Chameleon Collection 1
Order the first 3 titles from the collection together and save.
Please note: SUMMER TIME MACHINE BLUES is now definitively locked to REGION B
Available Now (Released - 31 August 2022)
Spine 001 - BREAKING NEWS · 大事件
Johnnie To · 2004 · Hong Kong · 90 mins
The premiere of Johnnie To’s Breaking News at Cannes marks the moment when art cinema finally embraced the Hong Kong action genre. Here is a film as intelligent as it is tense as it is well-made. From the breathtaking intricacy of its seven-minute opening take, shot on location in a grungy side street in the New Territories, the complex oppositions that form Hong Kong society are subjected to ruthless scrutiny. The familiar opposition of cops and robbers (led by pop-star Richie Jen) is complicated by a further division between no-nonsense street cops (led by Nick Cheung) and the media-savvy inspector (Kelly Chen).
A stake-out goes wrong and a very public shoot-out leads to an official panic. When the violent, though quietly decent bandits are run to ground in a typically cramped apartment building, it sparks a media circus. Inspector Rebecca Fong (Chen) sees the whole thing as a show, as imagery to be manipulated to her advantage, but the outlaws armed with mobile phones and an internet connection, show that two can play that game. Hong Kong may be a city where media spin is king, but To delves beneath the imagery to the gritty realities that make HK truly unique.
Spine 002 - SUMMER TIME MACHINE BLUES · サマータイムマシン・ブルース
Katsuyuki Motohiro · 2005 · Japan · 108 mins
Time. Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking went on about it forever. But the big questions of time travel remain: who stole Niimi’s shampoo, how might spilling coke on the remote control spell the end of the universe, and perhaps most importantly, how can nerdy guys get to meet girls?
It’s an endlessly hot Japanese summer and the members of the sci-fi club are hanging around waiting out the school vacation. Slowly, small things start not making sense, until a time machine and a dork from the future arrive in their clubhouse, and all of a sudden, the time-space continuum is under threat. Of course, the nature of the threat is never exactly clear, but it will involve a lot of frantic comic complications to put things right.
Director Katsuyuki Motohiro (Bayside Shakedown), is at the top of his game here, constructing a wildly playful and unfailingly inventive film that enjoys cult status among lovers of Japanese youth comedy.
Spine 003 - EXILED · 放‧逐
Johnnie To · 2006 · Hong Kong · 109 mins
Wo (Nick Cheung) unwisely returns to Macau where Boss Fay (Simon Yam) has put a price on his head. His childhood buddy Blaze (Anthony Wong) is given the contract, while another lifelong friend, Tai (Francis Ng) is sworn to defend him. The scene is set for the kind of simmering confrontations that fans of Johnnie To prize so much. As characters loom out of the darkness, the tension is so thick you could pick it up with a pair of chopsticks.
Exiled is undoubtedly the high point of To’s work in the gangster genre. It seizes on elements central to the Hong Kong action film, such as the conflict between loyalty and self-preservation, and the way that male bonding is certainly stronger than death, and maybe even stronger than automatic weapons. It succeeds brilliantly in making these genre elements fresh through Johnnie To’s enormous talent and passion for filmmaking. The film is full of memorable set-pieces where taut confrontation is savoured in the moments before it explodes, and where inventive wide-screen compositions and crisply edited action provide a feast for any cinephile.