ENJOY THE SHOW
"Do you live happily?" A short teaser trailer has arrived online for the next film from Korean filmmaker Hong Sang-soo, titled On the Beach at Night Alone. The film is set to premiere at the Berlin Film Festival in February this year, which is why this trailer is being released now. Not much is known about the plot yet, but On the Beach at Night Alone is supposedly about an actress who wanders around a seaside town, thinking about her relationship with a married man. The film stars Kim Min-hee, Seo Younghwa, Jung Jaeyoung, and Moon Sungkeun. There isn't much to this first trailer, but it is alluring to watch.
"Blurs the line between documentary and fiction like few films before it." The Orchard has released a trailer for a film from last year's Sundance Film Festival, titled All These Sleepless Nights, a Polish docu-drama about the wild lives of carefree youngsters growing up in Poland. The film follows students Kris (Krzysztof Baginski) and Michal (Michal Huszcza) across two summers in Warsaw, who experience life to the limit spending all night at clubs and parties around the city. Described by The Film Stage as "a music-filled ode to the ever-shifting bliss and angst of youth", this seems like a mesmerizing portrait of what life is like growing up in Europe in this day and age. This trailer is amazing, I'm totally into this and really, really want to see it.
"You don't seem happy. I'm just worried about you." A trailer has debuted for a charming new film titled Kushuthara, a rare romantic drama from the tiny Himalayan country Bhutan. Historically, the Bhutanese film industry has looked east for inspiration, modelling itself on the films of Bollywood. Kushuthara is one of the first films to be made in a more western style, with a storyline that draws on Buddhist spirituality. Emrhys Cooper, the first western actor to appear in a Bhutanese film, stars with Kezang Wangmo, and Jamyang Jamtsho Wangchuck (who appeared in Seven Years in Tibet). The dialogue is very cheesy, but I must admit there's a charm to it that makes me want to see it anyway. Plus, I totally love the Himayalas.
"When they step into reality, the real game begins." CJ Entertainment has released an official international trailer (with English subtitles) for an epic Korean action film called Fabricated City. The story follows a nerdy, uber-gamer who is the "best leader" online with his gamer friends. But he is framed for the murder of a young woman, so he teams up with his gamer/hacker friends to try and solve the case and clear his name. Starring Ji Chang-wook, Shim Eun-Kyung, and Oh Jung-se. So this actually looks pretty damn cool, there's some crazy action in it, and the Koreans certainly know how to make edgy but fun thrillers. Game on.
Two new Jackie Chan movies in one month! Yes indeed (Railroad Tigers is the other). Well Go has debuted an official trailer for the action comedy Kung Fu Yoga, starring Jackie Chan, directed by Stanley Tong. When I was younger, one of my favorite Jackie Chan movies was Rumble in the Bronx, an R-rated action comedy set in Brooklyn and it was awesome. Kung Fu Yoga reunites Chan with Supercop and Rumble in the Bronx director Stanley Tong for the first time in years. And as much as I would hope that was a good thing, this looks terrible. The cast includes Amyra Dastur, Aarif Rahman, Sonu Sood, Disha Patani, Lay Zhang, Eric Tsang. It's an India-China co-production and looks like a CGI-fest. But, the trailer is still fun.
"I started this mission. I will finish this mission." Well Go USA has revealed a new official US trailer for the action comedy from China titled Railroad Tigers, about a "ragtag" group of freedom fighters who ambush a military train. Jackie Chan stars, playing a railroad worker who leads a team of skilled fighters trying to take out the Japanese in order to get food for the poor. Also starring Huang Zitao, Wang Kai, Darren Wang, Alan Ng and Sang Ping. The first teaser trailer for this was goofy, and this trailer isn't that much better, but at least the VFX aren't as bad. I really, really wished this looked better than it does, because it would be nice to have another fun Jackie Chan movie, but I'm not sure this is one. In theaters starting today.
"If you're that interested in being a good father, why didn't you try harder before?" Film Movement has debuted an official US trailer for the latest film by acclaimed Japanese filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda, which first premiered at the Cannes, Toronto and London Film Festivals last year. Titled After the Storm, the familial drama is about an estranged father who attempts to reenter the life of his young son, with the moment to reconnect arriving with a typhoon. The cast includes Hiroshi Abe as Ryota, as well as Taiyo Yoshizawa, Kirin Kiki, Yoko Make, and Lily Frankie. One review from Cannes last year says that even fans of Kore-eda "might be taken aback by the supreme subtlety of his latest, achingly beautiful ode to the quiet complexities of family life." It looks like another honest, heartfelt Kore-eda film about being a parent.
An official US trailer has debuted for a film titled Old Stone, the feature directorial debut of Johnny Ma. If you follow international news, you may remember hearing news stories about how drivers in China will go back and kill people if they accidentally hit them. It's because the laws over there make it easier for the accused to get away if the person is dead, rather than just injured. Old Stone seems to be the first film made that examines one of these incidents. It's described as an intense "psychological thriller" about a taxi driver battling bureaucracy and legal manipulation in China. This premiered at TIFF and Berlin to mostly positive reviews, and it looks like it'll leave your head spinning. Starring Chen Gang, Nai An & Wang Hongwei.
Another live-action adaptation of an anime & manga series is coming to the big screen. Aside from Ghost in the Shell, Japan is developing a live-action Fullmetal Alchemist movie from director Fumihiko Sori. In the Fullmetal Alchemist world, alchemy is one of the most-practiced sciences. The film is about two brothers who go on a quest for the Philosopher's Stone (no connection to Harry Potter). It stars Ryôsuke Yamada as Edward Elric, Tsubasa Honda as Winry Rockbell, Dean Fujioka as Roy Mustang, Ryuuta Satou as Maes Hughes, Misako Renbutsu as Riza Hawkeye, Natsuna as Maria Ross, Natsuki Harada as Gracia Hughes, You Ooizumi as Shou Tucker, Jun Kunimura and many others. This first teaser doesn't have much footage in it, but at least there's more to see here than the Blade of the Immortal trailer. Take a look.
"I was waiting for you…" Cohen Media + Amazon Studios have debuted another new US trailer for Asghar Farhadi's latest film, a drama called The Salesman, which first premiered at the Cannes Film Festival this summer. The title is in reference to many unique aspects of the plot, but also specifically Arthur Miller's play "Death of a Salesman" which is being performed in the film. The actual story is about a couple whose relationship is tested after an assault incident with his wife while she's home alone. Shahab Hosseini and Taraneh Alidoosti star as the couple. I wrote in my review from Cannes it's "a complex, nuanced film with an intricate script that plays out in a very engrossing way." Recommended viewing once it's out in theaters.
Time to meet the Shinjuku Swan. A full Japanese trailer has debuted for Sion Sono's latest film, Shinjuku Swan II, a sequel to his first adaptation of a manga about an adult entertainment scout named Tatsuhiko Shiratori. Sion Sono is one of Japan's best directors working today, behind films like Love Exposure, Why Don't You Play in Hell? and Tokyo Tribe, though this film series hasn't picked up any US distribution yet. Shinjuku Swan II stars Gou Ayano, Alice Hirose, Kippei Shiina, Yusuke Iseya, Motoki Fukami, Nobuaki Kaneko, Yu Yamada, Hideo Nakano, as well as Tadanobu Asano as the rival scout CEO that Tatsuhiko goes up against. This looks like some of Sono's most commercial work, but might still be fun.
"You must take care of the others." Kino Lorber has revealed an official US trailer for the film titled Golden Kingdom, a narrative feature shot entirely in the Asian country of Myanmar (also known as Burma) by an American filmmaker named Brian Perkins. The film features non-actors and "bridges spirit, cinema, and traditional Burmese storytelling to open a view onto an unseen world." The story is about four young monks who are left alone in their remote monastery in northern Myanmar. Perkins has traveled extensively around Asia and India, establishing relationships in the monasteries and villages of Burma. This looks like a one-of-a-kind film, truly capturing the beauty of the location and the peacefulness of Buddhism. Worth watching.