2007 HKIFF : Part 2


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The Boss Of It All a.k.a. Direktøren for Det Hele (City Hall) Director : Lars von Trier / Cast : Jens Albinus, Peter Gantzler – Lars von Trier shows he can do top-notch comedy as well as he does depressing art-house films. The owner of an Danish IT firm is on the verge of being acquired by a Icelandic corporation, but he must present his prospective buyer with the company’s president, a man who doesn’t exist. His solution is to hire a self-important actor to fill in for the president! The Boss Of It All mocks the corporate hierarchy of modern tech firms and even makes fun of the process of filmaking and Dogma 95 movement. Recommended.

Bugmaster a.k.a Mushishi (Cultural Centre) Director : Katsuhiro Otomo / Cast : Odagiri Yu Aoi, Makiki Esumi – directed by Katsuhiro Otomo, the creator of the seminal cyber-punk animation Akira, Bugmaster has alot of expectations to live up to. Adapted from a manga, Bugmaster traces the story of a druid type character who helps farmers and villagers fight off supernatural creatures. Despite saving the lives of many, however, he has no memory of his past. I liked Bugmaster although the film unfolds rather slowly, and offers very few gripping action or special effects scenes. The period picture boasts none of the immediate thrills of Akira but is nonetheless a rewarding picture if you can sit through the lengthy 131 minute duration.

The Postmodern Life Of My Aunt a.k.a. (City Hall) Director : Ann Hui / Cast : Siqin Gaowa, Chow Yun-fat, Vicky Zhao – this is perhaps the most entertaining film Ann Hui has made in well over a decade. Siqin Gaowa thoroughly convinces as an old-fashioned and eccentric old woman trying to survive in the metropolitan city Shanghai has become. Chow Yun-fat steals the show as her romantic partner while Vicky Zhao also delivers a captivating turn as her abandoned daughter coming to her rescue. The film offers plenty of A-grade comedy and it has been a very long time since we have seen Chow in these lighter roles. Highly recommended.

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