Film review | South China Morning Post
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  • Mar 6, 2015
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Film review

Movie review: After Earth

US actors Will Smith (R) and his son Jaden Smith attend the 'After Earth' US premiere at the Ziegfeld Theatre in New York on May 29,  2013. Photo: EPA

Movie-goers have every reason to be cynical about After Earth. The film is conceived, produced and co-written by Will Smith, one of Hollywood’s overrated and unabashedly narcissistic leading men.

Friday, 14 June, 2013, 10:34am 2 comments

Film review: Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?

Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?

A trio of interrelated amorous dilemmas leads to a multifaceted look at love, Taipei style, in this nuanced comedy-drama. Three years after his stunning debut, Au Revoir Taipei, director-writer Arvin Chen Chun-lin's sophomore feature explores knottier but no less romantic terrain, and deals with them in a breezy manner that in no way diminishes their import.

11 Apr 2013 - 9:06am

Film review: The Hunt

The Hunt

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, as the saying goes. And in The Hunt's case, many well intentioned adults turn life into a living hell for a fellow member of their at times claustrophobically close-knit town after a child known to have an active imagination accuses him of a terrible act.

11 Apr 2013 - 9:08am

Film review: Touch of the light

Film review: Touch of the light

Music and dance, one an art that is primarily aural and the other weighted towards the visual, take on symbolic significance in a Taiwanese drama that charts a fluid course between fiction and reality. At the calm centre is Huang Yu-hsiang, a blind pianist and musical prodigy playing a fictionalised version of himself as he negotiates the shoals of adjusting to urban Taipei and budding adulthood away from his rural home.

4 Apr 2013 - 9:06am

Film review: Saving General Yang

Film review: Saving General Yang

Yang Ye, the venerable eponymous character in Saving General Yang, was the patriarch of a celebrated Northern Song dynasty (960-1127) military clan with female as well as male members.

4 Apr 2013 - 9:00am

Film review: G.I. Joe 2: Retaliation

G.I. Joe 2: Retaliation

When some gamblers lose, they double-down and make an even bigger bet. This appears to be the case for toymaker Hasbro and its Hollywood partners (MGM and Paramount) with this action figure movie sequel.

28 Mar 2013 - 10:05am

Film review: Ip Man-The Final Fight

Ip Man-The Final Fight

Movies about real-life wing chun master Ip Man (1893-1972) have a long way to go before they can rival those of his fellow Foshan native, martial artist-physician extraordinaire Wong Fei-hung (1847-1924), in number. But in recent years, there have been more films about Bruce Lee's teacher than the old-time kung fu folk hero.

28 Mar 2013 - 10:07am 1 comment

Film review: Rust and Bone

Rust and bone.

Considering that its director has said that its title refers to the mix of blood and splintered bone that one tastes upon being punched in the face, Jacques Audiard's Rust and Bone actually is not as brutal as one might think it would be. And in view of what horrors befall this raw romantic drama's two main characters, it's much less of an emotional downer than one might expect.

21 Mar 2013 - 9:05am

Film review: Passion


A veteran director long acknowledged for his lurid Hitchcock pastiches that splatter sex, violence and identity confusion across the screen, De Palma's Passion begins as one of his most restrained mise-en-scène films, but ends up as perhaps his silliest effort. That's quite an achievement for someone whose hit and miss pulp productions include Dressed to Kill, Femme Fatale and Body Double.

21 Mar 2013 - 9:08am

Film review: The Master

Film review: The Master

It’s hard to tell if Philip Seymour Hoffman’s titular character in The Master is a visionary or a fraud, but it’s clear there’s something very compelling and powerful about him. That just about sums up Paul Thomas Anderson’s movie as well.

14 Mar 2013 - 10:36am 1 comment

Film review: English Vinglish

Scene from the film "English Vinglish". Photo: Handout

English Vinglish will provide many Hong Kong cinemagoers with their introduction to its beautiful sari-clad star, Sridevi. But long-time fans of Indian cinema will already be familiar with the luminous actress who graced more than 200 Indian films before going into what looked like permanent retirement in 1997.

14 Mar 2013 - 10:36am 1 comment

Film review: Amour

A scene from the film 'Amour'. Photo:Handout

People admire Michael Haneke's films, but no one actually enjoys them. They watch for his stark, unflinching dissections of the human condition, void of any artificial emotions or manipulative devices. With that in mind, Amour is probably the closest the Austrian auteur will ever get to being warm and fuzzy.

11 Mar 2013 - 6:14pm

Film review: Stoker

Film review: Stoker

The English debut of South Korean auteur Park Chan-wook is hell bent on cashing every cinematic chip he banked from a cache of cult built on hits like Oldboy and Sympathy for Lady Vengeance. At its best, Stoker is an over-styled, under-stewed, psycho suspense thriller that is gothic with sexual tension and baroque with visual trickery. At worst, it is a vacuous exercise in aesthetics.

28 Feb 2013 - 12:16pm

Film review: Silver Linings Playbook

Silver Linings Playbook

Silver Linings Playbook is one of those films with a number of scene-stealing supporting characters. Chief among them is the one played with scene-chewing relish by Robert De Niro; but those portrayed by the nicely multi-ethnic ensemble of Jacki Weaver, Chris Tucker, Anupam Kher and John Ortiz also have opportunities to shine.

28 Feb 2013 - 12:14pm

Film review: Lost in Thailand

Lost in Thailand

On the face of it, Lost in Thailand is a modest comic road movie by first-time director Xu Zheng, who also stars in, wrote and produced the film. (To make it even more of a family affair, Xu's wife in the film is played by his real-life spouse, Tao Hong.) But it's hard to ignore the hype surrounding this unabashed crowd-pleaser in view of the more than 38 million people who have seen it since its release in China last month, making it the most viewed film ever on the mainland.


31 Jan 2013 - 5:45am