Sorry for the delay in posting this week. This is an arid time for Region 1 Asian releases, so if you’re aimlessly wandering around the “New Releases” section of your local rental shops and come across 18 Fingers of Death!, beware. Supposedly it’s a “mockumentary” directed by James Lew. I’d never heard of it before, though it’s listed as being made in 2004.
Note this review submitted by David M. Keplinger to Amazon: “I’m glad this movie is in the ‘comedy’ section otherwise I’d not known it was a comedy. I laughed one time. To say this is in anyway as clever or funny as Kung Fu Hustle is like comparing Rosie O’Donnell to Cindy Crawford. I think you get my point.
“I think you could take one of those 18 fingers of death and poke your own eye out. That would be slightly more enjoyable then having to watch this movie.
“I got to see this movie for free yet I somehow feel I should in some way get my money back. It’s the oddest feeling. Kinda goes with the bitter taste left in my mouth after having watched this movie.”
I’m prejudiced against “mockumentaries” anyway, having sat through too many unfunny ones as a film festival screener (death is easy, comedy is hard). So, best to catch up on any discs you have sitting around unwatched. I’m leaning toward watching Johnny To’s multi-award winning Election again, especially with the premiere of the sequel at the recently Hong Kong Film Festival. I admired Election but wasn’t blown away.
And, as an addendum to last week’s post about the Region 1 release of Zhang Yimou’s The Story of Qui Ju, Dave Canfield posted a revew yesterday. His summary: “This is a solid movie that deserves continued attention.” He confirms that the disk is bare bones but feels the DVD includes a good transfer.