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Monday, July 14, 2008

Happily Ever After 自虐の詩 starring Hiroshi Abe and Miki Nakatani

Jigyaku no uta

The literal translation of HAPPILY EVER AFTER's Japanese title, Jigyaku no uta 自虐の詩, is 'the poem of self-torture/ self-inflicted pain'. I watched it last night not knowing what to expect. I was initially interested in it solely because of the two leads, Hiroshi Abe and Miki Nakatani.

When Kaiji Shakedown covered the film last August, it was almost dismissive of the film's visuals, pointing out its flat television look that makes it look like TV movie of the week compared to the eye candy that was Memories of Matsuko'.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Saturday Epic Anime Scene - Lynn Minmay's DO YOU REMEMBER LOVE?

Since posting the awesomely epic Dragon Ball Z scenes of Super Saiyajin transformations last Saturday (Goku's 5-minute transformation is a stuff of anime lore), I will now decide to make this a weekly thing... for the time being.

This week, I'll go for MACROSS, another anime series I remember fondly from my childhood. Back then, like most non-Japanese, I know MACROSS as ROBOTECH, and was drawn to it every week. When I first heard that Tobey Maguire bought the rights to do a live-action adaptation few weeks ago, I was more than a little intrigued. Is Maguire going to be Rick Hunter? I can see that (even though he is a little too old for the role, but hey, if he can be a young college year Spidey, Rick Hunter's not a problem). But who can be the iconic Lynn Minmay? A contemporary teeny bopper pop singer? Hannah Montana as Minmay? Please excuse me as I go and slam my head against the wall.

Interview with 'Thoughts On Films'

Earlier this week, I sat down (in front of computer) for an (email) interview with Fikri of 'Thoughts On Films'. Things I spoke about include: filmmaking, videoblogging, my role in Greenlight Pictures and the company's previous productions, the theatrical distribution of local independent films in Malaysia.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Most epic anime scenes ever.

One of the most important anime series of my childhood.

Nothing to me then, can be more badass than a Super Saiyajin transformation in Dragon Ball Z.

The first one, Gohan's transformation to SSJ2 is both poetic and insane. Like there's this dove of light flying across, revelation striking him, and he flips out and turns SSJ2. Awesome emotional buildup. Wham! The lingering last shot of Gohan as he stared at the camera with tears in his eyes, it's like a coming-of-age tale for him, finally losing his innocence, his future unsure. It's evocative. It's something similar to the ending in Truffaut's 400 Blows.

Friday, July 04, 2008



This entry was originally written last Sunday. But as you know, I ended up being buried by the production of my new short film, FLEETING IMAGES. (screenshots), so I'm posting this up now instead.

I first heard about the TOKYO REFUGEE FILM FESTIVAL because of Refusenik (also check out the official production blog). It all happened 2-3 weeks ago when I was seeking, via Facebook, other filmmakers who reside in Tokyo, and I found Megumi Nishikura. After corresponding briefly on Facebook, she told me about the screening of Refusenik, a documentary she was involved in as assistant editor during her stay in Los Angeles.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Screenshots of my new short film, FLEETING IMAGES

The lack of blogging recently had a lot to do with me trying to finish up my new short film, FLEETING IMAGES before the deadline of a certain Japanese short film competition.

When you're sleeping only 2 hours, and spending most time of the day editing and shooting, writing a new blog entry is the last thing you have in mind.

The idea for FLEETING IMAGES came to my around two weeks ago. My Japanese short film was temporarily put on hold, so I was a little bummed out that I couldn't submit anything for the aforementioned short film competition*. I'm a person who needs deadlines to motivate myself into finishing something, does that mean that since YUKI's (title of that short film) is in limbo, I'll have to just sit on my arse and wait? Not an appealing idea.

So I started wondering what kind of short films can I conjure within two weeks. When I have a lack of cast and crew? Ideas started swimming around my head, and one was clearer and more doable than the others. After watching the first ten minutes of Chris Marker's Sans Soleil last year at Ming Jin's place, an interesting film that's part travelogue and part documentary (in the end, I guess the more accurate label for it would be a 'film essay'), I've once remarked: "DAMN, I could've used my holiday videos and try make something similar!"