August 23, 2013 |
Wong Kar Wai is known as an international master of moody romance, making films filled with a yearning melancholy. His "In the Mood for Love" was the only film from this century to make the Top 25 of a recent Sight & Sound poll of the greatest films of all time. So news that he was making a kung fu film tracing the life of Ip Man, who would famously go on to train Bruce Lee, caught many of his fans off-guard. Playing now in Los Angeles, the long-awaited film has already been the biggest commercial hit of Wong's career in China, even with its unlikely combination of a rousing martial arts story and a moving tale of romantic longing.
August 22, 2013 |
"The Grandmaster" is like a meal of all desserts, with maybe the tiniest bit of protein thrown in. You'll feel decadent enjoying it, but everything is so tasty, it would be foolish to object. An exercise in pure cinematic style filled with the most ravishing images, "The Grandmaster" finds director Wong Kar-wai applying his impeccable visual style to the mass-market martial arts genre with potent results. He's found a way to join the romantic languor of his earlier films like "In the Mood for Love" with the fury of Bruce Lee. Working with his alter ego, actor Tony Leung, and an impressive Ziyi Zhang - and leaving the action choreography to the masterful Yuen Woo-ping ("The Matrix," "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon")
July 28, 2013 |
Melissa McCarthy and Sandra Bullock aren't the only ones packing heat. L.A.-based Viver Brasil scorched the Ford Amphitheatre on Saturday with its hybrid moves that mix Bahian Candomblé (white magic) folklorico and modern dance. Founded and directed by husband-and-wife team Luiz Badaró and Linda Yudin, the Afro-Brazilian troupe celebrated its 15 th season with six works in a program dubbed “Intersections/Ajê.” Even Badaró, normally heard (on percussion) and not seen strutting, sashayed alongside guest artist Dona Marivalda, his king to her decked-out queen (huge hoop skirt, crown, velvet cape)
July 19, 2013 |
The Bee Gees are playing on Roy Englebrecht's office radio, but the 67-year-old sports promoter has a saying taped on his wall to assure he's not stuck in days gone by. "Don't judge me by my past. I don't live there anymore. " Southland boxing fans know Englebrecht's name. From 1985 until 2010 he promoted a grass-roots staple of the sport, the "Battle in the Ballroom" club shows at the Irvine Marriott. Future champions Shane Mosley, Genaro Hernandez, Johnny Tapia and Carlos "El Famoso" Hernandez all won there - Englebrecht claiming victories too, by routinely pocketing profits that climbed to about $15,000 per show at the end. But the staying power of the quick-thinking entrepreneur - who still works 80-hour weeks in staging more fight promotions in California than anyone else - is about more than just placing a blood sport in a swanky venue.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 1, 2013
Jim Kelly, who said he was the first African American martial arts expert to star in movies but later left the industry to become a tennis coach, died Saturday. His death at 67 was confirmed by his former wife, Marilyn Dishman. No cause was disclosed. Born May 5, 1946, and raised in Millersburg, Ky., and San Diego, Kelly attended the University of Louisville on a football scholarship but quit to protest the racist treatment of another player, he told The Times in 2010. He took up karate in the mid-1960s and ran a school in Los Angeles.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 17, 2013 |
Officials in Chinatown unveiled a 7-foot bronze statue of Bruce Lee to a crowd of several hundred in the historical Central Plaza on Saturday night. The unveiling caps a five-year effort to bring the statue to Chinatown, said Shannon Lee, Bruce's daughter and the president of the Bruce Lee Foundation. The statue, created by an artist in Guangzhou, China, is the first such statue of her father in the United States, Shannon Lee said. Though the statue will not be permanently installed until business leaders can raise $150,000 to put in seating and a concrete plinth, the timing was right for the unveiling, she said.