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The Golden Rock - July 7th, 2007 Edition

- This week, Japan Times reviews the Ryuichi Hiroki(who also made Vibrator) film Koisuru Nichiyoubi - Koi Shita (Thanks to Ryuganji for the link this week, because it wasn’t found from the Japan Times film review listing for some reason). Made under a project for the satellite channel BS-i, the film is currently playing at a Shibuya theatre. However, it actually opened last month at another theater in Shinjuku already, and only saw 1025 admissions/1.37 million yen. Since the theater has a capacity of 330, that means the shows aren’t even half-full on average. However, unlike other television-financed blockbusters, the experimental project is meant to show off new talents with commercial genres.

- Meanwhile, the Daily Yomiuri have reviews of Andrew Lau/Alan Mak’s Confession of Pain (which opens this weekend in Japan with a better trailer, despite some inaccurate subtitles. Japan Times also reviews it, though reviewer Kaori Shoji incorrectly identifies Andrew Lau as the sole director.), Pedro Almodovar’s Volver, and of course - the new Harry Potter movie, which seems to be drawing the most negative reviews of the series. They also give a very enthusiastic review for the new drama “Papa To Musume No Nanakakan,” which seems more like a idea stolen from Walt Disney’s 1976 film Freaky Friday (it was even remade a few years ago, so the TBS guys have no excuse)

- I found a very interesting Chinese blog on Hong Kong cinema that covers everything from films to theaters to ticket inflation. Recently, the blogger looked at why Simply Actors (starring Jim Chim and Charlene Choi) did so much business its opening week, except for the fact that it opened on a public holiday. Turns out the promotional campaign includes three different types of HK$10 off coupons that are good for different days of the opening week, which may mean lower box office gross, but also means more incentive for people to go to the theater. It’s even cheaper than buying a VCD, for crying out loud.

- In DVD news, the Japanese comic adaptation film Nana 2, which flopped pretty horribly at the box office last winter, is coming to an English-subtitled Hong Kong region 3 DVD on July 12th. Also, the DVD for Han Jae-Rim’s The Show Must Go On is coming to Korean region 3 DVD on July 19th.

- Prepare to see Yoji Yakusho everywhere when you head off to the Japan International Contents Festival this fall, because the actor has been chosen as the face of the festival.

- Alexi Tan’s Blood Brothers, also produced by John Woo and Terence Chang, is slates to have its world premiere as the closing film at the Venice Film Festival in September. But what is this whole thing about it being a remake of Woo’s Bullet in the Head?

- In the first half of 2007, Korean cinema took up only a 47.3% share of the total theatrical market at home, which is its lowest since 2001. In comparison, Korean films took a 60% market share in 2006. I’ve said before, plenty of countries outside the United States would kill for that kind of numbers. Yes, even the 47.3 % one.

- Considering that it’s over on Monday, this news is a little late, but this year’s Taipei International Film Festival seems to have the largest Chinese cinema lineup in all of Asia. It even has Hou Hsiao-Hsien sitting on top!

Tomorrow, Podcast and more and more news.

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