Happy Together, 1997, by Wong Kar Wai
Update: Due to ownership quarrels, the film Buenos Aires Zero Degree will not be screened as planned on Thursday. Vienna Café is replacing it with Stephen Daldry´s The Hours. And while that´s an awesome movie, it´s still a sad exchange, since The Hours has probably already been seen by most of us and is very easy to access – while…heaven knows when we´ll get the chance to see that Wong Kar Wai Documentary again…
Fans of Wong Kar Wai – here´s a chance to plunge deeper into the film making of this grand director. On Thursday, Vienna Café will show a documentary about one of Wong Kar Wai´s most famous movies, 1997’s Happy Together,.
Starring Leslie Cheung and Tony Leung Chiu-Wai, Happy Together is a film that “depicts a turbulent romance between two men”:
The English title is inspired by The Turtles’ 1967 song, which is covered by Danny Chung on the film’s soundtrack; the Chinese title (previously used for Michelangelo Antonioni’s Blowup) is an idiomatic expression suggesting “the exposure of something indecent.”
Happy Together received positive reviews from several film festivals, including a win for Best Director at the 1997 Cannes Film Festival.
Thursday´s documentary, Buenos Aires Zero Degree (1999), about the making of Happy Together, includes interviews, on-set footage, cut scenes and footage of crew members revisiting the locations where Happy Together was filmed. The film also shows many scenes that had been cut out of the original releases.
Wong Kar Wai has a long list of films behind him, of which In the Mood for Love, and 2046 are probably the most famous.
Where: Vienna Cafe, Shaoxing Lu, near Shanxi Nan Lu
Starts: Thursday, September 10th at 7.30pm
Check out what other movies are showing in Shanghai this coming week after the jump. Links lead to info about times and venues.
ENGLISH LANGUAGE MOVIES
- Penelope: Grab your nose for this Hollywood rom-com. James McAvoy teams up with Christina Ricci to unveil a modern day fairytale. Penelope is born with a pig’s snout due to a witch’s curse. To break the curse, she must find true love and realize life’s most important life lesson: “to like herself the way she is.” In Mandarin or English depending on the cinema.
- State of Play: Based on a BBC TV series, Kevin MacDonald´s latest fictional thriller stars Russell Crowe as a Washington Globe journalist who begins investigating the death of people close to his former boss, promising congressman Stephen Collins. Trouble ensues. In Mandarin or English depending on the cinema.
- Up: Carl Fredricksen, a 78-year-old, has always dreamed of visiting the South American wilderness. One day, he attaches his house to a super-cluster of hydrogen balloons and sets off his adventure with an 8-year-old boy. Brought to you by the creative team behind Toy Story, Finding Nemo and Cars. In Mandarin or English depending on the cinema.
- G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra: The elite Global Integrated Joint Operating Entity (read: G.I. Joe) takes on Cobra, an evil organization led by a nefarious arms dealer. The film follows the rise of Cobra and the G.I. Joe, so those new to the series will have an easy time following along. In Mandarin or English depending on the cinema.
- Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs: When Sid’s attempt to adopt three dinosaur eggs gets him abducted by their real mother to an underground lost world, his friends attempt to rescue him.
CHINESE LANGUAGE MOVIES
- Eternal Beloved: Yu Feihong is now back in the spotlight with her directorial debut Eternal Beloved. This ghost story revolves around an ancient gingko tree and tells a tragic romantic tale that crosses between the dead and the living.Co-starring in the movie is Yu Feihong herself and actor Duan Yihong.
- Legend of The Tang Empire: As the royal palace of the prosperous Tang Dynasty, Da Ming Gong is a magnificent example of the era’s architecture. This epic historical movie traces the legendary events that are said to have taken place in the grand palace. Take a look at the extravagant lifestyle of the Tang imperial family in this movie directed by Jin Tiemu. Mandarin only
- Invisible Killer (无形杀): A cautionary tale of the Internet’s potential for misuse receives an offbeat framing in “Invisible Killer,” which uses a police-procedural format to involving effect. Strongly etched characters and perfs compensate for the almost total absence of physical action as the central mystery unfolds via flashbacks, making this a contender for some festival sidebar play and cable pickup.
- China Idol Boy (乐火男孩): A sing and dance movie, starring the Super Boys and Girl Tang Xiao. It is the first made-in-China 3D movie shooting by real persons in real location.
- Gasp (气喘吁吁): American entertainer John Savage pairs up with China’s well-liked actor Ge You for one more time. They star as two desperate middle-age entrepreneurs who try to impress each other by puffing up themselves. Expect to see Howie B composing the music and Norwegian Aasulf Wolf Austad rocking the camera. U.S-educated director Zheng Zhong draws the best of both cultures into this comedy drama. In Mandarin with occasional English dialogue.
- Tian An Men (天安门): Prestigious director Ye Daying creates a history drama to celebrate the 60th anniversary of China. As the last film of Ye’s revolutionary trilogy, Tian An Men features Guo Keyu, Xu Xiaoli and Pan Yueming. The film is set during the Tian An Men’s restoration in 1949 for the Founding Ceremony of P.R.C. Mandarin only.
- Empire of Silver (白银帝国): This Shanghai International Film Festival winner features Aaron Kwok, Hao Lei and Zhang Tieling. Directed by Christina Yao, the film is set in the late Qing Dynasty and follows a carefree young man who is the reluctant heir to his father’s banking empire. Mandarin only.
- Metallic Attraction: Kung fu Cyborg (机器侠): China’s latest sci-fi slash kungfu comedy, helmed by Hong Kong director Jeffery Lau, is a local version of Transformers. Wonder what a male Chinese robot (just pretend) will look like in year 2046? Here is your chance. Sent to live with a family in Ningbo, robot K-1 falls in love with local girl Su Mei. Watch the forbidden love unfold.
- Sophie’s Revenge (非常完美): This Rom-com, directed by ambitious U.S.-educated director Jin Yimeng, marks Zhang Ziyi’s debut as a producer. The movie follows Sophie (Zhang Ziyi) and Jeff (Jisub So) as an engaged couple that rides an emotional roller coaster right before the wedding. Mandarin only.
- On His Majesty’s Secret Service (Dai noi muk taam 009): The Emperor appoints 12 secret royal guards in accordance with the Chinese zodiac. Among the best guards are Zero Tiger and Zero Pig. However, only Zero Dog is not interested in learning martial arts but prefers to spend more time on science and technology. One day the chief eunuch, Cao Yan Chui plans to overthrow the Emperor by killing a minister and want to have one of his godsons to marry the Emperor´s daughter. Together Ngor Nam, Zero Dog and Hei Mong decide to stop Yan Chui. Can they save the Emperor´s life and bring Yan Chui to justice?
- One night in supermarket (夜店): A one-thing-leads-to-another comedy of misadventure entirely set in the pic’s title location. It’s the wee hours at Wang Wang Supermarket, where nerdy stockroom boy Li Junwei is on duty with – and only has eyes for – Tang Xiaolian. But the quiet soon lapses into chaos when balding, pop-eyed He Sanshui comes in with two doofus heavies and demands to speak to the mart’s boss lady, Wang Sufen.
- Tracing Shadow (追影): A martial arts adventure set at the end of the Ming Dynasty. The country is in turmoil and the Manchurians are poised to advance upon Beijing. Kung-fu masters, royal guards and local bandits are fighting ruthlessly for a mysterious treasure map hidden inside the Ming palace.
- Overheard (且听枫韵): The film stars Lau Ching-Wan, Louis Koo and Daniel Wu as a trio of police officers conducting surveillance on a listed company.
OTHER LANGUAGE MOVIES
- Haeundae: Located on the southeastern tip of the Korean Peninsula, Haeundae-gu of the city Busan draws one million visitors to its beaches every year. This 2009 South Korean film has been billed as South Korea’s first disaster film, depicting the tsunami catastrophy of 2004. Haeundae is directed by Yoon Je-kyoon and stars Sol Kyung-gu, Ha Ji-won, Park Joong-hoon and Uhm Jung-hwa.
- Nobita to Midori no Kyojin Den, (Nobita and the Green Giant Legend): Nobita finds a fossilized dinosaur egg by accident, and with the help of Doraemon’s tools, they hatched the egg and began raising the dinosaur. Knowing that they can’t keep the dinosaur forever, Nobita was forced to send it back to prehistoric times where a group of hunters from the future threatens to endanger the dinosaurs. Determined to save the dinosaurs from the claws of the hunters, Doraemon and the gang returns to the past and sets out in a prehistoric adventure.