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Saturday, June 30, 2018

TwoOhSix Picks - 2018 New York Asian Film Festival

The 2018 New York Asian Film Festival lineup is filled with a wide variety of films touching all genres and coming from all over the world. In honor of this being the festival's 17th year of existence, you will find 17 selections that I consider to be the ones you do not want to miss. Of course, keep in mind, my picks tend to lead towards action, horror, science fiction, and other genre favorites although I do try to include a bit of everything.

Gotta love old school action movies with all the swords, bows and arrows, and high flying kicks you could ever ask for. At least I hope this movie has all of that.

Max Zhang, one of China's current popular action stars, goes blonde and kicks everyone's butts in this movie. I am really hoping for good things from Jonathan Li's directorial debut.

So, this is a Western style movie directed by the guy who has produced Indonesian horror and action movies like 2009's Macabre and 2016's Headshot. Take all my money!

This movie looks amazing! Lots of action, lots of stunt men, and tons of bodies left on the floor. Filipino action star Anne Curtis mows through bad guys like nobody's business and I'm excited to see the three-minute, one take, roof top sequence that is supposed to be the highlight of the movie.

The Empty Hands is a very entertaining drama about forgiveness and reconciliation that has just enough humor and action mixed in for positive effect and should be considered yet another success for Chapman To both as a director and as an actor. (TwoOhSix.com Review)

So, the director for this movie had, at one point in time, been facing the death penalty in real life but ended up serving ten years i prison for kidnapping. Now, he's created a raw and gritty gangster movie that looks pretty freaking intense. This I have to see!

After an alien invasion, two average Joe's are given major cyborg upgrades and end up meeting for an inevitably epic showdown. Sato Shinsuke adapted this story from a best selling manga so it must be good.

For actress Kim Tae-ri, this looks like a much more tame yet no less entertaining movie than her turn in Park Chan-wook's The Handmaiden. The story is based on a popular manga and focuses on Kim's character as she escapes the big city and reunites with her former simpler way of life.

A low budget zombie movie within a low budget zombie comedy has to be one of the best ideas I've seen in a while. I am expecting this to be an extremely over the top good time.

Dante Lam's action spectacle came to Seattle earlier this year and I absolutely loved it. Operation Red Sea is one of the best military action movies I have seen in years. Period. Nothing else to say. Go see it. (TwoOhSix.com Review)

The cast includes but is not limited to Louis Koo, Tony Jaa, Wu Yue, Chris Collins, Gordon Lam, and Stephy Tang. Do I need to say anything else to get you to watch this movie? How about this. Wilson Yip also directed the Ip Man trilogy.

They had me at "Shocking yet cartoonishly fun gore." Throw in a Karaoke obsessed, revenge seeking ghost and I'm all in.

Sort of a Filipino version of Eight Mile. Treb Monteras' debut feature looks like it is filled with tons of emotion and social commentary. Throw in a cast populated by the best Filipino rap stars in the business and this is definitely one to look for.

For her debut feature film, Malene Choi has created a sort of hybrid fictional documentary that is based on her own life experience as well as the experience of people who we see interviewed in the film. Check out my interview with actress Karoline Sofie Lee from the Seattle International Film Festival.

Director Yukisada Isao brings a popular 90's manga to life with what looks to be a dramatic slice of teenage life that doesn't hold anything back.

During the film festival, the director is going to receive the Star Asia Lifetime Achievement Award. In other words, watching this epic action movie that takes place in the 1600's is a no brainer.

Opening Night. World Premier. Director in Attendance. Oh, and the movie is a tribute to Walter Hill's iconic and classic 1970's film, The Warriors. Let's all come out and play!

The New York Asian Film Festival is co-presented by Subway Cinema and the Film Society of Lincoln Center and takes place from June 29 to July 12 at the Film Society’s Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th St), and July 13 to 15 at SVA Theatre (333 West 23rd St). It is curated by executive director Samuel Jamier, deputy director Stephen Cremin, programmers Claire Marty and David Wilentz, and associate programmers Karen Severns and Mori Koichi. (More Information)

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