"An honest depiction of two gay, Cantonese men"
I heard about this film from somewhere which I cannot remember for the life of me, but I think I saw the trailer and then was immediately drawn into the film. The cinematography creates an atmosphere of what the director thought Argentina was like. It is not wonderfully glossed-over with sparkling shots of the two men, quite the opposite - it shows them at their worst when they are with each other but it is through this, that I think, the two men come out at their best because this is the side of people we never see, and the fact it's coming out to both of them shows they have reached a very real level of intimacy. The main character 'fei' or 'yieu fei' is probably the more dominant character although he does end up indulging the other character 'wing' or 'bo wing' - who keeps leaving him and ... full review
"a dreamlike masterpiece of love and loss"
Mr. Rwj Nixon
There are certain movies that simply defy genre conventions, films such as Walkabout, or 2001 a Space Odyssey, films which even defy explanation. Ashes of Time is just such a film. The film takes place on the edge of a vast desert, where assassin Ou-yang Feng (Leslie Chueng) has come to seek solace and solitude from the mistakes of his past. Whilst here, he is visited by a variety of characters, the presence of each of them making him reflect on various aspects of his past, and the weight of the love he lost. This probably does not sound like much of a plot to those cine-files raised on a steady diet of Hero, House of Flying Daggers and Curse of the Golden Flower (and before anyone gets angry, I am not saying there is anything wrong with those aforementioned films, except maybe Curse of the Golden Flower), ... full review
"Cracking Hong Kong Action Classic"
'Once a Thief' is a Hong Kong action-comedy film, which was released in 1991 to widespread critical acclaim and box-office success.
The movie tells the story of three best-friends (Chow-Yun Fat, Leslie Cheung & Cheri Chung) who are orphans and specialize in stealing paintings via high-tech methods.
At the time of its release the movie was a departure of some sorts from John Woo's (Director) other features, which consisted of the violent Hong Kong action classics, A Better Tomorrow 1 & 2, The Killer, Bullet in the Head and Hard Boiled. All these movies were gritty, full of bloodshed and high in emotions. As a result these movies have been classed as some of the greatest Hong Kong entertainers ever. 'Once a Thief' in the other hand is an excellent light-hearted action comedy with a lesser dosage of violence.
The movie contains the following essential elements, action, ... full review
This was done under pressure from investors for Ashes of Time, the only Wong Kar-Wai martial arts film which for me is the most beautiful and sophisticated of its kind. As Ashes of Time was over budget and way behind schedule, they needed something that could make a quick profit at the box offce. As a result the same cast for Ashes of Time were sent away in the middle of making Ashes to make this film, which is in the genre of the obligatory Chinese New Year "having a laugh" film that comes out every festive season, a deconstruction of the martial art stereotypes and with a lot of slapstick. Wong Kar-Wai is not the director but the producer of the film. This is the first time I see all the actors I love in a comedy together. I haven't seen many films in this genre but this is ... full review
This review is for all those looking to buy but who are concerned about the colourization of such a brilliant and classic film. Don't be. There is nothing on these pages other than one review (thank you Pring "x"), that makes it clear that this DVD has two discs - one with the colourized version and one containing the original. Sure, debate can be had about whether we should or should not be fussing with cinematic gold but here there is no need. You get both and you can choose. If you're a purist - brilliant. If you are someone that sneers at the idea of B&W and so have avoided watching this awesome movie - brilliant...you can now, and you'll be better for it. Simply, this film is, without doubt, 5 stars. Full stop. In B&W it's tremendous and in colour ... full review