狄仁杰之通天帝国 | Detective Dee: Mystery of the Phantom Flame

Detective Dee

In 689 A.D., the Empress Wu Zetian is building a 66 m high statue of Buddha for her inauguration as the first empress of China under the objections and conspiracy of the other clans. When the engineer responsible for the construction mysteriously dies by spontaneous combustion, the superstitious workers are afraid since the man removed the good luck charms from the main pillar. There is an investigation of Pei Donglai and another investigator that also dies after withdrawing the amulets. Empress Wu assigns her loyal assistant Shangguan Jing’er to release the exiled Detective Dee from his imprisonment to investigate with Donglai and Jing’er the mystery of the deaths. They ride in a mystic and epic adventure to unravel the mystery.

Directed by Hark Tsui | Starring : Andy Lau, Carina Lau, Bingbing Li, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Chao Deng | Presented at Venice Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Abu Dhabi Film Festival, Glasgow Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, Helsinki Film Festival, Nagaoka Film Festival

Advertisements

苹果 | Lost in Beijing

Lost in Beijing

Lin Dong and Wang Mei are a childless couple in Beijing, wealthy, approaching middle age. Lin owns a foot-massage parlor. One afternoon he rapes one of his workers, Liu Pingguo, who has nearly passed out from drinking alcohol with a friend. Part of the assault is witnessed by Liu’s husband, An Kun, a window washer. He’s angry with the boss and with his wife, and he seeks compensation. Lin’s wife counsels him and joins in revenge. Then, Liu realizes she’s pregnant and a set of emotional calculations ensues: Lin wants to buy the child, Wang agrees but has conditions, An Kun goes back and forth and barely contains his anger; Liu withdraws. The baby comes. Can anything be sorted out?

Directed by Yu Li | Starring : Bingbing Fan, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Dawei Tong, Elaine Jin, Meihuizi Zeng | Presented at Berlin Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, Bangkok Film Festival

长恨歌 | Everlasting Regret

Everlasting Regret

Adapted from Wang Anyi’s award-winning novel, the film follows the life of a legendary Shanghai beauty, Wang Qiyao, whose fading glamour is mirrored by the prosperous growth of the city of Shanghai. The film co-stars Tony Leung Ka Fai, Hu Jun, Daniel Wu, and Huang Jue as men who fall for Wang Qiyao. Yet those she loves just leave her one after another when she grows old, and eventually she herself has to face what fate has prepared for her. The metropolitan city is perhaps the only thing that can survive all the drastic changes and remain forever young… Everlasting Regret resembles Stanley Kwan’s Center Stage thematically for both detail the rise and fall of a Shanghainese woman, but Everlasting Regret ambitiously covers a longer period from 1940s to 1980s, almost half a century. The nostalgic mood of the film reminds of Kwan’s best-known piece Rouge. Art Director William Chang, famous for creating a nostalgic atmosphere in Wong Kar Wai’s In the Mood for Love and 2046, successfully reconstructs the lifestyle of old Shanghai.

Directed by Stanley Kwan | Starring : Sammi Cheng, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Daniel Wu, Jun Hu, Jue Huang | Presented at Venice Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Chicago Film Festival, Tokyo Film Festival, Cinemanila Film Festival

黑社会 | Election

Election

Every two years senior members of Hong Kong’s oldest Triad, The Wo Shing Society, elect a new chairman. Fierce rivalries emerge between the two eligible candidates. Lok, respected by the Uncles is the favorite to win. His rival Big D will stop at nothing to change this by going against hundreds of years of Triad tradition – influencing the vote with money and violence. When Wo Shing’s ancient symbol of leadership, the Dragon’s Head Baton, goes missing, a ruthless struggle for power erupts and the race to retrieve the Baton threatens to tear Wo Shing in two. Can Wo Shing balance their traditional brotherhood ways with the cut-throat modern world of 21st century business?

Directed by Johnnie To | Starring : Simon Yam, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Louis Koo, Nick Cheung, Ka Tung Lam | Presented at Cannes Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro Film Festival, Torino Film Festival, Sitges Film Festival, La Rochelle Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival, Rotterdam Film Festival, Pusan Film Festival, Buenos Aires Film Festival, Locarno Film Festival

饺子 | Dumplings

Dumplings

No woman can resist the temptation of potential rejuvenation – for some it’s a dreamy blissful chase; for others a never-ending nightmare of endless pursuit. But Qing can afford it all. An ex-starlet turned wife of a prominent rich man, Qing is destined to have this dream come true. Qing uses a lot of connections to get to the mysterious chef, Mei to obtain her famous specialty dumplings. Qing is no gourmet but simply dying to recover her youth and beauty. At stake is her new “career” as a housewife of the rich. Mei’s dumplings claim to deliver the goods. Mei, a former gynecologist, developed a secret recipe for rejuvenation which has allowed her to bid farewell to her career as an abortionist. Now Mei only serves desperate rich women like Qing. Mei understands a woman’s need and she can fulfill a woman’s desire, all you need is a leap of faith to take a bite into her special dumplings with usual fillings.

Directed by Fruit Chan | Starring : Miriam Yeung Chin Wah, Bai Ling, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Miki Yeung, So-Fun Wong | Presented at Melbourne Film Festival, Edinburgh Film Festival, Helsinki Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro Film Festival, Sao Paulo Film Festival, Locarno Film Festival

柔道龙虎榜 | Throw Down

Throw Down

Hong Kong director Johnnie To pays tribute to the films of Kurosawa Akira with Throw Down, an uplifting comedy-drama about three troubled souls who find hope when they find each other. Taking place in a surreal alternate reality where all conflicts can be solved with a good judo match, Throw Down is about the importance of finding joy and honor in doing what you love. Johnnie To, who still calls Throw Down his favorite film in his filmography, uses every single directing trick up his sleeves to create exhilarating set pieces that prove he’s one of Hong Kong cinema’s greatest stylists.

Directed by Johnnie To | Starring : Louis Koo, Aaron Kwok, Cherrie Ying, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Siu-Fai Cheung | Presented at Venice Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival

20 30 40

20 30 40

Three women in different stages of their lives – 20, 30, 40 – face the hardships of the female existence. Xiao Jie has just turned twenty. She is in Taipei for the first time in her life. Now that she has finally escaped her strict parents she can’t wait to make her dream of becoming a pop star come true. When she meets the rather insensitive manager, Brother Shi, she believes she has at last found someone who will help to ‘foster’ her ambitions. But her new-found independence has unexpectedly dangerous consequences for her emotions… Xiang Xiang, a thirtysomething flight attendant, is caught between two men. In the throes of a passionate affair with a married man, she also has a younger lover… Lily Zhao is a forty-year-old divorcee. She thoroughly enjoys her life as a single woman and happily agrees to one rendezvous after another. One day, Lily – who looks much younger than her age – meets an attractive single man named Jerry. The only snag is that he is currently dating a girl that is the same age as Lily’s own daughter.

Directed by Sylvia Chang | Starring : Sylvia Chang, Rene Liu, Angelica Lee, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Anthony Wong Chau-Sang | Presented at Berlin Film Festival, Portland Film Festival