Hong Kong

Ann Hui – Tin shui wai dik ye yu mo AKA Night and Fog (2009)

Russell Edwards at Variety:
Domestic violence gets a compelling once-over in Hong Kong vet Ann Hui’s “Night and Fog,” which rises above its low-budget limitations on the basis of its hot-button topic and stellar performances. Establishing an air of fatalism at the start, this is a distinctly grim companion piece to Hui’s 2008 pic, “The Way We Are,” which offered a more benign portrait of the same Hong Kong town. Hui’s home fanbase should ensure respectable B.O. upon release in May for a subject many would like swept under the carpet. Further afield, the pic will become a fixture of quality fest programs. Read More »

Ann Hui – Jin ye xing guang can lan AKA Starry is the Night (1988)

A social worker falls in love with a teenager, and remembers an affair she had with a professor while she was at university.

Quote:
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“I spent a year at the Vidal Sassoon headquarters,” brags Lydia (Brigitte Lin), a sprightly social worker trying to impress Tian-An (David Ng), a stock market whiz kid and aspiring hairstylist. It’s a fitting overture for a movie brimming with striking hair, from Tian-An’s very 1987 mullet to Cai-Wei’s very 1966 bob-with-bangs, from Dr. Zhang’s (George Lam) caterpillar mustache to Lydia’s butch-adjacent boy-cut. It works; Tian-An falls for Lydia, and despite their nearly 20-year age difference, their relationship flourishes in health and happiness—or does it? Read More »

Patrick Tam – Xue zai shao AKA Burning Snow (1988)

Synopsis:
A young woman is forced to marry an older man who runs a roadhouse saloon. She is constantly being raped by her husband, a drunken loutish brute. She harbors a young man wanted by the police in a murder case, and soon the fugitive and the young wife have a torrid affair as she continues to hide him from the authorities. Read More »

Tun Fei Mou – Lian cheng jue AKA A Deadly Secret (1980)

Synopsis:
Director Mou Tun-fei came to international attention as director of the controversial Man Behind The Sun in 1988. But years prior, he was known for this unremitting tale of kung-fu sadism. Yueh Hua, co-star of Clan Of Amazons and Clans Of Intrigue, tears up the screen as a corrupt magistrate, so obsessed with finding a hidden treasure that he buries his daughter alive, setting off a frenzy of destruction. Read More »

Yuen Chor – Wu yi AKA Sex, Love, and Hate (1974)

Accredited director of erotica and kung-fu films Chu Yuan, combines stars from both genres in Sex, Love And Hate, a masterpiece about Hong Kong society’s differing emotional views on love and what women want when it comes to happiness in love. The provocative Ching Li (Chu Tai), the exotic Lily Ho (Pai Mei) and the princess of kung-fu films Hsu Feng (Yao Yao), play three women who live together and compare notes as to what would make them happy in love, in life, then go out to find it. Pai Mei wants money at all costs, Chu Tai will marry as soon as the opportunity arises and Yao Yao is saving her virginity for Mr. Right. Read More »

Stanley Kwan – Hong meigui, bai meigui aka Red Rose, White Rose (1994)

Chronicles the love life of a man, Zhenbao. He has a steamy fling with the wife of a friend, the saucy and exciting Red Rose. Even though he feels happy with her, he knows he will not end up with her. To maintain his reputation, he marries an antiseptic, frigid but classy lady of a prim and proper background (White rose). Dissonance abound when he finds his bride irritating. Read More »

Stanley Kwan – Lan Yu (2001)

Quote:
Beijing, 1988. On the cusp of middle-age, Chen Handong has known little but success all his life. The eldest son of a senior government bureaucrat, he heads a fast-growing trading company and plays as hard as he works. Few know that Handong’s tastes run more to boys than girls. Lan Yu is a country boy, newly arrived in Beijing to study architecture. More than most students, he is short of money and willing to try anything to earn some. He has run into Liu Zheng, who pragmatically suggests that he could prostitute himself for one night to a gay pool-hall and bar owner. Read More »