Kung Fu Hustle

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Director: Danny Pang. Review: Adam Wing. The last time the Pang Brothers scored a hit was in 2006 with fantasy horror yarn, Re-cycle. Their collaborations have fared better than their solo offerings, but with The Detective, Diary and...
Director: Danny Pang. Review: Adam Wing. The last time the Pang Brothers scored a hit was in 2006 with fantasy horror yarn, Re-cycle. Their collaborations have fared better than their solo offerings, but with The Detective, Diary and Abnormal Beauty under his belt, Oxide is the more reliable of the two. Danny has made some real clunkers along the way, including snooze-fest Forest of Death and In Love with the Dead. There's no doubting the visual prowess of either brother, but when it comes to great storytelling, fan favourites like The Eye and Bangkok Dangerous are fast becoming distant memories. Psycho-thriller Fairy Tale Killer is written and directed by Danny Pang, in collaboration with Thai director of photography Decha Srimantra (The Eye, Chocolate). In Lau Ching Wan (Mad Detective), Fairy Tale Killer has found a strong lead actor, but Danny also casts Wang Bao Qiang (Blind Shaft), Elanne Kwong (The Child's Eye), Elena Kong (Vengeance) and Lam Suet (Kung Fu Hustle) in supporting roles. Children's stories and horrifying murders walk hand in hand in the latest release from Terror Cotta, available on U.K. shores for the first time this month. Lau Ching Wan (Life Without Principle) stars as the troubled cop on the case, while Wang Baoqiang (Mr. Tree) becomes the deranged killer responsible for the bizarre and bloody deaths. The story kicks off when Inspector Wong arrests a seemingly disturbed man confessing to a brutal murder reminiscent of a children's fable. The only problem is, the supposed victim is still very much alive. The perpetrator is dismissed as a crank and released, but days later, the victim turns up dead with rocks stuffed inside his open stomach.
about 2 hours ago
Men
It was a fairly quiet weekend at the box-office, I thought, because Getaway, Closed Circuit and the One Direction concert film were the only wide releases, none of which I expected much from. I typically track the box-office reports all ...
It was a fairly quiet weekend at the box-office, I thought, because Getaway, Closed Circuit and the One Direction concert film were the only wide releases, none of which I expected much from. I typically track the box-office reports all weekend long in order to formulate a box-office trend piece on Sunday night (or in this case, Monday night because of the holiday), but I knew no one would bother with Getaway because who would possibly care, no one would bother with Closed Circuit because no one had ever heard of it (including the star of the movie, Eric Bana) and that, based on the failures of the recent Jonas Brothers concert film and the Katy Perry concert film that no one would likely bother with the One Direction concert movie, either. I was right on two accounts. Getaway debuted at number 9 with $4.5 million, which was frankly more than I thought it would make, and Closed Circuit debuted at number 15, with $2.5 million (again, about $1 million more than I thought it would make). I was wrong, however, in the interest for a One Direction concert film as One Direction: This is Us debuted at number one over the weekend with $17 million, ahead of The Butler ($14.7 million, $79 million cumulative) and We're the Millers ($12 million, $109 million cumulative. Rawson Thurber is no doubt pleased that Millers will surpass his Dodgeball's $116 million take next week, so he can now brag about the Millers take during his fantasy football drafts, not that I would know anything about this). Still, the huge, huge surprise of the weekend was from a movie that opened in only 317 theaters, a movie in fact that I'd never heard of. The Spanish-speaking Instructions Not Included debuted with a whopping $7.5 million, which is the fourth biggest debut of all time for a limited release movie. It's also the fourth biggest debut weekend of all time for a foreign language film, although it opened in significantly fewer theaters than the three films ahead of it. Not for the last time, Instructions Not Included demonstrates the power of the Hispanic demographic in the United States. Hispanics make up 17 percent of the U.S. population now, but apparently, they also make up 26 percent of the moviegoing public, which certainly suggests studios will likely aim to better exploit that in the future. It's a huge number, and completely took me by surprise. It wasn't the only impressive debut for a foreign-language film over the weekend, either, as Wong Kar Wai's The Grandmaster -- opening in 750 theaters -- also put up solid numbers, debuting with $2.4 million. All told, that makes The Grandmaster the 10th highest grossing foreign-language debut of all time. Here's the complete list. 1. Hero: $18 million 2. Jet Li's Fearless: $10 million 3. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: $8.6 4. Instructions Not Included: $7.5 million 5. Kung Fu Hustle: $6.7 million 6. Iron Monkey: $6 million 7. The Protector: $5 million 8. Pan's Labyrinth: $4.5 million 9. Under the Same Moon: $2.7 million 10. The Grandmaster: $2.5 million
about 1 month ago
Everyone has got their cinematic blind spots but not everyone recognizes it. Then again not everyone is Spike Lee. The director is coming off his successful Kickstarter campaign for his next film and part of that crowd-funding effort saw...
Everyone has got their cinematic blind spots but not everyone recognizes it. Then again not everyone is Spike Lee. The director is coming off his successful Kickstarter campaign for his next film and part of that crowd-funding effort saw the director reach fans and folks new to his work like nothing we've ever seen before. Part of that process in raising awareness for his next Spike Lee Joint was dropping his list of Essential Films that every filmmaker must see. It was an interesting round-up of titles, leaning heavy on American cinema classics, while also making room for oddball entries like "Kung Fu Hustle" and "Apocalypto." But it seems it wasn't quite so definitive. The...
about 1 month ago
Respected and controversial filmmaker Spike Lee, who directed several favorite movies of mine (Do the Right Thing, Inside Man), also teaches film at his alma mater NYU. At the start of each semester, Professor Lee hands out to his film s...
Respected and controversial filmmaker Spike Lee, who directed several favorite movies of mine (Do the Right Thing, Inside Man), also teaches film at his alma mater NYU. At the start of each semester, Professor Lee hands out to his film students a list of movies he's selected as essential viewing. The list went viral after Lee posted it last week over at his much-debated Kickstarter page for his next joint, a horror genre project he's had some trouble getting off the ground (half of the list is posted below).Some people have beefs with Lee's list of his favorite films. The Women and Hollywood blog noted that only one of Lee's picks was directed by a woman (City of God, which was co-directed by Kátia Lund), while a Racialicious writer tweeted that she read a complaint from another writer of color about Lee's list being too white. Whatever the case though, Lee's list is full of intriguing choices (Kung Fu Hustle? Fuck yeah!) and a lot of movies that are worth experiencing again (Kung Fu Hustle!).Did you know Uwe Boll teaches film as well? I happened to procure a copy of Boll's essential film list.[via University of Phoenix]
2 months ago
Spike Lee has been in the news quite a bit recently. He’s got Oldboy, arguably his biggest movie ever, coming out soon, and just began a Kickstarter for his follow-up that will be “about blood and sex.” Being that he...
Spike Lee has been in the news quite a bit recently. He’s got Oldboy, arguably his biggest movie ever, coming out soon, and just began a Kickstarter for his follow-up that will be “about blood and sex.” Being that he’s currently in the public eye, the director of such classics as Do The Right Thing, Malcolm X and Clockers is using the spotlight to educate fellow filmmakers. He’s released a list he gives to his NYU Graduate film students of the films he believes every filmmaker should see. Thanks to The Playlist for the heads up on this. First, here’s Lee’s explanation. And here’s the full list, unfortunately presented as two JPEG images. Any surprises on there? Lots. Only two Steven Spielberg films, an odd Woody Allen choice, Spartacus but no 2001 for Kubrick, District 9 and Kung Fu Hustle are included, there’s plenty to discuss here. This is not the typical list. Spike Lee Kickstarting His Next Film About Blood and Sex‘Oldboy’ Red-Band Trailer: “You Might Want to Think About What You’re Doing Here”First ‘Oldboy’ Poster Features an Image From the Spike Lee Film; Trailer Out Wednesday [Updated With New Images]Spike Lee’s ‘Oldboy’ Pushed Back Two WeeksSpike Lee Takes Over Former Michael Mann Project ‘Gold’First ‘Oldboy’ Teaser Poster, Plus Very Early Screening Reaction [Updated With High-Quality Poster]
2 months ago
Badges Of Fury, a crime thriller featuring one hell of a martial arts trio with Jet Li (needs no introduction), Collin Chou (The Matrix Reloaded, Flashpoint) and Wu Jing (SPL / Kill Zone) in the lead roles. When a spate of eerie murders ...
Badges Of Fury, a crime thriller featuring one hell of a martial arts trio with Jet Li (needs no introduction), Collin Chou (The Matrix Reloaded, Flashpoint) and Wu Jing (SPL / Kill Zone) in the lead roles. When a spate of eerie murders erupts across HK two troublemaking cops are assigned to the case. Young maverick WANG and grizzled vet HUANG who is fed up with his reckless younger partner always landing them in hot water. Reaching a dead end after discovering all the victims were former boyfriends of aspiring starlet LIU, the detectives must play a deadly game. One of them must go undercover as Liu’s lover to lure the killer out. Li, Chou and Wu are three of the finest screen fighters in the world and with Kung Fu Hustle and Crouching Tiger vet Po Chu Chui in the producer’s chair here’s betting they’re put to good use. The fights are mostly spectacular with Jet Li not showing any signs of aging. It’s a shame it’s let down by such appalling CGI/visual effects at some points. Martial arts movies don’t need special effects to be awesome, just human skill. It’s not like Jet Li or Wen Zhang can’t fight; they both have several scenes where they do some breathtaking fighting moves. It should be noted though that Jet is in a bit of a smaller role; he still has plenty to do but the main character is played by Wen Zhang. He actually gets pretty annoying rather fast because he’s such an idiot and you’re almost counting the seconds until Jet comes and saves the day. It references the Police Story movies and a few others too which does get tedious as self reverential humor is always lame. Badges Of Fury is unabashedly lowbrow, but even judging the movie by its own standards, the comedic scenes are shoddily set-up and highly repetitive. It’s like watching a lobotomised Charlie Chaplin: cast members slam into windows, doors, buildings and glass panes with the frequency of suicidal fruit flies, their gross buffoonery accentuated by cheesy visual effects. Oh and if you were wondering about the header image of this review: The impeccable casting crew to include the baby face Michelle Chen, boob overloading Ada Liu, and the beautiful and elegant Liu Shi Shi completes the female actress lineup while Jet Li and Wen Zhang are often outshine, they provide that decent support role. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9NF7czH1m_I The cameos appearing in the movie are a true gem, down to familiar extras and big names taking on minor rolls, it’s just a box full of surprises and when you are able to identify 90% of them, you know you were once a Hong Kong Entertainment fan. There are possibly two (count ‘em!) entertaining fight scenes in Badges Of Fury, and an NG sequence that’s more entertaining than the rest of the movie put together. We’re not recommending Badges Of Fury based on those dubious merits, however… after all, you’d have to have the fortitude of Jet Li to put yourself through torture for mediocrity.
2 months ago