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Friday, March 25, 2005

Short Takes: March 25, 2005


Bridget Jones: The Age of Reason

Director: Beeban Kidron
Language: English
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

Bridget (Renee Zellweger), the fearless crusader for single women everywhere, is back, if a bit more upholstered than we remember. But a little bulge is never the issue with Bridget, since men seem to love her for it. Certainly that's the case with ex-flame Daniel (Hugh Grant), who once compared her backside to a bicycle park. In this sequel, he schemes to get Bridget back, though his archrival and Bridget's current boyfriend Mark Darcy (Colin Firth) is there to make sure he doesn't. Bridget also gets to go to Thailand and is falsely arrested for smuggling but emerges as the triumphant "plumpette" whom everyone loves. Ditch those diet pills, ladies. (Kaori Shoji)


Bungee Jumping of Their Own

Director: Dae Seung Kim
Language: Korean
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

On a rainy day in 1983, a college boy shares an umbrella with a girl at a bus stop. They fall in love and have blissful times together until the boy is drafted into the army. On the day he must leave, the girl fails to show up to say farewell and they never meet again. Director Kim makes his debut in this romantic tale of fate and reincarnation, which takes a surprising turn later when the boy goes on to grows up to be a teacher at a boy's high school. The girl is played by actress Lee Eun Ju, who committed suicide last month at age 24.


Control

Director: Tim Hunter
Language: English
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

A violent sociopath Lee Ray (Ray Liotta) is sentenced to death for committing brutal murders. Several hours after his supposed execution however, he is awakened by men in suits. He is offered a new life by Dr. Miles Copeland (Willem Dafoe), in exchange for becoming the subject of an experimental medical program aimed at curbing violent tendencies.


Suite Habana

Director: Fernando Perez
Language: Spanish
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

This documentary follows a day in the lives of 12 citizens -- from a 10-year-old girl to a 97-year-old woman -- living in present-day Havana. As the title indicates, the film is musical in nature. With almost no dialogue, the film captures the rhythm of the city and of life itself. The people featured include an old woman selling peanuts on the streets; a young day-laborer who moonlights as a ballet dancer; and a hospital worker who becomes a drag queen at night.


Traces of Dragon

Director: Mabel Cheung
Language: Mandarin
Currently showing
[See Japan Times movie listings]

A documentary that explores Jackie Chan's past, this film is a must-see for fans of the Hong Kong-born superstar. In 1999, with his wife's health condition deteriorating, Jackie's immigrant father decided to reveal the family story, including his real name, to Jackie. During a turbulent chapter in Chinese history, both his father and his mother abandoned their two children from their previous marriages and left the country in order to survive.



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