Thursday, February 28, 2013

Location! Location! Location!

While in HK, I made it a sure point to visit some HK filming locales.  I consulted a few cool blog/websites, like HONG KONG ON FILM, and asked a few Facebook friends who either live in or have visited HK.   One friend joked that ALL of HK was a filming locale.  At the time, I just thought he was being a smart ass but while in situ, I immediately saw that he was speaking the truth.  So, while making our daily itinerary I was able to insert some locales to hit up while on our walkabouts.  Does the building above look familiar?

On the left, circa 1992, it was the tea house, where the infamous Chow Yun-fat shootout (my favorite action sequence ever!) took place in John Woo's HARD BOILED.  It's located at the intersection of Soy St. and Shanghai St., in Mongkok.  Today it has cutesy little puppies painted all over it.  Oy vey.

This location was one of my own design and I'm not quite sure if its the exact locale.  The similarity in the 'SAN FRANCISCO' neon sign on the right point to me being correct.  But lets just say it is because the film that it's from is a raw classic.  While pounding through the seediness of night time Wanchai with my wife and a friend, I located Club San Francisco, on Lockhart Rd..  On the left, circa 1988 in HER VENGENACE,  It was the club where Pauline Wong and Lam Ching-ying worked.  Today, it's all shiny and updated and ready for some dirty after dark, low down trade.

Ok.  Not the greatest shot of this location and really nothing to write home about, but while on a walking tour with a friend on our last full day in HK, he directed me toward Tom Lee Music on Cameron Ln., in Tsim Sha Tsui.  Above, left, is a scene from Johnnie To's PTU made in 2003. Thirteen years later, Tom Lee Music, or the building it's in,  appears to be going through some renovations.
And here, at the intersection of Temple St. and Kansu St. in Yau Ma Tei, is a locale from Herman Yau's exceptional 2007 film, WHISPERS AND MOANS.

This locale is also located in Yau Ma Tei, and since our hotel was only a few blocks away, we passed by a few times.  It's the quite HK film infamous Yau Ma Tei Police Station.  Above, clockwise, Shu Qi in PORTLAND STREET BLUES (1998), me-being a silly ninny (2013), ELECTION (2005), and DR. LAMB (1992).  I would like to extend my great thanks, once again, to HONG KONG ON FILM, for use of the above pics.

And finally.  My favorite film of all time.  CHUNGKING EXPRESS (1994).  So, the above locale is in Lan Kwai Fong, and, as you can see, my wife and I got in on the act here.  My wife playing the stewardess, and me, playing Cop 663.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Movie Theaters of Hong Kong

As we traipsed around the entirety of HK, or what we could get to anyway, I wanted to try to hit up a few of the movie theaters.  And, if not actually sit and watch a film there, at least get a pic or two.  And I managed to actually do both.  Above, and a few pix below, are of the President Theater in Causeway Bay.  A friend of ours was taking us on a walking tour through some of the cooler spots on HK island one night before we headed over to the hot-sex-on-a-platter bouillabaisse that is Wanchai and then over to the debauchery of Lan Kwai Fong for some drinks.  

The Last Tycoon

The Grandmaster, The Last Tycoon, and The Last Stand

The Grandmaster

Back on the Kowloon side, a few friends told me that it was a MUST to take in a movie @ the Dynasty Theater.  It's reputably a theater of questionable repute and one of the last bastions of old world HK film theater uncleanliness.  Unfortunately, I was only able to take a few pics of the facade.  But I'll DEFINITELY make a show there the next time I'm in HK.

The Tower and Hansel and Gretal: Witch Hunters

The Last Tycoon and The Grandmaster

The Broadway Cinematheque is in Yau Ma Tei, also on the Kowloon side of HK.  It's more of an artsy fartsy theater featuring more international fare.  We stayed in Yau Ma Tei so we walked by or were in the area of this theater quite often.  We didn't stop in for a show, though. We wanted to check out WKW's THE GRANDMASTER, but, for whatever reason, only a few theaters released it with English subs.
The Grandmaster outside of Broadway Cinematheque

The Newport Theater is in on Soy St., around the Ladies Market area of Mongkok.  Our hotel was actually a few blocks south and we made our way to the Ladies Market often for quick bites to eat.  Time and our itinerary stood in the way of checking out any films here.  But, we wouldn't be deterred.
The Grandmaster and The Last Tycoon
The Last Tycoon, The Grandmaster, and Les Miserables

Unfortunately, I was so caught up in a walking tour by a friend of mine that i forgot to take some snaps of the outside of this multi-leveled shopping palace in Tsim Sha Tsui.  The iSquare Theater is an IMAX spectacle that takes up the top few floors of this mall.   But, we were able to find a subtitled print of THE GRANDMASTER.  And we sat.  And we watched.  And it was gooooood.

The Grandmaster

 In Tsim Sha Tsui East, on Mody Rd., my wife and I were able to hit up the freshly released YOUNG AND DANGEROUS: RELOADED at the Chinachem Golden Plaza Cinemas.  I was also steered here by a friend who touted it's heyday HK movie charm.   Y and D: RELOADED was released in theaters in both a IIB and III version.  Guess which version we saw?  Ha!   CAT III all the way.  And we enjoyed the just-a-tad-seedy atmosphere of a Sunday night @ the movies.  Young punks smoking in the theater and all.  Fun movie.  GREAT TIMES!
Chinachem Golden Plaza Cinemas





CAT III is for me!


CAT III Warning

Love it or leave it!



Outside of the theater, THE GRANDMASTER

Y and D: RELOADED, once more


And, finally, our last stop.  Here at the Shilin Night Market in Taipei.  One of the largest Night Markets in Taiwan.  Just before we left the orgy of cooked animal entrails, my wife's cousin, and also our tour guide, pointed out this theater @ the market.  We didn't have time to see a flick here, and probably wouldn't have made it through without a toilet break or two after gorging ourselves with every little bit of marinated animal bits and pieces know to this earth.  But, THE GRANDMASTER was playing.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Swag from my Hong Kong/Taiwan trip

Just a quick stop by to post pics of the movie garbage that I blew my money on while on my Honeymoon in Hong Kong and Taiwan.  For those who are interested, take a gander at my goodies.  And, yes.  I have issues.  Enjoy!
I bought all of these VCD's at Widesight...

....a joint on Temple Street....

....and a stall on Kweilin St. in Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong

Taiwanese LD transfers to DVD that I bought in a convenience store in Hualien

Movie poster photo calendar and bio on Kuei Chih-Hung that I bought @ The Hong Kong Film Archives

These LD's were bought for me by a friend of mine in HK @ a stall in Sham Shui Po.  

While there, I visited with my friend and the stall where he had bought these LD's, but unfortunately, no LD's to be found at the stall on my trip

Beach Spike fan

I would like to take a moment to thank my wife.  What does one do when one's significant other is searching for nudie books at a newsstand?   My poor wife has the answer. Anyway, photo books for Shu Qi, Ellen Chan, Vivian Hsu, and Miho Nomoto.

Sex and Zen I & II photo books

Triad comic book, DVD, and theme song

Lobby Cards

Lobby Cards

Amy Yip Penthouse, Loletta Lee Penthouse, Julie Lee photo book

Young & Dangerous: Reloaded comics