Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Love & Loathing and Lula & Ayana + The Blade : NYAFF Day 11 update

Day 11 of the NYAFF started with my master plan of attending 3 screenings including LOVE AND LOATHING & LULU AND AYANA, & Tsui Hark’s THE BLADE and DETECTIVE DEE. My batting average ended up being .666 for the day but fortunately my friend Chocko anchored the blueprint by attending THE BLADE & DETECTIVE DEE. Sandwiched in between the Tsui Hark screenings would be the Star Asia Awards Ceremony to honor Mr. Tsui!

With Love and Loathing & Lulu and Ayana, I was expecting a cute, lighthearted reality check *hehehehe*, tits and ass tale of two porno stars from Japan with a hello kitty personality, but this story would prove to be much deeper, darker, & more mind blowing than that. L&L and L&A is an eye opening, but sad, social commentary on an issue in Japan that is more widespread than we think. In a nutshell without spoiling the film, Lulu is a beautiful, young lady that has been mentally neglected, oppressed, & verbally abused while growing up which would naturally lead to low self esteem & confidence. Pressures from a single parent to succeed in japanese society without their child ever developing their own individuality proves to be a train wreck in disguise. Void of any positive role models, filial support, or confidants to lay a shoulder on for advice, one can easily sway over to the dark side especially if that side is a smooth talking, conniving, hustling son of a pimp that promises fame & fortune in the cough..cough...ACTING business (porn). Lulu totally engrosses herself in an anime character while performing which gives her a personality and voice that she has never known being harbored & sheltered throughout the majority of her life. As strange as this may sound, this provided solace to her soul, giving her a place to go to escape the negativity of her family life. Ayana would be the other more experienced young lady of the business that had already walked the path of no return that Lulu is about to embark on. They both go through the struggles of coming to grips with reality until a few major events would change the ballgame. I definitely recommend giving this movie a look-see. Just a fair warning to potential viewers of L&L, blood splatter, TnA, hi def nipples (via @wanderingasian), and a rollicking bush amongst anime inspired *hehehehe* moans & groans are all on the menu!

The screening of THE BLADE couldn’t have been more different than LOVE AND LOATHING & LULA AND AYANA. However, they both were bound together as by-products of “action” porn in their own sense! It was an honor to watch the rare 35mm print of The Blade at the NYAFF because of how closely guarded the film reels seem to be under the possession of warner brothers’ slimey paws.

It’s been over a decade since we last saw The Blade and the story itself was still as confusing as the 1st viewing. Perhaps the movie had too many entanglements concerning other relationships added to the mix or maybe the english subs were not the greatest. This film was based on the one armed swordsman character made famous by the shaw brothers’ chang cheh but Hark's version would be muscled up on steroids with a more complex story. The main gist of the plot involves ON, the main character who works in a sword factory forging blades, discovering that this barbaric man & his entourage that terrorizes the village is also the same man that killed his father. Soon thereafter, this innocent man will lose his arm to a whole host of indigenous scavengers ravaging his community. Sexual innuendos, revenge, & bandits galore will take stage on this ancient & remote village. Meanwhile, the one armed man takes refuge with rage on his mind, plotting his vengeance which prompts the birth of the unique one armed swordsman techniques which he learns from a book with a stunted blade left by his father. Some real astonishing short blade techniques involved the action of spinning like a tornado with the blade in a 360+ circle which added continuous deadly flow to the spinning wheel of death. Another technique would embrace the stunted sword attached to a rope in order to use the slashing movements in an extended deadly fashion. The rabbid movement of the camera along with the closeups, & multiple angles involving 3 cameras, enhanced the stunning visual image! Tsui Hark who was present after the screening for a brief discussion with Grady Hendrix mentioned that he was one of the three cameramen on the dolly! Tsui Hark also harped that The Blade relied very little on wirework with the fighting and action being filmed old school style with new school filming techniques! The ancient village movie set was also a studio that was owned by Tsui Hark in the new territories area in Hong Kong which was disbanded by the Hong Kong government shortly thereafter. THE BLADE was certainly raw, dark, & vicious! You know this film has got to be the bomb if the director of Battlefield Heroes: Lee Joon-ik, director of City of Violence: Ryoo Seung-wan , & Milocrorze director: Ishibashi Yoshimasa were all in the house for the screening! Go,Go, and Go see The Blade if given the opportunity!

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