Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Movies:...

...A Thrilling Experience In China

There is nothing better than spending a quiet night in front of the TV with a good DVD. And it’s even better when the movie you are about to watch was just released in the theater. Because you see when you live in China you get to see a huge amount of the latest releases (the good, the bad and the one you wish you didn’t spend even 5 minutes watching) and you start to get demanding when the movies take more than a few days (a week top) after their opening day at the theater to hit the local shelves.

It all starts with the selection of the movie (because they are so many blockbusters being released, you need from time to time to dig a little deeper into the choice of movies available!). The whole experience starts with the DVD’s jacket, then the movie itself.

Most of the jackets are pretty good. Well the front (the picture corresponds to the movie) but when you check on the back that’s another story. When the film summary is actually corresponding to the movie, the credits are often from another one and if you decide to check on the film website you might end up onto another website.
Three movies for the price of one!

Then comes the film synopsis and sometimes it makes you really want to pick up the film and see if the commentary is true. Note: cut and paste in a language you don’t speak fluently is never a good idea!

Here’s an example
From “The Contract” (with Morgan Freeman and John Cusack)
With such horrible screenplay, not good actors could have salvaged it even with Freeman and Cusack, the dialog is bad, the supporting actors were also very lame, watching it after 10 to 15 minutes, you were beginning to get a bad feeling about it, like checking into a dentist clinic, lying on the chair, hearing and watching the dentist and the assistants preparing you root canal operation. Bas so bad; lot of unnecessary scenes and dialog kept and dialog kept coming up but didn’t delete wisely. Why after “shoot to kill”, ‘cliff hanger’ and some of the other better suspenseful movies, did this lame-duck like movie have to be produced. The reason why the father and son would go hiking in the mountain was quite vague, to think back, almost all the scenario and plot is this movie were vague and could have cared less by you; so you caught a criminal fugitive, allowing him to ask you son’s name and you wimpy son would answer the question dutifully, then answer your name to that criminal, are you nuts? What kind of stupid dialog is this? Writing a review to this movie is actually wasting time on earth. So I better stop right here.
Of course you want to buy it. A whopping 8 kuais (€/$1) and prove them wrong (or not!)

Then (and that’s my favorite part) you get to spot the silhouette.
some are more obvious than others !

Because most of the movies are being recorded in theaters, you get to see people arriving late. If only the TV set was bigger you could almost feel like you were really at the movie theater.

I won’t even comment on how many time the movie switch to Russian at the exact time you are finally finding out 1/ if she loves him or 2/who kills him or 3/why what happened happened! It will of course switch back to the appropriate language (mostly English for us) right after the climax. Then you’ll have to find a friend who might have a different copy and who might have been lucky to not have the language switch at the same moment so they can tell you what crucial part in the dialog you’ve missed and in exchange you get to tell her the part she missed. OR you go back to the store and find another copy hoping it’s a better one.

FYI: All these rules are not applicable around Movie Awards’ seasons because you get a proper copy which bears the mention “Property of XYZ for Oscar review only”… and that my friend makes you feel very special!