Saturday, May 03, 2008

the forbidden kingdom . and i make short films

a hollywood kind of hong kong kung fu film. which means it plays it so safe to cater to its market that it ends up being total and complete tripe. such a silly star vehicle that nothing else seems to be required but the presence of its casting coup. everything else is, and has to be, formulaic and therefore, mediocre . The plot concerns something about a staff that is to be delivered by the mandatory white boy who drops his jaw at the feats of the martial arts masters, across time and space, through a gate that is not a gate, into the hands of a monkey man, who is trapped in stone by the jade warlord who drank the elixir of eternal life. on the lord of the rings type of journey he meets drunken kung fu master and vengeful beauty and a chinese mysticism spouting monk. not that the story in such a film matters. it generally rests on the personalities of the actors and the fight sequences. both jet li and jackie chan seem bored by the film as it plods sleepwalking through the innumerable fight sequences. if these were any good, it would be all right. but no luck there either. we have seen it all before and in better versions.

mukul got himself a copy of ‘and i make short films’ a films division short from the 1960’s. experimental playful and ironic, a film about making films. state funded and maybe, which is why, better.

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