December 20, 2013

Fantasia 2013 bits III

Saving General Yang (Ronny Yu, 2013) Betrayed by a fellow general and captured behind enemy lines, the seven sons of the eponymous General Yang leave their family’s stronghold to save their father from an enemy out for revenge, and bring him home. With director Ronny Yu at the helm, and based on a popular Chinese tale, Saving General Yang lives […]
December 20, 2013

Fantasia 2013 bits II

Sweetwater (Logan Miller, 2013) A religious leader, accustomed to being the only authority in a small town in the far west, is confronted by the new sheriff in town and a newly arrived couple who question his power. This is what a great movie should be: great performances, a strong screenplay, a moody direction and cinematography: but also references the […]
December 20, 2013

Fantasia 2013 bits I

Rurouni Kenshin (Keishi Ohtomo, 2012) For our readers new to the character, the film is the story of Kenshin, a samurai who, in penance for his past sins, dedicates his life to helping the innocent with a reverse-edge blade, a weapon that can never kill. I’m a huge fan of the anime series, and although it was loads of fun […]
December 16, 2013

HK: Forbidden Hero (Yûichi Fukuda, 2013)

The best thing about HK: Forbidden Hero, other than the fact that it’s one of the most entertaining films of 2013, is the joy of having to explain its premise to people, witness their flabbergasted stare and assure them that “it’s really, really good”. Actually, it is really good because its parody comes from a place of love for its […]
December 16, 2013

The Lady Assassin (Quang Dung Nguyen, 2013)

The Lady Assassin, a martial arts blockbuster, is my first Vietnamese film ever. A light Sunday night screening at this year’s Fantasia Festival, it was attended by a notable number of people from Montreal’s Vietnamese community. Billed as a Vietnamese wu xia, in the film, a princess sold in marriage is taken in by a team of high-flying, ass—kicking, thieving […]