Top Favorites **** :
1. 2001: A Space Odyssey
2. The Shawshank Redemption
4. Psycho ('60)
6. Better Luck Tomorrow
7. Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle
9. Ping Pong Playa
10. Always Be My Maybe (2019 - A.Wong / R.Park dir. N.Khan)
Other Favorites ***:
Tigertail, Over The Moon, WF Productions' Everything Before Us, Bong Joon Ho's "Parasite", Evan Jackson Leong's Linsanity (The Documentary), Mayhem, Lee Chang Dong's "Burning", Justin Chon's 'Gook', 'Ms. Purple', Surrogate Valentine, Daylight Savings, Hang Loose, K-Town Cowboys, Harold & Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay, A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas, Finishing The Game, Jet Li's Fearless, The Year Of The Yao, To Be Takei, Katsuhiro Otomo's Akira (The Original Anime), Katsuhiro Otomo's Memories, Katsuhiro Otomo's Metropolis, Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away, Hayao Miyazaki's My Neighbor Totoro, Miyazaki's Nausicaa in the Valley Of The Wind, Pixar's Up, Toy Story, Office Space, Beavis & Butt-Head Do America, Idiocracy,
The Ringer, Jackass 3, Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, Shine, The Goonies, The Karate Kid ('84) / Part II ('86), Forrest Gump, Dead Poet's Society, Rocky, One Hour Photo, Poltergeist ('82), John Carpenter's The Thing/Halloween, Saw, 1408, Pet Sematary ('89), The Amityville Horror ('79), Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, Star Trek, Star Trek Beyond, Back To The Future Trilogy, The Breakfast Club, First Blood, Lord Of The Rings Trilogy, Avatar, Cool Runnings, Field Of Dreams, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The School Of Rock, The Hustler, The Color Of Money, Fear & Loathing In Las Vegas, Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory,
Rain Man, Fast Five, F & F: Tokyo Drift, FF6, Best of the Best, The Matrix/The Matrix Reloaded/The Matrix Revolutions,
The Terminator, Alien, Aliens, Casino, The Godfather Trilogy, Pee Wee's Big Adventure, The Maze Runner Trilogy, Escape From Alcatraz, The Twilight Zone: The Movie, Tales From The Crypt Presents: Demon Knight, Fast Times, Die Hard, Die Hard With A Vengeance, Ghostbusters ('84), Monster House, Spaceballs, Beetlejuice, Employee Of The Month, The Usual Suspects, Wreck-It Ralph
REVIEWS AND THOUGHTS
12/03/2020: Stowaway On Netflix
I can't wait for this - probably the next Netflix film to watch. Daniel Dae Kim plays one of the astronauts on a mission to Mars - with a stowaway seemingly sabotaging the mission, and a battle for survival.
Sounds like a cool plot - how it unfolds remains to be seen.
11/16/2020: Mulan (Live-Action) ** 1/2 - ***
First of all, I went in expecting this to be slightly different than the animated version. But it was more or less very much the same in story and scenes, except for a few conspicuous differences. Differences
that I did not particularly enjoy. Anyone who watched the animated version in the '90's should already know the story (as well as enjoying the musical numbers that go with Disney animated films). So in essence, you want to
look out for "presentation" and "style", how the film is presented.
Presentation-wise, it was mystical and artistically stylish. In terms of being different from the animation, I think they accomplished that. I enjoyed Jason Scott Lee's presence and performance as Bori Khan as well as the battle scenes. What I didn't enjoy or like - the witch, adding the Chi energy or power to the characters (couldn't Mulan just be a kick-ass without such mysticism?), and the score - I felt there should've been more music to the film.
The film had potential, but I would rate it between 2.5 and 3 stars (out of the four stars on my scale). It's pretty decent. I also felt there was a bit too much CGI, and some scenes should've been expanded or have been longer (such as the final fight).
10/28/2020: Over The Moon ***
Step aside 'Over The Rainbow', "Over The Moon" is here haha. What a fantastical, fun film - kind of a tear jerker at the end. I'm glad this was a musical (a lot of catchy songs, including
the ping pong battle scene - the kid might be a less fat version of Russell from "Up" haha).
All I could say is, just watch it.
Here's another inspirational story or gem to watch - Minari. It stars Steven Yeun (it's been awhile - haven't heard any news about him for more than a year. Or did he get rid of social media) as the father of an immigrant family
striving to achieve the dream (all the while navigating through their own family dynamics and struggles). It's a highly anticipated film to watch. Of course, I'll have to rent it once it becomes available.
This is definitely a film to look out for.
09/24/2020: Lang Lang's "Journey" To The Big Screen
My first thought of when I heard the news that Maestro Lang Lang's autobiography "Journey of a Thousand Miles" is going to be a film - excited, but why isn't an Asian production company making this. Or has one even considered it.
But then again - considering Lang Lang's collaboration with celebrities and such, it is a no-brainer. Plus, there'll be more exposure and most likely more revenue from a hollywood production.
But hollywood has been known for white-washing or over-dramatizing Asian stories. I think we have to trust Lang Lang - hopefully, he'll have some say or creative control. His is a remarkable and inspiring story of overcoming hardships, poverty
and a very strict father to become the most celebrated and arguably the most talented classical pianist there is. If I enjoyed "Shine", perhaps I can enjoy this. Still - the original book is going to always be where it's at.
Just a suggestion - consider hiring his friend Jay Chou to play a role or even play the adult Lang Lang himself haha. Jay Chou is quite the pianist himself.
09/06/2020: "Mulan" on Disney+
For anyone subscribed to it, it might be worth renting it. But as in any business endeavor, it is a money-making scheme for the channel. For anyone who do not have the channel,
just wait for it to rent on other platforms or VOD.
This live-action film is something I would be interested in watching - Jason Scott Lee, Donnie Yen, others who I don't know about, etc. It's an all Asian cast, as authentic as it gets from that perspective. As for the story and characters,
we'll just have to watch it to find out.
08/01/2020: Tigertail ***
It's a beautiful piece with subtlety writtin all over it. Visually relaxing and refreshing, stylish. You do not need to say much, nor have much dialogue in order to get a message across or to be well-directed or filmed. Kind of similar in style or reminds me of "Columbus" (with John Cho), and
"Ms. Purple" (Justin Chon directed). My favorite scene is when the young protagonist
opens and closes shop over and over - to convey the repetition of the daily grind, and the passage of time / realism.
You have the theme of regret - missing out on an old flame for opportunities elsewhere. The parents end a relationship that was not right to begin with - and with children, the father became estranged with the daughter.
More diverse story-telling needs to be heard, and this is why I watched it. Kudos to Alan Yang.
07/22/2020: IWMYM - Surrogate Valentine 3 ***
Let's put it this way - there was closure. And that's what we wanted all along. As noted previously, the ending of "Daylight Savings" was open-ended, but there was never
any kind of intention or indication that there was supposed to be resolution or closure - just a "that's it, that's the end" kind of conclusion. With that said, Boyle stepped away from the series
and never planned on a third. Until Lynn Chen stepped in.
This film is seen from the perspective of the three women from the previous films. What I interpret as what this "closure" is - things change, and nothing stays the same. What
is not or was not meant to be, still is not meant to be. In the end, Goh has matured and comes to terms with where he is now - he just laughs off the "I felt cheated on / revenge" kiss from Lynn's character.
In the end, he reconciles with his ex. I had sort of hoped he would have gotten together with Yea-ming. In the end, she had issues to work out and are just friends.
As fitting and enjoyable the film was, I wish it was a bit longer and wish it had a bit more drama in terms of the dynamics between all characters. Also, did Goh decide to write music again? Or is he just playing music as a hobby now?
Nonetheless, IWMYM gives closure to this trilogy.
07/15/2020: How 'Sweet' It is - "A Sweet Mess"
Daniel Dae Kim is going to produce and star in "A Sweet Mess", a rom-com novel by an up-and-coming author. I no longer read any books (they bore the crap outta me), so I have no idea about any authors.
But you have to give the benefit of the doubt to any young author - if it is picked up or considered for a film adaptation, it could be alright or worthwhile.
Talk about ironies of all ironies - if DDK considered Ali Wong for the lead as well haha (considering their characters in ABMM). And Randall Park for a role. More thoughts to come.
I'm looking forward to Daniel Dae Kim's role in "Stowaway". I heard he's also involved in some ghost story? Don't know anything about that.
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"Old Faces, New Places" K-Town Cowboys Trailer
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Dubya Gettin' His 'Weed' On With Harold & Kumar in 'Harold & Kumar 2'....
This shit is hilarious, basically my favorite scene in the second film of the series 'Harold & Kumar Escape
From Guantanamo Bay'. H & K parachute into Dubya's ranch house unbeknowest to the duo, and some funny dialogue ensues with Dubya's usual idiocy and southern drawl; "Oh shit it's Cheney, that guy scares the crap outta me", "Haw, haw, haw, I thought you guys were terrorizers", "Oh fuck G-bay", "Mitsubishi-Wah", "Well, Kumar. That makes you a hypocriticizer too".