Sunday, February 08, 2009

Pictures and Misc.

More pictures needless to say. Almost half way through. Today children, we have photos of one of our favorite faces - Joey Wong - in fact a slew of them. Then a few of Joey Yung who I liked so much in Crazy N' the City and then oddly as far as I know she hasn't been in anything since. A smattering of Jordan Chan looking very modelish, Josie Ho looking interesting as always, sadly only a few of Kara Hui - I like her so much but have never come across many pictures of her and none from the 1970's, a whole bunch of Kathy Chow who was terribly under utilized in HK film though she has had a fine career in television, Kelly Chan who was so bad in An Empress and the Warrior but still looks so good and finally a few of Karen Mok who oddly I saw last night on TV in Black Mask. It was the English dubbed version and since I have the HK version I don't know why I stopped channel surfing and watched it, but I did. Still not a great film and one of Mok's worst roles.

Just want to mention how rotten it is that Variety Asia and thus Kaiju Shakedown have fallen victims to the economic downturn. It is hard to imagine that these cost savings were all that much - but I expect they didn't have much pull back at headquarters and so someone made the easy political choice. Everyone loved KS of course and I found VA very interesting as well. Not sure if Grady will bring back Kaiju in another reincarnation but I know lots of people hope so.

Though the news was likely mentioned all over the Internet, it was thanks to reading a post from SBK on YTSL's blog that I learned that Criterion had released Chungking Express. Yay! Finally a decent clean and crisp DVD version and with the original music back in. I used to watch this film religiously every year just to re-gain my optimism for humanity (Red has the same effect on me), but have not done so for a couple of years due to my chaotic schedule. Thus it was pure pleasure visiting old friends and scenes again last night. I have always liked the first half and loved the second half and that still holds. The ending kills me. The extras are kind of disappointing though - especially for Criterion and the price - not that I ever watch them on DVDs but I would have for this one and would have loved to have seen the actors talking about the film. I haven't listened to the Tony Rayans commentary yet. Maybe next year. A short essay from Amy Taubin makes an interesting supposition - that the break between the two stories was in fact Wong Kar-wai breaking from his gangster genre past to his future lush romances. I wonder. Certainly when I was watching the scene between Tony and Valerie Chow to the music of What a Difference a Day Makes I thought that WKW could teach Ang Lee a few things about filming love scenes.

For no good reason except to cheer myself up, I took a load of screen captures and here they are. Who can tell me what the first three captures have in common. No prizes other than knowing you are smarter than the average bear. Or the only one who reads this blog! Picts here and here.

The answer to the above comment is now in the comment section.

Joey Wong (78 picts) - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

Joey Yung (10 picts)

Jordan Chan (14 picts)

Josie Ho (11 picts)

Kara Hui Ying-hung (7 picts)

Karen Mok (22 picts) - 1, 2

Kathy Chow (43 picts) - 1, 2, 3, 4

Kelly Chan (30 picts) - 1, 2


eliza bennet said...

I can't tell what the first three stills have in common (other than night & lights) :(

You are going to give the answer right?

This film is my all time fave and no matter how much I view it, it doesn't lose its sparkle!

Brian said...

Yikes - I thought the question would be eazy peazy for you Eliza - maybe I worded it wrong - what is it about those 3 scenes/shots that they have in common with one another within the context of the film. I'll give it one more day if no one gets it. If YTSL doesn't get this I would be shocked!

You know the only part of the film that I now find a little tedious is the section with Tony talking to the things in his apt - but somehow I would guess that Tony walking around in his underwear is enough to keep you interested!

Steve said...

Aren't they shown out of sequence in the film?

Brian said...

Not out of sequence necessarily - but yes - these are quick shots in the first story in which the 3 main characters in the second story make a blink of an eye appearance. Very good!

eliza bennet said...

Hahahahahaaaaa! Now I see what you mean - I actually made the Faye/cat connection the first time I saw the film, but Tony looking down was for the second viewing.

"You know the only part of the film that I now find a little tedious is the section with Tony talking to the things in his apt - but somehow I would guess that Tony walking around in his underwear is enough to keep you interested!"

!!!! This is one of my favorite parts of the film since I sometimes talk to inanimate objects and liken them to people too (like the dish rag and soap) It was one of the many many reasons this film is very near and dear to my heart.

Although you have a point I would be thrilled even if Tony just sat there - fully dressed or in his underwear or naked - since he is great no matter what he does. His only weakness was the intimate scenes (excluding CE) and now he mastered them too!!! A top notch actor and a hottie who looks better with age :)

YTSL said...

Hahaha at some of the comments in this thread! And yeah, I quickly looked and wondered if the connection between those photos was like Steve correctly identified but he was quicker to comment than me.

Also, like "eliza bennet", loved the talking to inanimate objects scenes since I do that too. But urgh, I really do prefer Tony fully clothed... watching him during the "Lust, Caution" sex scenes, realized that his legs are pretty hairy (for an East Asian man) and watching him in "Chungking Express", I can't help thinking that his underwear looks too worn for my liking... ;(

Brian said...

I guess Faye didn't replace his underwear! I just think a man should switch to boxers at some point in his life. Do most people talk to inanimate objects I wonder? I don't at all unless I include myself and many have certainly described me as an inanimate object at times! Or maybe its a female thing?

I think WKW put the 3 shots in there as part of his larger theme in the film of proximity and connecting. There are stories going on all around us but we rarely intersect with them unless through an accident of timing. So Takashi bumps into Brigitte and falls in love 50 hours later, Takashi bumps into Faye and nothing happens - but during that whole first story the lives of Tony, Faye and Valerie are going on and each of them comes within a second perhaps of intersecting with the people of the first story and if they had their story would have been different. Or something like that!

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