identity and a contract killer is on loose to take down the three assassins before they suceed in their mission.
Assasination has some quality decors, live action sequences, a bit of humour & romance and a lot of suspense mixed with action. Eventhough a lot of characters are introduced rapidly, about an hour into the fim they all get automatically registered leading to an thrilling standoff climax.
Assassination - Cream of the Fight
The Terror Live [2013 : Korean : 1h40m : Suspense (Thriller, Socio-Political)]
Written & Directed by Kim Byung-woo
Starring : Lee Geung-young & Ha Jung-woo
A desperate radio anchor, Yoon Young-hwa (Ha Jung-woo), finds the call made by a person who calls himself Park Jeong-min, an ultimate oppurtunity to shoot up in his carrier. He negociates the call details, which initially he dismissed as a prank call, with his boss and ex-wife to get back his lost professional & personal life set-up. The caller had just blown the Mapo Bridge crossing the Han River and claims to do more damage if his demands are not met. Entering into a conversational game with the annonymous caller, Yoon not only finds himself trapped inside the caller's universe, but also becomes a sitting duck over the conspiracy circling around buisness and politics.
Major portions of the film happens inside a cubical, and entirely depends on Ha Jung-woo. It is him we see almost in every single frame where he begins with arrogance while handling calls, clever while negociating with his boss, cunning while talking to the caller, angry when he learns that he is deceived, terrorised when being trapped and finally sits silently and shattered when the valcano of show-buzz erupts something else than just news - he slowly realises that he has become the victim for the sensation. All the tiny emotions are brought out by Ha Jung-woo, which makes the film advance briskly to a stunning climax.
The Terror Live - Tickle & Tingle
Last edited by mappi; 15th February 2016 at 02:51 PM.
26th February 2016, 01:51 PM
Two South Korean Films
The Suspect (Yonguija) [2013 : Korean : 2h20m : Action (Espionage, Drama)]
Directed by Won Shin-yun
Starring : Korean Actors
There is a bit of political tension inside the movie, but its for those who follow such news, for them and everyone else The Suspect is a packed film with Action, Thrills, Stunts & Drama, that accounts the life of a Spy who comes out from hiding to avenge the killer who had shattered his life. In the process, when his godfather is murdered, all evidence points at the Spy, who is again forced run, only this time he beedn chased by his military rival.
The tale is gripping and the actions are wonderfully filmed. The car chase & roof-top-running sequences were excellent with an apt backgorund score. I liked the post-climax a lot. The Suspect will certainly keep you entertained during a quite Satruday afternoon.
The Suspect - Reckoned Steps
Coin Locker Girl (aka) Chinatown [2015 : Korean : 1h50m : Drama (Film Noir)]
Directed by Han Jun-hee
Kim Hye-soo as MAA
Kim Go-eun as Il Young (10)
Maa, a nickname to the leader of a deadly local money laundering mafia in China Town, runs several illegal buisness with authority. Il Young is an orphan who joins Maa and grows up to become her hench(wo)man, amoung four others, to reclaim money from the debtors. When she meets Suk-hyun, a youngman whose father owes money to Maa, she starts to feel the feminity inside her hallow heart. Working strictly with rules, 'Pay money or Pay with your Body', Maa wants Suk-hyun eliminated and his organs taken as a compensation. The only person stopping her is Il Young.
Even when the movie talks about Korean mafia, there are less action sequences. The beauty is the performence of the artists admist tiny realistic brawls which are brutal (audience discretion is advised). The camera is used to put the audience is an ambience throughout the film. Coin Locker Girl is a beautiful film, with no mercy.
Coin Locker Girl - Closed Outside
Last edited by mappi; 26th February 2016 at 02:45 PM.
4th March 2016, 02:20 PM
2 South Korean Movies for the Week-End
Pirates [2014 : Korean : 2h10m : Adventure (Epic, Action, Comedy)]
Directed by Lee Seok-hoon
Starring : Son Ye-jin (super figure), Kim Nam-gil & Yoo Hae-jin (This guy is really funny)
A Korean Masala Film.
Pirates-the film, has action, comedy, tragedy, romance, adventure, revenge and much more stocked inside. Various groups - sea pirates, bandits, mercenary - embark into the sea to retrieve the royal seal lost in the waters. When they meet, the sea floor becomes a battle field.
There is a superb action block in a town where the Pirate leader chases the Bandit leader. The music is epic and the sword fights are sleek in style. The film is funny even with subtitles. The quality of special effects is great - the sequences with the Whale are class.
Get packed and take the sea with the Pirates.
Pirates - Fun on Waves
The Divine Move (Sin-ui Hansu) [2014 : Korean : 2h : Thriller (Action, Suspense, Drama)]
Directed by Jo Bum-gu
Starring : Lee Si-young (nick named "Belly Button") & Jung Woo-sung
The Divine Move is an interesting film with its ample share of violence (Kitchen Knife Brawls, etc., - viewers discretion is advised). Eventhough I had no clue about the board game, the principle plot of the film, the way its filmed and the music score easily allowed me to be a part of the procedings. The way the board, the coin and the players are filmed brings in the intensity, the actors and the BGM elevating the interest.
The film is about a board game called Baduk (a kind of checker game where you eat the opponents coins with your strategic moves across lines - that's what I made out anyway). The hero looses and left to rot. He comes back and takes revenge.
The thrills & suspense get the clock ticking and the fist fights are catchy. If you know this board game, it would add more involvement with the film, else, it is an entertaining watch.
The Divine Move - GO
22nd June 2016, 03:57 PM
Son Hyun-joo Twin Thrillers
Son Hyun-joo, a South Korean Actor, is a Television star before making into the movies. Here, I propose two films in which he stars as the lead actor :
The Phone [2015 : Korean : 1h50m : Thriller (Fantasy, Drama)]
Written and Directed by Kim Bong-ju
The Chronicles of Evil [2015 : Korean : 1h40m : Thriller (Crime, Drama)]
Written & Directed by Beak Woon-hak
Please do not look for any synopsis or trailers for both the films. Play the movie and let the story be the guide. The story intersection in The Phone and the plot twist in The Chronicles of Evil are outstanding. Son Hyun-joo, with his expressive eyes and natural movements, crackles on screen.
Last edited by mappi; 22nd June 2016 at 04:06 PM.
5th March 2017, 07:21 PM
Headshot [Indonesia: Indonesian/English: 2hrs : Martial Arts (Action)]
Release dates :
September 2016 : 22nd L'etrange Festival Paris / TIFF
December 2016 : Indonesia
March 2017 : World Wide (in selected countries/theatres)
Directed by Mo Brothers [Kimo Stamboel, Timo Tjahjanto (Writing Credits)]
Starring : Chelsea Islan, Julie Estelle, Iwo Uwais & Sunny Pang
"This story might sound familiar to you. Ishmael. There was once a rumour about a mysterious young man. Everytime he appears he leaves a scene of massacre that turns the whole beach blood red." - Headshot
Rated VERY R : due to high violence during action sequences, audience discretion is advised.
An artistic portrayal of gore and violence, using the Indonesian martial arts Pencak Silat, as seen in Iwo Uwais previous films (Raid 1, 2 and IPL2).
A boss of a drug cartel, Lee, escapes prison. An amnesiac with a headshot, named Ishmael by his treating doctor, is found on a beach shore. Ishmael swims in the the blood of his enemies to find his past.
Prison Escape - Hideout shootout - Hospital Hassle - Inside Bus Combat - Police Station Attack - Forest Fight - Beach Brawl - Bunker Duel => A stylised ultra violent action exhibition.
Mo Brothers excellent direction with original camera works (the arrest of Lee, breaking ankles, man vs sharp objects ...) and an outstanding soundtrack (the one during Police Station Attack is extrodinary) with an exceptional display of Pencak Silat martial arts (the hits & blocks and the artists quickness are amazing) admist breaking bones and torn flesh, makes Headshot a lovely display of awesomeness.
Beautiful Julie Estelle, cute Chelsea Islan, 'as usual energetic' Iwo Uwias, terror eyed Sunny Pang and his monsterous henchmen, together procreate a pretty deadly action film.
Headshot - Scarface
23rd April 2017, 06:41 PM
Railroad Tigers [2016 : Action Comedy : Mandarin / Japanese : 2h]
Country : China
Mandarin Title : Tie dao fei hu
Written & Directed by Ding Sheng (Little Big Soldier & Saving Mr. Wu)
Starring : Super Chan
During the Imperial Japanese military's full-scale invasion of China, railway porter Ma Yuan along with his Chinese associates called Tigers, ransack Japanese supplies from the trains to feed a group of famished population. When the Tigers come to know about a key military transportation route, Ma Yuan leads them to an adventure over the running train with a single aim of derailing the locomotive using the enemy's armaments amidst a fierce retaliation from the Japanese military leader.
Unlike other Chan films, Railroad Tigers is more on visual-effects than hand-to-hand combats. Nevertheless, Jackie pulls out his old tricks from his favorite sack to climb walls, swing ropes, to dive and roll, which are still as much fun to watch as it was about three decades back. The VFX supervision is well done, keeping in mind that most of the train sequences were generated during post-production.
The film has wonderful characters that are funny. Each use a different combat technique bringing in an enjoyable variation during action sequences. The stunts are great and as usual have the charm and funniness of a Jackie Chan film.
Ding Sheng induces a lot of comical events before stepping into Grande Finale. The whole episode over and inside the trains are shot and cut fluidly (of course mostly VFX shots), to be precise the assembly has been very well carried out.
Railroad Tigers is old school and it does not depend on modern narrative (focusing on structures and trends). It is much better than the American-Western Production with Jackie and approaches a bit towards the Korean-Western The Good, the Bad and the Weird (2008).
A lot of action happens inside the film and every single moment is enjoyable.
Railroad Tigers - Talk less!
Last edited by mappi; 23rd April 2017 at 06:45 PM.