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Subway Cinema Coming Attractions:
NEW YORK ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL - Asian Films Are Go!!! (June 16 - July 1)

Visit our archive for previous editions of the NEW YORK ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL:
and 2005.

September 16 - September 23, 2004
The big news this week is next week's opening of INFERNAL AFFAIRS from Miramax. From what we've heard it's a release of the uncut, original language movie and it's an amazing gangster film. America hasn't produced a decent crime flick since 1999, so thank goodness for Hong Kong.

For those who read this blog, you've got a chance to win passes to a screening of INFERNAL AFFAIRS.

To win passes to the Thursday, September 23 @ 7PM screening of INFERNAL AFFAIRS send an email to

The first 15 to respond will be winners. The rest of you will be losers.

The screening will take place at Cinemas 1,2,3 at 1001 Third Avenue (at 59th Street). Details will be emailed to the winners.

September 24 brings Thai arthouse director, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, to the Anthology Film Archives with the release of his acclaimed ants-at-the-picnic flick, BLISSFULLY YOURS.

September 24 sees INFERNAL AFFAIRS open up across New York. It'll be playing at the Angelika, the AMC Empire, Lincoln Square and the New York Twin.
Read a review:

October 1 - 17 brings us a good Asian line-up in the New York Film Festival.
For details:

October 2 sees a Shaw Brothers retrospective at Lincoln Center - part of the New York Film Festival.
For details:

Tickets are going very quickly - many shows are sold out - so buy now if you want to go!

October 18-29 sees a great contemporary Hong Kong retro at Lincoln Center.
For details:

November 12 sees a contemporary Korean Cinema retro at Lincoln Center.

December 3 sees a wide release of Zhang Yimou's HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS.

AMC Empire 25 (42nd Street and 8th Avenue)
Anime fans have been making little puddles on their seats for weeks in anticipation of Mamoru Oshii's follow-up to his ground-breaking GHOST IN THE SHELL. And there's no doubt that this movie is absolutely stunning visually.
Read some reviews:

Broadway Theater (Broadway and 53rd)
The hit British musical, BOMBAY DREAMS is chuffing along. But even a score by A.R. Rahman (including "Chaiya Chaiya" from DIL SE, and "Shakalaka Baby" from NAYAK), a role for Madhur Jaffrey, the biggest Indian cookbook writer in the West, and inflatable Ganesh statues (plus a big fountain) haven't saved it from almost unanimous critical slams. Yikes! I liked it, but I like Bollywood, and if you don't know Bollywood you probably won't like it, and who in the US knows much about Bollywood? Bolly-bummer.
Ticket info:212-239-6200

Cinema Village
Taiwan's arthouse director (does Taiwan produce anything else, these days?) Tsai Ming-liang brings his trademark silences, Buster Keaton deadpan, and drip-drip-drip constant water leakage to the world of movie love. It's the last days in the life of the Fu-Ho theater and they're screening King Hu's masterpiece, DRAGON INN. While the movie runs, lonely people meet and try to connect in the theater, the bathrooms and the ticket booths. The theater is haunted, and actors Miao Tien and Chun Shih are in the audience, watching themselves perform in the movie they made almost 40 years earlier. Some people hate this movie, but a lot of Tsai Ming-liang fans are calling it amazing.
read a review:

ImaginAsian Theater
239 East 59th Street (at Second Avenue)
Daily at 12PM, 2PM, 4PM, 6PM, 8PM and 10PM

Landmark Sunshine (Houston Street, between 1st and 2nd Avenues)

Loew's State
Salman Khan stars with Preity Zinta in this Bollywood knock-off of RETURN TO ME. Directed by Salman's brother-in-law, it's being derided as soppy and sentimental. How so? Let's just say it's about a businessman who loses the love of his life and doesn't know how to move on when he meets another lady, later.
Read a review:

Nassau Coliseum
September 18th rings in the TEMPTATION 2004 concert at Nassau Coliseum, then on 9/25 you can see it at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Whuzzat, you say? It's a gigantor concert that beams down the biggest stars in Bollywood for an all-signing, all-dancing, all-glitzy extravaganza. Who are the biggest stars in Bollywood? Shah Rukh Khan! Preity Zinta! Rani Mukherjee! Saif Ali Khan! And then a bunch of other people. Guaranteed to be like swimming in a big sea of cheese, in the best possible sense.
More details:

34th Street Loews (between 8 and 9 Avenues)
TAEGUKGI (2004, Korea, 145 minutes)
Saving Private Ryan for Korea, this epic war flick replicates the strengths and weaknesses of Spielberg's flick. But somehow TAEGUKGI feels more like an old time Hollywood epic, along the lines of GONE WITH THE WIND or DR. ZHIVAGO, only with more amputated limbs. The promotional effort for this movie doesn't let you know that it's not just the highest grossing movie of all time, but it made TWICE as much money in Korea as its nearest competition (the Lord of the Rings movies). That would be like an American movie making $500 million dollars, instead of leveling out at the $200 million mark which seems to be where our super-blockbusters hover these days. Searing and brutal. Well worth your $10.
Read a review:

New York Film Festival
October 1 - 17 at Lincoln Center
Tickets went on sale September 12
This year's festival features a pretty strong Asian line-up. Here's a rundown:

Cafe Lumiere - Hou Hsia-hsien's latest

House of Flying Daggers - the latest martial romper stomper from Zhang Yimou, who's rapidly turning into the action director to beat. By the way, Zhang Yimou and Zhang Ziyi will be making an appearance at the screenings.

Tropical Malady - Apichatpong Weerasethakul's latest brain-boggler

Woman is the Future of Man - Hong Sang-Soo's latest Korean art film

The World - from Jia Zhangke, director of Platform

All three INFERNAL AFFAIRS movies (do not miss a chance to watch 1 and 2 back-to-back)

"Elegance, Passion and Cold, Hard Steel", a tribute to the Shaw Brothers Studios. Ivy Ling Bo, star of THE LOVE ETERNE, will be at the opening of this special retro.
more info:
and better even more good info:

Quad Cinema
BANG RAJAN (Thailand, 2001)
Wow, this one really slipped through the cracks with practically no advertising. But BANG RAJAN is a great movie from Thailand. A thundering, Medieval war movie based on a true story, you'll see giant wooden mallets, battle-axe-swinging drunks riding water buffalo into battle, and some of the juiciest, most moving melodrama to hit the screen since, well, TAE GUK GI.
read a review:

Union Square 14 (and other theaters)
HERO (2002, China, 98 minutes)

Right outta the New York Asian Film Festival comes Zhang Yimou's HERO, his eye-popping martial epic starring Jet Li, Maggie Cheung, Tony Leung and Donnie Yen. It's about two years since this movie was released everywhere else in the world, but better late than never. With cornea-blistering visuals by long-time Wong Kar-wai collaborator, Christopher Doyle, this flick is not the Second Coming, as many would have you believe, but it is an awe-inspiring spectacle on the big screen. It took a lot of behind-the-scenes maneuvering and pressure to get this movie released in the US at all, but bless 'em for finally doing it.

Village East
ZATOICHI (2003, Japan, 116 minutes)
Japanese auteur, Takeshi Kitano, directs and stars in this modern installment in the classic Japanese ZATOICHI series. Zato-who? Zatoichi, the blind masseur who roams Japan killing jerks when he's not relieving head and neck tension. Kitano adds in tap dancing, digital blood spray, and his own, patented deadpan morbid humor.
read a review:

WARRIORS OF HEAVEN AND EARTH (2003, Japan, 114 minutes)
Released to compete with HERO, this mainland Chinese epic Western (set in old timey time China) is a pretty drab affair. There's a certain amount of "let's go on an epic quest" feel to it, and the performances are generally good, but after HERO, well, where's the pretty colors?
read a review:

Special Note:
We don't just cover New York!

Look! It's proof!
TAE GUK GI is also playing at the Movieworld at Douglaston in Queens (718-423-9200) and the Mayfair Triplex in New Jersey (865-2010), the Brandon Cinemas in Forest Hills and the College Point Multiplex Cinemas in Queens.

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