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 »
  

PiFan 2014 Review: CAMERA Has A Good Eye But Lacks Focus

The debut feature from James Leong showcases the director's strong visual sensibility, but with an unimaginative and wasteful screenplay, Camera fails to capitalise on its intriguing premise.Set in a near-future Hong Kong, a gaping class and wealth divide has seen... More »
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: TALE OF A BUTCHER SHOP, A Sensitively Observed Documentary Of A Working-Class Family

Tale of a Butcher Shop, Hanabusa Aya's sensitively observed documentary on a family of butchers in Kaizuka City in Osaka, Japan, begins in a very startling fashion, with an unflinching depiction of a cow's slaughtering. A man leads the cow... More »
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: LOVE'S WHIRLPOOL Offers Potent Mix of Eroticism, Comedy, And Melancholy

Miura Daisuke (Boys on the Run) adapts his own award-winning 2005 play Love's Whirlpool into his latest film of the same name, and it is quite a remarkable and wonderfully acted film where sex is the main subject and the... More »
  

Review: Cathy Garcia-Molina's SHE'S DATING THE GANGSTER Is More Than Just Your Average Filipino Rom-Com

The early 90's was for Philippine cinema a period for transition from the hard-hitting dramas and actioners to the sugary and light romances that are still popular up to today. Carlos Siguion-Reyna's Hihintayin Kita sa Langit (I Will Wait For... More »
By Oggs Cruz   
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: 0.5MM, A Darkly Comedic Probe Of Japan's Historical And Social Psyche

The remarkable Japanese director Ando Momoko expands her cinematic canvas considerably with her second feature, 0.5mm, a major highlight of this year's Japan Cuts festival. It's a deceptively small film that tackles big subjects, an intimate film with an epic three... More »
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: MONSTERZ, In Which Nakata Hideo Misfires With A Lackluster Remake

The slow but steady decline of the once-great Nakata Hideo (The Ring, Chaos, Dark Water) continues unabated with his latest, Monsterz. This is a remake of Haunters, the 2010 Korean film by Kim Min-seok that itself was no classic, but had... More »
  

Japan Cuts 2014 Review: WOOD JOB! Takes Us Deep Into the World Of Forestry, With Wonderfully Comic Results

The recent Japanese film Wood Job! is not, despite its very suggestive title, a pornographic film, which will either relieve or disappoint you, depending on where your movie tastes happen to lie. Instead, it is the latest comedy by Yaguchi... More »
  

Review: WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE, Ghibli Enters A New Age With A Melancholic Ghost Story

Studio Ghibli and its catalogue of extraordinary animated films has been built on the back of two men: the creator of its most beloved characters and star of the studio, Miyazaki Hayao and the often over-looked, but no less talented,... More »
  

Review: HUNGRY GHOST RITUAL Has No Appetite For Horror

Nick Cheung follows a string of critical and commercial hits with his debut as writer-director, a seasonal horror flick in which he also takes the leading role. While Cheung has a keen eye for detail when it comes to the... More »
  

London Indian 2014 Review: AS SEEN BY THE REST Presents An Intricate Puzzle Box For Movie Buffs

A thrilling mystery in several parts, As Seen By the Rest (Ulidavaru Kandante) is a bold leap forward for the cinema of Karnataka, India. The film is both completely comfortable in its own skin and with its identity as popular... More »
By J Hurtado   
  
 
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