October 4, 2012 |
The original "Taken" may have earned an impressive $224 million-plus in worldwide box office receipts, but it apparently went unseen in one remote corner of Albania. That would be the home base of a group of men who, not knowing any better, feel compelled to menace Bryan Mills and his family one more time in "Taken 2. " Talk about slow learners. Led by taciturn Murad (grizzled veteran Rade Sherbedgia), these men are the blood relatives of the folks master of mayhem Bryan killed back in the day while rescuing his daughter Kim from the clutches of nefarious white slavers in Paris.
August 23, 2012 |
At any other time, the storyline of a film like "R2B: Return to Base" - a reckless young fighter pilot (Korean superstar Rain) is taken down a few pegs by a more experienced and disciplined rival (Yu Jun-sang) and learns the value of teamwork - would likely earn references to "Top Gun. " With the film by chance seeing release so closely after the recent death of "Top Gun" director Tony Scott, one almost feels sorry for "R2B" director Kim Dong-won for how inescapable the comparisons will be. They are not unfounded, of course, as Kim's film looks to get premium mileage from the thrill of a slo-mo formation walk across a tarmac or the whooshing rush of the horizon line slipping by the cockpit.
January 10, 2014 |
In the 19th century, the British had a phrase to describe their effort to keep Russia from extending its imperial influence through Central Asia and into the crown jewel of the British empire, India. It was called the Great Game, with both sides spying, gathering intelligence and manipulating local leaders and populations to their advantage. Rudyard Kipling used the term in his classic 1901 novel "Kim. " In his new book, "America's Great Game: The CIA's Secret Arabists and the Shaping of the Modern Middle East," Cal State Long Beach history professor Hugh Wilford explains how the same phrase, and many of the same risky tactics, came to describe the post-World War II effort by U.S. operatives to shape the modern Middle East.
January 27, 2010 |
For years, Kim Young Soon said, she struggled with a cruel uncertainty: She didn't know the crime that landed her in Yodok prison, the notorious penal colony in secretive North Korea. One day in 1970,North Korean secret police agents came for Kim and her family: her parents, husband, three sons and daughter. They were taken to the gulag whose mere name stirs terror among many North Koreans. Life under the regime took its toll on Kim's family. Her parents died of hunger at Yodok, she said.
August 4, 2011 |
Four decades ago, fisherman Kim Seong-do came to this tiny outcropping known as the lonely island in search of solitude and a good catch. He moved into a cave here in 1971, scratching out a desolate existence on what South Korea calls Dokdo, whose two treeless islets rise from the water like shark's teeth, battered by fierce winter storms. Scaling its seaside cliffs, Kim found a freshwater spring reachable only by a rope strung up a 250-foot-high rock face. At night, his cave came alive with strange creatures.
October 5, 1997 |
A head-banging bike messenger in a prolonged punk adolescence, romantically involved with a postoperative transsexual. An ex-British Navy man with a homicidal blood-sugar disorder, engaged in an ill-fated affair with a man-eating matron. A shellshocked World War I vet who hears birds speaking Greek. Such is the autumn itinerary of Rupert Graves, the young English actor best known here for playing upper-crusty Brits, usually in E.M.
January 15, 2012 |
On his first day of freedom, North Korean defector Kim Yong-chul sat crossed-legged on the floor of a small apartment without a stick of furniture. He ate fried chicken and pork belly, washed down with celebratory shots of soju from a paper cup, toasting the stranger he says saved his life. Krys Lee is no stranger now. The Korean American writer is more like a fussy parent, worrying that the fortysomething refugee was drinking too much and might fall prey to other addictions in South Korea's culture of plenty.
December 20, 2012 |
The South Korean import "Whatcha Wearin'?" is as sweet and silly and, at times, raunchy as any Hollywood-hatched romantic comedy. Still, even if it's not all that distinguishable from its stateside brethren, the film manages enough sparkly charm and warm comedy to offer a few hours of featherweight fun. The meet-cute here between the recently dumped Hyun-Seung (Ji Sung) and the long-partnered Yun-jung (Kim Ah-joong) involves an accidental phone sex session that's contrived, but also amusing and sexy.
September 12, 1997 |
Even in this sexually brazen age, romantic comedies involving transsexuals are not the usual thing. Filmmakers, not surprisingly, aren't rushing to create genial romps about people who've turned to surgery to change their sex because, explains a dictionary, they have "the physical characteristics of one sex but a strong and persistent desire to belong to the other." Which is why the British "Different for Girls" is different for sure.
September 14, 1985 |
When Jang Kim missed a point-after-touchdown kick in the second quarter, no one thought too much about it. It turned out to be very crucial. The Chaminade kicker's miscue enabled Notre Dame to come away with a 14-13 victory Friday night at Notre Dame in the season opener for both teams. With Chaminade trailing, 7-0, Eagles' wide receiver Randy Schieber caught a three-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Pablo Suarez with 4:40 left in the first half.