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Archive for September 1st, 2008

The Golden Rock - September 1st, 2008 Edition

- Who would’ve thunk it? Journey to the Center of the Earth has topped the Hong Kong box office for the 3rd weekend in a row. On Sunday, it made HK$1.41 million from 34 screens for an 18-day total of HK$27.16 million. Much of this gross is attributed to the more expensive 3d screening, which makes Beowulf’s flop in Hong Kong a little perplexing. Maybe Brandan Fraser looks better in 3d? As expected, Rec got second place with HK$609,000 from 28 screens on Sunday, giving the film a 4-day weekend total of HK$2.39 million. The other film that enjoyed a significant boost over the weekend is the Hollywood romantic comedy Made of Honor. On 25 screens, it made HK$430,000 for a 4-day weekend total of HK$1.56 million.

On the other hand, Hana Yori Dango Final didn’t enjoy the boost from some theaters putting it on their bigger screens. In fact, it only earned HK$145,000 from 14 screens on Sunday, which is strange since the film made more from less screens on opening day. The Japanese drama-turned-film (which I still think is the worst Japanese film of the year so far) has a 4-day total of HK$680,000. Another film that didn’t do much better is Patrick Kong’s Forgive and Forget. From 34 screens, the horror-romance made only HK$170,000 on Sunday for a 4-day total of HK$980,000. The Edge of Love had more luck as a limited release, making HK$86,000 from 6 screens for a 4-day total of HK$340,000.

Still hanging in there is Cyborg She, which made a healthy HK$300,000 from 16 screens on Sunday for a 11-day total of HK$3.32 million, which makes HK$5 million within reach. The Dark Knight is already at HK$57.15 million after 46 days, and its IMAX shows are still doing fairly healthy business.

- In the Japan cinema attendance chart, Hancock and 20th Century Boys finally came together and knocked Ponyo off the top spot. Depending on the grosses, but the executives at NTV may not be so happy that the most expensive Japanese film ever made only managed a 2nd place debut, especially with two more films to go. Of course, the quoted 6 billion yen budget may just be spread across three films, which means with international presales, each film just needs to make over 2 billion yen to break even.

- It was a very very quiet week for Japanese drama ratings. Yasuko to Kenji didn’t show up this week because of NTV’s yearly 24-hour telethon. Instead, the Jun Matsumoto-starring drama that was shown during the telethon got a 25.6%. The ratings up and down was fairly boring, with only 33-pun Tantei reaching its season-low rating of 7.0. With the Olympics now over, Gonzo, Seigi no Mikata, Sono Otoko, Fushocho, Yottsu no Uso, and Code Blue all got a bit of a boost. Maybe things will pick up soon as the season reaches an end.

-  It’s reviews time! Variety’s Ronnie Schieb looks at Hayao Miyazaki’s Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea, while Derek Elley lets out some hate for Yu Lik Wai’s Plastic City.

In Venice, boos were heard at the screening for Plastic City, which was the only Hong Kong film in competition.  Reportedly, the hate comes from the faulty English subtitles and a general feeling of not knowing what the hell is going on. On the defense, director Yu Lik Wai answered that his film is a contempoary fable and that he gives his own effort 69 points because the best he can do is 70 points. On the other hand. Elley said to Apple Daily that out of a score of one to ten, he gives the film a negative 10.

- Under Japanese pop news today, after Speed came together for another reunion, the band Do As Infinity is now also reuniting. However, they don’t be releasing new work until next Spring.  Meanwhile, young female rocker YUI has announced that she will be taking a short break after her next single in oder to “refresh” herself. She’ll be back next year.

- Lastly, Yuya Yagira has released a statement, clearing up that his recent trip to the hospital was not from a suicide attempt. He had simply taken too much tranquilizer after a family argument and actually called for help himself.  He even left the hospital on the same day.

 
 
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