Friday, June 30, 2006

A Confession of Pain! Ouch!

The Infernal Affairs’ directors Andrew Lau and Alan Mak, and the scriptwriter Felix Chong, team up again for the new thriller movie Confession Of Pain, and it started the shooting secretly a day before. Confession Of Pain is one of the greatest budget film of Media Asia in 2006, and it is confirmed a principal photography’s regional press conference will be held in Hong Kong on July 10. Tony Leung Chiu-wai and Takeshi Kaneshiro will be the main cast in this film, which attracts so much attention in public from the very beginning. On the other hand, the leading actress in the film is not yet confirmed, and Director Lau admitted the actress will not be Sammi Cheng for sure.

On the first day of the shooting, a rumour was spreading and saying that Tony Leung was not satisfied with his role which seems to be the second leading role in the film, which leads to the discord between him and Director Lau. Lau said he did read this news and found it funny. Lau has been friend of Tony Leung for so many years and this is not their first time to work together. They knew each others well and surely no discord happened between them. As well, he keeps on communicating with the cast since the film was in development stage, and so he guessed the rumour turned up because the press could not get the interview chance with Leung.

Media Asia’s CEO, John Chong, was also surprised by such rumour. Chong said the script had been finalized for sometimes and Leung was not his first time to read the script on the first shooting day. Leung also considered for quite a long time to the role in the film, and it is impossible to change the role during shootings. Chong smiled, “I believe it’s the news for press to entertain the public.”

On the other hand, no actress turned up on the first day of shooting. Director Lau kept it in confidential and he could only tell that Sammi Cheng will not involve in this project.

It is believed that the leading actress will be turned up in the press conference on July 10, and Director Lau said everything will be revealed on that day. He also emphasized that Confession Of Pain is totally irrelevant to Infernal Affairs. Although they are both thrillers, they are totally two different stories. He is so much looking forward to the villain role played by Leung, and all the details will be revealed in the press conference on July 10.

According to Media Asia, one of the investors of the film, Confession Of Pain hopefully will be the biggest scale and budget film amongst all the Hong Kong thrillers, as the total budget of the film has cost for nearly HK$100 millions. The scale of the shooting crews and cast will be also the biggest. The shootings will last for about 2 months in Hong Kong, and hopefully it can be released in Asia region by the end of 2006.

Golden Village Flagship at VivoCity Will Open on 7 October

Market leader Golden Village Multiplex is pleased
to announce the start of a 100 Day countdown beginning today to the opening
of its new Singapore flagship 15-screen, 2,293-seat cinema complex at
HarbourFront. The new flagship 15-plex will be named - GV VivoCity and is
scheduled to open its doors on 7 October 2006. The new cineplex will occupy
a stunning 90,000 sq feet of space, and is expected to entertain over a
million patrons per year.

As part of the 100-day countdown celebration, Golden Village will be handing
out flyers at MRT stations and at its 8 multiplex locations to get everyone
aware and involved. Customers who present this flyer at GV VivoCity during
the opening month of October will receive a surprise!

It has been seven years since Golden Village last opened a new multiplex in
Singapore (GV Grand at Great World City, in January 1999). Village Cinemas
International, the managing partner of Golden Village, takes pride in
continuous innovation in cinema design and management around the world. With
Golden Village's 14 years of experience in Singapore under its belt, GV
VivoCity will incorporate the latest world-class features under one roof:
* The widest indoor cinema screen in Asia (22.4 metres)
* A cluster of three Gold Class Cinemas - the ultimate in luxury movie
viewing with a private lounge and seats comparable to First Class airline
* A Cinema Europa - a first for Singapore - where quality
international movies, such as those usually available only in film
festivals, will be showcased all-year round (this concept is extremely
successful in Village's other territories)
* A wide range of exciting food and beverage items from premium coffee
to tasteful dinners
* State-of-the-art Digital Projection
* An unparalleled selection of all types of movies
* A beautiful indoor reception area for private screenings, premieres,
group functions, and corporate parties

"Think of the huge shake-up that happened in the cinema industry when Golden
Village first arrived in Singapore. Golden Village has continually pushed
boundaries and redefined cinema-going with every multi-screen cinema complex
we've built in Singapore since 1992. We take pride in being true innovators
focused on creating the ultimate customer movie experience. As the Number
One cinema brand in Singapore, we will make GV VivoCity the all-new way to
go the movies in Singapore. We're factoring 14 years of local experience and
customer feedback into the whole design and programming process," said Mr
Kenneth Tan, Managing Director, Golden Village Multiplex Pte Ltd.

Thursday, June 29, 2006


In Twentieth Century Fox’s (TCF) upcoming social satire, THANK YOU FOR SMOKING, the film’s official poster artwork has been rejected for print advertising. TCF was informed by the Singapore Press Holdings copy vetting unit that the poster visual was unacceptable as advertisements deemed promoting smoking, cigarette and tobacco brands are prohibited by law.

The film poster has been approved for in-theatre display however, for print advertisements in the newspapers’ cinema listing pages, the artwork has been modified in line with the authorities’ anti-smoking stand. The revisions include the removal of the cigarette visual from the ad and the inclusion of the text “A SOCIAL SATIRE” below the title treatment.

TCF stresses that THANK YOU FOR SMOKING is by no means an encouragement of the smoking habit, rather, the film is a fiercely satirical look at today’s “culture of spin” based on Christopher Buckley’s acclaimed 1994 novel of the same title.

THANK YOU FOR SMOKING world premiered at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival to critical and audience acclaim. Adapted for the screen and directed by Jason Reitman, the film stars Aaron Eckhart as Nick Naylor, chief spokesman for Big Tobacco, who makes his living defending the rights of smokers and cigarette makers. Nick’s notoriety attracts the attention of both tobacco’s head honcho and an investigative reporter for an influential Washington daily. Nick says he is just doing what it takes to pay the mortgage, but he begins to think about how his work makes him look in the eyes of his young son.

The film also stars Maria Bello, Cameron Bright, Adam Brody, Sam Elliott, Katie Holmes, William H. Macy and Robert Duvall.

THANK YOU FOR SMOKING is rated M18 (Sexual References). The film opens exclusively at Golden Village Plaza, Cathay Orchard Cineleisure and The Cathay on July 6, 2006.

GV savings for Safra members!

Announced by BG Bernard Tan, Vice President of SAFRA, during a free screening of Superman Returns for over 1400 SAFRA members at the Golden Village Great World City, SAFRA members, in this first ever arrangement between an association and cinema chain in Singapore, starting from 1st July 2006, need only pay $8.00 during peak periods instead of the usual $9.50 which is applicable after 5pm from Friday until Sunday, eve of public holidays and public holidays. Mr. Kenneth Tan, Managing Director of Golden Village has long recognized the ever-growing patron of moviegoers in Singapore, and is happy and proud to show appreciation to the NSMen for their dauntless effort and integral contribution towards nation building.

Member can effortlessly purchase their tickets via SAFRA online service or at any GV box office by presenting their membership card.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

A reader's humble review of 4:30

Thanks to our reader, hengcs for contributing this review:

The film is likely to please critics but also mainstream audience. Despite the lack of dialogue, there are numerous light hearted moments and emotionally engaging segments. At the end of the film, audience will feel for the kid, with some after effects still lingering. What brings the film
to another level is its ability to generate equivocal interpretations. Willing audiences are always encouraged to ponder and probe further.

Is everything a reality or is it all but a dream? To touch the audience, the plot is realistically grounded, so that one can identify with the characters and events. Every scenario and every occurrence seems so close to heart and feels so genuine. Certain poignant scenes will definitely
strike a chord in many lonely hearts. Despite its seemingly real setting, the film never fails to drop hints at the possibility of a fantasy or a dream. Could all these be a figment of Xiao Wu’s imagination, either due to solidarity and longing, or the overdoses of cough medicine? For
example, the dates Xiao Wu has written all depict December. The inquisitive mind would be quick to realize that it is school vacation, at least in Singapore! In yet another scene, Xiao Wu could only conceive black brushstrokes of paint when urged to draw “his dream”. He remarks
that he has no dreams. While it could be literally interpreted, it may suggest self denial. He probably has "dreams" all along, of this man that will come into his life, whether it is a fatherly figure, a partner or simply a friend. These brushstrokes resurface at the end of the film,
suggesting that all dreams could have been shattered. Also toward the end of the film, the director employs a common technique in TV/film during scenes of reminiscences -- objects will start vanishing and disappearing from sight. On second thought, these scenes can be explained differently. If one were to look intently, these items have never existed to begin with! That explains why Xiao Wu could only gaze into emptiness and nothingness. With a title such as “4:30”, it would not be surprising to know that audiences have been transported into yet another “dreamland”.

What may really spark controversy and a heated debate is the exact relationship between Xiao Wu and Jung. Apparently, there is a conscientious effort to be "tactful" and “cautious”. Audience would likely interpret the entire relationship to be that of a lonely kid seeking a fatherly figure. After all, Xiao Wu’s mother is constantly overseas, leaving him alone at home. In an essay reading, Xiao Wu has based his description of his father predominantly on this Korean man. The
credibility of it being a mere “father and son” relationship should be in part credited to the convincing performance of the two male protagonists. Throughout the film, they are rather controlled in their performance. While this relationship seems to be at the forefront and narrated explicitly, some audience may be perturbed because the relationship borders precariously on an "identity issue" of a teenage boy growing up, with only a mother and no father to emulate. Again, there are numerous hints to this interpretation. The opening Chinese song that is repeatedly sung is often construed as a love song; the kid is shown to return and
hide in a "closet"; some of the pranks may be construed as either innocent childish pranks or otherwise. In essence, I believe most conservative audience would rather believe that the film depicts a “father and son” relationship, while the more unorthodox audience might take liberty with its ambiguity and subtlety. Beyond these two kinds of relationship, it can also parallel the journey two people of different cultures undergo when trying to understand and feel for each another. Without knowing each other’s language, one can only communicate through visual connections, emotional connections, actions and behaviors.

Belying the simplicity of the plot, there are other messages that the film deals with. Apart from the issues of loneliness, desolation, communication and relationship, it could also be a film about valuing the moment in time. As the kid embraces the clock in his arms, even the audience will
pray that time can be stopped. Every single moment counts. And if we should value the present, we should value life. Not surprising, the film warns of self destruction, be it through drugs, such as the cough medicine, smoking, or suicide.

While there will be an attempt by some to compare the film to Tsai Ming Liang's (which largely dwell on loneliness), I have to qualify that 4:30 may appeal to mainstream audience slightly better, with its numerous comical scenes and slightly better pacing and slightly more dialogues,
albeit not too much. If I were to nitpick on a scene that could be better, it would be the note that is written by the Jung. The director gives away how he feels for Xiao Wu by depicting the Korean words (even if Xiao Wu does not understand). Told from the perspective of the kid, the puzzle is unraveled for those who understand Korean. Instead, I feel that the director should have shown the back of the note (or simply a portion of it) so that both Korean and non Korean audience can continue to wonder what the Korean man has written, and hence, share the perspective and non comprehension of the boy.

Despite this possible enhancement, I still recommend the film. It is one of the few films by Singapore that is artsy (due to multiple interpretations), but also commercially viable (due to its entertaining scenes).

Rating: **** Stars review of 4:30

Friday, June 23, 2006

Royston and his Raymond Weil

In conjunction with the release of Royston Tan’s second feature film, 4:30, the Gala Premiere was held last evening at Shaw House’s Lido Cineplex.

Besides the Gala Premiere, another highlight of the evening is the presentation of an exquisite Raymond Weil Tango Chronograph Timepiece to Royston by Mr Tan Soo Khoon, Managing Director of Crystal Time Singapore, the sole distributor of Raymond Weil in Singapore.

Being an avid supporter of Arts & Culture, Raymond Weil has inducted Royston to their Hall of Fame for his dedication and contribution to the local art scene, by presenting him a the Raymond Weil Tango Chronograph Timepiece, making Royston the first in Singapore to own the exquisite timepiece. Apart from Royston, some of the distinguished and talented celebrities who are in the Raymond Weil’s Hall Of Fame includes: Charlize Theron, Janet Jackson and Il Divo.

Thursday, June 22, 2006


"KING AND THE CLOWN" received 15 nominations for the Korean GRAND BELL AWARDS including Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor (Kam Woo-sung) and Best New Actor (Lee Joon-ki). The 43rd Grand Bell Awards Ceremony will take place on July 21 2006 in Korea.

"KING AND THE CLOWN" is review here

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Royston's Shorts

Finally, a compilation of short films from one of our local directing hotshots. You've heard the name, you might have seen some of the films, but here's a collectible DVD with gems you probably would have missed.

Though of course, with the PG rating, you can forget about having Cut and 15 included in the compilation. Anyway, it should be an interesting addition to your DVD library.

In any case, I'm gonna get, and so should you!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Dragon Tiger Gate goes into Guinness World Records

The largest sand bag was made as a prop for the coming HK action flick, "Dragon Tiger Gate". The massive sand filled bag weighs 141kg, 2.5m tall and 1.8m wide. And yes it goes into the Guinness World Records.

"Dragon Tiger Gate" movie details here

Friday, June 09, 2006

Ratatouille! The Next Pixar Film

The teaser trailer for next Pixar's animated film, Ratatouille is out and if you didn't catch it before "Cars", Check it out here !

Transformer Official Website

DreamWorks Pictures has launched the official Transformer the Movie Website ! The website features a countdown to when the teaser trailer will be revealed. Check it out here

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Garfield A Tail of Two KittiesTrailer

Click on the image for the Quicktime trailer

Friday, June 02, 2006

Viva Cuba at The Cathay!

It's gonna be a month long Cuban affair at The Cathay, and movieXclusive got invited yesterday evening to the official launch of a series of activities, to commemorate the opening of The Cathay's new tenants!

There'll be stage performances at the Level 1 Atrium with salsa dances and Cuban band performances, and various promotions for all shoppers. Of course, there'll also be the first ever Cuban Film Festival at the Picturehouse!

For more details on the promotions and film schedule, log on to

Meanwhile, we bring to you our photo essay from the opening event. Enjoy!

MX NewsBites Archive