Yay! I met up with tatterpunk
over the weekend and sicced many Taiwan food recs to her and then took her to Page One for English books.
For anyone interested, my 2008 picks for Chinese and Korean media
is up at the Aqueduct Press blog.
Short write-ups of random Asian (mostly Chinese) movies I have watched while in Taiwan:海角七號/Cape No. 7
- This is the little movie that apparently took Taiwan by a storm; currently, it's the second-highest grossing movie here ever, with only Titanic
beating it. Aga left Taipei to go back to his rural hometown Hengchun in southern Taiwan after not being able to make it as a rock star. There, he works as a postman, and one day he gets a package from Japan addressed to a place that no longer exists. ( Read more... )
Fun and frothy.梅蘭芳/Forever Enthralled
- This is Chen Kaige's (of Farewell, My Concubine
fame) latest film, about the Peking opera star Mei Lanfang, one of the most famous dan
in opera. Mei lived through the fall of the Qing Dynasty, the establishment of the Republic of China, the Japanese invasion, and the Communist Revolution, although the film stops when WWII ends. My favorite parts of the film were the earlier bits, since I am a total sucker for costume drama, and the actor playing young Mei is fantastic, as is the guy playing his rival/mentor, 13 Yan. ( Read more... )
Still, a neat movie if you want to know more about Peking opera, with good performances.花吃了那女孩/Candy Rain
- A tiny indie movie with several segments, each concentrating on a young lesbian couple in Taipei. I, uh, half watched this while checking email because otherwise the slice-of-lifeness would have put me to sleep. Not that it was boring! I was just sleep deprived. ( Read more... )
Like the name, this isn't necessarily deep, but it's sweet and lovely.ラブ＊コン/Lovely Complex
- Why did no one tell me Love Com was a movie? (Also, so is Mushishi, though I am trying to see if I can rent the DVD before deciding if I want to buy it.) I have only read one volume of the manga, so I don't know how faithful or not the movie is. But it is so cute! And they managed to find actors with an actual height difference. It also helps that the guy playing Otani is very cute. I cannot actually say if this is a good movie or not, but if you like shoujo manga, I'm pretty sure you will like it. It has all the shoujo manga effects in movie format!
My absolute favorite part of the movie was when Risa goes on about her crush on Otani, which makes everything he does sparkle. He sparkles as he falls asleep in class! He sparkles when he plays basketball! He sparkles when he sneezes! Even his sneezes sparkle! (By this point, I was trying very hard not to fall out of my seat laughing.)( Read more... )
So shoujo manga!
I am also going to watch Red Cliff II, which is coming out the day before I leave. I do not care if almost everyone dislikes Red Cliff I and nothing happens in it and really it's just name-checking the key scenes in Romance of the Three Kingdoms! It has Takeshi Kaneshiro as Zhu Geliang and Tony Leung as Zhou Yu and they bond over military strategies and trying to outsmart each other! And all the awesome Zhu Geliang stories I grew up on are in the second part (borrowing arrows, stealing the east wind, etc.).
Also, even though Lin Chiling gets all the fame for being a supermodel and playing the Love Interest (Xiao Chiao), I want more of Sun Shangxiang
, who reminds me of Eowyn. She paralyzes pigeons and Liu Bei with some sort of qigong thing! She has an army of women attendants! And she secretly has some sort of relationship with Zhu Geliang in my head, as he is the only one (so far) who sees how awesome she is. I must remember to file this away as a possible Yuletide request.
I am also sad that part one of the 20th Century Boys movie seems to have come out in Taiwan, but is not out on DVD yet.
And I am SUPER SAD that the new Miyazaki movie is coming out after I leave! ARGH!