Review: KUNDO: AGE OF THE RAMPANT Marches With A Confident Swagger

With big stars and a hefty budget, Kundo: Age Of The Rampant marches into theaters with confidence and tongue planted firmly in cheek. This hybrid period film owes more to spaghetti westerns than the history of its Joseon Era setting... More »
  

Blu-ray Review: MARDOCK SCRAMBLE (THIRD EXHAUST), Sleazy Yet Satisfying

(Teenage Hooker Concludes Trilogy... but is she a Killing Machine?) This month, the third and final film in the Mardock Scramble trilogy was released in the United Kingdom. As I have seen and reviewed the first two films (here and... More »
By Ard Vijn   
  

Review: JIGARTHANDA, A Mini-Meta-Masterpiece Of Madurai Mob Movie Mimicry

Karthik Subbaraj's Jigarthanda is long, juggles multiple storylines, tells complex stories in tiny chunks, is loaded for bear with insider references for Tamil film aficionados that will frequently leave newbs scratching their heads, and is nearly impossible to write about... More »
By J Hurtado   
  

Review: Lame Leads Sink THE PIRATES

Fast on the heels of Kundo: Age of the Rampant and Roaring Currents, the summer's latest period blockbuster enters a crowded field in a market that has of late become oversaturated with similar fare. With lowbrow, poorly executed humor tucked... More »
  

PiFan 2014 Review: GIOVANNI'S ISLAND, A Moving Tale of Post-War Survival

Director Nishikubo Mizuho's ode to post-war survival, Giovanni's Island (Jobanni no shima), offers a heartbreaking account of the struggles of two brothers, as the world they grew up in changes around them, amidst the aftermath of the Second World War. Junpei... More »
  

Cinemalaya 2014: Carlos Siguion-Reyna's HARI NG TONDO (WHERE I AM KING), A Crowdpleaser With Some Semblance Of Substance

There are at least two disparate movies in Hari ng Tondo (Where I Am King), Carlos Siguion-Reyna's first feature film in more than a decade. The first movie is the one written by Bibeth Orteza, which was followed faithfully... More »
By Oggs Cruz   
  

Review: DRAGON BALL Z: BATTLE OF GODS Stirs Good Memories, But Not For Very Long

Dragon Ball Z: Battle Of Gods is a really fun entry in Toriyama Akira's beloved universe that's just not up there with the most memorable ones. It manages to capture the absurdist essence of Dragon Ball very well, but disappoints... More »
  

Cinemalaya 2014 Review: Milo Sogueco's MARIQUINA Maps Familial Heartbreaks With Astounding Elegance

In one sequence in Milo Sogueco's Mariquina, shoemaker Romeo (Ricky Davao, who inhabits the role with unabashed fragility) attempts to salvage whatever he can save in his warehouse from the flood. His teenage daughter, Imelda (Barbie Forteza, who inhabits the delicate... More »
By Oggs Cruz   
  

Review: Strong Effects Play Second Fiddle to Patriotism in THE ADMIRAL: ROARING CURRENTS

When making films based on significant milestones in a country's history, nationalism can be a great asset in a filmmaker's arsenal but it's also a tool that must be handled carefully, as too much patriotic bombast can mar an otherwise... More »
  

PiFan 2014 Review: Horror Comedy MOURNING GRAVE Aims Low But Hits Its Mark

Korean horror has been in the midst of a rough streak for the past half decade. Relying on worn out themes, new works been have trotted out regularly every summer but even with lowered expectations, each year has put forth... More »
  

Review: THE WHITE HAIRED WITCH OF LUNAR KINGDOM Is A Soulless Remake, Devoid Of Magic

Jacob Cheung's new retelling of Liang Yusheng's bestselling novel makes a royal mess of its source material as well as bearing little resemblance to Ronny Yu's much-loved 1993 adaptation. Conflicted over whether to favour action, intrigue or romance, the film... More »
  

PiFan 2014 Review: MY ORDINARY LOVE STORY Is Not Your Ordinary Rom-Com

Expectations play a large role in how we consume and react to cinema, particularly in the commercial realm. Genre formulas are so clearcut than any deviation is immediately noticeable. Some variation is required to prevent things from getting stale but... More »
  

Fantasia 2014 Review: Indonesian Action Flick GUARDIAN Frustrates

Marysa is getting pretty sick and tired of her mom, Sarah, haranguing her about her martial arts studies. She just wants to be a normal teenage girl and hang out with her best friend. But Sarah is insistent on these lessons,... More »
  

Review: Cool KUNDO: AGE OF THE RAMPANT Has Some Swagger In Its Step

With big stars and a hefty budget, Kundo: Age Of The Rampant marches into theaters with confidence and tongue planted firmly in cheek. This hybrid period film owes more to spaghetti westerns than the history of its Joseon Era setting... More »
  

PiFan 2014 Review: ZOMBIE FIGHT CLUB Loves Shooting Ass Way More Than Kicking It

Joe Chien's follow-up to the bafflingly tasteless and salacious Zombie 108 delivers a generous second helping of the same Z-grade trash and splatter. Andy On and Jessica C are the attractive, if helpless, leads who - eventually - find themselves... More »
  

PiFan 2014 Review: Silat Drama YASMINE Fights From The Heart

An earnest and heartfelt coming-of-age story hailing from the tiny South-East Asian sovereign state of Brunei, Siti Kamaluddin's debut feature has attracted widespread attention thanks to its spirited use of en vogue martial art silat. While Yasmine trades the visceral... More »
  

Review: Bleak And Gripping, HAEMOO Prizes Character Over Spectacle

At the request of Finecut, the film's international distributor, the title of the film has been changed to Haemoo. Sea Fog was a working title used up until this point. To date, the summer of 2014 has seen the majority... More »
  

Fantasia 2014 Review: THE SEARCH FOR WENG WENG, Fruitful But Melancholy

I first encountered the work of Filipino action hero and tiny man-child Weng Weng at this very festival in 2007. Andy Stark and Pete Tombs ran an absolutely bonkers reel of money shots from their Mondo Macabro release label in front... More »
  

Fantasia 2014 Review: THE RUN Strikes Familiar Chords With Fists And Knees

It is said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Then baby, let me tell you Malaysian action flick The Run is flattering a whole lot of folks from other parts of Asia. When Khaliff (Aaron Aziz) returns to his... More »
  

Fantasia 2014 Review: Iguchi's LIVE, Silly, Sordid, Satisfying

Out of his many obsessions, it's clear that Iguchi Noboru is an ass man.It's pretty obvious from his camera's obsession with ample posteriors, but in conversation with him, he confirmed his appreciation for the curved tuchas. If that wasn't enough... More »
  
 
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