October 15, 2010 |
Fans of the odd, the bloody, and the extreme in cinema need not feel alienated: The Philadelphia Film Festival also offers "The Graveyard Shift," a series of 10 films that will delight the more twisted cinephiles. Here are some highlights: Actor-director Yuen Woo-ping, best known as the action choreographer for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon , returns to directing after more than a dozen years with True Legend , the story of the perpetually drunken kung fu folk hero, Beggar Su. Martial arts of a sillier tone figure in Mandrill , a spy spoof from Chile that reunites Kiltro 's director, Ernesto Diaz Espinoza, and star, kung fu master Marko Zaror.
October 8, 2010
THE "MADE In China" label on this summer's "Karate Kid" is what made it such a surprising and interesting remake. Producer Will Smith took son/star Jaden inside China for this new version, featuring Jaden as a Detroit transplant who confronts local bullies by learning kung fu from a local master (Jackie Chan). The cast is engaging and the story efficient, but what struck me was the access the filmmakers had to out-of-the-way places, the picture they were able to present of life in contemporary China - a privilege that not many contemporary Chinese filmmakers seem to have.
December 22, 2000 |
If we were to classify movie-goers, we might say that people who like "Die Hard" are from Mars, and people who liked "The English Patient" are from Venus. Each group loves its own kind of movie, and just as passionately hates the other kind. It's long been known in Hollywood that if somebody could somehow combine these two forms, make a movie that would satisfy both camps, it would be like splitting the movie atom. Or like joining the polarized atoms of entertainment and art to form an explosive new compound.
October 20, 2000 |
There's no action hero nimbler - or slaphappier - than Jackie Chan, human whirligig and Baryshnikov of balletic kung fu. And there's no Jackie Chan movie more pleasurable than Drunken Master II (1994), which Miramax's Dimension Films has dubbed into English and rereleased as The Legend of Drunken Master. In this sequel to the 1978 film that established him as the heir to martial arts legend Bruce Lee, Chan reprises the role of Wong Fei-Hung, a real-life healer and kung fu master who died in 1924.
May 17, 1991 |
Two of the most illuminating and constructive films about the recent experiences of westerners in China have used the universal language of music to surmount barriers of communication. Distant Harmony chronicled the flamboyant pilgrimage of mega-tenor Luciano Pavarotti, and From Mao to Mozart followed violin virtuoso Isaac Stern on a teaching mission to China's conservatories. In Iron and Silk, Mark Salzman plays himself and the cello - both with an amateurish charm. Posed improbably on a bridge in the southern city of Hangzhou, Salzman saws his way through a Bach prelude.
October 10, 1991 |
Her body tensed at the ready, forehead knotted in concentration, Pam Kazlouski began a warmup of kicks, chops and other kung fu moves during a recent class at the North American Wing Chun Kung Fu Association in Maple Shade. Kazlouski, clad in the school's uniform - white pants, red shirt and blue sash - has studied this 250-year-old martial art for about a year. "It's good for women because you don't have to be strong," Kazlouski said. "It's really effective if you're a lot smaller than your opponent.
March 14, 2008 |
Mixed martial arts meets the movie box office. The introduction to one of America's fastest-growing sports comes today by way of Never Back Down, the big-budget film starring Djimon Hounsou. Kung-fu arts and ninjitsu were the traditional way that movies explored the martial arts. The Chinese term kung fu has been defined literally as energy time. Mixed martial artists use this principle to become complete striking and submissions grappling experts. Will real MMA fighters appreciate the way their sport has been translated into cinema?
January 20, 1986 |
And the awards keep coming . . . Channel 10 is the sole recipient of the Delaware County Press Club Award for Excellence in Public Communications for its coverage of the MOVE confrontation last year. Cameraman Pete Kane and reporter Harvey Clark will receive individual awards for their part in the coverage at a dinner on March 14 in Media, and general manager Steve Cohen will accept a seperate award on behalf of the station. Channel 10 has also been nominated to receive the prestigious Alfred I. Dupont Columbia University Award in Broadcast Journalism, for the same story.
December 13, 1989 |
Anthony L. Bates Dandridge won the $200,000 grand prize in an Alpo Pet Food contest. James T. Parker Jr. won a $50,000 Cadillac Allante in a Trump Plaza Hotel sweepstakes. Lewis J. Mazzio's girlfriend won the $75,000 grand prize in another Alpo contest. But not really. They were only fronts for two promoters who swindled several firms out of some $300,000 in a nationwide sweepstakes contest fraud. They didn't really get the prizes, only a cut of the winnings. Dandridge, 39, a kung fu instructor from Richmond, Va., Parker, 33, a professional hypnotist from Lansdowne, and Mazzio, 23, a businessman from Gladwyne, were convicted of fraud charges yesterday by a U.S. District Court jury.
November 14, 1991 |
Frank Wolek, a Wynnewood resident and professor of management at Villanova University, describes his hobby with the same terms that he might use in his classes. Internal dynamics. Tight control. Wolek's hobby is tai chi, a Chinese martial art that Wolek learned at a studio in Havertown and has practiced 45 minutes a day for the last three years. In competition, Wolek, 56, spends six or seven minutes executing a slow, controlled set of motions in front of five judges.