Thursday, January 30, 2014

Zhong Guo Box Office - January 26, 2014 - 中国票房榜

Zhong Guo Box Office - Week Ending: January 26, 2014


Weekend of January 26, 2014
Rank Film Title
1 熊出没之夺宝熊兵 (Boonie Bears)
2 Despicable Me 2 (神偷奶爸2)
3 Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (一触即发)
4 喜羊羊与灰太狼之飞马奇遇记 (Meet The Pegusus)
5 六福喜事 (Hello Babies/Hallo Babies)
6 Ender's Game (安德的游戏)
7 巴啦啦小魔仙之魔法的考验 (Balala The Fairies)
8 警察故事2013 (Police Story 2013)
9 私人订制 (Personal Tailor)
10 诡镇 (The Apostles)

Source: Ent Group - retrieved January 29, 2014

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

47 Ronin - 浪人47



47 Ronin (浪人47) is an 2013 film. The movie stars Keanu Reeves. The supporting cast include Hiroyuki Sanada, Kou Shibasaki, Tadanobu Asano, and Rinko Kikuchi. The movie is based on a old Japanese legend of the same name.

A "half-breed" boy, Kai, is found running through the forest and found by the local warlord. Taken in as a servant, he befriends the warlords only child and daughter, Mika. Kai is basically subjected to all sorts of mis treatment for his status. When the warlord is "killed", his samurai become masterless, thus Ronin. They seek revenge against Lord Kira. Because Kira has a witch as her assistant, Kai is brought in for his expert knowledge of witchcraft and how to combat it. They set out an elaborate plan to take out Kira and avenge their fallen lord.



Pretty simple story. Should be an easy sell. Looks of swords, action, and revenge storyline. BUT it was very hard to watch this. I've watched my fair share of samurai movie through the years out of Japan. This movie's cast was made up of mainly Japanese (from Japan), but the director was not. The screenplay, etc. was not. It was a "western" staff that hired a mostly "eastern" staff. And the movie felt that way. Over emphasizing "honor" and "duty" all the way to the climax. Over playing the half breed aspect. So, in the end, it felt awkward watching this. However, when the action takes over, the action wins. You don't care, you just watch the action. But when the story comes back into focus, its a mud field to get through.

I can't really recommend this. Even though many of the actors named above are some of my favorites. However, seeing Kou again made me want to re-watch Battle Royale again.



Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Taiwan Box Office - January 26, 2014 - 台灣票房榜


Weekend of January 26, 2014
Rank Film Title Weeks
1 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (白日夢冒險王) 5
2 Frozen (冰雪奇緣) 6
3 鐵獅玉玲瓏 (Lion Dancing) 1
4 American Hustle (瞞天大佈局) 4
5 救火英雄 (As the Light Goes Out) 1
6 甜蜜殺機 (Sweet Alibis) 2
7 Her (雲端情人) 2
8 Grudge Match (進擊的大佬) 2
9 Walking With Dinosaurs (與恐龍冒險) 3
10 The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (哈比人:荒谷惡龍) 7
11 Last Vegas (賭城大丈夫) 3
12 English Vinglish (救救菜英文) 6
13 The Legend of Hercules (鋼鐵力士) 3
14 Grand Piano (關鍵琴聲) 2
15 Blue Jasmine (藍色茉莉) 6
16 風暴 (Firestorm) 5
17 看見台灣 (Beyond Beauty - Taiwan From Above) 13
18 The Bling Ring (星光大盜) 2
19 47 Ronin (浪人47) 5
20 G-Dragon 2013 1st World Tour - One Of A Kind 3D 2

Source: Yahoo! Movies Taiwan - retrieved January 27, 2014

Monday, January 27, 2014

2014 Films To Look Out For - Part 3

Part 1 and Part 2 covered the first half of the year. Today is a brief look ahead to the third quarter. Not all of them will have posters/trailers, but I will add them as they become available. Release dates may also change. Enjoy my list and happy watching!

Part 4 will cover October through December.

Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes (猩球崛起:黎明的進擊)


Jupiter Ascending



Hercules: The Thracian Wars
Poster and Trailer not available

Guardians Of The Galaxy (星際異攻隊/銀河守護隊)


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Poster and Trailer not available

The Expendables 3 (浴血任務3)



Sin City: A Dame To Kill For (萬惡城市2)


The Equalizer
Poster and Trailer not available

Sources:
IMDB Coming Soon
Comingsoon.net
Box Office Mojo
Wikipedia.org
Taiwan Yahoo! Movies
WMoov Hong Kong

Sunday, January 26, 2014

鐵獅玉玲瓏 - Lion Dancing - Upcoming



鐵獅玉玲瓏 (Lion Dancing) was released in Taipei this weekend. The movie is about traditional Lion Dancing. From the trailer, its just a comedy with lion dancing. Seems to be mostly in Tawianese as well. I think I'll be passing.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Hong Kong Box Office - January 19, 2014 - 香港票房榜

Hong Kong Box Office - Week Ending: January 19, 2014


Weekend of January 19, 2014
Rank Film Title
1 救火英雄 (As the Light Goes Out)
2 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (發夢王大歷險)
3 Last Vegas (老爆伴郎團)
4 警察故事2013 (Police Story 2013)
5 惡戰 (Once Upon A Time In Shanghai)
6 The Butler (白宮管家)
7 The Legend of Hercules (大力戰神)
8 寵愛情人夢 (Girl In The Sunny Place/Hidamari No Kanojo/The Girl In The Sun)
9 冬蔭功2 (Tom Yum Goong 2/The Protector 2)
10 喜愛夜蒲3 (Lan Kwai Fong 3)
... ...
19 一個複雜故事 (A Complicated Story)
... ...
21 掃毒 (The White Storm)
... ...
26 風暴 (Firestorm)
... ...
29 一首搖滾上月球 (Rock Me to the Moon)

Source: Box Office Mojo and WMOOV - retrieved January 21, 2014

Thursday, January 23, 2014

2014 Films To Look Out For - Part 1

I started this last year. Going to continue it this year as well. A brief look ahead to the movies of 2014 that look pretty awesome. Not all of them will have posters, but I will add them as the year goes on. Enjoy my list and happy watching!

This installment will cover the January through March. Part 2 will cover April through June. Part 3 will cover July through September. Part 4 will cover October through December.

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (傑克萊恩:詭影任務)



I, Frankenstein (科學怪人:屠魔大戰)



The Monuments Men (大尋寶家)



RoboCop (機器戰警)



Pompeii (龐貝)



Non-Stop (空中救援)



300: Rise Of An Empire (300壯士:帝國崛起)



Divergent (分歧者)



Noah (諾亞方舟)



Sources:
IMDB Coming Soon
Comingsoon.net
Box Office Mojo
Wikipedia.org
Taiwan Yahoo! Movies
WMoov Hong Kong

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Zhong Guo Box Office - January 19, 2014 - 中国票房榜

Zhong Guo Box Office - Week Ending: January 19, 2014


Weekend of January 19, 2014
Rank Film Title
1 Despicable Me 2 (神偷奶爸2)
2 熊出没之夺宝熊兵 (Boonie Bears)
3 Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (一触即发)
4 喜羊羊与灰太狼之飞马奇遇记 (Meet The Pegusus)
5 Ender's Game (安德的游戏)
6 六福喜事 (Hello Babies/Hallo Babies)
7 警察故事2013 (Police Story 2013)
8 私人订制 (Personal Tailor)
9 救火英雄 (As The Light Goes Out)
10 Метро (夺命地铁)

Source: Ent Group - retrieved January 20, 2014

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Firestorm - 風暴



風暴 (Firestorm) is an 2013 film out of Hong Kong. The movie stars Andy Lau. The supporting cast include Gordon Lam, Yao Chen, and Hu Jun. The movie takes place in Hong Kong and reach number in the local film markets of Hong Kong, Zhong Guo, and Taiwan.

Andy Lau plays a lead officer of the police department, Lui. Lui is trying to nail a group of criminals hitting security trucks. When Lui's team engages a team in mid-robbery, there's a standstill that takes the life of an hostage. The police seem to know some of the parties but they don't cooperate and the police have no evidence to make arrest. While the way, Lui goes after those that can and enlist the help of a friend in the black trade business. Situation after situation, Lui has to adjust to the criminal activity.



I can see why this film was so well liked. There were many cheezy film special effects, but I understand this is HK and not Hollywood quality. I also know the style of going more realistic since "Breaking News". Which this movie really reminded me of. The acting was semi-over the top, but still good enough to bring along the movie.



Surprised I was able to see in only 4 weeks after its release. But there are many more from December that haven't made it to LA yet.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Taiwan Box Office - January 19, 2014 - 台灣票房榜


Weekend of January 19, 2014
Rank Film Title Weeks
1 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (白日夢冒險王) 4
2 Frozen (冰雪奇緣) 5
3 American Hustle (瞞天大佈局) 3
4 甜蜜殺機 (Sweet Alibis) 1
5 Grudge Match (進擊的大佬) 1
6 Her (雲端情人) 1
7 The Legend of Hercules (鋼鐵力士) 2
8 Walking With Dinosaurs (與恐龍冒險) 2
9 風暴 (Firestorm) 4
10 Last Vegas (賭城大丈夫) 2
11 Grand Piano (關鍵琴聲) 1
12 The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (哈比人:荒谷惡龍) 6
13 English Vinglish (救救菜英文) 5
14 The Bling Ring (星光大盜) 1
15 47 Ronin (浪人47) 4
16 看見台灣 (Beyond Beauty - Taiwan From Above) 12
17 G-Dragon 2013 1st World Tour - One Of A Kind 3D 1
18 Blue Jasmine (藍色茉莉) 5
19 戰酒 (Battle Spirit) 2
20 屍房宴 (We Are What We Are) 1

Source: Yahoo! Movies Taiwan - retrieved January 20, 2014

Sunday, January 19, 2014

甜蜜殺機 - Sweet Alibis - Upcoming



甜蜜殺機 (Sweet Alibis) was released in Taipei this weekend. The movie stars Alec Su and Ariel Lin. From the looks of the trailer, this is a Taiwan version of Jimmy Fallon's "Taxi" movie. A buddy cop movie that wants to put the comedy stamp on it. Bathroom humor to start the trailer says it all.

Looks satirical enough for me to want to check it out tho.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Admission - 愛在招生部



Admission (愛在招生部) is an 2013 film. The movie stars Tina Fey and Paul Rudd. This was one of my favorite films of 2013.

Tina Fey plays Portia Nathan, a admissions officer at Princeton. Tina is single and been dating her long time boyfriend, a professor at Princeton. They live a very mundane life style. So much so that he cheats on her with another woman and gets her pregnant and moves out. Paul Rudd plays John Pressman, a nomad teacher currently stationed at Quest, a school for uniquely gifted students. John contacts Portia with the story that one of his students must be the baby she gave up for adaption back in college. As the story unfolds, Portia's life starts to spiral into bad decisions. John's also got his personal commitment problems to deal with. But those two together, romance! As the story unfolds, they try to find out if she is indeed the mother or not.

This movie was downright depressing. With two people that went to Ivy schools and have "the life", they sure know how to make bad decisions. They also know how to escape from real commitment. One for comfort and the other for security. Security of always knowing you've got no commitments. The security of knowing comfort will lead to a secure life of not rocking the boat.

As I am sort in their life stage, but a bit more mundane, I can relate to the career, life, and responsibilities that they face and much make decisions about. Which made me appreciate that the American is all by a facade of a long ago manifest destiny era that is long gone.



Friday, January 17, 2014

Hong Kong Box Office - January 12, 2014 - 香港票房榜

Hong Kong Box Office - Week Ending: January 12, 2014


Weekend of January 12, 2014
Rank Film Title
1 救火英雄 (As the Light Goes Out)
2 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (發夢王大歷險)
3 冬蔭功2 (Tom Yum Goong 2/The Protector 2)
4 Last Vegas (老爆伴郎團)
5 The Legend of Hercules (大力戰神)
6 寵愛情人夢 (Girl In The Sunny Place/Hidamari No Kanojo/The Girl In The Sun)
7 喜愛夜蒲3 (Lan Kwai Fong 3)
8 Frozen (魔雪奇緣)
9 The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (哈比人 - 荒谷魔龍)
10 風起了 (Kaze Tachinu/The Wind Rises)
... ...
11 風暴 (Firestorm)
... ...
14 掃毒 (The White Storm)
... ...
20 一首搖滾上月球 (Rock Me to the Moon)

Source: Box Office Mojo and WMOOV - retrieved January 16, 2014

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Pieta - 聖殤



Pieta (聖殤) is a 2012 film out of Korea. The movie stars Lee Jung-jin and Jo Min-su. The movie received quite a few accolades from the international film community. I borrowed the DVD from my local library.



Lee plays Kang-do, muscle for a local loan shark. Jo plays Jang, who enters Kang-do's life saying that she abandoned him all those years ago. Jang follows Kang on his normal daily collections. Kang's specially is making his subjects cripple in order to collect the insurance money to pay back. Jang slowly gains Kang's trust and they become quite close. When Jang goes missing, he searches for her by going back to all those he's make cripple and seeing if they kidnapped her.

This was a very slow paced film. Lot's of guerilla film making with the hand held cameras, giving a shaky feeling. The story unfolded like I predicted it would. Too many hints in the beginning to masks it for long. I didn't know the plot of the money, I had it on hold from my local library and watched it. I didn't go out of my way to watch it. If this movie feel off my list, I wouldn't be sad. But I did watch it cannot recommend it.



Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Zhong Guo Box Office - January 12, 2014 - 中国票房榜

Zhong Guo Box Office - Week Ending: January 12, 2014


Weekend of January 12, 2014
Rank Film Title
1 Despicable Me 2 (神偷奶爸2)
2 Ender's Game (安德的游戏)
3 警察故事2013 (Police Story 2013)
4 私人订制 (Personal Tailor)
5 救火英雄 (As The Light Goes Out)
6 六福喜事 (Hello Babies/Hallo Babies)
7 等风来 (Up In The Wind)
8 The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (圣杯神器:骸骨之城)
9 Метро (夺命地铁)
10 Legendary: Tomb of the Dragon (史前怪兽)

Source: Ent Group - retrieved January 14, 2014

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Thor: The Dark World - 雷神索爾2:黑暗世界



Thor: The Dark World (雷神索爾2:黑暗世界) is an 2013 film. The movie stars Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, and Tom Hiddleston. The supporting cast include Anthony Hopkins, Stellan Skarsgård, Idris Elba, Kat Dennings, Ray Stevenson, Zachary Levi, Tadanobu Asano, Jaimie Alexander, and Rene Russo. The movie is a sequel to Thor from 2011. But is more of a sequel to Avengers in story. This was one of my favorite films of 2013.



Approximately 10,000 years ago, the Dark Elves of Svartalfheim want to preserve pre-universe darkness and want to destroy the nine realms. Every 5000 years, the nine realms align for but a brief moment and the elves have only this chance to destroy them all. But Bor, the father of Odin, Thor's grandfather and former ruler of Asgard stops them. The dark elves leader Malekith escapes and plans to try again in the future, sacrificing his realm. Back on earth on current times, Jane Foster is in London and on a date. But Darcy comes and pulls Jane from the date to go explore energy patterns like those in New Mexico. When they get to the site, they find the objects are passing between realms. Jane explore a unique energy pattern and gets sucked into another realm where the Aether enters her body and expels her back to Earth. Around that time, Thor ask Heimdall how Jane is, but is out of sight. Worried, Thor heads to earth to find her. When he does, the Aether has attacked some police officers. Thor takes Jane back to Asgard to "save" her, but the Dark Elves detect her and try to reclaim her. In the process, Asgard is attacked and Frigga is killed. Thor takes Jane to Svartalfheim so Malekith can extract the Aether from her body. In order to do this, they free Loki to asset them. The Aether is extracted but Thor is unable to destroy it. Malekith takes it back to earth for the convergence. Thor tracks it there for the ultimate battle for the world.



This movie was quite awesome. I liked how the majority of it was off earth in the other realms. The nine worlds concept hasn't been fully explored but its a great concept for story telling. I think that's why you've seen the success of Thor in both the movies and in the comic books. It's a relatable immortals world. Very different than the Greek/Roman gods.

The comic factor of the movie was also very well played. In the mist of world destruction, humans will be humans. Alan Taylor, the director has recently been directing episodes of Game Of Thrones. He's taken the great aspects of what appeals of that world and brought it to Thor. Nice play Marvel. You're string of off the beaten path directors continue to offer great story with lots of action.



Monday, January 13, 2014

Taiwan Box Office - January 12, 2014 - 台灣票房榜


Weekend of January 12, 2014
Rank Film Title Weeks
1 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (白日夢冒險王) 3
2 Frozen (冰雪奇緣) 4
3 The Legend of Hercules (鋼鐵力士) 1
4 American Hustle (瞞天大佈局) 2
5 風暴 (Firestorm) 3
6 Walking With Dinosaurs (與恐龍冒險) 1
7 47 Ronin (浪人47) 3
8 Last Vegas (賭城大丈夫) 1
9 The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (哈比人:荒谷惡龍) 5
10 English Vinglish (救救菜英文) 4
11 看見台灣 (Beyond Beauty - Taiwan From Above) 11
12 戰酒 (Battle Spirit) 1
13 我的恐怖室友 (Roommate) 1
14 My Mandala (原來你還在) 1
15 Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (鬼入鏡:詛咒) 2
16 Blue Jasmine (藍色茉莉) 4
17 Young And Beautiful (美麗 - 誘惑) 1
18 掃毒 (The White Storm) 2
19 十二夜 (Twelve Nights) 7
20 The Best Offer (寂寞拍賣師) 8

Source: Yahoo! Movies Taiwan - retrieved January 13, 2014

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Hong Kong Box Office - January 5, 2014 - 香港票房榜

Hong Kong Box Office - Week Ending: January 5, 2014


Weekend of January 5, 2014
Rank Film Title
1 救火英雄 (As the Light Goes Out)
2 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (發夢王大歷險)
3 喜愛夜蒲3 (Lan Kwai Fong 3)
4 Frozen (魔雪奇緣)
5 The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (哈比人 - 荒谷魔龍)
6 風起了 (Kaze Tachinu/The Wind Rises)
7 風暴 (Firestorm)
8 Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (美食風球2)
9 掃毒 (The White Storm)
10 同窗諜影 (Commitment)
... ...
18 一首搖滾上月球 (Rock Me to the Moon)

Source: Box Office Mojo and WMOOV - retrieved January 9, 2014

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Hong Kong Box Office - December 29, 2013 - 香港票房榜

Hong Kong Box Office - Week Ending: December 29, 2013


Weekend of December 29, 2013
Rank Film Title
1 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (發夢王大歷險)
2 風暴 (Firestorm)
3 Frozen (魔雪奇緣)
4 The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (哈比人 - 荒谷魔龍)
5 風起了 (Kaze Tachinu/The Wind Rises)
6 Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (美食風球2)
7 47 Ronin (浪魂47)
8 掃毒 (The White Storm)
9 Walking With Dinosaurs (與龍同行)
10 The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (飢餓遊戲2:星火燎原)
... ...
21 一首搖滾上月球 (Rock Me to the Moon)

Source: Box Office Mojo and WMOOV - retrieved January 9, 2014

Friday, January 10, 2014

RIP Run Run Shaw


Earlier this week, Run Run Shaw of Shaw Bros. and TVB passed in Hong Kong.

Shaw Bros. was a big influence on my childhood and even to today. I recently rented a Shaw Bros.'s film from my local library.

Of the 1,000 of films from the studio, I may have watched 50-100. It's hard to say as I watched most of them in the 1980s. Many of them via re-runs and dubbed on local Los Angeles stations like Channel 5 and Channel 11.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Zhong Guo Box Office - January 5, 2014 - 中国票房榜

Zhong Guo Box Office - Week Ending: January 5, 2014


Weekend of January 5, 2014
Rank Film Title
1 警察故事2013 (Police Story 2013)
2 私人订制 (Personal Tailor)
3 等风来 (Up In The Wind)
4 救火英雄 (As The Light Goes Out)
5 Legendary: Tomb of the Dragon (史前怪兽)
6 Olympus Has Fallen (奥林匹斯的陷落)
7 The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (圣杯神器:骸骨之城)
8 The Reef 2: High Tide (海底大冒险)
9 青蛙王国 (The Frog Kingdom)
10 风暴 (Firestorm)

Source: Ent Group - retrieved January 6, 2014

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Hong Kong Box Office - December 22, 2013 - 香港票房榜 - Update

Hong Kong Box Office - Week Ending: December 22, 2013


Weekend of December 22, 2013
Rank Film Title
1 風暴 (Firestorm)
2 The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (哈比人 - 荒谷魔龍)
3 風起了 (Kaze Tachinu/The Wind Rises)
4 Frozen (魔雪奇緣)
5 掃毒 (The White Storm)
6 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (發夢王大歷險)
7 Walking With Dinosaurs (與龍同行)
8 The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (飢餓遊戲2:星火燎原)
9 阿信的故事 (Oshin)
10 Gravity (引力邊緣)
... ...
12 一首搖滾上月球 (Rock Me to the Moon)
... ...
24 爸媽不在家 (Ilo Ilo)

Looks like Box Office Mojo finally report HK Box Office results again. Report the EntGroup numbers last year.

Source: Box Office Mojo and WMOOV - retrieved January 7, 2014

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Taiwan Box Office - January 5, 2014 - 台灣票房榜


Weekend of January 5, 2014
Rank Film Title Weeks
1 The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (白日夢冒險王) 2
2 風暴 (Firestorm) 2
3 47 Ronin (浪人47) 2
4 American Hustle (瞞天大佈局) 1
5 Frozen (冰雪奇緣) 3
6 The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (哈比人:荒谷惡龍) 4
7 English Vinglish (救救菜英文) 3
8 看見台灣 (Beyond Beauty - Taiwan From Above) 10
9 Ender's Game (戰爭遊戲) 3
10 Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (鬼入鏡:詛咒) 1
11 Blue Jasmine (藍色茉莉) 3
12 掃毒 (The White Storm) 1
13 The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (飢餓遊戲:星火燎原) 7
14 清須會議 (The Kiyosu Conference) 2
15 十二夜 (Twelve Nights) 6
16 The Best Offer (寂寞拍賣師) 7
17 築巢人 (A Rolling Stone) 1
18 Nebraska (內布拉斯加) 1
19 100次的哭泣 (Crying 100 Times) 1
20 The Body (屍物招領) 2

Source: Yahoo! Movies Taiwan - retrieved January 6, 2014

Monday, January 6, 2014

Slow Box Office

Seems the holiday's have brought about some slow box office results for both Hong Kong and Taiwan. Hong Kong is 3 weeks behind and Taiwan's latest weekend is still absent. I expect this from the Lunar New Years weekend, like the last few years, but for the gregorian one, a bit surprised.