Today’s New Release: China’s Award-Winning 2007 Documentary- CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (ZUI YU FA)

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“If I’m not busy on the farm, I’m here collecting scrap. Where else would I be? Besides, it’s not like I’m a murderer, running from the law. I’m just a junk collector. Hardly beats begging, but what else is an old guy like me going to do?” ~WANG YUFU, trying to talk the police into giving him his junk cart back, after he claims his sales permit for dealing in scrap was left at home.

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Today’s New Release: China’s Award-Winning 2007 Documentary- CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (ZUI YU FA)

Click to stream!

Click to stream!

        This fascinatingly humorous and surprisingly contemplative doc was an *Official Selection* of the Hong Kong International Film Festival, and won numerous festival accolades like *Best Director* at the 10th One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival (Czech Republic), the coveted *Golden Montgolfiere* at the 2007 Nantes Three Continents Festival, and the *Nuremberg International Human Rights Film Award* at… well, of course, the 2009 Nuremberg International Human Rights Film Festival. Shot close to director Liang Zhao’s hometown (which lies smack-dab at the China/North Korea border), CRIME AND PUNISHMENT follows a few young officers at the local police station as they carry out their law enforcement duties and features cases too insignificant and comically asinine to be reported by local news. Imagine if you will; FOX’s COPS… in Red China! It’s interesting enough that some of these incidents caught on camera that the police are called out on play through like an episode of Comedy Central’s RENO 911. My favorite example: the deranged drunk who calls to report a dead “corpse” named Wang Huan in his home, and when the police arrive, all they find are a pile of positioned clothes shaped like a body. When the pile starts getting cleared, the man exclaims, “Where’d he go? He’s gone!” Yet as awkwardly humorous as this doc starts out… it reveals itself to be a painfully stark inside look at a military police-state drenched in cruelty and injustice. Considering where our own country is these days with numerous cases currently claiming injustice and prejudice in law enforcement, there could be no better documentary to watch than this.

Some of the harshest scenes involve a group of loggers who are stopped at a roadside checkpoint for transporting illegally cut trees from atop a mountain. They are brought to the station, only to be punched, slapped, poked and harassed by the cops. At one point, the cop yells at the cameraman to turn the camera off. When filming resumes, the loggers are having their mug shots taken, and are covered significantly with facial bruises. But nothing prepares the viewer for this: *WARNING*: at the 1:57:48 time mark, they gut a bound and gagged German Shepherd mix, so PLEASE turn away or fast-forward if you’re like 98% of most domestic animal-loving people in any pre-apocalyptic society! CRIME AND PUNISHMENT is truly a tough pill to swallow the last 45 minutes. However, it’s a fair insight into a society that “could be” if democracy and due process is allowed to suffocate and die. Makes you think, doesn’t it?

Directed by Liang Zhao

Featuring the participation of: Wang Yufu, San’r (cast uncredited)

Budget: $100,000

Maid in Hong Kong

If you liked “Maid in Manhattan,” then watch “Wan Chai Baby.”

Tess arrives in Hong Kong as a maid to support her son and family back in the Philippines.

It’s 1997, and as Hong Kong prepares for its handover to China, Tess’ life changes in ways she could not imagine.

‘Transformers 4′ Confirmed to Shoot in China

Michael Bay’s, “Transformers” robots are gearing up for a fourth film. China Movie Channel and Paramount Pictures have arranged for the fourth movie to be filmed in China.

China Movie Channel is run by the Chinese government, and will assist with filming locations, theatrical promotions, and post-production work. The organization will also help out with casting Chinese actors in the film.

The movie will star Mark Wahlberg, and is due out June 2014.

‘Django Unchained’ is Tarantino’s First Movie to Debut in China

The latest Tarantino film is heading overseas. The director is preparing to launch his famed movie in China on April 11. ‘Django Unchained’ has brought in $402 million worldwide thus far.

Sony Pictures made the announcement about the film’s release in the People’s Republic of China late last week. ‘Django’ has earned $80 million more than Tarantino’s ‘Inglourious Basterds.’

It is unknown how long the violent western will be permitted to be shown by the Chinese government, but most films normally receive a one-month engagement.

 

Brad Pitt Joins China’s Sina Weibo With Cryptic Tweet

Brad Pitt has joined Sina Weibo, China’s hybrid version of Twitter and Facebook, with a mysterious first tweet hinting at a trip to the country ultimately causing an internet flurry of chatter and speculation.

His post simply said, “It is the truth. Yup, I’m coming.”

The real surprise here, if you didn’t already know, is that Pitt has allegedly been banned from China, thanks in major part to his role in the 1997 film ‘Seven Years In Tibet’.  Pitt is well known for his political, humanitarian, and philanthropical efforts that have included criticizing the Chinese government’s controversial rule (lightly put) in Tibet.

In 1997, a statement from the powers that be in China wrote that Hollywood could never be forgiven for their film “Seven Years in Tibet”.

I can just imagine the security, pandemonium, and political ramifications of his visit.

 

‘Looper’ Finds a Box Office Loophole

Source: universitytimes.ie

The publicity firm for “Looper” told the world a little lie this weekend. On Sunday, the firm announced that the film was apparently “killing it” in China, taking home close to “$25 million.”

It turned out that the reported “$25 million” was about $20 million off. The film blamed the mishap on an accounting error while converting from yuan to dollars.

While the film was busy taking home between $5-7 million in China, it raked in $20 million back home for its opening weekend.

Trailer: Tarantino and RZA Combine Kung-Fu and Hip-Hop in ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’

‘The Man With The Iron Fists’ is produced by Quentin Tarantino and will be Wu-Tang member RZA’s directorial debut. Over the course of two years RZA and Eli Roth (‘Hostel’) worked on the screenplay together, talking through every aspect of the story, down to the detail of every weapon. The story, set in 19th century China, follows a blacksmith (RZA) who makes elaborate weapons for a small village and is forced to unite with warriors and assassins to protect the village and defeat a traitor who threatens to destroy them all.

It’s got a fantastic cast that includes Russell Crowe, David Bautista, Byron Mann, Jamie Chung, Rick Yune, Pam Grier, Lucy Liu, Cung Le, and of course, RZA.

Check out the Red Band Trailer here and tell us if you’re just as pumped as we are!

Happy Birthday, Jet Li!

Jet Li was born Li Lian Jie on April 26th, 1963, in Beijing, China.

Here’s a sweet Jet Li film montage for you. Sit back and watch him kick some serious…


Jet Li started training at the Beijing Wushu Academy at age 8 (Wushu is China’s national sport and a performance version of martial arts). He won five gold medals in the Chinese championships, his first when he was only 11. In his teenage years, he was already a national coach, and before he was 20 he had starred in his first Chinese film ‘Shao Lin tzu’ (1979), or ‘Shaolin Temple’. The movie influenced the beginning of the 1980s Kung-Fu boom in China. He then relocated to Hong Kong, where he was already the biggest Chinese star of the early 1990s.

Off to Hollywood.

Li’s first appearance in a Hollywood film was ‘Lethal Weapon 4′ (1998). For agreeing to play the part of the villain in LW4, Li was promised his first leading role in ‘Romeo Must Die’ (2000). He has gone on to star in many Hollywood action films, including ‘Kiss of the Dragon’ and ‘Unleashed’. He co-starred in ‘The Forbidden Kingdom’ (2008) with Jackie Chan, ‘The Expendables’ (2010) with Sylvester Stallone, as the title character villain in ‘The Mummy: Tomb Of The Dragon Emperor’ (2008) opposite Brendan Fraser, and many more.

If you like martial art films as much as we do, then you should definitely check out these awesome titles available to stream now on BIGSTAR!

Fist of Fury

Yakuza: Like A Dragon

Zatoichi

100 Years Later and Titanic Steers Past $2 Billion

James Cameron is proud to announce that the 3D version of the film set “Titanic” over the $2 billion mark.

Despite its domestic sinking at the box office, “Titanic 3D” was a big hit overseas. The re-release of the film took home $88.2 million from several international markets – China being responsible for $58 million of this total.

Titanic proved to be “unsinkable” overseas, while it is still struggling to stay afloat in the United States. The centennial of the ship’s sinking did not seem to have an impact on ticket sales domestically.

Cameron will now be competing with himself to top “Avatar,” the only other film to pass the $2 billion point. It’s smooth sailing ahead for James, as the first release of “Titanic” made a cool $1.84 billion in ticket sales. Is it safe to call Cameron, “King of the Worldwide Box Office?”