6 items from 2014
The Divine Constabulary are back in the awkwardly titled “The Four 2”, with director Gordon Chan serving up more fantasy martial arts and mystery in the second part of a planned trilogy based on the novels by Wen Ruian. Like its predecessor, the film is a big budget blockbuster, shot in 3D and featuring an avalanche of special effects and computer enhanced action, continuing the story of Emotionless (Crystal Liu Yifei, “The Assassins”), Iron Hands (Collin Chou, “Special ID”), Life Snatcher (Ronald Cheng, “Vulgaria”) and Cold Blood (Deng Chao, “American Dreams in China”) as they come up against new and old foes and confront their own troubled pasts. Led by Master Zhuge (the legendary Anthony Wong), the Divine Constabulary are called in to investigate a series of murders and massacres, with links to the slaughter of Emotionless’ own family some 15 years back. Butting heads again with Department Six, they find their »
- James Mudge
These days, Media Asia is a pillar of the Hong Kong film industry establishment. It can boast a production pipeline connected to a large talent pool, enviable connections in mainland China, a profile in Hollywood and even a stock market listing. But it was not always so.
The company was founded 20 years ago when seven mid-ranking executives from Star Television, then News Corp.’s Hong Kong-based, pan-Asian TV unit, were fired en masse.
Known collectively as the “Seven Samurai,” the execs took with them a contract to manage Star’s massive film library, which includes all six Bruce Lee movies, as well as many early Jackie Chan, Jet Li and Michelle Yeoh titles. And, reflecting the film catalog origins, the company’s distinctive, but somewhat retro “Ma” logo initially stood for Media Assets.
Coming at the end of the “Golden Era” of Hong Kong cinema and only a few years »
- Patrick Frater
I don’t know what it is about cars in movies but they can be very entertaining. Be it The Fast and The Furious in its various forms, Driver or even The Italian Job the non-stop action of high-speed racing and chases has always been popular. Motorway (aka Che Sau) is a film that taps into this popularity and comfortably sites between Fast and Furious and Driver as a understatedly cool “cops and robbers” film that brings some brains to the car chase sub-genre.
When an overconfident rookie is confronted by a getaway driver who appears to be able to do impossible turns through the use of a unique drifting technique he seems to have found his match. Taking him under his wing his veteran partner teaches »
- Paul Metcalf
Motorway finds Soi Cheang (Accident) once again teaming up with producer Johnnie To for the latest Milkyway production. Which can only mean one thing, it’s time for another bout of adrenaline-fuelled cool. Realism is the name of the game in Soi Cheang’s latest thrill ride, with exhilarating car chases and jaw-dropping stunts shying away from Bruckheimer style and sheen. You’ll actually feel like you’re part of the action when the pedal hits the metal, alongside Initial D stars Shawn Yue and Anthony Wong, no strangers to unadulterated racing action. Yue and Wong play elite traffic cops in a secret police unit that upholds the law in unmarked police cars. Gordon Lam, Barbie Hsu, Michelle Ye and Josie Ho are along for the ride, not to mention some really fast cars and an icy cool exterior long associated with the Milkyway brand. Available to buy in the »
The 33rd Hong Kong Film Awards is expected to be a hell of a show with some great films going head to head. Leading the way with nominations is The Grand Master with 14, followed by Unbeatable (Dante Lam).
There were complaints last year, that the show didn’t live up to expectations, mainly due to the fact the movie Cold Wars, won nearly every award. Best actor award see the likes of these guys going head to head, Tony Leung (The Grandmaster), Louis Koo (The White Storm) and also Anthony Wong (Ip Man: The Final Fight).
Take a look at the list and comment who you think will win. The winners will be announced on April 13.
- Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons
- Johnnie To »
Fight films “The Grandmaster” and “Unbeatable” are the titles to beat after the pair secured the most nominations for the Hong Kong Film Awards.
The Wong Kar-wai-directed “Grandmaster,” which was the opening film of last year’s Berlin festival, picked up 14 nominations including best film and best director, it was announced on Wednesday.
“Unbeatable,” a mixed martial arts drama by Dante Lam secured 11 nominations, again including the main categories.
Tony Leung Chiu-wai is nominated for portraying Ip Man (the martial arts ace who mentored Bruce Lee) in “The Grandmaster,” while Anthony Wong receives a nod for playing the same character in “Ip Man – The Final Fight.” Zhang Ziyi is nominated for her leading actress role in “The Grandmaster.”
- Patrick Frater
6 items from 2014
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