Thursday, January 29, 2015

Kung fu Jungle | 一个人的武林 [ Movie Review ]

Pitch: I wasn't keen on watching Kung Fu Jungle. Donnie Yen's previous action flick Special ID and Wang Baoqiang's villainous role in The Fairy Tale Killer were pretty disappointing. But after a fellow movie buff friend's recommendation, I decided to this movie a chance and see how bad can it be.

Plot: Three years ago, Mo Hahou (Donnie Yen) surrendered himself to the police for accidentally killing marital arts opponent. In prison, he saw a news report about an unusual murder case and offer his aid to Inspector Luk Yuen-Sun (Charlie Young) to capture the killer in exchange for his freedom. Will they be able to stop the killer (Wang Baoqiang) who is on a vicious killing spree?

Perspective: Kung Fu Jungle turns out to be much better than I had anticipated. Right at the start, I knew that there's something special about Kung Fu Jungle. The numerous cameos and the manner that this movie romanticize with martial arts / kung fu made viewing this movie a wonderful treat. The end credits confirms my suspicion that this is a homage to the unappreciated crews that gave us years of enjoyable Hong Kong action movies. It was heartfelt and long overdue, specially in an era that Hong Kong action movies are even more at risk these days.

Donnie Yen performance was much better in Kung Fu Jungle than Together and Special ID. It was mainly due to the fact that the filmmakers in this movie knew how to play to his strength. It also made me realize that Donnie Yen has limited acting range. He tends to excel in roles that calls for a restrained personality (eg. his characters in Ip Man and Peter Chan's Wu Xia). But when he tries to take on emotional roles or a wilder range of personality (like a undercover cops), it tends to end up as a awkward mess.

Wang Baoqiang was surprisingly good too. His craziness was well control and it didn't go over the top like his previous role in The Fair Tale Killer. It made it easier to sympathize with his character.I don't think he is an action star but there were some scenes that I wonder how it was filmed. Did he performed the stunts or was it expertly choreographed / edited to make him look like a menacing martial arts killer?

However, there are some faults with Kung Fu Jungle. Realism in police procedures was obviously threw out of the window and certain aspects of the story was skim through without much thoughts. It felt like the focus was to tell a Silence of the Lamb-ish story with Kung Fu. It's not grounded in reality but Kung Fu Jungle provided an entertaining homage to the personals that made Hong Kong action movies great and for that, I am not going to nitpick much.

Rating: ***

Kung Fu Killer (2014) on IMDb

Monday, January 19, 2015

Timecrimes | Los Cronocrímenes [Movie Review]

Snap review

Pitch: Timecrimes has frequently pop up whenever I search for a good time travel movie. The ironic part was that i never found the time to watch it. After having a great time watching Predestination and Triangle, I finally found the urge to seat down to watch this.

Plot: Hector just moved into his new home with his wife. Little did he know that a casual Saturday would become a strange turn off events involving voyeurism, a masked slasher and a complicated time travel.

Perspective: Timecrimes is one heck of a ride. Lots of twist and turn that worth rewatching. It might be a low budget movie but it didn't stop Timecrimes from being a solid sci-fi entertainment. Lastly,  Barbara Goenaga provides the drool factor that makes this movie even more engaging.

Rating: ***1/2

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Uzumasa Limelight [ Coming Soon ]


Uzumasa (Kyoto) is considered the Hollywood of Japan. It has produced many "jidaigeki" films (period dramas with sword fighting) that are loved by many Japanese, and are highly praised all over the world. 

These films wouldn't be what they were if it weren't for the "kirareyaku" (actors who's main job is to be killed by the lead star). Men who are killed, without ever being lit by the limelight... This story is about those men, the unsung heroes of classic jidaigeki films. Actors who loved and respected the art, even when the production of classic jidaigeki films began to dwindle. 

Using Charlie Chaplin's film "Limelight" as an underlying theme, the admirable story of these men dealing with a new generation and fading craftsmanship is told with melancholy and soul.  


Japan's most-killed samurai stuntman wins immortality at last
Seizo Fukumoto, 71, has supposedly acted out 50,000 screen deaths; now the samurai movie specialist's first lead role has won an international prize

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Avengers: Age of Ultron [Coming Soon]

26 / 07 / 2014

Marvel been releasing exclusive San Diego Comic Con 2014 concept art posters for Marvel's upcoming "Avengers: Age of Ultron". Together, they form a massive poster. Pretty awesome don't you think?

Marvvel SDCC 14 exclusive concept art posters for Avengers: Age of Ultron - 
 Quicksilver, Thor Black Widow, Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America, Scarlet Witch and Hawkeye

Thursday, November 21, 2013


'Gravity' Spinoff: Watch the Other Side of Sandra Bullock's Distress Call

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

The Man from Earth [ Movie Review ] ****

The Pitch

While going thru some low budget movies online, I stumbled upon The Man from Earth. The thing that stood out for this movie was that it had a 7.9 out of 10 rating on imdb. Usually the low budget movies with unknown actors n director are rated around 4 - 5 out of 10 on imdb. 7.9 was definitely outstanding for a low budget sci fi. The 73,175 votes also sound pretty substantial and unlikely a bid to push up the rating by the production team (or fans) .

The storyline had a intriguing hook. At a farewell party became an intense interrogation when the retiring professor reveals to his colleagues that he is actually 14,000 years old. One of the imdb user reviews mentioned that this movie was "a seriously engaging film ... A sci-fi film with absolutely no special effects" ( from United Kingdom).

All these reminded me of Cube. A low budget Sci Fi movie with limited special effect, small cast and limited sets production but it remained one of my favorite sci fi movies to date. It's a sci fi movie that brings something new and different to the plate. A risk taker that leaves the viewers something to think about after the credits rolled.

Something tells me that The Man from Earth could be my next fave sci fi movie. 

Monday, April 22, 2013

Iron Man 3

Iron Man 3 Lego Poster (16 Apr 2013)
Iron Man 3 poster in Lego form. Nuff Said

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Rurouni Kenshin | るろうに剣心 [ Coming Soon - 29th Nov 2012 ]

 Rurouni Kenshin るろうに剣心
The Pitch

Rurouni Kenshin or perhaps better known as Samurai X originated as a manga by Nobuhiro Watsuki. The tale of the wandering protector with a dark past went on to get it's anime series treatment. Both the manga and anime were so popular that even someone like me who is not really into manga or anime had a rough idea about this series about.

But for some reasons, it was difficult for me to follow this series properly. It was either catching a few episodes of Samurai X anime on television or sampling some of Rurouni Kenshin manga at the library. So when the news of Rurouni Kenshin getting a live action treatment by the Japanese, I was pretty excited about watching this movie. Finally there's a chance for me to get started on the Rurouni Kenshin's series.

Given the popularity of this series, the cast and director of this live action film have a lot of expectation to live up to. Will they be able to capture the essence of Rurouni Kenshin without boring the fans with repetition of materials from the manga and anime? Will they be able to hook newbies like me to this series? Will it be good?

On 29th Nov 2012, Rurouni Kenshin will be shown exclusively at Film Garde cinemas in Singapore.  It's just a couple of months after It's general release in Japan. A good incentive to catch this on the big screen.

The Plot
Nearly 140 years ago, in the last days of the Shoguns, there was a man known as “Battosai the Killer,” feared as the most powerful assassin.

He was faster than a god, stronger than a demon, and had a leading spirit of the Meiji Restoration.

In a flash he downs any number of opponents. Once he pulled out his sword, nobody survived against him.

As the war ended and the new Meiji era came, Battosai vanished from the world.

The only thing that remained was his legend.

10 years later, a man appeared in a world still in disarray.

His name is Kenshin Himura, a wanderer who saves people with a back-blade sword that cannot kill.

This is Battosai the Killer, who has taken a pledge never to kill again.

In order to bring peace to the world so that his loved ones can live safely,

Now Kenshin’s battle begins!

(Plot from Filmgarde's page)

Trailer (from Encore Films)

Friday, November 23, 2012

Bekas [ Coming Soon 28 Feb 2013]

The Plot

Iraq in the early 1990 was a devastating land to survive in. When we think of Iraq, the first thing that tends to pop into our minds is the war and Saddam Hussein. But there is another side too - it is perhaps the most notorious country in the world and it goes by the name Kurdistan. 

Welcome to BEKAS. This is a story about two homeless brothers (Zana, 7) and (Dana, 10) who live on the edge of survival. In the beginning of the story they catch a glimpse of Superman through a hole in the wall at the local cinema. Zana and Dana decide that they want to go to America and live with Superman. 

Once they get there he can solve all their problems, make their lives easy and punish everyone that has been mean to them. Zana, the younger brother, starts to make a list of all people he is going to tell Superman to punish. On top of the list is Saddam Hussein. Dana on the other hand makes a concrete plan for what they need to get there; money, passports, transportation and a way to get across the boarder. Unfortunately they have neither of those. But in spite of everything they decide to follow the dream.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Evangelion 3.0: You Can (Not) Redo [ Coming Soon ]

Just a few updates for Evangelion 3.0 before the general release in Japan (4 Nov 2012)

 a pretty awesome movie poster for Evangelion 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo and ...


... a Pink Eva? and a chess game ... with a moody soundtrack ... hmmm

Another Trailer for Evangelion 3.0 (23 Oct 2012)

This time round, it's plays more like a "normal" trailer. Although it didn't reveal much but there's Kaworu Nagisa playing the piano and his interaction with Shinji Ikari. It would also seems that the 3rd Evangelion movie might not branch off too far from the original anime series as it was previously reported.