Monday, April 19, 2010

I Survived Typhoon Shelter Crab and A Wong Jing Double Feature!

I have wanted to try Typhoon Shelter Crab for some time now and today I had it.

Not only that but it was at an Anthony Bourdain-approved restaurant, Under Bridge Spicy Crab.

Unlike last September when we sought out a location from Anthony Bourdain's Hong Kong episode of Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, this time we stumbled upon the place by accident in the search for good food.

In Hong Kong, that search is not a hard one but the choices are so numerous that you can waste 10 minutes discussing options before dining.

If this place was good enough for Ti Lung, it's good enough for me!

Believe it or not, I did not reach for the Benadryl after ingesting the crab -- you don't eat the garlic and spices, obviously.

Compared to how crabs are done in Maryland, this was much better. Maryland Crabs are overrated and invariably taste more like Old Bay Seasoning than actual crab. And the smell doesn't come off for days.

The smell came off after I wiped up -- that bowl of lemon water on the table helped there.

Those clams were a bit of overkill and we had fried rice as well. Too much food for two people, I think, but that's not the first time that's happened here in Hong Kong.

At 3:00 PM Hong Kong time, 19 April 2010, I was wondering what were the Cantonese words for "What the fuck is going on here!?!"

I say that not about the Langham Place maze of escalators -- more on that later -- but, rather, about Wong Jing's 2010 spectacle Future X-Cops.

As Kozo's crew has not reviewed this film yet, I feel like I should try to summarize it or something before I eviscerate it.

Andy Lau plays a cop in 2080 -- the 1979 Buck Rogers-style opening scene just says "A City, 2080" -- who fights some unnecessarily mecha-villains while wearing a silver jumpsuit alongside Fan Bing-Bing.

It is worth noting that Fan Bing-Bing with feathered hair and rocking a tight silver jumpsuit on a big movie screen is something special and magical.

So, they fight, Fan Bing-Bing, as Andy's wife, gets killed and Andy goes back in time not to prevent her death 10 minutes ago but rather to go back to rescue the guy who invented something that the villains were after in 2080.

None of this makes sense so give me a break.

Somehow he's undercover in the past and Barbie Hsu is there and there's a kid and so on.

It's hard to decide what I liked the most about Future X-Cops: the rip-offs of Terminator 2 or the rip-offs of Robocop?

Maybe the scene where a suicidal woman on a ledge is proposed to by a guy who is serenading her even as the guy is dangling on a rope *and* Andy Lau is performing heroic robot-associated antics?

There's a lot of goofy CGI nonsense that was sort of fun in a so-bad-it's-good-kinda-way.

Beauty on Duty (2010) has a real review here which might read a tiny bit more harsh than my personal review but I am an inveterate Charlene Choi junkie -- case in point.

But, more importantly, you may ask how did I miss the first few minutes of Beauty on Duty if it was in the same theater as Future X-Cops immediately after that film?

Here's how: In Hong Kong, god forbid you have to use the restroom after a film ends as you will be refused and, instead, herded stormtrooper-like to the exit that leads back to the mall.

In the hell of escalators that is Langham Place that means that kenixfan was herded out into an entirely new section of the complex and had to scurry through ramps to get back to the theater.

As House 6 is upstairs this also means that I have to go in and ride more escalators to get to the theater. When I originally entered, I went up to the theater, used the restroom, rode an elevator down to the snack bar, bought my drink, and had to ride another escalator back up -- no elevator for me.

This mall is frankly ridiculous and I've been to Hong Kong enough now to know that I don't like it. I'll stick to Pacific Place, or Times Square, or any other mall that is not unnecessarily a slave of its design.

That said, the theaters and malls here are clean and quite nice on the whole so my complaining may seem petty.

The film: Beauty on Duty seemed to be getting laughs from the almost full theater which contradicts the fact that the film seems to be leaving most theaters here already.

Charlene is a tiny bit more adult in this role -- she actually drinks (!) and kisses a guy on screen -- so there's progress of a sort. The Donnie Yen jokes were funny the first time. And there are a lot of hot local models in bikinis in some scenes.

It's not as horrid as Superfans (2007) but what is?

Not sick of you yet Ah Sa...