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hkcinemagic.com editorials Archives (last update : august 2011)

You find here, in reverse chronological order, all the former hkcinemagic.com editorials.

- Summer 2011
- Spring 2011
- Winter 2010-2011
- Fall 2010
- Summer 2010
- Spring 2010
- Winter 2010
- Fall 2009
- Summer 2009
- Spring 2009
- Fall 2008
- July 2008
- June 2008
- May 2008
- April 2008
- February 2008
- January 2008
- November 2007
- October 2007
- September 2007
- August 2007
- July 2007
- June 2007
- May 2007
- April 2007
- March 2007
- February 2007
- January 2007
- October - December 2006
- July - September 2006
- April - March

Summer 2011

[Mapping HK film locations] Gary and Thomas have investigated more than 12 areas of Hong Kong where exceptional HK films were shot. The most comprehensive area being the Kowloon peninsula, with locations in Kowloon, Yau Ma Tei, Jordan, Mongkok, Tsim Sha Tsui. Don't miss out on where As Tears Go By, The Beast Stalker, Echoes Of The Rainbow, Election 2 or PTU iconic scenes were shot. Direct link here.

[Interview Clement Cheng: Gallants] We met Gallants director Clement Cheng at the London Terracotta Far East Film Festival for a one-to-one interview. Cheng is a warm and chatty character, so we decided not only to present the interview transcript, but also to share edited transcripts of his masterclass and Q&A in the British capital.

Spring 2011

[NOIR – A FILM NOIR RETROSPECTIVE ] If you are lucky to be in HK from June 3rd to 26th, don't miss NOIR, a cinema retrospective with French and HK crime dramas. Classics of the “polars” made in France will be screening alongside gritty and thrilling crime flicks from HK (Dangerous Encounters --1st Kind, On the Run, As Tears Go By, My Heart is that Eternal Rose, etc.). On top of that a masterclass with Johnnie To and French director Jacques Audiard (A Prophete) will take place at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts (June 5th, free entrance), with music composer Xavier Jamaux (Sparrow, Mad Detective). Read more on our forum.

[Book review: HONG KONG SCREENSCAPES] Hong Kong cinema isn't just escapism cinema. There are also films on the fringe of the mainstream, independent movies, documentaries, avant-garde films and multimedia exhibitions. Hong Kong Screenscapes reveals all that and much more. The authors treat us with many vital and informative interviews from filmmakers including: Ann Hui, Patrick Tam, Tammy Cheung, Roger Garcia, Yau Ching, etc. This is an excellent and important read to grasp all the aspects of the non-commercial cinema from Hong Kong.

[Terracotta Far East Film Festival] This festival will take place in London, May 5th -8th, at the Prince Charles Cinema, at the heart of Chinatown. In addition to many cool Far East films (The Lost Bladesman, Gallants, Revenge: A Love Story, Choy Lee Fut), there will be a few Q&A and masterclasses with filmmakers (Sam Voutas director of RED LIGHT REVOLUTION, Tak Sakaguchi director of YAKUZA WEAPON and  Clement Cheng director of GALLANTS). More in our forum.

[DVD Review: Supreme Swordsman] A Shaw Brothers wuxiapian from the 1980s, Supreme Swordsman fails on many levels but still manages to entertain with a stellar cast (Derek Yee, Jason Pai Piao, Ku Feng) and some decent action set-pieces choreographed by Yuen Wah. Sylvia delves into the film flaws and lists the DVD merits.

[Hong Kong Film Awards 2011] The HK equivalent of the Academy Awards took place last Sunday. Tsui Hark's Detective Dee and Clement Cheng's and Derek Kwok's Gallants were the two main winners of the evening pocketing respectively six and three Awards. Ip Man 2 snatched the Best Choreography Award. More details in our forum.

[Quadruple Tap !] Leslie Cheung passed away on April 1st, 2003, leaving a huge void in the entertainment industry of Hong Kong. April 1st was the occasion of huge commemorative events in Hong Kong. To pay tribute to Leslie Cheung, one of the biggest stars in the Hong Kong music and cinema industries, we have proposed several things on HKCinemagic.com, site and forum:
- Photos of the Expo for the 20th anniversary of Days of Being Wild (Li Lokman).
- Photos of the double events at the Avenue of Stars in Tsim Sha Tsui on April 1st at night (Gary Wong).
- Candid photos of Leslie Cheung on the set of A Chinese Ghost Story, taken by director Ching Siu-tung and published in his own blog.
- A review by Marie Jost of the excellent book Farewell My Concubine - A Queer Film Classic by Helen Hok-Sze Leung.

Winter 2010-2011

[DVD Review : BASTARD swordsman] A wuxiapian from the early 1980s, with the same supersonic action scenes and fun sfx as in Zu or Holy Flame of the Martial Word, Bastard Swordsman delivers its fair share of entertainment. Sylvia Rorem delves into the film's craziness and discusses the merits of the Funimation DVD, the only video edition of the film available in North America.

[The Rise of Johnnie To] How did Johnnie To go from an almost unknown director in Western circles in 2000 to one of the world's most talked about international filmmakers today? That's a question Marie Jost has tried to answer in her essay “The Rise of Johnnie To.” Marie details how To made a name for himself in the West and how his persona came across and evolved in the interviews translated into English and made available to his non-Chinese audience. Stay tuned for more exclusive photos and a big bonus.

[HKCinemagic.com on smartphones] After our annual break for the Chinese New Year, we are back for more action. Let's start by announcing that HKCinemagic is available on smartphones, nearly anywhere in the world. We've tried in Hong Kong, and it works fine. We are told that it is also viewable on i-phones. This is another way to enjoy our filming location guide!

[DVD Review: Soul of the Sword (Funimation)] Director Hua Shan deftly blends hyperkinetic action with a satisfying and engaging plot in Soul of the Sword (1978). Starring Ku Feng and Ti Lung, the film follows swordsmen who try to survive in a merciless Jiang Hu. Sylvia reviews the Shaw Brothers film and comments on the DVD released by Funimation in North America.

Fall 2010

[Book Review: The 1970's Ultimate Guide...] Thomas has reviewed the 1970s THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO MARTIAL ARTS MOVIES OF THE 1970S and he asked a few question to the author Dr. Craig Reid. Dr. Reid is thorough on many levels and his prose is clear, entertaining, witty and engaging. For each film entries he proposes technical details, all the English title variations, a synopsis, fun facts and trivia and analyses the cultural references, describes the martial arts techniques and choreographies and throws in a few behind-the-scene tidbits.

[DVD Review: Shaolin Rescuers (Funimation)] Shaolin Rescuers is an energic and playful entry in the Venoms sub-genre created by Chang Cheh. Unfortunately, the film offers rarely more than just fights and acrobatics back to back, with no much of a story or proper character development. Sylvia comments on the film and the DVD released in North America by Funimation.

[Interview with Darren Shahlavi : Ip Man 2] p Man 2 almost ended up like an instalment of the Rocky's franchise, and that is in part due to the way DARREN SHAHLAVI fought DONNIE YEN in the ring –very Stallone-like. Arnaud, who interviewed Shahlavi last year about his career pre-Ip Man 2, has just asked the evil English boxer a few more questions on this year's kung fu bloskbuster. Before Ip Man 2, Shahlavi was mostly known for his work in Yuen Woo Ping's Tai Chi II. Arnaud's earlier interview focused on Shahlavi's HK career and his memories on set with a wide range of filmmakers, from Yuen Woo Ping to Tony Leung Siu Hung, to Philip Ko, passing by Ng See Yuen, Bey Logan and even Uwe Boll. The two parts of the interview are now available.

[Clara Law and Eddie Fong Talk] 2010, filmmakers Clara Law and Eddie Fong participated in a panel discussion at the University of Hong Kong. Gina Marchetti transcribed the talk for HKCinemagic. The two HK filmmakers, currently based in Australia, discussed the major themes present in their films: Chinese Diaspora, existence and dreams. They mention Farewell China, Autumn Moon, Floating Life, Goddess of 1967 and their latest effort Like A Dream starring Daniel Wu and Yuan Quan.

[DVD Review: Shaolin Prince (Funimation)] Shaolin Prince is an enjoyable kung fu comedy directed by choreographer Tong Gaai. It also is a super-charged blend of innocent fun, a quick paced story of good and evil, and mind-boggling action. Sylvia reviews the films and comments on the Funimation DVD released in North America.

[Filming locations for Bruce Lee’s films] Thomas and Philip have updated the “Mapping Hong Kong Film Locations” article with a chapter dedicated to filming locations of films Bruce Lee made as an adult. Very few of these locations remain and are accessible by members of the public. What’s more, locations of the films he made as a child actor are no more. For the completists and those planning a pilgrimage in Hong Kong to visit places where Bruce Lee worked and lived we’ve added a special page with places to check out (including Bruce Lee’s home in Cumberland Road).
Summer 2010

[Hong Kong films are MIA in major festivals] Cinema has gone MIA. It seems like a long time since Wong Kar-Wai won the Best Director Award at the Cannes Film Festival for Happy Together (1997) and Tony Leung won there as well for In the Mood for Love (2000). As interest in Chinese-language film continues to grow, the numbers of Hong Kong films lauded at major festivals shrinks. Gina Marchetti and Lin Yiping examine the HK films presence or absence in major European festivals, especially Locarno and Karlovy-Vary.

[DVD Review: The Duel (Funimation)] The Duel is Chang Che's operatic masterpiece of tragic revenge. Although nowhere near as mean or powerful as Vengeance!, The Duel features Ti Lung and David Chiang once again battling for their lives and their honor, loving beautiful women, and righting wrongs, all the while knee-deep in dying Shaw stuntmen and gallons of tomato-red blood. Sylvia reviews the film and the Region-1 DVD.

[Ou-Yang Sha-Fei is passed away] Born in Suzhou in 1924, Ou-Yang Sha-Fei was a screen legend – she made more than 200 films between 1937 and 1990. After a long and fruitful career and two marriages she relocated in the USA in the 1990s. Ou-Yang Sha-Fei passed away aged 86 on 3rd August 2010 and was buried in Salt Lake City, next to her husband. Here is our profile page complete with a bio, a filmo and some galleries.

[DVD Review: Shaolin Handlock (Funimation)] Shaolin Handlock is a fun 1978 Shaw Brothers film that tells a traditional kung fu tale in a modern way. While far from meaningful, there is enough quality action, attractive Shaw stars and good acting to make this film worth watching. Set aside reality and just enjoy this clever revenge story that centers on a family both empowered and imperiled by their deadly technique, the Shaolin Handlock. Sylvia discusses the merits of the film and the DVD.

[Interview with Leo Au-Yeung (Ip Man action)] Despite Sammo Hung’s intensive martial arts knowledge he had to be reminded of Wing Chung’s principles and specificities for his work as action director on Ip Man 1 & 2. Sammo got a refresher from Master Leo Au-Yeung. A Wing Chun expert and student or Ip Chun (Ip Man’s elder son), Au-Yeung Sifu was martial arts consultant and assistant choreograph on Wilson Yip’s Ip Man and Herman Yau’s Ip Man: The Legend Is Born. Mike Fury interviewed Au-Yeung Sifu.

Spring 2010

[Mapping Hong Kong film locations] We have mapped the different places in HK appearing on films. The locations come with a Google map, an actual photograph, a Youtube clip, and comments.

[DVD Review: Shaolin Invincible (Funimation)] Invincible Shaolin, another Venoms offer from Chang Cheh, was re-released in the US by Funimation in June 2010. Here is Sylvia's take on this action packed kung fu film.

[DVD : Opium & The Kung Fu Master (Funimation)] Opium and the Kung Fu Master, re-released in the US on DVD by Funimation in April 2010, is a rather elegant, fully entertaining Shaw Brothers kung fu drama. Sylvia discusses how satisfying this kung fu pian is.

[DVD review: The 14 Amazons (Funimation)] The classic Shaw Brothers epic The Fourteen Amazons is finally released stateside by Funimation/Celestial. Sylvia discusses the merits of the film and the DVD.

[An interview with Producer Terence Chang] In 2007, Terence Chang shared first-hand insights on John Woo's career and personality, and sheds light on their relationship. Here is the direct link to the interview.

[An interview with director John Woo] So many things have been written on John Woo. Good or bad. So we needed to find out for ourselves what was really going on and what the ‘God of Action' had to say about it. During the production of Red Cliff, we discussed with Woo his background and we came back for more later, after the film was released. The interview is a collection of quotes we gathered over a period of two years.

Winter 2009 - 2010

[Hong Kong Film Awards 2010: Nominees] The nominees for the 2010 HK Films Awards have been announced and are now available in our forum. Teddy Chen's Bodyguards and Assassins has been nominated 19 times. So the film is likely to pocket a few kudos. Other movies worthy of considerations are Echoes Of The Rainbow, Overheard, Red Cliff and Night and Fog. Hopefully this year, Simon Yam, nominated twice, will get the Best Actor Award he has deserved for years.

[An interview with director Gordon Chan] We were told that Gordon Chan was a very friendly chap, but when we met in the Landmark in Central, we spent the best time in Hong Kong ever, chatting about our favorite movies and Chan’s writing and directing successes: Fight Back to School, Fist of Legend, Final Option, Beast Cops, The Big Heat, A-1, Heart to Hearts, etc. In our interview, we also discuss Tsui Hark, John Woo, Anthony Wong, Michael Wong, Yuen Woo-ping, Jet Li, Bruce Lee, Dante Lam, Stephen Chow and Ng Man Tat…

[Interview with Jonathan Isgar, a blunt gweilo] Arnaud Lanuque adds another trophy to his ongoing Gweilos series (foreigners in HK cinema) with Jonathan Isgar. Remember he was opposite Jet Li in Once Upon a Time in China as the evil American, Jackson. Now Isgar has made many more movies, which he discussed with Arnaud. Let’s see, he appeared in Outlaw Brothers, Operation Condor, Spygames, Undeclared War, Fight Back to School 2 and Catman. You’ll find that Isgar doesn’t hide behind words --he is blunt and sometimes doesn’t even bother to answer the question.

[Shaw Brothers starlet Biographies] Gillian is a big fan of the Golden Age of the Shaw Brothers and the studio’s starlets: Margaret Tu Chuan, Tina Chin Fei and Angela Yu Chien. She shares her passion and has updated three profiles and bios for us. Gillian also has a Facebook group you are most welcome to join. : Past Divas of Hong Kong Cinema.

[Interview Koan Hui] We met Koan Hui in March 2001 for the Asian Film Festival of Deauville, France. A close assistant to Tsui Hark, Koan Hui was in charge of special effects for Legend of Zu and the script of Time and Tide. He also worked on The Blade. Here is a brief interview with him.

Fall 2009

[Golden Horses 2009] The Taiwanese Oscars winners of 2009 are revealed in our forum. Congrats to Leon Dai who received the most awards for "No Puedo Vivir Sin Ti" (I Can't Live Without You, in Spanish).

[Chan Hung Lit passed away] Chan Hung Lit, aka Chen Hung-lieh, was a on-screen baddie from the Shaw Brothers era. He died of a heart-attack four days ago while filming the TVB TV-series “Off Pedder”. Chen's most memorable role for Western audience was opposite Cheng Peipei in King Hu's Come Drink With Me (1966). He also appeared in classics such as The Thundering Sword, The Trail Of The Broken Blade, The Magnificent Trio or Temple Of The Red Lotus. One of his latest big screen appearances was in the Billy Chung's vehicle for Jordan Chan, Hong Kong Bronx (2008).

[Interview with a Gweilo Darren Shahlavi] A gweilo mostly known for his work in Yuen Wooo Ping's Tai Chi II, Darren Shahlavi was interviewed by Arnaud Lanuque as part of our ongoing Gweilo series. Shahlavi shares his memories on set with a wide range of filmmakers, from Yuen Woo Ping to Tony Leung Siu Hung, to Philip Ko, passing by Ng See Yuen, Mark Houghton, Bey Logan and even Uwe Boll.

[More Videos Reviews] Kenneth Brorsson from SoGoodReviews.com carries on his wonderful video reviews, here are a few: The Forbidden Legend Sex & Chopsticks, The Detective, Possessed, Red Shield, Son on the Run, Fatal Love, Off Track, etc. You check also his Youtube channel.

[Lumina : The Web Serie] Lumina the Web Series premieres Independent filmmaker Jennifer Thym has launched a web series, a mini series only available in The Internet (i.e. Youtube), Lumina. Starring JuJu Chan, Michael Chan and Vince Matthew Chung the nine-part fantasy thriller is set against the sparkling backdrop of Hong Kong. The nine video of 8 minutes each will be featured on our dedicated film page.

Summer 2009

[Shing Fui On passed away] Known for being one of the most recognisable villains in the modern HK cinema, Shing Fui On passed away at 54. Immediately recognisable, Shing had grasped HK action film fan attention with his peculiar look. He was very famous for his crazy gangster portrayals, such as in The Killer or A Better Tomorrow 2, and earned the nickname of ‘Dai So' or ‘Big Crazy.' Shing also played in comedies and in TV-Series. Rest In Peace Dai So.

[Interview with Brit Ninja Scott Adkins] Scott Adkins has established himself as one of the UK's rising talents and one of the most impressive physical action stars to recently emerge from the western market. In Hong Kong, he has worked on films such as The Medallion, Black Mask 2, The Accidental Spy and Extreme Challenge. Today, he continues building an impressive portfolio of work, predominantly in the west, and remains a major fan and follower of Hong Kong action cinema. Interview here.

[Interview with HK Top DP Arthur Wong] Veteran director of photography Arthur Wong shot many films for Tsui Hark, Jackie Chan and many kung fu film directors. A respected and recognized player in the local film industry, Wong never runs out of anecdotes and funny stories to share. We interviewed him in his HK home in 2005.

[Fantasia 2009] One of the word biggest genre film festivals, namely  Montreal's FANTASIA, starts on 9th July to last 20 days. While focusing in its early years heavily on HK made productions and Japan's anime movies, the fest has long since evolved to cover fantasy/horror/thrillers films and sci-fi films from around the world. For the highlight of this year edition and many other useful info please check our English board here.

[Death of Director Ho Meng-hua and actor Sek Kin] Seasoned director from the Shaw Brothers era, Ho Meng Hua passed away on 19 May 2009 in Hong Kong. He worked for the international renowned studio for 23 years and made more than 50 films, such as the famous The Mighty Peking Man and The Lady Hermit. Two weeks later, actor Sek Kin (Shek Kin) died in the HK Elisabeth’s Hospital on 3 June 2009. Sek will remain in the memories of many film enthusiasts for his famous bad guy image, especially in Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon, but also as the opponent to Kwan Tak Hing in the mythic Wong Fei Hong series.

Spring 2009

[Vengeance by Johnnie To] The film hit French theatres on 20 May 2009 after competing in the Cannes Film Festival. Featuring French singer Johnny Hallyday, a Gallic version of Elvis Presley, Vengeance has had many mixed reviews. Some called it a master piece, while others just dismissed it as a cold turkey. Many people left during the official Cannes screening while some still left the prestigious French Riviera theatre enchanted by To’s latest noir offer.

[RSS feeds] We have updated the homepage with a few more features. Now, you can use the RSS feeds to stay on top of our updates and more video displays will help to find the new additions quicker. Don't forget the mouse overs.

[Interview Gregory Charles Rivers] If you ask Hong-Kongese to name a western actor working in the city, they will likely name Ho Kwok Wing, aka Gregory Rivers, and Australia-born actor very familiar with the TV dramas in TVB. He has also played in many films and Arnaud met him in HK, as part of his project on the gweilos, to get more info on Rivers’ carreer.

[28Th HK Film Awards] Ann Hui surprised everyone pocketing four awards for her social drama, the very local The Way We Are. The film won kudos for Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Female Lead and Best Supporting Female. Action films were also celebrated and Ip Man and Red Cliff shared the Best film, Best Choreographies and some other technical prizes. Finally, the always glowing Josephine Siao Fung Fung received an award for her career achievement, a career she indeed started at a very young age. This is the full line up for the 28th HK Film Awards 2009.

[Interview with HK Film historian Law Kar] A veteran film critic specialised in the Hong Kong film history, Law Kar is an authoritative figure who has worked with the prestigious HK Film archive and the HK International Film Festival. We finally got around the transcription of our past interview where Law Kar discusses his love for cinema in general and the HK cinema in particular.

[Video Reviews] We apologise for the slow updates, but we've been busy on backstage. Yes, some boring work to add more hidden features to the site. Hopefully not useless! As soon as they are up and running we'll bring them to the fore. Meanwhile, we already have some new interesting bits, like the video reviews Kenneth from So Good Reviews shares with us. Examples: Beast Stalker, Six Strong Guys, Ab-Normal Beauty. More soon.

[Underground and Bodyguard available on DVD] Director Cheung Chee Keong we interviewed a few weeks ago just informed us that his two films will be available on DVD in the UK very soon through Cheung's own label Action Extreme. The DVD of Underground will be released on 18/05/2009 followed by Bodyguard: A New Beginning on 08/06/2009. Pre-order your copies on Amazon.co.uk.

Winter 2009

[Interview with Cheung Chee Keong] Brit Film-maker from Chinese decent Cheung Chee Keong, or Chee Keong Cheung, discusses below his brand new film, the actioner Bodyguard: A New Beginning. Shot between HK and the UK, and a bridge between two countries and two cultures, Bodyguard is Cheung’s first step in the world of action drama, the HK style.

[Bruce Lee's Movies Reviews] Mike Fury's New Year resolution is to delve in our database and unearth the old gems. This weeks he reviews Bruce Lee's five films and complete our film pages.

[Interview Terence Yin] A familiar face in the cinema of the last decade but rather a low profile artist, Terrence Yin has a lot of interesting things to discuss about. This actor used to bad guy roles and second rated films, gave us first-rate accounts on the film industry and his portal for local talents, www.alivenotdead.com.

[Book Review] Far East films stem from a rich and complex culture and history. David Carter offers in East Asian Cinema much appreciated keys to decipher all that complexity, and incidentally one of the best books on the subject.

[Mike Leeder's Blog] Mike Leeder has been in HK for 3 decades and has worked as casting director, consultant and producer. He was the referee Randall in Fearless and is currently working on the new Yuen Woo ping film, Beggar So. His blog is hosted by HKCinemagic.com.

[Interview with Cat 3 Elvis Tsui Kam Kong] After an exile up North, in Beijing, for TV-series, Elvis Tsui agreed to come back to HK to work on Nick Chin’s directorial debut, Magazine Gap Road. He answered a few questions for us.

[Interview with director Nicholas Chin] For his directorial debut, Nicholas Chin has weaved a beautiful tale, set up in the highest part of Hong Kong Island, The Peak. In our interview, Chin discusses in details how he got the indie film off the ground, from the initial idea, to hiring a great cast and crew and to his unique creative process.

[Interview with actor Jaycee Chan] Jaycee Chan, son of kung fu superstar Jackie Chan, talks about his short, albeit fascinating, career. Despite the burden of being 'the son of', he has made a string of interesting films, The Sun also Rises and The Drummer, far from the usual HK action fare. Interview.

[45th Golden Horses Awards] Yesterday night Peter Chan's The Warlords led the Awards ceremony with 12 nominations and pocketed the Awards for Best Feature Film, Best Director and Best Visual Effects. Other major winners included Benny Chan's Connected, a remake of Cellular, and the Taiwanese feature Cape No7. More info and photos in our forum.

fall 2008

[Book Reviews] Thomas has reviewed a couple of books on Asian and Far East films : East Asian cinemas Exploring Transnational Connections on Film and Asian Cinema: A Field Guide. More book reviews will follow.

[Interview] In December 2007, we spent an hour discussing with one of the Hong Kong most prolific filmmakers, the uber-busy Wong Jing. Here is a transcript of the interview that reveals some truth on the man and exposes his legendary candor.

[Interview] Hong Kong number one baddy directorial debut Coweb is an answer to thai action film extravaganza, and especially to the latest entry, Chocolate. Let's hear what this new film has to offer with the interview of the new director Hung Yan Yan.

[Interview] Filmmaker Antony Szeto’s (Dragon Blade, 2005) new directorial effort, Wushu, appears like a bridge between productions from HK and the Chinese mainland, between old-school and new school action films and between a feature film and a TV movie. Is it ambitious or just schizophrenic? Arnaud interwiewed the director.

[Interview] Director Peter Chan Ho-Sun has been famous among HK film buffs with local low-budget/low-profile drama and romantic comedies such as He's A Woman, She's A Man, He Ain't Heavy, He's My Father. With the mainstream blockbusters Perhaps Love and The Warlords Chan has strived in the last three years to expand the reach of his films to mainland China, the whole Asia and the rest of the world. In the following two unpublished transcripts of our conversations with Peter Chan in 2005 and 2007 we discusses what has made the filmmaker he is now.

[Interview] Editor/director David Wu is well known for his axe montage and editing techniques on the best action movies from the late 1980s/early 1990s (The Killer, The Bride with White Hair). In the mid-1995, Wu went West and made many films and TV series in America. He felt into oblivion. His latest effort, Iron Road, with Betty Sun Li (from Fearless) and Tony Leung Kar-fai, was a good excuse for him to go back to under the limelight in China. It was also a good excuse for us to catch up with the filmmaker responsible for the 1980s-1990s HK action film extravaganza.

July 2008
[Festival] At the 2008 HKIFF, Arnaud Lanuque met with Besieged City director Lawrence Ah Mon and they discussed the joy to work with non-professional actors in Besieged City and with the Baseball team of HK in City without Baseball. This is the transcript of the interview.
June 2008

[Festival] North America biggest film genre fest The Montreal's Fantasia Festival is coming back for it's twelth edition starting on July third. Here's a preview for it from our Quebec base contributor Yves Gendron : forum link.

[Interview] Since the UK-based "Hong Kong Legends" label ceased its DVD release activity, Bey Logan has moved to the US-based "Dragon Dynasty" label under The Weinstein Company (TWC). DD is already developing a substantial catalog of Asian and Hong Kong film releases. Bey took time out from his busy schedule to answer some of the questions we had about his new job with DD.

may 2008

[Obituary] Two HK actors have died during the month of may 2008 : Lau Chi Wing (a wellknown TV actor most famed for the TVB series "Fatherland") and Shaw Brothers actor Wong Yu (a Jimmy Wang Yu bis). More infos by clicking on their names.

[Interview] In the interview we had with Patrick Tam, the director talks about the production of his most recent film, After This Our Exile, his relationship with Wong Kar-wai, his involvement with the Hong Kong New Wave, his method of working with actors like Aaron Kwok, and his own approach to the intricacies of film aesthetics within Chinese-language cinema.

[Books] We write some reviews of a series of books of reference proposing film reviews, analysis or interviews. The reviewers have tried to highlight the point behind each book, as well as shedding lights on their advantages and limitations. HK Cinema Books page here.
April 2008

[Interview] Blood Brothers is the first Alexi Tan's movie. It was produced by John Woo and Terence Chang. We meet the young director at the 2008 Deauville Asia Film Festival : this is the interview.

[Review] Lee Alon reviewed the average Three Kingdoms - Resurrection Of The Dragon by Daniel Lee with Andy Lau and Maggie Q.

[HK Awards] The prestigious 2008 HK Film Awards ceremony took place on Sunday 13, April 2008, and the big winner of the night was unsurprisingly Peter Chan's The Warlords, which pocketed 8 awards. Other films multi-awarded include Derek Yee's Protégé, Yau Nat Hoi's Eye in the Sky and Ann Hui's The Postmodern Life of My Aunt. HK Films Awards 2008 winners are known. See our forum for more infos.

february 2008

[Interview] Film critic-slash-actor Paul Fonoroff is mainly famous for his gweilo work in Once Upon A Time In China 2 as the consul and his review anthology (PAUL FONOROFF AT THE HONG KONG MOVIES - 600 reviews From 1988 Till The Handover). Below, Fonoroff kindly discusses his background as well as his experience in the industry and his opinion on HK/Chinese cinema.

[Obituary] A venerated Hongkongese seasoned actress, Lydia Shum was a child actress in the 60s often alongside Josephine Siao and Connie Chan. A silver screen and local TV programme landmark, Shum  has remained very present in the Hong Kong people's life in the last few years, despite a semi-retirement.
In 2006, Lydia Shum was admitted to hospital for a gall bladder cancer. The actress died at 60, in the Hong Kong Queen Mary Hospital on February 19, 2008 at 8:35 PM (local time), after 3 years of struggle against a terrible disease. Lydia Shum was very famous not only in Hong Kong but also in all Asia and in all the chinatowns around the world.

january 2008
[Interview] Our first gift for this new year, we've just translated an former interview. Guest of honour at the last Amiens Festival 2004 (France), we were able to interview one of the last living legends of the Shaw Brothers studios: Ti Lung.
november 2007
Interview] Arnaud Lanuque interviewed the actor Jimmy Wong Ka Lok. A former popular model, Jimmy Wong quickly managed to find his place in Hong Kong cinema industry. Jimmy kindly agreed to discuss his career. A good occasion to discover an underrated actor!

[Review] Lee Alon reviewed Carol Lai's last movie Naraka 19

[former Interviews] We just translated in english some ancient french interviews:

- The producer/actor/writer Bey Logan (december 2004) : the guy is always so talkative and very interesting.

- In a new genre, we interviewed the director Stanley Kwan in Paris Festival (July 2005).

- Ricardo Mamood is an actor from Argentina who first started out on the stage, before joining many exciting projects in HK, such as Twins Effect, Infernal Affairs 2 or The Medallion. To meet him (June 2005) was the opportunity for us to make an original foray into HK cinema, through the eyes of a non-Asian actor.

october 2007

[hkcm communauty] We just opened 2 pages where hkcinemagic.com lovers can meet each others : Facebook and Myspace (direct links are available on the left french flag at the top of hkcinemagic pages). Don't hesitate to add some commentaries. Don't forget our map.

[Interview] We had the chance to discuss with German actor Brandon Rhea (the belgian fighter in Fearless). Joining him for the interview is English journalist and Fearless casting director, Mike Leeder, always ready to share his great knowledge of the HK movie industry.

[Review] Lee Alon reviewed The Sun Also Rises.

[Interview] Jerry Trimble is one of the great kickboxing champions. Based in Hollywood, he has mostly worked for US films but has also participated in several HK productions. He kindly agreed to talk with us of his career and his involvement in HK films.

september 2007

[Focus] Male actors have dominated the Hong Kong movie industry since the 70ies. In those conditions, the career of a Hong Kong actress is tougher compared to their male counterpart. Only a few, the best one, make their way in the long run. A good illustration of the later sort is given by Hong Kong actress Athena Chu who confirms her great value for HK cinema with each passing year. Arnaud is the  french specialist of Athena  (some say in the world...) so he did this  lenghty article  to help people discovering this underrated beauty.

Summer holidays are over, at least for those lucky ones who had a break; time to wrap and put the swim trunk back in the cupboard. Those unfortunate enough not to enjoy the summer, might have spent more time indoors, in front of their computer and have probably realized that the HKCinemagic.com team was still working hard. New articles, interviews, galleries and video clips are available in the English side of the site.

[Interview] We met and talk, for starters, with a baddie of one of the summer action blockbusters, Invisible Target. His name is Vincent Sze and he’s wrecking havoc in the film with Wu Jing and Andy On. The guy himself is French and was happy to answer our questions on his short, albeit interesting, career within the HK film industry.


august 2007

[Review] William reviewed the disappointing Rush Hour 3.

[Event] Legend of SB movies and Five Venoms star Lo Meng is to be honoured with a lifetime achievement award for his ongoing contribution to Hong Kong cinema. The ceremony, held as part of the 1st Annual International Martial Arts Cinema Expo will take place on the 25th & 26th of August in Philadelphia, PA (location and event details). Hapkido Grandmaster Kim Jin Pal (one time master of Jackie Chan) will also attend, and will be acknowledged for his on screen work; a series of movie appearances in the early 70's. More infos here and here.

[Shaw Brothers] David Vivier had the chance to visit the Shaw Brothers' Studios in Clearwater Bay. Here is a guided tour inside the mythic studios.


july 2007

[Reviews] Lee Alon reviewed the excellent Benny Chan's movie Invisible Target. Don't miss his other review : Eye in the Sky.

[Festival] Our Canadian contributor, Yves Gendron, is currently attending North America's greatest film genre festival; the Montreal's Fantasia Fest. He's now sending web-links covering the event for our board.

[1997-2007] To celebrate a decade of cinema after the 1997 handover of HK to the Chinese mainland, the HKCinemagic.com team has come up with a series of top 10 must-see films. Our regular contributors share their favorite films produced over the last decade but also provide explanations for their choice. Why such films are so important to watch? HK cinema isn't dead after 1997 like many people expected it, and helmers likes Stephen Chow, Johnnie To, Wong Kar-wai, Herman Yau, Ann Hui, Fruit Chan, Peter Chan and the likes proove that there are still many surprises to expect from this influential cinema industry. Let's celebrate HK, let's love HK and Happy Birthday to a very young and promising cinema.

june 2007

[Interview] With Nanarland website, we interviewed the famous "ninja director" Godfrey Ho. He tells us all his truth. Enjoy.

Review] Lee Alon reviewed the third Lee Po Cheung's movie Single Blog.


may 2007

[Review] Lee Alon reviewed the last Herman Yau's movie Whispers and Moans.

[Review] Lee Alon reviewed Susie Au's Ming Ming.

[Biographies] We translated some french bios by Arnaud Lanuque and Yves Gendron. So, you could read portraits about : the actor Paul Chun, and Shaw Brothers directors : Doe Ching, Chow See Luk, Tu Guangqi and Tang Xiaodan.


april 2007

[Interview] King-wei Chu caught up with the 1970s glamorous Shaw Brothers actress Siu Yam Yam/ Shaw Yum Yum in Hong Kong to reveal unexpected seedy sides of the film business in its golden age

[Review] Lee Alon reviewed the disappointing Spider Lilies.

[Interview] In 2003, Thomas met the stuntman Bruce Law. The interview was in hkcinemagic1, now you could read it on hkcinemagic.com.


march 2007

[Interview] Chu King-wei interviewed Shaw Brothers actor Chen Kuan-tai.

[Video] HKCinemagic.com has a new multimedia service, with video streamed directly from Youtube. In some movie pages you can directly watch trailers, making-of and scenes from your favorite films. Soon, other kind of videos will be added, such as interviews, reports or music videos. Other videos will also be included throughout the site in pages like the profile and article pages (see in films listings). Later a video gallery (with possibility to sort videos by type, date, names etc.) will also be available.


february 2007

With the french websites Drkungfu and Nanarland, we interviewed the journalist-producer-actor-director Toby Russell, who is a kung fu specialist and a key man in independant kung fu movie scene who had worked for many years both in Taiwan and HK.

Lee Alon reviewed the actioner Twins Mission and Derek Yee's Protégé

Hkcinemagic.com team wishes you a happy Chinese New Year of the Pig 2007.


january 2007

Lee Alon reviewed the taiwanese movie Eternal Summer.

During the Cannes festival Bastian had the oppotunity to meet Johnnie To. The director was in town to present his two-part movie : Election. In this short interview he talks about his career and his latest work.

The veteran actor Walter Tso Tat-wah is dead January 13th, 2007. Waiting for a biography, we propose you his (not exhaustive) filmography (a few hundred of movies !) and some galleries.

We have updated our website with a new search engine based on google. The Google Search will let you search through the entire HKCinemagic website including reviews and articles. Click here to read more about it or simply use the "G"oogle icon inside our search form on the left to give it a try. We hope it will help you browse Hong Kong Cinemagic.

Mike reviewed the excellent Wo Hu. Lee Alon reviewed Confession of Pain. Mike reviewed Hong Kong Godfather and Crime Story. We added a new banner Google Adsense for eventual advertising.


october - December 2006

December : Mike reviewed Sammo Hung's Don't Give A Damn !
Lee Alon reviewed Patrick Tam's After This, Our Exile and Mike Murphy reviewed Johnnie To's Breaking News.

November : Lee Alon reviewed the excellent Battle of Wits.
We're very happy to greet three new editors in the hkcinemagic.com team : William from London, Aline and Henrique from Brazil. Welcome everybody !
Arnaud interviewed the famous Action Director Tony Leung Siu-hung.
Mike (a new editor) reviewed Century of the Dragon and Triads : the Inside Story.
Lee Alon reviewed Diary by Pang Brothers

October : The well-know actor/artial art artist Bruce Leung returned on screen recently in Kung Fu Hustle, Arnaud Lanuque had the chance to meet him for an interview.
Lee Alon reviewed DOA : Dead or Alive


july - september 2006

September : Veteran actor Bao Fang is dead September 22th.
Review of The Banquet by Lee Alon
Other veteran actor Kwan Hoi San passed away in the night between September 10 and 11, 2006. He's widely known especialy for his role as a virtuous gang boss, betrayed by Tony Leung in John Woo's Hard Boiled. VLT reviews his extensive career for us.
Review of On The Edge (the last Herman Yau's movie) by Lee Alon

August : Arnaud offers us a mega informative interview with Roy Horan, a gweilo who became actor and producer in HK during 80-90'
Review of Dog Bite Dog by Lee Alon (08/18/06)
News about Heroes of Shaolin by Lau Kar Leung (08/11/06)
Special Battling Babes with Yukari Oshima (video footage made by Cyril)

Review of Re-Cycle by Lee Alon

July :
First review about the last HK blockbuster Dragon Tiger Gate.
Thomas Podvin interviewed the actor-director Derek Yee. Arnaud Lanuque tested the Optimum DVD A Better Tomorrow. Yves Gendron presented the picturesque character of the Cantonese martial folklore Beggar So and the Montreal's Fantasia film fest with the asian and international programming.


April - March 2006

April : We offer many more interviews: Peter Chan for Perhaps Love, director of Fearless' director Ronny Yu, and the beast Anthony Wong. Pieter and Yves also offer a summary on the Clan Yuen, the most gifted choreographer group that has been in activity in HK for several decades. Finaly, we've added a new feature for the non-famous actors, unknown to us. You'll find them in our people index registrated under the names "***?" Help us to find out who they are, see the forum.

March : we present an exclusive news about Lau Kar Leung's new movie project. We also offer many more interviews: Peter Chan for Perhaps Love, director of Fearless Ronny Yu, and the beast Anthony Wong. Pieter and Yves also offer a summary on the Clan Yuen, the most gifted choreographer group that has been in activity in HK for several decades. Finaly, we've added a new feature for the non-famous actors, unknown to us. You'll find them in our people index registrated under the names "***?" Help us to find out who they are, see the forum.

Your participation and help for HKCinemagic.com will be greatly appreciated. If you want to be seriously involved and are committed, please contact Thomas at contact@hkcinemagic.com. He’ll be glad to welcome you among the team.

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