25 February 2011

Movie Review: Spring Fever 春风沉醉的晚上


Okay. For your information, the English translation of the movie title really really sucks. 春风沉醉的晚上 means Drunken Faggot, Hidden Drag Queen. Just kidding. It means A Night Deeply Drunk on the Spring Breeze. Spring Fever is Lou Ye's newest movie filmed and presented to the public during a five year ban imposed on Lou Ye and shot secretly in Nanjing.

Like Summer Palace, it suffers a "too long" problem. There is one too many subplots and well, the liberal suturing of these subplots together makes its 'almost' nonlinear except that there is a narrative and it is linear. The movie is so saturated in emotion that it's worth watching just to feel uncomfortable at certain points with its hauntingly real emotional presence. The actors just do such a brilliant job together you forget you are watching a movie. Chen Sicheng's character of Luo Haitao (pictured above, right) reminds me of one of the coffee babies. Which one?

I would not watch this is nonlinear/dissociative films are not your thing or you can't give the movie your undivided attention.

22 February 2011

Movie Review: End of Love

I decided to use this picture above because its the one on the movie poster. But it would not be my first choice for this movie. I'd rather have used the one below:

For the last year, I have been averaging a death of a close friend or family member about one a month. The movie Amphetamine another recent Hongkong film, also touched me deeply on its comment regarding fate, drug use, sex and the confusion of growing up, growing old, getting sick and dying.

This movie is similar, in a less cinematographic way, in that it touches on these themes, including various themes of the mother complex. Simon Chung does a great job. This is perhaps the best he's done so far. Innocent and First Love and Other Pains were both okay. But this really does an excellent job of tying life's suffering together.

Since all of the deaths recently have been Christian, I thought I'd share this verse I found to be relevant (and consistent with Buddhism's non-theistic teachings):
Alalahanin mo rin naman ang Maylalang sa iyo sa mga kaarawan ng iyong kabataan, bago dumating ang mga masamang araw, at ang mga taon ay lumapit, pagka iyong sasabihin, Wala akong kaluguran sa mga yaon;

Bago ang araw, at ang liwanag, at ang buwan, at ang mga bituin ay magdilim, at ang mga alapaap ay magsibalik pagkatapos ng ulan.

Sa kaarawan na ang mga tagapagingat ng bahay ay manganginginig, at ang mga malakas na lalake ay mapapayukod, at ang mga manggigiling ay mangaglilikat sapagka't sila'y kaunti, at yaong nagsisidungaw sa mga dungawan ay mangasisilaw,

At ang mga pintuan ay sasarhan sa mga lansangan; pagka ang tunog ng giling ay humina, at ang isa'y babangon sa tinig ng ibon, at lahat ng mga anak na babae ng tugtugin ay mabababa;

Oo, sila'y mangatatakot sa mataas, at ang mga kakilabutan ay mapapasa daan; at ang puno ng almendro ay mamumulaklak; at ang balang ay magiging pasan, at ang pita ay manglulupaypay: sapagka't ang tao ay pumapanaw sa kaniyang malaong tahanan, at ang mga tagapanangis ay nagsisigala sa mga lansangan:

Bago ang panaling pilak ay mapatid, o ang mangkok na ginto ay mabasag, o ang banga ay mabasag sa bukal, o ang gulong ay masira sa balon;

At ang alabok ay mauuwi sa lupa gaya ng una, at ang diwa ay mababalik sa Dios na nagbigay sa kaniya.

This movie is not told in a simple chronological narrative so viewers that like that will find the nonlinear story telling and flashbacks to be disjunctive. However, I rate this as a must watch movie. Love and drug addiction expose the deep interdependence of a single life. Addiction is a fascinating site to tell the story of life and the suffering of life.

17 February 2011

Terence Vien Tagorda

RIP
Terence Vien Tagorda
May 12, 1984 - February 14, 2011

12 February 2011

God Save the Egyptian People


The Dictator is Gone

God Save the Egyptian People.

01 February 2011

Two Steps Back for Indonesia

Ariel Irham

Indonesian judges have sent wildly popular Javanese pop star Ariel Irham, pictured above, to jail for over three years because his friends took some sex videos he took of him and his girlfriends sent them out into the world and they went viral. Read more from the AP.

As the youth of Indonesia grow up, the grip of puritanical religious backwardism prevails.