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To Kei-Fung, Johnnie


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#41 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 03:10 PM

I guess I was expecting something a bit more scathing. It almost sounds as if this could be an ok watch.


First you have to remember my tolerance for bad. Second the film is pretty much in the mediocre, it is not horrible it is not good. The problem with being medicore is that there are many, many better films to watch (of course you don't necessarily know this until you watch them :D). Being a To fan I knew I had to take care of this one. It is by far NOT his worst film (Lucky Encounter and I don't like Executioners either).

In a way it reminds you of the many Taiwanese martial art films out there well without the horrible outfits. Their actually isn't much martial arts in the movie. It plays more of a mystery than anything else (though that is typical of many wuxia film). I wasn't that happy with the plot, but not the worst I've seen either (not sure if everything actually made sense, but I think most of it did). This is the type of film you forget in a few days time.
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#42 Duke Togo

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 03:24 PM

And that to me translate to an ok watch, which combined with the rare-factor makes it almost certain I will not be seeing it. The only Taiwanese wuxia films I've seen were Elimination Pursuit (which I absolutely loved) and Lost Sword Ship (so-so), so I guess I should expect more like the latter. I would love a proper DVD of Elimination Pursuit, the one we have now is horrid, though I figure the original material is poor. Would you say The Enigmatic Case is at least better than Woo's Once a Thief?

#43 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 03:31 PM

... Would you say The Enigmatic Case is at least better than Woo's Once a Thief?


Well here's the problem: there is two different Once a Thiefs. There is the 1991 movie (which I hope you are referring to) and the TV movie in 1996. I have seen and own both. The Enigmatic Case is better than the TV movie but not as good as the 1991 release. But there is no comedy in The Enigmatic Case. I know that the earlier OAT is problematic, but it still has good direction, The Enigmatic Case is bland except for some of the step-printing scenes which really annoyed me and there is some decent scenes here and there.
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#44 Duke Togo

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 03:43 PM

I am talking about the 1991 Once a Thief with Chow Yun-Fat, which doesn't bode well because I thought it was rather poor and disappointing. Anyhow, I figure I need to see more To, and also more Woo if I consider Once a Thief Woo's worst (HK/Mainland). Or would you say that is about right? That To craving never really went anywhere, but I'd say it is a little stronger than usual lately. It is too bad I have no unwatched To here at the house.

#45 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 03:55 PM

I am talking about the 1991 Once a Thief with Chow Yun-Fat, which doesn't bode well because I thought it was rather poor and disappointing. Anyhow, I figure I need to see more To, and also more Woo if I consider Once a Thief Woo's worst (HK/Mainland). Or would you say that is about right? That To craving never really went anywhere, but I'd say it is a little stronger than usual lately. It is too bad I have no unwatched To here at the house.


Yeah if Once a Thief is your worst Woo then that's actually good. His worst by far is Laughing Times (I have a review here, but I'll put a link just in case) but I have not seen all of Woo's American output (you have seen a few I have not like Windtalkers) and all of Woo's comedies which most critics say is his worst genre. I have one comedy of his that I haven't watched Plain Jane to the Rescue (1982) and several other action films. On listsofbests compare it is not showing that you saw Bullet in the Head. If you have not I think you will like it and it's overdone melodramatic content. It is also showing that you did not see Hard Target, but I can't believe that.

Of course both To and Woo were very much influenced by Jean Pierre Melville.

What will be the next To film you will buy? Make sure you are updated with this list http://www.listsofbe...com/list/65136/ so I can be annoying and recommend a next pick for you.
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1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

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#46 Duke Togo

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 04:15 PM

Yeah, I haven't seen Bullet in the Head or Hard Target.......and that To list is now up to date (was only missing Mad Detective). It is good to hear that there is more out there to look forward to from Woo than Bullet in the Head. I just haven't seen Hard Target get the kind of attention Hard Boiled, The Killer, or the Better Tomorrow films have received.

#47 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 04:24 PM

Yeah, I haven't seen Bullet in the Head or Hard Target.......and that To list is now up to date (was only missing Mad Detective). It is good to hear that there is more out there to look forward to from Woo than Bullet in the Head. I just haven't seen Hard Target get the kind of attention Hard Boiled, The Killer, or the Better Tomorrow films have received.


It's been years since I've seen Hard Target so I am going to make it a point to revisit in the near future. I liked it years ago but I know it is not as good as the three you mention (kind of hard to).

I thought you had seen Mad Detective. Refreshed the compare (you can always add the following to the end of the link if you want to see a quick compare to Duke :D /compare?username=Duketogo1300) There are a few films of To's that are not on there that I will add later like The Odd One Dies, The Longest Nite and Expect the Unexpected where Johnnie To took over direction but kept the director's name (yes the same director :D).

I think next has to be either Running Out of Time, The Odd One Dies, The Longest Nite, The Big Heat or Sparrow.
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#48 Duke Togo

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 04:27 PM

How about Running Out of Time 2? Worthy?

#49 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 04:32 PM

How about Running Out of Time 2? Worthy?


Still haven't seen it and do not own it, but the reviews tend to be harsh on it. Reminds me I need to buy it soon. The only unwatched Johnnie To I have now is Wu Yen.
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Previous Editions: 2,
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#50 Duke Togo

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Posted 19 July 2011 - 05:16 PM

Well I am in the mood for To now, so while I consider what to buy I might just watch one I have tonight. Maybe a weird one like PTU or Throw Down. :D

#51 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 09 September 2011 - 12:21 PM

Wu Yen (2001)

I finished the To co-directed (with Wai Ka-Fai) costume "comedy" "film" Wu Yen (2001) this morning (started last night, had to finish today so tonight I could start on something else): It was overlong, irritating, I couldn't take several of the female actresses like Anita Mui as male nor could I understand calling Sammi Cheng ugly with a small red mark (they call a mole). It feels, looks and acts like a TVB movie (seriously feels like a few outside scenes are taken from another film). I just wanted it to end. It had a few laughs, but mostly consisted of the most annoying triangle romance involving 3 females (Anita Mui playing a man; Cecilia Cheung playing a spirit who plays a fox spirit (狐狸精) who is both a man and a female though both characters look like females).

The film takes place during the warring states period (445-221 BC) and starts off as a shadow puppet play (皮影戏) and occasionally mixes puppet scenes back into the film.

I would add this to a short list of To films that can easily be avoided like Lucky Encounter and Executioners and one of the worst Milkyway produced films.

For a different opinion here is Lovehkfilm's review.
Another positive review.
Another Positive Review by Shelly Kraicer, January 31, 2001

Apparently there was a real Zhong Wuyan (Wu Yen) character
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1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

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#52 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 12:56 PM

Life Without Principle (2011)

Indomina acquires Johnnie To's LIFE WITHOUT PRINCIPLE
Life Without Principle (Variety Review via HKMDB News)
Life Without Principle (Screen Daily Review via HKMDB News)
PRINCIPLE, with interest (David Bordwell)

Q & A at TIFF (thanks to Brian T. for recording and uploading this)




Edited by masterofoneinchpunch, 10 October 2011 - 05:20 PM.
Added David Bordwell link

Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
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#53 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 01:32 PM

To's next film Romance in Thin Air will be (released Valentine's Day in China/HK I believe):

Posted Image

As usual with his romantic comedy films they will most likely not get a R1 DVD release later on. I have liked some of his rom coms in the past, but they are generally not as interesting as his personal projects.
Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
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#54 Duke Togo

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 01:40 PM

I generally expect strange directions with To's films, any of that with his rom coms?

#55 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 01:53 PM

I generally expect strange directions with To's films, any of that with his rom coms?


Yes, but generally within the realms of situation comedy though so nowhere near as unique his other projects. Is there a specific one that interests you? Needing You is the one that most often gets mentioned as his best (it is not my favorite, but partially that might have to do with a rare exotic "illegal" restaurant scene that upset me personally). But my favorite is probably Love on a Diet which I think is one of his funniest films (but the plot is strictly rom com).

Also of note that the rom coms tend to be codirected by Wai Ka-Fai (which usually means that To does all the camera work, but Wai does the script work) and as you might have noticed they tend to star Sammi Cheng Sau-Man (who is one of my favorites) and yes she is starring in Romancing in Thin Air.

But his rom coms tend to be more narrow than his comedies (whose quality is all over the place; like John Ford I think his comedy works in film as long as the film is not a comedy).
Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
My Amazon Reviews

#56 Izo

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 02:08 PM

I feel a tinge of guilt whenever I see this thread bumped. As much as I loved Mad Detective, I still haven't seen another To film. This will be remedied soon.

#57 Duke Togo

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Posted 16 November 2011 - 02:27 PM

Yes, but generally within the realms of situation comedy though so nowhere near as unique his other projects. Is there a specific one that interests you? Needing You is the one that most often gets mentioned as his best (it is not my favorite, but partially that might have to do with a rare exotic "illegal" restaurant scene that upset me personally). But my favorite is probably Love on a Diet which I think is one of his funniest films (but the plot is strictly rom com).

Also of note that the rom coms tend to be codirected by Wai Ka-Fai (which usually means that To does all the camera work, but Wai does the script work) and as you might have noticed they tend to star Sammi Cheng Sau-Man (who is one of my favorites) and yes she is starring in Romancing in Thin Air.

But his rom coms tend to be more narrow than his comedies (whose quality is all over the place; like John Ford I think his comedy works in film as long as the film is not a comedy).

Have no idea what interests me honestly, this is a To-centric curiosity. I will just start with these. ;)

#58 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 28 November 2011 - 05:15 PM

"Drug War" (Du Zhan): Johnny To and Wai Ka-Fai to Shoot Gangster Film on Mainland
Under Construction:
My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

“Empty your bladder of that bitter black urine you call coffee.” – The Tick

My HK movie reviews
My Amazon Reviews

#59 Izo

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Posted 09 December 2011 - 11:42 PM

Just finished Election and, despite having a script that could use a bit more focus, the film is excellent. With this film and Mad Detective, To is revealing himself to me to be one of the more dynamic voices in cinema today. When I say "dynamic", I mean it in the musical sense. To knows when to give us quiet moments as well as loud action scenes, and he knows how to use those quiet moments so effectively. To's camera movements are so enthralling as well, and really they serve the action or non-action absolutely perfectly.

The movie has a phenomenal ending.

#60 Izo

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Posted 14 December 2011 - 12:20 AM

My third Johnnie To film: PTU: Police Tactical Unit. Another excellent movie, and I think I liked it more than Election, but not as much as Mad Detective. Scattered thoughts:

- To makes films that on the surface appear like they would be very conventional, but he continually does interesting and unusual things and never falls to predictability
- The scores on all three To films I've seen have been absolutely amazing.
- All three films showcase To's ability to film complex plots with several narrative strands in unusual and exciting ways.
- Pay attention. There are constantly important things going on in the background of his compositions.
- The musical scores are just so damn cool!
- PTU has a really strange nocturnal beauty about it, and a very matter-of-factness when it comes to the reality of being a police officer.




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