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Infection / Kansen (JAPAN 2004)

 

Director : Masayuki Ochiai
Cast : Koichi Sato, Masanobu Takashima, Mari Hoshino, Michiko Hada, Kaho Minami and Shiro Sano.

Synopsis
INFECTION takes place in a dark, isolated hospital, where one nurse’s mistake has led to dire consequences for a patient.

Review
by Edward Tang

I’m not a fan of Japanese horror flicks, mainly because they aren’t scary and seem like the same thing over and over. So for me to see this one, I probably either didn’t check to see if it was a “Japanese” horror film, or I just didn’t care that day. Milking the success from previous hits that have also been made into successful American flicks (Ringu and Ju-on), obviously anything that has those names tagged on it, will catch the eye of any fan of these movies. So I threw on “Infection”, which actually beat out “Alive” as having no point to exist. Being a horror film, it contained many of scenes where there would just be talking. Yes, talking. Then as the people became “infected”, they’d spit out green slime. Then we lead to the typically cliched ending, which really leaves no room for thought. But horror is not what I received from this piece of shit. It wasn’t a gory, it wasn’t filled with good visuals (in this film, there’s a swing moving around, ohhh), it relied on quick shots to make us JUMP, but all I did was vomit. (From anger)

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Imprint (JAPAN 2006)

Director : Takashi Miike
Cast : Billy Drago, Youki Kudoh, Michie Ito, Toshie Negishi, Shimako Iwai.

Synopsis
An American journalist in 19th century Japan is hoping to find the love he left behind. His long search leads him to a dark island where the only sanctuary is a brothel. He ends up spending the night with an interesting woman where he learns that some things are better off left in the past.

Review
by Edward Tang

Miike is a crazy man, and he’s the only reason I even cared to turn to Showtime and view the goodness. But alas! Miike’s little flick called “Imprint” was originally withheld from Showtime for, get this, being too disturbing! Miike has made a career of being disturbing (and quite hilarious, touching, poetic…) and you could just go rent “Visitor Q” to see what I’m referring to. I really had to get my hands on this, because to one quote I read on the internet which called this the “most disturbing thing I’ve ever seen.” A frantic search through the alleys of despair, I FINALLY viewed the spectacle of Miike’s goodness and I can say it delivered in the overall violent/weird images but really doesn’t break any new ground if we are going towards Takashi Miike’s awesome resume including such classics as Ichi the Killer, Fudoh or Dead or Alive.

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House of Fury (HK 2005)

Director : Stephen Fung
Cast : Anthony Wong, Stephen Fung, Michael Wong, Gillian Chung, Daniel Wu, Charlene Choi and Wu Ma.

Synopsis
Yue Siu Bo is a former secret agent turned chiropractor who thought he left his past behind. However, his past catches up to him as a rogue agent demands to know the whereabouts of an agent. This agent captures Yue Siu Bo and its up to his kids to find this agent and save their dad.

Review
by Edward Tang

I’ve literally seen about 1000 Anthony Wong films in the last few months and this guy doesn’t seem to stop. I’m sure he doesn’t give a shit about scripts anymore, because lets face it, he’s a f*ckin’ actor! He’s been in so many classic films, it’s hard not to like the guy just a little bit. Since I’m a fan, I’ll usually see whatever he’s got to offer and of course I had to check out House of Fury.
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Hit Man File (THAI 2005)

Director : Sananjit Bangsapan
Cast : Chatchai Plengpanit, Saranyoo Wongkrachang, Suntisuk Promsiri, Bongkot Khongmalai

Synopsis
Forsaking his idealist past, Tanthai has become the
Thai underworld’s secret weapon: a remorseless contract killer able to dispatch any target? provided his price is met. But when Beum, a Machiavellian politician, hires
Tanthai to eliminate an upstart drug kingpin threatening Bangkok’s fragile criminal status quot, the lone wolf assassin’s ethical vacuum is inadvertently breached. Caught between rival Triad bosses, mercenary policemen and power hungry parliamentarians, Thailand’s deadliest assassin becomes the country’s most wanted target. As Bangkok boils over into a full-fledged gang war, Tanthai crosses gun barrels with a rival from out of his past and risks everything to answer a conscience he thought he’d long ago erased.

Review
by Edward Tang

II think this film had the potential to be something more than what it turned out to be. It had great cinematography (Considering this is a Thai film, it’s excellent), an interesting cast of characters and some good music. But that’s really it and what truly detracts from these smaller “good” things is the story and how it makes no fucking sense whatsoever. Granted, I didn’t expect a well thought out story but something that was barely adequate would have done well here. There are so many random characters and plot points that really make the film hard to understand: who is who and what their actions actually mean in the long run. Throughout the film I continuously asked my friends who this character was and what he was doing in the story, and they were as dumbfounded as me. I wanted to like this film but I was disappointed in the long run because there really isn’t anything in here that deserves a look.

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Bodyguard From Beijing (HK 1994)

Director : Corey Yuen/Kazuya Konaka
Cast : Jet Li, Christy Chung, Kent Cheng and Collin Chou

Synopsis

Jet Li is a bodyguard from Beijing, assigned to protect an eye-witness (Christie Chung) of a mass murder case. In the process, Christie Chung tends to fall in love with Jet Li….

Review
by Edward Tang

Jet Li and Corey Yuen have made a few films together including one of my favorite films in “Fong Sai Yuk” and others that are horrible. But the apply titled “Defender” or “Bodyguard from Beijing is a loose remake of the Whitney Houston bore fest. I’m impressed for the most part with this film because it has some great action sequences, but totally gets bogged down in the typical fare. You’ve got the bumbling fat sidekick, the fiends bad guy, the typically useless girl, the little kid who gets in the way, and the hero who accomplishes all of his goals. This film is good for the action, but it seemed to try and build a romance that just didn’t feel good with us at the end.

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