Winners, Losers, and Survivors: A Crime Blog [Police Story]


It’s finally time for the finale of Asian Crime Action Month. Today I will examine the master at work; the great martial arts action king, Jackie Chan, who starred and directed this film back in 1985. Chan is a prolific actor who’s been doing martial arts movies since the 70s, and continues making them even now. He also does his own stunts and it’s worth noting that most people would have died attempting ma ny of the stunts he has pulled. Today I will write about his masterpiece, Police Story. Continue reading

Sketchy Pencil Point: Marilyn Monroe and Her Thick Red Lips

P1000182With all those assignments and commissioned illustrations from the school newspaper, I decided that I should take a break from perfectionism and conformity to external requirements. Racking my brains for a sense of desire and something I wanted to see on the empty sheet in front of me, I felt an urge to draw some nice lips with some heavy red lipstick coating them, thick and glistening. Don’t ask me why that’s the case or how this sudden urge creeped into that slot in my brain folder labelled, “possible-junk-for-drawing.” That’s just the way it worked.

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News Hungry: Harvard Student Blames His Misfortunes on an Illusional Experiment


You have to be sure before you destroy what you already know and substitute it with something new.”                                                                                                                                               -Helena Matute

Back in the 1970s, a Harvard student approached his psychology professor and asked for some unusual help. He explained how he heard his wife say what he was thinking before he said it and then she divorced him. He also talked about layoffs with his coworkers and coincidentally he was laid off two days later. These misfortunes led him to believe that he was in some kind of scientific experiment so he asked his professor to test his hypothesis. Continue reading

Monovlogs: Hick Movie Review


Today, Monovlogs will be talking about an infamous movie: Hick. Starring Chloe Grace Moretz and Eddie Redmayne (two of my most beloved actors) and directed by Derick Martini, Hick received one star on Rotten Tomatoes. Hick is a term used to describe a hillbilly, or a southerner. The plot is about a young girl, Luli, who decides to run away to Vegas. However, things come up and she experiences occurrences a little closer to reality than what she had imagined. Continue reading

Winners, Losers, and Survivors: A Crime Blog [The City of Violence]

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If, after watching The Chaser, you felt like killing yourself, this film should lift your spirits. Instead of looking at Asian crime action films of a darker subject matter, I’ll look at one that is just plain fun, bright, and fast paced, which tends to obscure its very heavy subject matter. Seung-wan Ryoo’s The City of Violence (2006) is a light-hearted gangster film, about former friends fighting to the death over the fate of their hometown. Continue reading

Cover Story: The Moon Song

The sky was an ugly shade of grey. There was a woman screaming in the distance somewhere, like someone had died or like she was dying or something inconvenient like that. The buildings had been burning for hours, and the soft blue lights from the wispy clouds continued to move gently over people panicking in the streets, calming their writhing motions and quickly dissipating the atoms of their flesh. The black-clothed, stoic figures continued to move down the streets of the falling city in lines, their metal guns in hand. Continue reading



The Sword of Doom is a brutal 1966 samurai film made by Kihachi Okamoto. It’s sanguine, dark, and brilliantly shot by Hiroshi Murai. It’s not a terribly high brow movie and definitely not a sterling example of jidaigeki (period pieces focusing around samurai) but it contains brilliant moments of “real grunt-and-groan sword-swinging” (as the 1967 New York time review says.) This same article referred to the Tarrantino-esque climax at the end of the film as being the most “chop-choppingest climax, ever.” And this scene is without a doubt really good: paper screens sliced through into tatters, sprays of bitumen-black blood dappling tatami mats, kimonos ripping, keen blades whistling through the air. The voyage however, leading up to this particular scene is slightly ill-plotted (mostly because it was planned to be many movies based on a episodic novel), but overall immensely entertaining. Continue reading