Tony Leung

grandmaster

When you hear that director Wong Kar-wai, the modern master who brought us the beautiful and complex romance In the Mood For Love, is directing a martial arts film based on the life of the legendary fighter who trained Bruce Lee, you expect it to contain quite a bit more beauty and subtlety than your usual kick/punch affair. But while the first trailer for his upcoming, fight-heavy, Ip Man biopic, The Grandmaster, was rather beautiful to look at, it also contained some throwback trailer narration that was so overblown and melodramatic that it felt like it should have been attached to a Cannon Films release from 1987. What a weird choice. The Grandmaster has just released a new trailer though, and while it still contains mostly just a bunch of gorgeously-shot action sequences that don’t give us much of an idea of what to expect from the acting or storytelling of the film, it at least ditches the cheesy narration in favor of a track from famed kung-fu-loving hip-hop star the RZA. Click through to watch some people take some mad beatings that are set to some mad beats.

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In the mood for love / In the mood for love

Looking for any excuse, Landon Palmer and Scott Beggs are using the 2012 Sight & Sound poll results as a reason to take different angles on the best movies of all time. Every week, they’ll discuss another entry in the list, dissecting old favorites from odd angles, discovering movies they haven’t seen before and asking you to join in on the conversation. Of course it helps if you’ve seen the movie because there will be plenty of spoilers. This week, they wonder whether Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung‘s characters in Wong Kar-wai‘s In the Mood For Love really commit adultery and discuss the restrictions that led this film to become an instant classic. In the #24 (tied) movie on the list, two neighbors who suspect their spouses of shared infidelity build their own lonely relationship in revenge. But why is it one of the best movies of all time? Let’s investigate.

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The Grandmasters

Ip Man was an early 20th century master of a specific style of martial arts known as Wing Chun, and while he’s highly revered in China his biggest claim to fame in the Western world has been by way of his most famous student: Bruce Lee. He died in 1972, but his stature has continued to grow thanks to recent films about his life. The most notable ones are Ip Man and Ip Man 2 which starred Donnie Yen in the title role and kicked insane amounts of ass. The latest entry in Ip Man’s biopic canon comes from an unlikely source in director Wong Kar-Wai. He’s been working on The Grandmasters to various degrees over the past few years with Tony Leung as Ip Man joined by Chen Chang and the lovely Ziyi Zhang. It covers the same ground as Yen’s films but looks to be a bit more artsy. Check out the trailer below.

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For 36 days straight, we’ll be exploring the famous 36 Dramatic Situations by examining a film that exemplifies each one. From family killing family to prisoners in need of asylum, we brush off the 19th century list in order to remember that it’s still incredibly relevant today. Whether you’re seeking a degree in Literature, love movies, or just love seeing things explode, our feature should have something for everyone. If it doesn’t, please don’t make us stare longingly at Maggie Cheung without being able to do something about it. Part 28 of the 36-part series takes a look at “Adultery” with Wong Kar-Wai’s In the Mood for Love.

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Sixteen years after the release of Chungking Express – the film that placed Wong Kar-Wai firmly and what seems to be permanently in the realm of international auteurdom – it is repeatedly remembered and recounted as an exercise in Cannes-friendly urban arthouse cool, specifically in its constant comparisons with the style-heavy and suave work of early 60s Godard; Amy Taubin called Chungking Express the Masculin-feminin (1966) of the 1990s, and Tarantino has made vague comparisons to Breathless.

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John Woo

While the Cannes Film Festival officially ended yesterday, we should see a fair amount of coverage stretch on into the latter parts of this week, as there is still a ton of buzz and hot assets floating around.

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If you get a chance to see this near-masterpiece, please don’t let the NC-17 rating give you a second moment’s thought (unless you’re under 17 of course).

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