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Trailer Reaction: Safdie Brothers' Good Time


Kung Fu Hustle is a spectacle you have to see to believe. If I were to tell you that this Cantonese marital arts film entails characters that act like the looney tune characters on amphetamines would you even believe me? While most of the martial arts films like crouching tiger hidden dragon (2000) and hero (2002) are depicted in the upmost elegant manner, Stephen Chow takes the revered and graceful genre to another level by making it the most ridiculous spectacle to ever be seen.

Set in shanghai, china in the 1940s, the story revolves around a town who is ruled by the feared axe gang. Sing (Chow) desperately wants to become a member but accidentally stumbles upon pig sty alley which is ruled by landlords who turn out to be the greatest kung fu masters. sing's foolish actions eventually cause the axe gang and slumlords to engage in an kung-fu battle of epic proportions.

Chow has directed and acted in his own films since the 90's but it wasnt till the popularity of Shaolin Soccer (2001) that allowed Hustle to be picked up by Columbia Pictures Asia to be made. the film encompasses all that is absurd and theatrical about the kung-fu genre where human fists and kicks can indent opponents' faces inward and people can be throw out of buildings, face plant to the ground, and still be alive. although i havent seen many marital arts films, i would say because of its eccentricity and originality that it is one of the best film to come out of the genre. comically, chow made himself to resemble bruce lee with the exactly hair cut and attire that the icon usually struts with. he even appropriately brought his own childhood icon leung sui lung, a famous martial art actor in the 70's to play the impossible beast. Underneath its moronic and absurd qualities, the story tells a heartfelt tale about underdogs and outcasts and how together as a community can beat the odds against ruthless gangsters. indeed like takashi miike's ichi the killer (2001), kung fu hustle is something that must be seen to believe because words just dont cut it anymore, mark my words. A

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After taking a few laps in feature filmmaking, Rodolphe Marconi decided to dip his little fins into the typhoon of documentary filmmaking. Unlike Werner Herzog who has the abilities to tread between the feature and documentary worlds, Marconi sadly drowns in his first attempt. Lagerfeld Confidential tells almost all about the world renowned mystery man behind the infamous shades. Karl Lagerfeld is a German fashion designer but first and foremost he is the revered head designer and creative director for Chanel.

As we become an insider in lagerfeld's private life, we are given a rare chance to witness him in action and his passion for his work, fashion, photography and essentially all of life. the audiences discover his many quirks and mannerisms that seems to stem from his strict mother. it is unsure if it is lagerfeld's tendency to hide or the incompetency of the Marconi that provides little to nonexistent insight to who he truly is. the audience is consistently kept at an arms length distance from lagerfeld even in his own home. the rigid interview like dialogue reveal barely anything besides what comes out of lagerfeld's mouth. although what is asked and shown of the fashion icon can be taken as true to his character, it is the filmmakers' timid and infuriating presence behind and in front of the camera that propels this documentary to crash and burn. Marconi takes this once in a lifetime chance to show fashion mavens who Lagerfeld is and he misses and wanders off in his bland and structured direction that will leave many victims of fashion not much to squawk about. D


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