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Archive for June 23rd, 2010

Guess the pic

Courtesy of the Fantastic Mr. Fish

The winner can submit their screen-cap to movieman0283@gmail.com. Do not include film title in file name so I can participate as well! (Give a day or two for the new picture to go up)

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Guess the pic

Courtesy of Samuel Wilson

Just Another Film Buff already guessed “36th Chamber of Shaolin” though the comment was caught in limbo.

The winner can submit their screen-cap to movieman0283@gmail.com. Do not include film title in file name so I can participate as well! (Give a day or two for the new picture to go up)

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© 2010 by James Clark

      Whereas, for all but curmudgeons, the vicissitudes of the lovers, showing from out of In the Mood for Love, elicit a direct and memorable response, the second phase of reversals for one of those lovers, in Wong Kar-Wai’s 2046 (2004),  proves much harder to warm up to. Though the visual and aural design of the latter film is very similar to that of the former, and though even much of the two narratives is shared, we are made to engage 2046 with energies never brought to bear by the closely revealed twisting of Mrs. Chan and Mr. Chow.

    Apparently the film released later was in the works earlier, but the writer-director could not fix upon a structure to deliver its goods (those goods themselves mountainously difficult to bring to sufficient resolution). The two films, then, are aspects of one cinematic package, In the Mood for Love being a more readily presentable introduction. It was one thing to launch a spare duet (a “chamber-music” work) redolent of a devastating crisis, whereby attractive soloists could form an ensemble action of limited and immediately assimilated powers. But the writer had come to be haunted by the full ramifications of those casualties, lightly touched upon by impingements there of the world at large. In awkwardly (understandably so) proceeding toward that arena, Wong Kar Wai—hitherto never a conventional practitioner—began to exasperate his production coterie and the film world at large, losing, along the (very long) way his longstanding genius cinematographer, Christopher Doyle, who subsequently went on record as opining that the chief had expended all his ammo in producing that singularly profitable hit, and could not move on to other forms of entertainment. So laconic and elusive were his working methods, even a close partner in making unique sparks fly hadn’t a clue about what he was driving at! And that impasse speaks to not only the content of 2046, but the wider sphere of attempting serious innovation by means of consequently big-money-losing ventures, like those of Demy and Lynch, which eventually result in careers, if not terminated, massively complicated and compromised. (more…)

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by Allan Fish

(Japan 2001 126m) DVD1/2

Aka. Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi

Chihiro in Wonderland

p  Toshio Suzuki  d/w  Hayao Miyazaki  story  Hayao Miyazaki  m  Joe Hishaishi 

VOICES BY:- Daveigh Chase (Chihiro/Sen), Suzanne Pleshette (Yubaba/Zeniba), Jason Marsden (Haku), John Ratzenberger (Aogaeru), Michael Chiklis (Father), Susan Egan (Lin), David Ogden Stiers (Kamaji), Lauren Holly (Mother), Tara Strong (Boh), 

You are lucky” exclaims Pixar’s John Lasseter in the introduction to his friend Hayao Miyazaki’s masterpiece on the US DVD.  Indeed we are lucky, for Miyazaki is the man who has, single-handedly, re-established faith in traditional animation at a time when, post the brief renaissance after Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin, Disney had not only reduced it once more to a lesser art, but abandoned it altogether.  He also brought true respectability to Japanese animation which for so long had lain in the shadow of Manga, from the children’s serials like Battle of the Planets to fully fledged features such as Ghost in the Shell and Akira.  Yet it was only in the nineties that Miyazaki’s reputation began to spread outside his native land and, great though his earlier works are (check out Castle in the Sky, Kiki’s Delivery Service and particularly the ecological animated classic Princess Mononoke), I’m in agreement with Lasseter; Spirited Away is indeed Miyazaki’s masterpiece.

            Ten year old Chihiro is a disaffected, sulky little girl who is moving with her family to a remote new home away from the city.  However, on the way they take a wrong road and turn into an old abandoned theme park which they decide to explore.  There they find some food cooking which the parents start tucking into only to turn into pigs.  So begins Chihiro’s adventure to win back her parents’ human selves as she is taken to a mystical fantasy land within the old theme park, a sort of bath-house for spirits and ghosts where she is set to work on menial tasks by the magical witch boss Yubaba.  (more…)

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