New DVDs

11 Apr 2003

Made a little DVD run today. We buy pirated DVDs for 7rmb each (less than US$1). I bought pretty much only Chinese and Japanese stuff. The Chinese movies are mostly fluff. The Japanese movies were several of Miyazaki Hayao‘s classic animated films. Two of the Chinese movies I got mostly because the covers made me laugh. Keep in mind that since these movies are pirated — and in many cases released before the real DVD has even been released — the pirating companies have to design their own covers. Usually they just steal images from advertisements, but occasionally you see something original or weird, and you see a lot of bad English. I picked up two DVDs that I’d like to mention, although I haven’t watched them yet.

Flowers of Shanghai

Flowers of Shanghai (海上花).
This one is apparently critically acclaimed. What caught my eye was a line at the top of the cover: PROSTITUTE MOVIE COLLECTION (Chinese: 青楼名妓电影系列). I know there are some movies about prostitution, but there’s a prostitute movie collection?! Kinda funny. The movie is about the late 19th century Shanghai brothel business.

Looking for Mister Perfect

Looking for Mister Perfect (奇逢敌手).
I don’t have high expectations for this movie. I’m thinking it’ll be popular because it’s one of Shu Qi’s new ones. The graphic the pirates used for the cover design is such an obvious ripoff of the The Fast and the Furious design that it’s embarrassing. What was funny was the English description on the back. Here it is, verbatim:

> The bright and red-blooded woman fucks the small of earnes t to work, however lack the confidence to love.Although have to warmly pursue, however dream of to launch the love with white dress man of in a dream.A time an d outside swim consumedly horse insid e,small The white dress man, of the to p in a dream however is the evil-foreb oding dream’s beginning.Advertise co mpany Chen to living, and superficia lly is aMissile that wet businessma n, carry on the back the to howev er make with big Poon to navigat e the electronics spare parts to def end the system bargain.Check the b lack dragon spy of this case the Alex, and mistake small for the party, at a the round pursueThe empress, small c ooper ates with hims, and the Poon fina ly catch.Two people with each other living the cordiality… the…

OK, I know it ends in an ellipsis, but that’s really the whole thing. Amazing, is it not? It left me speechless.

Shu Qi
Shu Qi, as I mentioned above, was probably a big draw for the viewers of Looking for Mister Perfect. She is really popular in China right now. She’s in ads everywhere (red bean soup in a can, shampoo, long underwear… you name it!), and stars in movie after movie. One of her most recent big hits was So Close.

She’s obviously popular for her good looks, but what’s interesting is that she got her start in the soft porn industry. Predictably, a lot of Chinese girls hate her. Meanwhile, guys everywhere go gaga.

I got some comments on Looking for Mister Perfect from a Chinese discussion board. Interestingly, they’re bilingual. Excuse my hasty translation.

> adult (2003-4-10 5:58:01): shu qi is very sexy, I saw her early nude movie, she is good.

> 输棋 (2003-4-4 8:49:07): 真不明白,怎么这么多人喜欢她?不过既然有人会如此捧林青霞,答案也就很明显了,输棋不好看,但还比林青霞好 [I really don’t get it — how can so many people like her? But there are also people that are similarly crazy over Lin Qingxia — the answer is obvious. Shu Qi isn’t good looking, but better than Lin Qingxia.]

> agree (2003-4-3 10:44:03): yes, I share the same view with su qi, and I would love to slap those who thinks 舒淇 [Shu Qi] has the looks, 舒淇 [Shu Qi] is as attractive as a toaster.

> su qi (2003-4-3 9:16:33): I do not understand the popularity of shu qi. She plays the exact same role in every one of her movies.

If I had to choose an actress that’s been in some of the more erotic-type movies, I’d go with Christy Chung (钟丽缇). I’ve seen I’ve heard about some some pretty racy flicks of hers, like Jan Dara (晚娘), a twisted tale of a Thai family’s ruin, and Samsara, a story of Tibetan monk’s bout with temptation.

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John Pasden

John is a Shanghai-based linguist and entrepreneur, founder of AllSet Learning.

Comments

  1. Jason Marc Says: August 11, 2004 at 8:33 am

    I really think Shu Qi is an attractive woman, she is gorgeous and beautiful, no wonder she is in every Chinese advert and movie, i mean come on! She has that innocence about her that makes her seem fragile, yet at the same time seems to have complete comtrol over all men!

  2. HOANG NHUAN Says: March 11, 2005 at 2:05 am

    So do I, Mr. Jason Marc, I think Shu Qi is an very attractive woman and she looks like young for a long time. She is very nice and lovely woman!

  3. Scott Chandler Says: March 5, 2007 at 9:38 am

    Of course after reading girls saying Shu Qi is neither petty or cute and she can’t act, all the guys worldwide say “HUH?”

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