After scoring some hefty cash and a shiny Oscar for remaking one of Andrew Lau‘s films, it’s of little surprise to note that Martin Scorsese wants to keep tabs on whatever the Hong Kong filmmaker’s got going on nowadays. Now, over six years after The Departed hit theaters, American and Hong Kong forces will combine for Revenge of the Green Dragons, a crime drama that sounds to be a mingling (in shades) between the places and people of these respective helmers.
Scorsese is executive producing Lau‘s picture, a 1980s- and New York-set tale — based on a 1992 New Yorker piece by Frederic Dannen — which revolves around two brothers who are fresh off the boat from Hong Kong and ready to find people more suitable to their own interests. It’s with this that they become part of “the Green Dragons gang,” among which they gain a big reputation between their comrades and enemies. Like any good gangster story, however, things must go wrong, and a woman has to be crucial to collapse; in this case, “an ill-fated love affair pits one of the brothers against the gang leader,” leading him — maybe the sibling, too — down a path of violent vengeance. Cue a ballet of flying bullets and falling corpses.
That last sentence is, in a far-too-oblique-for-this way, a point of saying this all rings a few mental genre bells — but it’s something I like, and something I think Lau & Scorsese can make reliable entertainment from. If an American remake comes down the line in a few years’ time, so be it.
Here’s a similar, albeit more minor bit: Cineuropa have learned that, before returning full-time with this year’s Only Lovers Left Alive, Jim Jarmusch will have his name on Aaron Brookner‘s documentary Smash the Control Machine. The subject is the latter’s own uncle, Howard Brookner, a filmmaker who died of AIDS complications in 1989; before that, however, he’d forged a directorial career which included Bloodhounds of Broadway, the Madonna-starrer released months after his own death.
The connections point toward why this is happening in the first place: Jarmusch was a sound recordist on Brookner‘s 1983 profile of William S. Burroughs, while Aaron Brookner has a credit on the director’s 2003 anthology picture Coffee & Cigarettes. You could say this newfound alliance makes all kinds of sense.
What impression is gleaned from this description of Green Dragons? Might Jarmusch add anything to Control Machine?
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I’m not sure I’d think much about diving into the work of Les Blank if only given a plot synopsis. His films, including a plethora now available in a stunningly thorough Criterion set, take on the esoteric sides of America, from bluegrass musicians to the wonders of polka to the taste of Creole cooking. These […]
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