Tuesday Film Roundup: Karate Kid in Beijing, Babylon A.D. and Red Cliff II

Film News

According to Variety, Beijing has been chosen as one of the cities in which Columbia's remake of the 1984 classic Karate Kid will be filmed. The film will star Will Smith's son Jaden and is expected to start shooting early next year.

Keep reading below for more Beijing-related film news and screening times for all the English-language films being shown in Beijing tonight.


The first installment of Red Cliff broke box office records throughout Asia when it was released earlier this year. John Woo's epic also managed to push Titianic of its perch and now lays claim to being both the most expensive and also the most lucrative Chinese film ever made. According to reports in today's paper, the second half of the film is due for release in January 2009. A short trailer of the second installment has also been proving popular on video sharing sites.

Jia Zhangke and Chen Danqing in Conversation
On Nov 23, Peking University will host a dialogue between Jia Zhangke and Chen Danqing. the event begins wirh a review on Jia Zhangke’s works over the past 10 years which wiil be followed by a screening of his 1998 film Xiao Wu (also known as Pickpocket). After the film, well-known artist Chen Danqing will lead a discussion of Jia's work. More information available here. RMB 10. 6:30pm. Peking University Centennial Hall (6275 7627)

Korea Film Festival 2008

The 4th Korean Film Festival. kicked off last Friday with a screening of The Happy Life on at Star City. The festival goes through until Nov 20 with films being screened at both the Star City and Xindong’an cinemas in Wangfujing. The festival features 12 (relatively) recent releases from Korea and many of the screenings will be attended by the directors themselves. The other eleven films being exhibited are: Secret Sunshine (Lee Chang-dong), Christmas in August (Hur Jin-ho), Miracle on 1st Street (Youn, JK.), Bunt (Park Gyu-tae), Yobi, the Five-tailed Fox (Lee Sung-gang), A Man who was Superman (Chung Yoon-chul), 200 Pounds Beauty (Kim Yong-hwa), Maundy Thursday (Song Hae-sung) and Beyond the Years (Im Kwon-taek).

Tickets to films at Xindong’an are RMB 30, Star City screenings are RMB 40. You can find a full schedule at the cinema’s official website. Expect the films to be in Korean with Chinese subtitles.


In Other Film News


The release date for Chen Kaige's Forever Enthralled (Mei Lanfang) has been brought forward one week. The film will now premiere in Beijing on Dec 5.

Feng Xiaogang, whose latest comedy If You Are the One (Feicheng Wurao 非诚勿扰) is due for release on Dec 22, won a celebrity endorsement case last week. Eric Mu over at Danwei has the details.

Fans of eye candy might want to catch Chinese director Zhang Jianya's latest film, Fit Lover (爱情左右 Aiqing Zuodeng Youxing), when it opens on Nov 28, according to Xinhua, the film stars "twelve of the country's best looking actors."

Films Around Town

Screening Times for Films in Beijing – Tuesday Nov 18

(All times and prices have been taken from today’s Beijing News or this website – it would be a good idea to call and confirm details) If you can read Chinese, this is by far the best site to consult.

Babylon AD

When even the director of a film admits that he's "very unhappy with the film," and that he "never had a chance to do one scene the way it was written or the way I wanted it to be. The script wasn't respected. Bad producers, bad partners, it was a terrible experience" it's not surprising that what emerges is an incomprehensible and unwatchable film. Its chances at the box office will probably not be helped by the fact that it's been available on DVD in the capital for weeks. You can take a look at some of the terrible reviews of the French-US co production here. View the trailer here.

CBD
Wanda International Cinema

16:20 17:20 18:20 19:20 20:20 21:20 22:20

Xidan
New Capital Cinema

16:05 16:40 17:15 17:50 18:25 19:00 19:35 20:10 20:45 21:20 21:55

Sanlitun
Village Mega Box

19:30 21:30

Haidian
UME International Cineplex

17:15 19:00 20:45 21:25 22:30

Stellar International Cineplex

17:45 19:35 21:25

Wangjing
Stellar International Cineplex

17:00 18:40 20:20 22:00

Wangfujing
Star City

16:50 18:25 20:00 21:35

Xindong'an Cinema

15:00 16:35 18:10 19:50 21:25

Dongsishitiao
East Gate Cinema

19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00

Shuangjing
UME International Cineplex

16:20 18:00 19:40 21:20

Zhongguancun
Mega Box

18:50 19:50 20:50 21:50

East Fourth Ring Road
Espace France Cinema



16:40 17:35 18:20 19:15 20:00 20:55 21:40 22:35

007: Quantum of Solace

The high-octane adventures of Bond (Daniel Craig) continue. This new mission sees the martini-gulping international man of mystery teaming up with old friends to navigate a minefield of treachery, murder and deceit. Early reviews have been good, but not great. See trailer here.

CBD
Wanda International Cinema

17:50 18:40 19:10 20:05 20:55 21:25 22:20

Xidan
New Capital Cinema

17:15 17:35 18:05 18:15 18:45 19:05 19:10 19:25 19:45 20:15 20:25 20:55 21:15 21:35 21:50

Sanlitun
Village Mega Box

18:10 18:45 19:20 19:55 20:30 21:05 21:40 22:15 22:50

Haidian
UME International Cineplex

17:40 19:45 21:50 and (digital) 17:50 19:55 20:30 22:00 22:35

Stellar International Cineplex

16:20 18:35 20:50

Wangjing
Stellar International Cineplex

16:50 19:00 21:10 and 11:50 14:00 16:10 18:20 20:30

Wangfujing
Star City

16:10 17:10 17:40 18:10 19:10 19:40 20:10 21:10 21:40 22:10

Xindong'an Cinema

Theater 7: 17:10 19:10 21:10
Theater 8: 16:40 18:40 20:40

Dongsishitiao
East Gate Cinema

16:00 16:30 17:30 18:00 18:30 19:30 20:30 21:30 22:30

Shuangjing
UME International Cineplex

16:00 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00

Zhongguancun
Mega Box

18:10 18:45 19:20 19:55 20:30 21:05 21:40 22:15 22:10

Yayuncun
Sun Cinema

16:30 17:30 18:30 19:30 20:30 21:30 22:30

East Fourth Ring Road
Espace France Cinema



17:00 17:40 19:10 19:40 21:10 21:40 10:25 12:25 14:25 16:25 18:25 19:00 20:25 21:00

Wanted
Wanted
marks James McAvoy's third appearance on the Chinese big screen this year. Unlike his earlier roles in Atonement and The Chronicles of Narnia, McAvoy plays the stereotypical apathetic young man who's stuck in a dead-end job but is offered an escape when he's introduced into the exciting world of assassins by a beautiful and dangerous woman called Fox (Angelina Jolie). It all sounds as if it's based on a comic book, that's because - as with a lot of blockbusters these days - it is. The film received positivie reviews when it was released in the States back in July, you can view some here. Take a look at the trailer here.

Haidian
UME International Cineplex

17:40

Wangjing
Stellar International Cineplex

17:05 19:05 21:05

Xindong'an Cinema

17:00 19:00 21:00

Shuangjing
UME International Cineplex

19:40 21:40

Journey to the Center of the Earth 3-D Brendan Fraser stars in this remake of the Sci-fi classic. Read reviews here and view trailer here.

CBDWanda International Cinema

17:45 19:45 21:45

Haidian
UME International Cineplex

16:30 18:15 20:00 21:45

Shuangjing
UME International Cineplex

15:15 17:00 18:45 20:30 22:15

Other Films Showing the Week

Hutong Days (胡同里的阳光 Hutong li de Yangguang)
The film tells a story about a poor family living in the hutongs of Beijing. The story focuses on how the difficulties faced by the husband and father and how he manages to educate his little boy in his wife’s absence.

5.12 Wenchan Doesn’t Believe in Tears (5.12汶川不相信眼泪 5/12 Wenchuan bu Xiang Xin Yanlei)
The first movie based on the tragic Sichuan eathquake features images filmed at the site of the earthquake.

Brilliance in Europe (点亮欧洲 Dianliang Ouzhou)
The electrifying world of World Trade anti-dumping hearings gets a film makeover which places a Wenzhou entrepreneur at odds with EU safety hawks – how will the case involving light metals ever be resolved? We leave it to you to find out. Another boring movie from director Zhou Wei.

Out of Control (过界 Guojie)
The plot follows the adventures of a man on the run.

Love at Restaurant (味道男女Weidao Nannv)
Set against a background of 2008 Olympic Games, the Chinese version of No Reservations (itself based on a great German film called Mostly Martha) looks about as promising as its Chinglish title suggests.


Home Run (回家的路 Huijia de Lu)
A movie that follows the story of three people; a female anchor, a single father and a lost kid. The three of them gain notoriety through a reality show of the same name. Everything about it suggest it sucks, view the trailer here. In Chinese, no English subtitles.

Champions (夺标 Duobiao)
This low-budget film tells the story of how the Chinese martial art team performed at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Reviews suggest this film also sucks, view the trailer here. In Chinese, no English subtitles.

The Butterfly Lovers (剑蝶 Jiandie)

The presence of one half of the Taiwanese pop duo Twins in the cast of this adaptation of the Chinese legend of the Butterfly Lovers should be enough to ensure it rakes in quite a bit at the box office. No English subtitles. View trailer here.

Nov 21
Hell Boy 2: The Golden Army
Take a look at the surprisingly positive reviews here and trailer here.

Nov 27
Next

Implausible Nicolas Cage vehicle that's been out on DVD for an age. Reviews here and trailer here.

Dec 5
Forever Enthralled (梅兰芳 Mei Lanfang) A biographical account of iconic Peking Opera star Mei Lanfang directed by Chen Kaige and starring Beijing-born singer Leon Lai. Ziyi Zhang stars as Mei’s lover Meng Xiaodong. More info available here. You can look at the "trailer" - it's really just a selection of still images taken from the film set to a Peking Opera sound track - here.

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