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Monday, 31 October 2011

Comforting Sounds

Howdy everyone.

Apologies for the delayed post. I've been busy with both work and assignments and didn't have the time to write over the weekend.

I had a pretty boring week this week which means no photos of my everyday life. Boooooooooo, I know. Maybe once I get these assignments out of the way I'll actually have the time to go out. Oh wait a minute, "Uncharted 3" comes out this week and I should be expecting "Batman: Arkham City" any day now. Let's just put my social life on hold for a while there.
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WHAT I'VE BEEN WATCHING

Normally I'd write my full thoughts about each film I saw this week but considering that I still have some work that's due in, I think I'll just reserve my thoughts to dotpoint forms. So if anyone's followed me on Tumblr, you may have seen these similar dotpoints of the films I saw. This week, I watched the Jet Li wuxia classic, "Swordsman 2", the stylish "Sakuran", Hong Kong classic, "Comrades: Almost A Love Story" and the thought-provoking, "After Life".

http://i2.listal.com/image/228506/600full-swordsman-ii-poster.jpg
  • Honesty time: I slept through portions of the film.
  • I know, it’s a horrible thing to do during a film.
  • And I have no idea how it happened - I got a good 10 hours of sleep and yet I still managed to sleep through it!
  • My bed is too comfortable.
  • Having said that, I don't think my judgement of this film is exactly sound.
  • But from what I did see of the film it’s pretty much classic wuxia.
  • And I shouldn’t have laughed as much as I did with the film because the jokes are kinda flat as these movies tend to be but I had a pretty good time watching it!
  • That is of course until I slept.
  • Kinda awkward to see Jet Li be so silly in this film cause he’s always so goddamn serious.
  • That and he had a Cantonese voiceover so that was also awkward.
  • But hey, Michelle Reis and Brigitte Lin were in it so what’s not to love?
  • Watching it just reminded me of all the drama series my parents watch.
  • Like I said, classic wuxia!
  • Not exactly memorable by any means, if anything it's pretty run of the mill.
No trailer because the trailer practically gives you the entire film. ==

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http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_vwrM0CLDHKs/TJMidPyFklI/AAAAAAAAFNw/wuggCVHjpoo/s1600/Sakuran_poster.jpg
  • “Pretending there’s something there when there isn’t. It’s petty. I don’t do that. Pretending there’s nothing there when there is something… that’s called ‘style’.”
  • Pretty sure that quote taken straight out of the movie sums up my entire feelings regarding the film.
  • Singer Anna Tsuchiya plays up her a role a bit at times but it’s still pretty fun to watch - balancing vulnerability and toughness quite well throughout.
  • And the film’s visuals are just bright and dazzling.
  • Absolutely enamoured by how colourful the film is.
  • But for all the film’s ‘style’ there really isn’t much there.
  • If there was a story, then I don’t know what that was because things just happened and then they just forget about it and move on.
  • The relationships that were built for amongst each character was pretty thin.
  • AND CAN SOMEONE EXPLAIN THAT INCREDIBLY RANDOM APPEARANCE BY OGURI SHUN? LIKE WAS THAT A CAMEO OR SOMETHING OR WAS HE JUST SOME RANDOM EXTRA AND NOT FAMOUS AT THIS POINT IN HIS CAREER? I LOL’D AND THEN I THOUGHT WTF?
  • And it wouldn’t be appropriate of me to not discuss the use of Shiina Ringo.
  • And as much as I love that woman (and anyone that knows me knows that I love her a great deal) I felt her songs were kinda misrepresented within the context of the film.
  • They sounded great within certain scenes (the opening with Meisai is godly) but as a whole the soundtrack for the film is a bit of a hit and miss (the scene where Gamble is used is reallllllyyyyyyy out of place).
  • I still think Heisei Fuuzoku is one of my favourite albums of all time though - this movie hasn’t deterred that thought.
  • Also the alterante arrangements for some of the songs that were used in the film were quite nice, I thought.
  • But yeah, Sakuran = all style, no substance.
  • Sorry Carrie if you're reading this.


http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/archive/b/b9/20090219072544!Comrades_Almost_a_Love_Story.jpg
  • Quite enjoyed this cute little ‘love’ story.
  • But kinda hate the fact that the covers and posters that I've come across for the film are all like the one above there cause it almost looks like a porno movie.
  • But who wouldn’t fall in love with Maggie Cheung?
  • Even if she is working with McDonald’s!
  • And sorry Leon Lai but you don’t possess the charm of Tony Leung.
  • But that isn't to say he was bad or anything.
  • Just saying that Maggie works best with Tony.
  • The third act of the film was a bit disappointing though - it kinda just took a nosedive and dipped heavily into soap opera melodramatics.
  • Although the third act was kinda redeemed when both Maggie and Leon’s character gaze at the Statue of Liberty. Great little scene.
  • Oh, speaking of soap opera melodramatics, that music that was used in the film was overwhelmingly annoying at times.
  • I dunno if anyone who has seen the film thinks that but that music was pretty awful at times.
  • Also, I’m not knowledgable on my history of Hong Kong but I like how it was integrated throughout the film and how it had an affect on the lives of our characters.
  • I was just waiting for 1997 to hit for the handover of Hong Kong but they never got there. Oh well.
  • Enjoyable film - funny and entertaining.
Surprisingly enough there is no trailer for this film on YouTube but plenty of clips so go crazy with that.

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http://movie-poster.allsubs.org/posters/465/Wandfuru_raifu__1998_big_poster.jpg
  • Loved this movie.
  • Truly brilliant concept: after death you are taken to an institute where you are given three days to decide which one memory you would like to take into the after life.
  • Not as emotional as I thought it would be (although the old lady talking about her brother and the red dress was quite the tear-jerker).
  • But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t affected by the film in some way.
  • Very thought-provoking - made me reflect on my life and has made think which moment I would take.
  • Hirokazu Koreeda’s approach to this film was great.
  • Loved the documentary approach to it - gave it a level of authenticity, like this kinda thing actually does exist and that these characters do exist!
  • I really ought to watch more of his films but from the three that I’ve seen, this one included, (Nobody Knows, Air Doll), I have to say that this guy is one of Japan’s best directors working today and one of the top filmmakers in the world right now that not many people are paying a lot of attention to.
  • His films, from what I gather, not only celebrate life but, more importantly, some of the tragedies that beset it.
  • Air Doll was an existential and coming-of-age (yes I do classify this film as coming-of-age) drama about a sex doll come-to-life trying to find the importance of human life and our relationships with others.
  • Nobody Knows was a tragic drama that, again, reasserted the importance of one’s relationships with others and their humanity and was about four children trying to survive for themselves after their mother abandons them.
  • Do endevour to search for After Life! Very poignant and moving film that makes you think about what you've accomplished in your life time.

Kind of a "meh" trailer but stick with it.
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Anyone looking forward to some Tidbits of Film News should look elsewhere because I'm not going to be putting it up this week. Sorry! It will return next week though!

So I guess I'll just end this week's blog post here and with this song that I just found (like right now as I was writing this!) and it is amazing. Like oh man, could this be one of the greatest things I've ever heard in my life? Okay that's probably a bit exagerrated but it's such an amazing song that nine minutes is NOT enough! Ugh. Enjoy your week everyone.



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