Directed by Leon Le, the movie Song Lang, set in 90s Saigon, begins with Dung “Thunderbolt”, a debt collector, meeting Linh Phung, a cải lương (Vietnamese opera) actor. When Dung sees Linh Phung on stage, Dung was instantly pulled back to the past he has long been trying to ignore…Full Article VIETNAM: Film ‘Song Lang’ has a refreshing take on ‘queer love’
IMMANUEL PORTUS WRITES- The 35th Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival ushered in a myriad of untold stories within the backdrop of the Asian-American canvas. Waves of audiences lavished applause as every film took its place and breathed color into every every nook, cranny, and fold of the cinematic canvas. And in…Full Article Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival: Happy Cleaners – a Happy Review
YUXIN ZHOU WRITES — On April 2, the Chinese TV drama series “All is Well” ended. The show was about a typical Chinese family, in which, yes, (as the title suggests) all is well. Is it? While the show features an ordinary Chinese family, in one episode Mingyu (played by…Full Article China: Modern Chinese Women Struggle in Problematic Family relationship Caused by Parents’ Gender Preference
PAULA MARKOW WRITES– Outfest Fusion, a film festival that showcases the LGBTQ community, ran from March 1 to 5 at the Chinese Theatre, offering an array of short films. One segment that caught my attention was a series of shorts about the LGBT community in India. The first short, Yaman,…Full Article LGBTQ: The Indian Films From Outfest You Need to See
‘(This article contains spoilers) YUXIN ZHOU WRITES — On February 5th, the Chinese sci-fi movie “ The Wandering Earth” was released worldwide. Directed by Frank Gwo, the film is a significant landmark in Chinese cinema, with record-breaking box office success, stunning visual effects, and unique storytelling in the epic science…Full Article China: Movie review of China’s first sci-fi blockbuster “The Wandering Earth” – It Rocks!
“You can’t keep living for other people, you know. No one is going to win like that.” Hana defies every norm: as a full-time student studying math, and the daughter of an immigrant, she is also a daughter caring for her ill mother, a part-time worker at her family’s Korean…Full Article KOREA: Fish Bones Review — Family Expectations and Individual Aspirations
CONOR FAIRTLOUGH WRITES — You’ve probably never seen the Japanese animation “Kimi no Nawa” (Your Name), but if you are a film critic, chances are you haven’t stopped hearing about it. The 2016 feature, directed by Makoto Shinkai, is not only currently the highest grossing anime and Japanese film, but…Full Article JAPAN: Is the ‘Western Viewpoint’ of Japanese Film, Kimi no Nawa, white-washing?
JENICA ROSE GARCIA WRITES — Every December, the internet excitedly awaits the acclaimed “Moving Pictures” mashup, which strings multiple pieces of footage from disparate movie trailers into a whole new trailer. The creative genius behind “Moving Pictures” is Clark Zhu, who has accumulated millions of fans and has been featured…Full Article Profiles: Video Editor Clark Zhu’s Path to Film
IMMANUEL PORTUS WRITES- Purple and scarlet lights illuminated Stage 4’s facade at Sunset Las Palmas Studios during the event of New Filmmakers Los Angeles on October 6th, a film festival that aims to celebrate LA’s heritage and identity. Emerging creative voices such as LA filmmakers Rona Par and Mengfang Yang drew…Full Article Film: Celebrating Diversity and Resilience through Cinematic Arts
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES — The end of summer marks the start of the academic year, and I am ecstatic to go back to school. But this time, I will be in graduate school pursuing a Master’s degree in Public Policy at the USC Price School of Public Policy. I figured…Full Article MOVING ON: Alexis Cruz Bids Farewell to Asia Media
ELIZABETH SOELISTIO WRITES – Despite the cheerful and bright colors advertised on its billboards and posters, “A Taxi Driver” is a film that depicts the serious tale of an unsung hero who helped defend democracy by exposing a military dictatorship’s misdeeds in Gwangju, South Korea. Balancing comedy and political thrills,…Full Article South Korea: The Tale of ‘A Taxi Driver’ and the Gwangju Massacre
FASSA SAR WRITES — Korean filmmakers and actors put pressure on President Park Geun-hye to release the names of 9,473 film artists – including film-makers, actors and studio executives – that have allegedly been put on a secret list that would deny them government financial and logistical support for their…Full Article SOUTH KOREA: LEADING FILM ARTISTS BLACKLISTED FOR TELLING THE TRUTH
RYAN DAO WRITES — After a long 12-year hiatus, the legendary king of monsters makes his triumphant return of the silver screen with “Shin Godzilla” (“Shin Gojira,” or internationally known as “Godzilla Resurgence”), a modern-take on a classic Japanese icon. “Shin Godzilla” is the 29th installment in the Godzilla franchise…Full Article JAPAN: GODZILLA’S TRIUMPHANT RETURN
FASSA SAR WRITES – Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury’s new Bollywood film, Pink, combats underlying sexism and androcentrism within Indian culture. The film points out the misogynist culture that justifies violence against and control of women. The film, Pink, tells the story of three girls, Meenal, Falak, and Andrea, who attend a…Full Article INDIA: NEW BOLLYWOOD FILM GIVES MISOGYNY THE PINK SLIP
FASSA SAR WRITES – Chinese officials say that despite the country’s current prosperity, there’s trouble brewing: commercial films just aren’t socialist enough. China’s legislature, National People’s of Congress, revisited a draft of a film law proposed in 2015 that attempts to regulate its domestic film Industry and Chinese-owned Hollywood studios.…Full Article CHINA: PROPOSED LAW TAMES FILM INDUSTRY
ALEXIS CRUZ WRITES – Usually it’s censors who block a controversial film from domestic distribution. Not so in Quatar, at least in the case of The Danish Girl. Following online outrage at the transgender tale, the country’s Ministry of Culture tweeted out this month: “We would like to inform you…Full Article QATAR: The Freedom to Censor