The Fruit Hunters (2012)
Written by Yung Chang and Mark Slutsky – based on the book by Adam Gollner
Directed by Yung Chang
After a highly successful Toronto debut screening as part of last week’s Toronto Reel Asian Film Festival Richmond Hill program, Yung Chang’s The Fruit Hunters starts an exclusive engagement this weekend at the Hot Docs Bloor Cinema. The film about people obsessed with seeking out and growing exotic fruits from around the world spans the globe in search of these hidden treats and director Chang introduces us to people of all nationalities. From the South American trying to save the banana business from extinction to the Hollywood celebrity trying to launch a community orchard in the Hollywood Hills, we are invited into all of these stories through Chang’s lens.
The Fruit Hunters is indeed a globetrotting tour of places with the (more…)
Starring Peter Ho, Tony Leung Ka-fai, Jia Song, Mickey Ho, Ringo Yu and Wilson Chu
Written by David Wu, Li Xiao-Min
Directed by David Wu
Making a welcome return to Chinese action filmmaking after a long absence working in North American television, frequent John Woo collaborator David Wu brings us Cold Steel. After a very successful showing at Fantasia in Montreal this year, the war-time epic has finally made its Toronto debut thanks to Reel Asian and co-presenter Toronto After Dark. So how does Mr Wu’s Cold Steel stack up to the classic films of Woo’s that he worked on?
In 1938, during the second Sino-Japanese War, Mu Lianfeng (Ho), (more…)
Starring Huang Peijia, Paul Chiang, Lun Ou Yang
Written by Yi-Chien Yang
Directed by Jim Wang, Yi-Chien Yang
Kicking of Saturday’s lineup at the Richmond Hill Centre for the Performing Arts is the award winner from this year’s Taipei Film Festival, Cha Cha for Twins. This coming of age story centers on the tale of twin sisters who, now that they have turned 17, are discovering just how different, and alike, they truly are as they both strive to emerge as individuals apart from each other. But growing pains aren’t called ‘pains’ without reason.
Poni and Mini (Peijia in a dual role) have always done everything together. (more…)
Reel Asian Film Festival 2012
Wolf Children (2012)
Starring the voices of Aoi Miyazaki, Takao Osawa, Haru Kuroki, Momoko Oono, Yukito Nishii and Amon Kabe
Written by Satoko Okudera, Mamoru Hosoda
Directed by Mamoru Hosoda
Considered by many in Japan as the heir apparent to the anime crown currently adorning the master animator Hayao Miyazaki, director Hosoda delivers a fairy tale/fable with a very sophisticated and adult message, Wolf Children. An anime master in his own right, Hosoda shows off classic hand drawn characters on sophisticated backgrounds in a coming of age story with a very worthwhile message at its core. But how will Wolf Children measure up to the classic Miyazaki fare like Princess Mononoke, Ponyo and Spirited Away?
Starring Arnold Reyes, Menggie Cobarrubias, Dido De Le Paz and Ella Guevara
Written and Directed by Ron Morales
One of the grittiest films to play Reel Asian this year is the crime thriller Graceland from the Philippines. Not to be confused with the lavish estate of Elvis in Memphis, Graceland in this case refers to the seedy underground that inhabits and seeps out of every pore of the city of Manila. A place where everything has a price and nothing appears to be as it seems.
Marlon Villar (Reyes) is a pious family man who minds his own business (more…)
November 6-11 Toronto
November 16-17th Richmond Hill, Ontario
Toronto’s largest and oldest all Asian film festival, Reel Asian, will play out on screens across Toronto and Richmond Hill over the next week and a half. One of Toronto’s bigger and most recognizable festivals, the 16th edition of Reel Asian brings us over 60 films, feature length and short form, from over 13 countries. Without delving too extensively into the myriad of options available, we will simply highlight the five most intriguing reasons to attend based on what we have seen on the schedule.