Friday, July 27, 2012

Previously announced Filipino titles from SHOUT! FACTORY may or may not get released

In the past I've mentioned that SHOUT! FACTORY had announced they were going to release three Filipino/USA co-productions on DVD. The films are SAVAGE, THE HOT BOX and WOMAN HUNT. However, lately it has been speculated that these films may have been cancelled as it's reportedly been announced that SHOUT!'s Roger Corman line will soon be coming to an end.

I've been looking forward to DVD releases of these three films (I already own them all on VHS) and didn't wish to neither take mere rumours as facts - nor be content with being in the dark. So I got in touch with Cliff Mac of SHOUT! and asked him about it.

I guess his reply could have been more optimistic - but then again it could also have been more pessimistic!! He simply doesn't know if they are going to release these three films! In the email that I received he says all three films need new transfers and that those are expensive. He also mentioned that the titles probably won't sell an awful lot - so (reading between the lines) the question is will SHOUT! want to pour money into some old Filipino films (that don't have a selling point like a Pam Grier in them)!?

If SHOUT! decide to put them out - and Cliff stressed if - we won't see them this year.

So, that's the info I have on SAVAGE, THE HOT BOX and WOMAN HUNT as it is right now. I'm certainly crossing my fingers that we'll see DVD releases of the films at some stage.

Definitely amongst the ten

A Hero Never Dies asked me to take part in his upcoming TOP 10 of favourite Hong Kong films (and thanks for the offer!). I first encountered the Hong kong film via the old UK fanzine IN THE FLESH when I lived in London in the late 80s. Editor Steve C. was among the very first to dig up those unknown treasures via tape-trading (and you still owe me for a full subscription, Steve C.!!!). And later on Jonathan Ross did an edition of his The Incredibly Strange Film Show devoted to HK cinema. I watched and re-watched that episode over and over again. Shortly after a number of the films started turning up on Channel 4. I think I still have some of those tapes with ad snippets in them. LOL.

So, almost 25 years as a HK movie fan, what do you choose as your favourites??? I thought it would be a piece of cake, just take the 10 most loved ones from the early days! But, usch, 10 quickly turned into 20 and there's more popping up like there's no stopping them. Too many faves!!

But one film that sits firmly placed in the back of my mind and has done so ever since that first viewing via a 3rd generation video dupe from UK TV is ROUGE. This is ANITA MUI's film. And Leslie Cheung's. It's a ghost movie about loss but in contradiction to, for instance, A CHINESE GHOST STORY it's not full-on ghost fighting at breakneck speed. And there's no scenes set in the realm of death. It's a quiet and sad love story about a woman who should have died but didn't and thus have to go from one eternity to the next in search for the love she lost.

It's a gripping, sad, wonderful, and awesome film. And the main actors' reality isn't any less sad; A few years after the film was finished Leslie Cheung killed himself (he couldn't stand getting older) and soon after Anita Mui died from Cancer. She was just over 40. Both were big film and pop stars in HK and in the Chinese markets. Anita Mui had a big audience in Canada (many Chinese live in Canada).

So that's ONE down. Now I just gotta settle on the remaining 9. @_@

I posted the cover for my VHS here. Unfortunately, it's been reported (on ADG) that the most recent HK DVD has the top and bottom chopped off. The old HK DVD and the VHS uses the original picture format.

Looking smug

Gee whiz!! Today this place reached 100 subscribers! Who shoudda thunk that!!! For the longest time the count number has been steady at 98 but then yesterday Brian Harris of Wildside Cinema subbed and today one Onkel Tydefar (lol) turned the dial to 100. Cheers mate. I ought to give him a prize but on his blog I see he's just been on a fantastic trip to the US so that'll do. LOL.

Sure, one hundred isn't all that much in Cyberspace but for an underground blog it's pretty cool. Hmm, can you even be "underground" in Cyberspace or is it just "unknown", haha. And needless to say, I might have 5 subscribers cancelling their sub tomorrow but, hey, it's 100 right now!

Not surprisingly, the Dell cover comes courtesy of Member-X in Finland.