Fri, Dec 25, 2009 - Page 16 News List


Compiled BY Martin Williams


New York, I Love You

Admirers of the anthology Paris, Je T’aime from three years ago will rush to see this loosely connected battery of 10 short films by different directors, including China’s Jiang Wen (姜文). Such productions usually struggle to live up to the promise of all the directing and acting talent on show, but even in a below average collection there are better segments to savor. Even so, critics thought this effort didn’t stack up against its Parisian predecessor.

Gokusen: The Movie

Manga-adaptation time again, though Gokusen offers the relative novelty of a female yakuza boss-in-waiting responding to her better angels and working as a schoolteacher with a classful of reprobates. Ergo, this is one teacher you do not want to cross or talk back to, even if she is into impossibly cutesy antics. Subtitle “The Movie” refers to the fact that the film is a crossover from the popular TV version of the comic. Trivia: Nakama Yukie, who plays the teacher with a crime pedigree, has largely been a TV actress, but one of her earlier film roles was the evil Sadako in the prequel Ring 0: Birthday.


Released in other overseas markets as Many Kisses Later, this Italian box office champ is a comedy with a cast of thousands and good spirit to spare. The action centers on a half-dozen couples between Christmas and Valentine’s Day and how their romantic histories affect their relationships. Massively popular, though its depth is perhaps reflected in the fact that it was nominated for nine Davids (the Italian Oscars) and won none. A remarkably similar American film called Valentine’s Day opens here in two months.

Like a Star Shining in the Night

A French entry in the deadly-disease-threatens-blissful-romance genre, this one has the male of the couple (Nicolas Giraud) come down with Hodgkin’s disease and waste away, but not without the love and carnal loyalty of his fiancee (Salome Stevenin). It’s the latter of these that gets this DVD preview a release from tomorrow at the Baixue theater in Ximending, but the upside is its positive message of love — and desire — come what may.

Give Me Your Hand

Held over at the last minute last week, this European co-production involving two brothers and a pretty road trip starts at the Baixue tomorrow. Original title: Donne-Moi la Main.


Missed this one last week. An Italian drama about randy youth, Albakiara was released last year. If disaffected youth, sex, drugs and rock music is your cup of espresso, get in quick to see it before it finishes tonight at the Baixue. Or wait for the imminent DVD release.


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