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Archive for September, 2007

More Lust, Caution crap

It’s been a long week here at The Golden Rock due to personal and academic issues (trust me, the academic one will be quite detailed in an upcoming post on the spin-off).

Anyway, only a small report at the wee hours of the night - according to Oriental Daily, Ang Lee’s sexually explicit espionage “thriller” (this is apparently a loose term) - the film will be showing in Hong Kong without any cut and with a category-III rating (no one under 18 admitted). This comes as a pleasant surprise after the Hong Kong distributor said they were heading for cuts even in liberal Hong Kong.

The Golden Rock will be back tomorrow night with a packed weekend entry.

More Lust, Caution crap

It’s been a long week here at The Golden Rock due to personal and academic issues (trust me, the academic one will be quite detailed in an upcoming post on the spin-off).

Anyway, only a small report at the wee hours of the night - according to Oriental Daily, Ang Lee’s sexually explicit espionage “thriller” (this is apparently a loose term) - the film will be showing in Hong Kong without any cut and with a category-III rating (no one under 18 admitted). This comes as a pleasant surprise after the Hong Kong distributor said they were heading for cuts even in liberal Hong Kong.

The Golden Rock will be back tomorrow night with a packed weekend entry.

The Golden Rock Song of the Day - 9/8/2007

When I say it’s addictive, I really mean it’s addictive. Today’s Song of the Day comes from an album I recently reviewed, and it is definitely the second-best song on a somewhat disappointing album. From the album Ardently Love, it’s Hins Cheung’s “Cruel Love.”

Can anyone pin down what Taiwanese R&B song this sounds like? We’ll make it the next Song of the Day.

The Golden Rock - September 8th, 2007 Edition

- Reviews for this year’s Venice surprise film - Johnnie To’s Mad Detective starring Lau Ching-Wan - are out from the two big trade papers. Variety’s Derek Elley calls it a neat idea that doesn’t quite hit the bull’s eye, and that it’s a rewrite or two away from achieving the rigor of a To movie. On the other hand, Hollywood Reporter’s Ray Bennett, who can’t seem to spell “Johnnie” right, is a lot kinder, calling it concise and artful.

- Sony is changing their focus, putting more emphasis on foreign films when they realized that these foreign films don’t need investors, but rather a widespread distribution network that Sony can offer.

- Takashi Miike’s latest Sukiyaki Western Django had its screening at Venice. However, responses from journalists and festival audiences are quite different. Sorry, guys, I can’t get excited about a Takashi Miike film as some of you may do.

- Leah Dizon is really starting to get huge not just in Japan (forget the fact that her last single didn’t sell much), but in the rest of Asia as well. Her debut album, which will no doubt feature lots of easy-to-sing song with carefully pronounced Japanese, will be released simultaneously in 9 countries. However, I doubt a number of her fans are fans because of her singing. I suspect this might have something to do with it.

- It saw a screening at Venice, and it opens this weekend at home: Japan Times’s March Schilling has a review of Shinji Aoyama’s latest Sad Vacation, which supposedly wraps up a Kita Kyushu Saga. Along with that, Japan Times also has an interview with Aoyama himself. In addition, it’s been out for a while, but there’s also a review of the documentary The Cats of Mirikitani.

- Twitch has a review of Ang Lee’s Lust, Caution from Toronto, calling it the most disappointing film at the festival so far. Ouch.

- By the way, Jacky Cheung is singing the theme song for Lust, Caution, presumably before he got sick and canceled his concerts

- The Singapore-based Asian Film Archive is getting a donation of 90 Malaysian classic films that will be restored and archived (but of course. That’s what an archive is for).

- They never succeed, but they keep trying: a Hong Kong-based sports media company has signed a deal to broadcast National Football League (American football) games across Asia. This comes after several hurdles to bring NFL outside the United States, including the postponement of an exhibition game in China and the closure of the NFL European League.

- They’re outsourcing everything to India these days. Even Sony is outsourcing the production of their direct-to-video sequel to the animated film Open Season to India and New Mexico (that’s in America, not Mexico).

The Golden Rock Song of the Day - 9/8/2007

When I say it’s addictive, I really mean it’s addictive. Today’s Song of the Day comes from an album I recently reviewed, and it is definitely the second-best song on a somewhat disappointing album. From the album Ardently Love, it’s Hins Cheung’s “Cruel Love.”

Can anyone pin down what Taiwanese R&B song this sounds like? We’ll make it the next Song of the Day.

The Golden Rock - September 8th, 2007 Edition

- Reviews for this year’s Venice surprise film - Johnnie To’s Mad Detective starring Lau Ching-Wan - are out from the two big trade papers. Variety’s Derek Elley calls it a neat idea that doesn’t quite hit the bull’s eye, and that it’s a rewrite or two away from achieving the rigor of a To movie. On the other hand, Hollywood Reporter’s Ray Bennett, who can’t seem to spell “Johnnie” right, is a lot kinder, calling it concise and artful.

- Sony is changing their focus, putting more emphasis on foreign films when they realized that these foreign films don’t need investors, but rather a widespread distribution network that Sony can offer.

- Takashi Miike’s latest Sukiyaki Western Django had its screening at Venice. However, responses from journalists and festival audiences are quite different. Sorry, guys, I can’t get excited about a Takashi Miike film as some of you may do.

- Leah Dizon is really starting to get huge not just in Japan (forget the fact that her last single didn’t sell much), but in the rest of Asia as well. Her debut album, which will no doubt feature lots of easy-to-sing song with carefully pronounced Japanese, will be released simultaneously in 9 countries. However, I doubt a number of her fans are fans because of her singing. I suspect this might have something to do with it.

- It saw a screening at Venice, and it opens this weekend at home: Japan Times’s March Schilling has a review of Shinji Aoyama’s latest Sad Vacation, which supposedly wraps up a Kita Kyushu Saga. Along with that, Japan Times also has an interview with Aoyama himself. In addition, it’s been out for a while, but there’s also a review of the documentary The Cats of Mirikitani.

- Twitch has a review of Ang Lee’s Lust, Caution from Toronto, calling it the most disappointing film at the festival so far. Ouch.

- By the way, Jacky Cheung is singing the theme song for Lust, Caution, presumably before he got sick and canceled his concerts

- The Singapore-based Asian Film Archive is getting a donation of 90 Malaysian classic films that will be restored and archived (but of course. That’s what an archive is for).

- They never succeed, but they keep trying: a Hong Kong-based sports media company has signed a deal to broadcast National Football League (American football) games across Asia. This comes after several hurdles to bring NFL outside the United States, including the postponement of an exhibition game in China and the closure of the NFL European League.

- They’re outsourcing everything to India these days. Even Sony is outsourcing the production of their direct-to-video sequel to the animated film Open Season to India and New Mexico (that’s in America, not Mexico).

The Golden Rock Song of the Day - 9/7/2007

Today’s song of the day is not quite fitting for the time and mood, but I heard it on the radio today and was reminded how much I like it. From the compilation album Ultrasound, it’s David Tao’s “Seasons of Loneliness”

Before the next news post, please take the time to check out my short review of Pang Ho-Cheung’s Exodus.

The Golden Rock Box Office Report - 9/7/07

- The Thursday Hong Kong box office was very quiet, considering that it’s the first opening day since the school year have started. I don’t know why they moved a youth-oriented film like Nakara 19 to this weekend, but it did top the box office. However, it only made HK$220,000 from 30 screens to become number 1, which should say a lot about the rest of the chart. The second-biggest opener is the Hollywood musical Hairspray, which made HK$170,000 from 17 screens on opening day. From ticket sales, it should have a healthy per-screen average this weekend.

A film that surprisingly got a higher per-screen average is the Alfred Cheung “romantic” comedy Contract Lover. On only 10 screens (it was on 27 last week), the film managed to break the HK$10,000 per-screen mark to make HK$110,000. After 8 days, the Mainland-targeted comedy has made HK$1.64 million.

Back to the rest of the openers - the Japanese horror film Apartment 1303 (not to be confused with the Hollywood horror film 1408, which will be showing here soon as well) made a weak HK$70,000 from 10 screens; The Last Mimzy made only HK$50,000 from 11 screens (maybe it’ll pick up in the weekend with the kids audience); and the chick flick Evening made HK$40,000 from its 5 screen limited release. With 7 openers, that leaves 2 movies out - the Korean horror flick Arang and the Japanese romance Heavenly Forest. Both films opened on 9 screens and made less HK$40,000. They’ll be gone in a few days.

- Outdated by a few days, but let’s talk Japanese box office numbers. Rush Hour 3 only took a 37% plunge to drop from 1st place to 6th place; Tengoku De Kimi Ni Aetara actually saw a 7% rise to get up to 2nd place. In fact, all the other movies moved by so little that Rush Hour 3 and Taxi 4’s drops seems larger in comparison. Hell, even Harry Potter managed to lose just 7% of its audience in its 7th week. Was it that good?

No news post today, but at least a Song of the Day is coming up. Sorry, but there are just not enough news this weekend to go around.

The Golden Rock Song of the Day - 9/7/2007

Today’s song of the day is not quite fitting for the time and mood, but I heard it on the radio today and was reminded how much I like it. From the compilation album Ultrasound, it’s David Tao’s “Seasons of Loneliness”

Before the next news post, please take the time to check out my short review of Pang Ho-Cheung’s Exodus.

The Golden Rock Box Office Report - 9/7/07

- The Thursday Hong Kong box office was very quiet, considering that it’s the first opening day since the school year have started. I don’t know why they moved a youth-oriented film like Nakara 19 to this weekend, but it did top the box office. However, it only made HK$220,000 from 30 screens to become number 1, which should say a lot about the rest of the chart. The second-biggest opener is the Hollywood musical Hairspray, which made HK$170,000 from 17 screens on opening day. From ticket sales, it should have a healthy per-screen average this weekend.

A film that surprisingly got a higher per-screen average is the Alfred Cheung “romantic” comedy Contract Lover. On only 10 screens (it was on 27 last week), the film managed to break the HK$10,000 per-screen mark to make HK$110,000. After 8 days, the Mainland-targeted comedy has made HK$1.64 million.

Back to the rest of the openers - the Japanese horror film Apartment 1303 (not to be confused with the Hollywood horror film 1408, which will be showing here soon as well) made a weak HK$70,000 from 10 screens; The Last Mimzy made only HK$50,000 from 11 screens (maybe it’ll pick up in the weekend with the kids audience); and the chick flick Evening made HK$40,000 from its 5 screen limited release. With 7 openers, that leaves 2 movies out - the Korean horror flick Arang and the Japanese romance Heavenly Forest. Both films opened on 9 screens and made less HK$40,000. They’ll be gone in a few days.

- Outdated by a few days, but let’s talk Japanese box office numbers. Rush Hour 3 only took a 37% plunge to drop from 1st place to 6th place; Tengoku De Kimi Ni Aetara actually saw a 7% rise to get up to 2nd place. In fact, all the other movies moved by so little that Rush Hour 3 and Taxi 4’s drops seems larger in comparison. Hell, even Harry Potter managed to lose just 7% of its audience in its 7th week. Was it that good?

No news post today, but at least a Song of the Day is coming up. Sorry, but there are just not enough news this weekend to go around.

 
 
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