MOSTLY FILM: On The Outside, Hacking In
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MOSTLY FILM: Terracottadammerung

Sam Voutas and co-star In these matters, I take my lead from Chris Sims. He started out as an amateur comics journo with his own site, Chris's Invincible Super-Blog. At some point down the line, he became a professional comics journo with Comics Alliance, but couldn't bring himself to abandon the fanbase he'd built up on his own blog over the years. So, he still posted when he could on The ISB, but at the same time he used it to announce his frequent contributions to Comics Alliance: not just with a straightforward link, but also with additional commentary and the occasional bit of material from the cutting-room floor.

So yeah, what I'm doing with these Mostly Film articles - such as today's piece on the Terracotta Far East Film Festival - is a similar sort of thing. Except Sims gets paid for at least one of his writing gigs. And he's contributed to a book - Write More Good - that you can buy in proper shops, not just as print-on-demand. But apart from all that, similar, right?

Anyhoo: Terracotta. We were there in 2009. We wanted to be there in 2010, but we were in Japan at the time. So I was very keen to do the 2011 Festival, and the chance to create a big chunky article for Mostly Film out of it was appealing. As you can see from the article itself, though, things didn't go exactly to plan at the start. (This was also my excuse for the lateness of this month's Simian Substitute Site, as well as its focus on Austin, Texas. There's not much I can tell you about my few days in Austin, except that the Sichuan Garden is indeed a rather fine restaurant, though I'd have to quibble at that "top 100 in the US" tagline: it's just a strip mall Chinese diner, but with a great kitchen. Definitely worth a visit if you like your Chinese food spicy, as The BBG does.)

I'm quite pleased with how quickly this review came together - I was taking notes on my phone at the end of each day, and was able to deliver a first draft of the piece by 11am the day after the festival finished. A few bits and pieces have come to light since then, and rather than confuse the Mostly Film editing process with them, I've decided to share them with you lot. Think of them as DVD-style Special Features, or maybe Bonus Beats if 80s dance records are a better cultural reference point...

  • There was an audience vote after every film: I mention it in passing in the context of Petty Romance (which was popular) and Child's Eye (which wasn't). The runaway winner of the audience award, though, was Sam Voutas' Red Light Revolution, which gives me an excuse to use the picture at the top of this page.
  • A couple of official movie sites I discovered after the article was submitted: Petty Romance and Karate Girl. No English language content on either of them, so just click around and see what you can find.
  • Thanks to the magic of YouTube, we can now all enjoy the karaoke stylings of Tak Sakaguchi at the Terracotta Festival party.
  • Contrary to what they suggest in Choy Lee Fut, there is no place called Thames Town in the United Kingdom. There is one just outside Shanghai, though, which looks like where those scenes were filmed.

Everything else you need to know is in Terracottadammerung, published on Mostly Film today. I shouldn't be hitting you with another one of these for at least three weeks now, promise.

Comments

TheBBG

Perfectly happy with the outcome of the audience award vote, although in the end Milocrorze just pipped it in my vote. Deliberate quirk can go one way or the other with me, but in this case it just took me along with it. I keep finding myself trying to say "Ovreneli Vreneligare" - which is even harder to say for Japanese pronunciation, although there's a kind of poetry to it if you try it enough times.

Also up there with Red Light Revolution for me just behind Milocrorze was Petty Romance. So it seems that the lighter and funnier films did it best for me this year.

As we only saw 11 films, I could probably produce a complete listing in order - but I won't go that far.


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