Archives For English

Buying physical media has been a chore lately, you gotta keep an eye out so you make sure you don’t miss your delivery because, for some reason, people cannot just leave your package any longer.

Plus, distributors are doing physical media less and less. The whole of the Indian Cinema industry has decided to phase out physical media in favor of going all in on OTT and VOD. Even enormous hits like RRR are left with no physical release, even in the West. Even Disney is letting Sony handle its physical media, which seems like the end of an era. Then there’s the whole thing about editing and disappearing media from libraries.

So these are some of the most recent -and not so recent- films that have been added to the physical library. I wish I had more disposable income because there are a bunch of titles (and upgrades) that had been added to the wishlist.

These on top of some Bluray upgrades like Sion Sono’s Love Exposure, Kalatozov’s The Cranes Are Flying, brand new Criterion’s for Los Otros and Laberinto del Fauno. Some random BR UK release for Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?

Also, this post makes it so that this year is the most I’ve blogged since 2020. I’m coming for you 2019. Four posts in Feb’24 is the most continuous blogging since Aug’18.

Having debuted back in 2022 under the name Song Soowoo (송수우) with the edgy-sounding song Love Me or Hate Me [MV], Song is back under the name NINA (니나) [almost impossible to look up without running into other Ninas] with the music video for Love Like This, directed by Jonah George.

Alt link available at Super Sound Bugs!

Which, if you’ve seen the Bugs thumbnail on YouTube, looks Yu Aoi-inspired. I say Yu Aoi-inspired, because it’s mostly Yuki Tanada’s One Million Yen Girl and heavily references Shunji Iwai’s Hana & Alice for obvious shots. However, it also heavily references Iwai’s 1995 Asian hit Love Letter which has inspired a whole generation of filmmakers [1][2] and idols.

That’s me. People will ask me if I’m watching which and what show, and I would usually say that I really don’t have time to watch much television. However, the past week I’ve been catching up with my “to watch” list and inundated.

I watched one single episode of Prime India’s Jubilee, which I’m looking forward to finishing. And I just binged through Apple’s Pachinko. I’m usually hit or miss with Kogonada (After Yang was excellent), but my only complaint about Pachinko is that I really wish American series would do their just one off series and not make me wait for two or three seasons.

I’ve also just started Nicole Kidman’s Nine Perfect Strangers (after going through Hulu’s Tiny Beautiful Things with Kathryn Hahn). Going though Showtime’s The Good Lord Bird, and have been catching Demon Slayer episodes, as well as rewatching shows like Cowboy Bebop and Orange Days (went through Tiger & Dragon, as well as Quartet a while back). Picking up old school Trigun, and planning to finally go through Emily Blunt’s The English and FINALLY trying to get through McQueen’s Small Axe.

Not even counting that I really wanted to watch that Prime The Underground Railroad series.

I was going down memory lane in regards of learning languages (BBC’s The Big Muzzy Story), and had visions of a Disney game I had when I was very little. I just had a vague memory of an orange tablet-like machine that you used punch-cards with. It was obviously “interactive,” and was used to learn English. With this description, I ended up finding this thread on Reddit, with this one thump-up random link that was reprimanded for just being the link. But it was THE link we were looking for.

The Mickey Mouse Disney “Touch & Discover” by Texas Instruments.

Other than remembering Mickey Mouse English gibberish (I, of course, didn’t speak English as a child), I remember the Jungle Book card and the sound that you got when you pressed the Bagheera Panther and Shere Khan Tiger!

The options that seem available online are everywhere in terms of prices— from $25USD (no shipping) up to £285GBP.

I have vague memories of some of these cards— the Bambi one about forest animals, the Winnie the Pooh about the weather and seasons, the Mickey Mouse Apprentice about number memory, definitely the Mad Hatter one with his laughter. As I said before, the Jungle Book one with the jungle animals, the Snow White music fun one, the Peter Pan directions one, the shadows one, the Pinocchio one about telling the time (in clock needles!), and maybe the character order memory games.

What an amazing memory re-discovery.

Isabella Leong has been on and off since she made her official film comeback back in 2015 with Murmur of the Hearts, which is an amazing film. Se also had small roles or almost cameos on 12 Golden Ducks that same year, and got back together with Pang Ho-Cheung for a small role in Missbehavior in 2019.

From her recent interview on A Date with Luyu (鲁豫有约), you can tell that she enjoyed or had fond memories of her debut film Isabella, which Pang directed almost 20 years ago— which also amazes Leong when she realizes how fast/much time has passed. I was also amazed at how she remembered the tracking of the shot, all the more amusing when both clips were put together for contrast.

In 2020, she appeared on Ann Hui’s Love After Love, which was available to watch on MUBI in some territories, and might be available on places like Netflix or Prime, depending on your territory. Now, she’s part of the most recent Dante Lam HK film starring William Chan and Nick Cheung, titled Bursting Point (爆裂點) [Trailer], which I’ve mostly heard positive things about.

Since her teenaged (!!!) sons already give her enough time to move about life, she’s been a lot more active at events and, if you follow her on Instagram, photoshoots. Which finally gets me the reason I was writing this post- she’s the first cover of 2024 for the Condé Nast Traveler China edition, which is a luxury travel magazine based in New York.

I checked their website to see who was the photographer of the shoot, but it looks like they haven’t updated that since their May 2023 issue was published (relatable). Editorial director Shawn Ong only mentions their collaboration with Eastern & Oriental Express Southeast Asia in prep for the launch of their luxury train in two different seasonal routes. The train interiors look (and photograph) amazing. They’re elegant, colorful and textured without looking overwhelming [1][2][3].

However, this is not a travel blog. I took these bad screencaps of some of my favorite shots.

Director Ong’s post features many more pictures, in case anyone’s interested. My favorite is this out of focus one. lol

The original latino dub of my Operación Dragón de Bruce Lee memories. After years searching, several copies acquired (The first thing I did when I bought my Special Edition DVD was check the dub). I even had to go through several copies of Spain’s Spanish, only to find out that the Latino version had a do-over, and that the original Latino dub of Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon was probably lost media.

I even wrote to OG Hector Lee, who was the original Bruce Lee voice in the film.

It has not been lost. These are my memories. I will cherish them.

Happy sort of belated Christmas, everyone!

I’m bummed! I was expecting to spend a quiet Xmas day with my mother, as we had agreed to catch a viewing of Celtic Woman’s A Christmas Celebration, which I happened to own a DVD of. Everything was going smoothly, we were already finishing Green the Whole Year Round when the DVD stopped playing. After checking again on the same player, through the track selection page, and testing a different player. I determined it was a disc issue.

It’s the dreaded disc rot.

I ended up testing my other two Celtic Woman DVDs. When they both had similar issues, the Celtic Woman 2005 release gets stuck at Orinoco Flow and A New Journey gets stuck at Panis Angelicus, I got worried similar DVD releases (that might be even slightly older than these) stored in the same place might have similar issues. However, it doesn’t seem to be a storage issue, as it’s a Manhattan (Now Capitol Music Group) release issue. I don’t even know if I’m allowed to post this on Amazon to try and find someone that might have similar issues, so I decided to post here just in case someone might be searching for this specific issue.

At the moment, both Celtic Woman and A New Journey seem to still be available on Amazon through sellers (wonder if they have similar disc rot issues), and A Christmas Celebration offers copies of upwards $30 from other sellers not the same ‘url product’ where it was originally purchased. A New Journey remains the only release errrr “easier” to back up in case of physical loss.

The fact that other Arista and Sony releases that are slightly older and stored in the same condition as these show no signs of rot tells me that smaller no-label releases are the most in danger of decay and most in danger of becoming lost media.

If you have a good copy of the 2005 Celtic Woman concert or A Christmas Celebration to share, please, let me know through a comment or drop me a line.

So I did this.

Na hosh chale
Na junoon chale
Dil par kiska qanoon chale

Tu jaan meri
Meri jaan hai tu
Chal jaise ragon mein khoon chale

Tu kya hai
Kya ehsas hai tu
Ehsas ka koi wajood nahi

Main kaise tujhe chhu leta hu
Jab samne tu maujuud nahi

Ae jaan meri
Meri jaan hai tu
Chal jaise ragon mein khoon chale

Palko ki chhaon dhundta hu
Main teri nazar ki dhoop tale
Uss pyaase ka kya hoga bataa
Jo sabnam ke paataal pai palin

Ae jaan meri
Meri jaan hai tu
Chal jaise ragon mein khoon chale

Full version of the audio is available here.

Vishal’s version (labeled as “Film Version”) is slightly different after the first chorus, so might share in separate post.

Translations to English would be appreciated.

Continue Reading…

… is Amy.

I asked the collective conscious who the biggest Yu Aoi fan was, and it pulled this up.

I’ll take it.

Amy is the biggest Yu Aoi fan.

Oh, wow. Look at this ridiculously good-looking photo of Dita Von Teese. What a face. What a shot. Bless Beau Nelson for this shot.

credits to Dita Von Teese’s FB, who -by the way- won’t let me access her Linktree because it says it goes against community standards. Facebook has become insane. It was bad before, now it’s worse. It’s almost nearly unusable now.