Civilization Invades Japan
survey of 3500 years of Turkish civilization is making
its rounds through Japanese art museums this fall/winter
season. Displaying antiquities from the major civilizations
and empires of Turkey, the Ottoman, Byzantine, and Hittite
empires from Turkey's past are each represented in this
relief of a hunting scene
Courtesy Japan times
the empires displayed, the Hittite aspect of the exhibition
yields the deepest look at one of history's most unknown
civilizations. Existing primarily between 1900 and 1200
B.C., the Hittite empire was largely a mystery to historians
up until the early 20th century, whereby pictographs
discovered earlier in Turkey and Egypt led to the discovery
of the Hittite empire. The antiquities represented in
this collection offer a rare look into this lost and
Byzantine depiction of the Archangel Gabriel
Courtesy Japan times
Byzantine and Ottoman empires, though well known, fill
out the rest of the exhibition. Featuring a number of
Christian artifacts from the Byzantine period, and secular
arts from the Ottoman Empire.
The show, "Three Great Civilizations in Turkey"
will run till September 28th at the Tokyo Metropolitan
show will then travel to the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum,
from October 12th to December 7th and the Osaka Museum
of History from December 20th through February 16th,
of The Japan Times, September 3, 2003
Away": your typical aussie battler film. Courtesy
of The Age
Age is reporting in its September 8th issue on the recent
decline in Australian-produced filmmaking. In particular,
the relative lack of originality in Australian cinema
and the impact this is having on the industry as a whole.
Blaming lack of creativity, the Age reporters clearly
identify certain key themes that have been overplayed
in recent films.
on the theme of the "Aussie battler," the
Age argues that Australian cinema of late has focused
primarily on the Australian underdog, to a point of
creative stagnation. While a staple of Australian comedies,
the Age goes on to report on how the notion of the battler
has even arisen in dramatic works from the country.
not centering on the notion of having an underdog as
problematic (indeed, its rather ubiquitous in all pop-culture
art), the Age attacks the implementation of the underdog
protagonist in overly Australian terms, as "Australians
themselves are portrayed on the screen as naive and
dim survivors of a laconic but cloistered culture that
simply can't deal with change." In addition, The
Age finds problems with how Australian cinema of late
has resorted to a "one-dimensional character when
it brings on its [...] villain."
of The Age, September 8, 2003
Tong Bemoans Death of Literary Prospects in China
author Su Tong made very critical comments about the
success authors from China can expect in their home
country. Citing both piracy in the country and a dwindling
interest in literature in the country, Su Tong's comments
reflect a growing problem for Chinese literature. "Nobody
reads anymore, they are all trying to earn money"
admits Tong, disparaging the declining interest in the
upwardly mobile Chinese population. Indeed, as China's
economy has rapidly grown over the past decades, more
television and other media have taken time away from
reading. This combined with the lax controls over intellectual
property in China has yielded a very poor environment
for the development of the Chinese novelist as a profession.
of Muzi News, August 24, 2003
from Infernal Affairs 3 take the press by storm
in media blitz. Courtesy
an attempt to cash in on last year's wild commercial
and critical success of "Infernal Affairs,"
filmmakers are laying the groundwork for shooting two
prequels. With the second installment of "Infernal
Affairs" opening in October, the publicity machine
has already started in full force for the third movie.
Shot back-to-back this year, the production has been
a whirlwind pace to cash in on the popularity of the
original film. Packed with top-list Asian stars, the
producers are looking at making these "affairs"
a worthwhile franchise for audiences and critics alike.
of China Daily, September 3, 2003
Croft Runs Afoul of the Chinese Government
Jolie at US opening of "Tomb Raider 2: Cradle
of Life" Image courtesy
of yahoo news
has banned "Tomb Raider 2: Cradle of Life"
out of complaints of "negative portrayals of the
country." The only country to ban the movie, Chinese
censors felt that "westerners have made their presentation
of China with malicious intention" according to
many media reports. China felt its reputation had been
damaged by the movie with its depiction of the country
as having a lack of order or real government, and under
the control of secret societies. China's ban, though
only a fraction of the international earnings of the
first Tomb Raider movie, marks a small blow to the international
earnings of the film. "Tomb Raider 2: Cradle of
Life" had been slated to open in fall of this year
of Yahoo News, August 29, 2003
Attempts to Avoid Malaysian Restrictions
Scene from "Homerun"; image Courtesy
censors are currently in the process of screening the
Singaporean film "Homerun" in order to determine
whether or not to remove a certain scene containing
what many believe to have certain political messages.
Singaporeans had previously noted on the subtext during
the film's run in its home country of Singapore. Director
and screenwriter of the film, Jack Neo, voiced dismay
over the manner in which the parodying of Singaporean/Malay
relations had been focused on by some groups, rather
than the greater focus of the movie - the struggle Singapore
had faced building a nation. The scene in question features
an argument about water, subtly referencing similar
arguments between the Malaysian government and Singapore.
"Homerun" has been a local hit in Singapore,
having grossed $1.8 million in Singapore in its first
5 weeks running.
of Channelnewsasia.com, September 4, 2003