Poster

My Rating: 5Stars

This evening I saw the movie The Beast Stalker at UA Cinema, TimeSquare, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong. Another late addition to my Must See Movies list.

This was only my second movie (on the big screen) in over 3 weeks. Those who knows me will find this extremely unusual, as some of them say I watch almost anything. Although I disagree, but I used to watch on average 2 - 3 movies a week. That was before I returned to Hong Kong over 10 years ago, now one movie a week was typical. The reason for this recent hiatus was quite simple, I found there were nothing interesting enough to watch.

Until I came across a review of this movie in HK Magazine (Friday, Nov. 28, 2008 issue), which gave it high praises. It had been years since I last watched a Hong Kong made movie and there is really nothing American to watch at the theaters, I decided to give it a try.

Wow... I was surprised!

I walked into the movie with a bit of the plot in mind; just from what I read in HK Magazine, never seen the trailer and only knew that Nicholas Tse was staring in the movie. I was mesmerized right from the start and the movie gripped me all the way through until I left the theatre.

Don't worry, as always, there are no spoiler below...

The movie starts off establishing Nicholas Tse to be a tough, by the book, kind of leader in the Hong Kong police. Even though he is a detective sergeant, he is respected by his team and a hard worker.

The plot took off quickly after several minutes into the movie, grabbing the audience's attention and did not let the audience go until half way into the movie. Just when the audience thinks it has the plot figured out the writers threw in a few more twists.

The movie reminds me a bit of the cinematography style of Bad Boys, some of Die Hard where the hero never gives up no matter how hurt he gets, the true and trusted Hong Kong police action, and several Hollywood caliber car stunts and special effects.

The writers left the main story simple, the stunt choreographers keep the stunts somewhat believable, as a result allowing the director, Dante Lam, freedom to keep the audience focused on the acting and the many twists in the plot.

Unlike many past movies made in Hong Kong, every dialogue has a purpose and lends to complete the pieces of the story, each sub-plot begins at different points in the movie but closes off nicely at the end. The plot did not provide all the answers until the end of the movie where the audience realizes how much everything are linked.

There were experienced actors like Nicholas Tse and Nick Cheung in this movie, the not so experienced, Jingchu Zhang, and others who gain fame from local TV (TVB) series. They were all fairly good with the leads giving memorable performances.

It has been a long time since I was able to give any movie such high praises, let a lone a Hong Kong made movie. This movie reminiscence the impact Infernal Affairs; the original not the subsequent sequels, made to the industry. So much so that Hollywood had a remake, The Departed six years after the original. I just hope this latest movie is a sign of the caliber of work to come from Hong Kong film makers.

PS: the movie's original title was "Witness" until its trailer debut on November 11, 2008.

Rating Legend:
5Stars Not to be missed
4Stars Wait for the DVD
3Stars Buy from iTunes Store
2Stars Rent it on iTunes
1Stars Waste your time elsewhere
Posted
AuthorVinko
CategoriesMovie Review

Poster

My Rating: 5Stars

剛剛睇完《証人》,一散場就叫好...好久都未試過睇完港產片就叫好,上次叫好是睇完《無間道》。

"証人"情節拍得好細緻,好緊湊,前呼後應,睇得出拍得好有Heart,一些都無諗過當觀眾低能,特技效果"正",每一個演員都是好戲之人,特別係謝霆鋒,張家輝,智叔。未睇套戲之前都聽說影評讚好才去睇,詁唔到真係咁好睇,超水準之作,港產片真是掂的。

Another late addition in Vinko's Must See Movies list.

Rating Legend:
5Stars Not to be missed
4Stars Wait for the DVD
3Stars Buy from iTunes Store
2Stars Rent it on iTunes
1Stars Waste your time elsewhere
Posted
AuthorVinko
CategoriesMovie Review

Hong Kong PoliceAre our public officials so scare of doing the wrong thing that they forget what is the right thing to do? Today in a press conference held by Mr Tang King-Shing, Commissioner of Police in Hong Kong, with regards to the security procedures of the 2008 Olympic (Hong Kong) test equestrian competition. He commented on yesterday's incident of ironworker demonstrators' clashing with police in Central district. Where hundreds of demonstrators over powered the police line and ran into the streets blocking traffic, causing a major traffic jam.

He said, "... since there are many citizens disagree with the ironworkers' actions, he warns that they may be charges to be filed against the ironworkers for their actions...".

I am totally confused by this statement. Is the "Commissioner of Police" taking into considerations whether the public disagrees with some individuals' actions before he file charges against these individuals? Why doesn't the "Commissioner of Police" just use the law as guidelines and file charges accordingly.

Is the "Commissioner of Police" a "politician" or is he a "police officer"?

Does the "Commissioner of Police" imply that Hong Kong Police takes into account public opinions before charges are lay for law violators?

Does it also imply that if a person can kills someone, he is not guilty and will not be charged, as long as the general public "believe that the person killed is justified to be killed"?

What has our society come to where the "head of police" believes that public opinions take president over "The Law"?

Posted
AuthorVinko
Categoriesopinion

Do you believe in the formation of labour union at work place? This question is not easy to answer. I believe it is not a clear cut "yes" or "no" answer in most cases. I think labour union has its justifications, while it is also one of the most disruptive establishment at a work place.

One of the most powerful labour union in the world is the "US Auto Union". They often have labour disagreements with various different auto manufactures (General Motors, Ford, etc.), then as a result a labour strike is often called. In most cases this labour action is decided on by the management of the union; supposedly representing the membership. Although in most cases, the membership are often happy to be working rather than on strike. Recently in Hong Kong a labour dispute arise between the ironworkers and their employers. This disagreement escalated into a major confrontation between 300+ ironworker demonstrators and the police. The ironworkers overpowered the police line into a main street, Queen's Road, of Central district. Causing the police at the scene to call for reenforcement.

During this time I was on a tram heading to Central from Wan Chai, and our tram got stuck just entering the Central district by the horrendous traffic jam in front of Cheung Kong Center, most likely due to the police, at the scene, closing a section of Queen's road to prevent any injuries of the ironworkers when they broke the police line.

We had no idea of the ironworkers actions and police vehicles with police reenforcement came from all directions, but they could not get through the traffic jam either. There was so many police vehicles that most people on the tram were worry that there is a riot or worst a bomb threat.

Eventually a bus driver got out of his bus and directed the traffic to make an opening for the police convoy to get through. I was in a hurry so I convinced the tram driver to let me off the tram and walked the rest of the way to my destination.

On the way I found police vehicles already parked along most of the streets surrounding HSBC Headquarters and the Legislator building. There were police running toward Queen's Road, obviously exited about something. Now afterwards I know why they were running. They were in a hurry to backup their comrades at the ironworkers demonstration stopped at Queen's Road Central and Ice House Street.

I do not see the need for the ironworkers to be demonstrating in Central on a Saturday afternoon. In the past three days the Hong Kong media had already reported on their dispute with their employers, and majority of the public already knows about their complaints. I most definitely do not agree with their actions of turning their demonstration violent and over powered the police who were accompanied them on their demonstration from Kowloon to Central government Labour Department.

Posted
AuthorVinko
Categoriesopinion

Queen's Pier

I am currently watching the live broadcast of the police stand-off with the demonstrators at the Queen's Pier, Central, Hong Kong. The police action started at 11:00 this morning.

They went in to remove the demonstrators holding out at the pier, including the three on hunger strike for the past 100 hours, and 8 demonstrators who were camped out on the roof of the pier.

Police Action #1Police Action #2

For those who do not know about the dispute. You can read more about it in a very up to date Wikipedia entry for the pier.

In short, the Queen's Pier is an "unofficial" historic site, located in Central district of Hong Kong next to the City Hall, was targeted to be demolished to give way to a transportation project to build a costal highway.

They just removed the last of the demonstrator from the roof of the pier.

Demonstrator #1Demonstrator #2Demonstrator #3

I do agree that the demonstrators should voice their opinions against the demolition of Queen's Pier, but at the same time, I do not agree with their extended defiant of the police instructions to leave.

We all have the rights to demonstrate and voice our opinions openly, which in this case the HKSAR government and the police allowed the public to do so, even after the deadline (August 1, 2007) to reclaim the property for the contractors.

Exercising our human rights is one thing, but defying the law is another. I do not see the need for the demonstrators to hold onto their positions after the police have ask them to leave. Nor do I agree with the demonstrators who attempt to break the police barricade violently.

The even more ridiculous thing is ATV 24 Hours News station broadcasting the demonstration live from 15:00 onwards until 21:30. Especially when there are many other important news in Hong Kong and elsewhere in the world. I agree that the event at Queen's Pier is happening live, but the ATV reporters just kept repeating what they had said since 15:00.

Posted
AuthorVinko
Categoriesopinion