Friday, January 18, 2008

more thanks to Jonathan Ross

I had heard about this sometime ago, but only now catching up with it. In the post below I credited Jonathan Ross for pointing me into the jungles of HK cinema and in 2006 he returned to offer insight into the world of contemporary Japanese, Hong Kong and Korean cinema with his 3 part Asian Invasion series on BBC 4. Grateful to YouTuber kenada for posting these. If they happen to disappear, just do a search as I am sure they will pop up somewhere else.

Each of the three episodes has been broken up into around 6 parts to fit on YouTube. I am posting the first part and you can find the rest at kenada's channel. Here is the breakdown of the series:

Jonathan goes to Tokyo to see if Japanese cinema has gone off the boil, as some critics suggest. He meets directors Ryuhei Kitamura (Versus) and Mamoru Oshii (Ghost in the Shell) and surveys the current crop of Japanese films, including the strange tale of a giant squid turned championship wrestler.

In Hong Kong Jonathan meets Stephen Chow, star of King Fu Hustle and Shaolin Soccer, celebrates Michelle Yeoh, the world's first female Asian superstar and looks back at his all-time Hong Kong heroes, including Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan.

Many critics consider Korean cinema to be the most exciting in the world today. Among the directors Jonathan meets are Park Chan-wook, whose film Oldboy won the Grand Prix at Cannes in 2004. He also looks at an extremely odd little monster movie produced by North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il who kidnapped the film's director from South Korea to make his dream project.

For full descriptions of each episode and the films featured in them, visit the BBC4 site.

Also be sure to check out the series Mind, Body and Kick Ass Moves that kenada also has posted. Expect a blog entry on that in the future.

NOTE: Just watched the Japanese episode and there are a number of what I would consider "spoilers", especially for the Miike films, so proceed at your own caution!

1 comment:

Lars Erik said...

Cool! Ross' INCREEDIBLY STRANGE FILM SHOW was a true eye-opener in the 80's, when he profiled genre filmmakers like HG Lewis and Russ Meyer. I've had trouble seeing the rest of the series and only ever saw the Jackie Chan episode when he was doing HK movies. The new ones sound great - YouTube here I come!