4.26.2011

What Women Want (2011): Asia Returns the Favor

While researching Russell Wong for reasons I don't think I need to explain, I came across this little gem:
After an accident, a chauvinistic executive gains the ability to hear what women are really thinking.

~ What Women Want (2011)
Sound familiar? It sure as hell should.  Back in 2000, Mel Gibson starred in a film which featured that really annoying song by Christina Aguilera, and this was the exact story.  Eleven years later (this past February to be specific), China released its own version of the film, complete with better setting, better music and, of course, better-looking people.

To be honest, I haven't seen it, and don't really want to because I can't stand the genre, but I love it anyway.  It's one of those movies which gets five stars from Moi simply on principle.


Then again...I might take a peek.

Layin' down the Lau.
The film stars folks who need no introduction; there was one reason - and one reason only - as to why I wasn't struck down by Andy Lau's virile good looks in House of Flying Daggers: Takeshi Kaneshiro.

I feel that too requires no explanation.

Moving on...the film also stars the legendary Gong Li who, in the eyes of Moi can do no wrong. (She made Memoirs of a Geisha watchable; she talked smack, broke rules, and got it on with Karl Yune).  And last but most certainly not least, What Women Want also features the jaw-dropping, smoking hot man himself, Russell Wong.

You know...it really might not hurt for me to see this film when it becomes available on DVD.

***Update***

Here's an interview with Andy Lau which I've adored for years.  Courtesy of Tide Theory:
Andy Lau Shuns Hollywood

By MIN LEE, Associated Press Writer

The star of the hit Cantonese crime thriller "Infernal Affairs" said he won't settle for two-bit roles or stereotypical characters who only excel in kung fu.

"Do you think they respect Chinese movies?" the 42-year-old actor and singer said in an interview Tuesday with The Associated Press.

Lau said he's been approached with Hollywood scripts but "nothing has moved me yet."

"Infernal Affairs" scored five of Taiwan's Golden Horse Awards, the Chinese-speaking world's equivalent of the Oscars, but Lau noted it had not yet made it to the United States.

Warner Brothers bought rights to remake the film, however. (*retches*)

"Why can't our movies be distributed in America without going through the major studios?" Lau asked.

Other Hong Kong talents who have thrived in Hollywood are typically action stars, including Jackie Chan, Jet Li and Chow Yun-fat.

"I don't think the product I'm working on is inferior to theirs," Lau said.

Asked whether he envisions any changes in Hollywood's attitudes toward Chinese, Lau voiced strong doubts.

"Not in my generation," he said. "Look at how long it took for blacks."


Lau said he turned down a role as a cross-dressing Chinese opera diva in the Hollywood love story "M. Butterfly" because filmmakers wouldn't entertain his suggestion to delete a scene.

"They said, 'You're nobody. Don't bargain with us,'" Lau said.
John Lone eventually played the part of the Beijing transvestite — who becomes the love object of a French diplomat who initially is ignorant of the character's gender.

But the role's controversial nature wasn't the reason he rejected the offer, said Lau, who is known for his sappy ballads and mainstream movies.

Lau said his fans would accept him playing a homosexual character.

He said he had been ready to take a part in Hong Kong director Wong Kar-wai's "Happy Together" — the story of two gay lovers who escape to Argentina — but he opted out because of disagreements over the production timetable.

Asked why he hasn't been bolder with his choices, Lau said, "It's a matter of things falling in place."

Lau also defended the multi-tasking approach of Chinese stars.

Unlike most top entertainers in the West, Lau and his fellow artists juggle acting and singing careers.

"In the Olympics, I respect the decathlon," he said.

Lau, a 24-year veteran, insists the quality of his work hasn't suffered because of the dueling commitments. "I don't think the quality of my product is worse than those of artists who star in fewer movies," said Lau.

Associated Press
In case anyone's wondering what a real man is like, consider this a hint.

16 comments:

  1. Shit, it's worth seeing, girl! Dislike of the genre be damned; sometimes you gotta break some rules.

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  2. Hollywood's already remaking Asian films. Turnabout is fair play. Plus, Mel Gibson did nothing for me.

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  3. I'm tellin' you...I dig this movie simply on principal and I hope to GAWD to see more like these from 'round the world. For right now, I need to see films like these from Asian in particular. I hope their success puts Hollywhite to shame for its sick little racebending trend.

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  4. For those of you who've already read this, I've added a precious addendum. Lau had this bad-ass interview which made me drool for ages. Enjoy!

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  5. "Not in my generation," he said. "Look at how long it took for blacks."

    And look what sort of black films get Hollwood's promotion. *sigh*

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  6. Man oh Man Infernal Affairs... whew.... That prison pull up scene still holds a special place in my heart. I respect Andy Lau like no other. What a man.

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  7. Andy Lau....I have had a crush on that man since seeing Return of the Condor Heroes, 1983 (a classic btw) in my childhood days. Thanks for putting this film on my radar...Gong Li...Russel Wong, my brain exploded.

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  8. LOVE Andy Lau! That is what caught my attention. I will watch anything he is in no matter if I understand the language or not.

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  9. Warner Brothers bought rights to remake the film, however.

    Guys...I just now realized that Warner Bros. - the same people who ruined Airbender, Jade & Tanya in MK9, and who are molesting Akira as we speak - are remaking Infernal Affairs. I don't know why it took me so long to put 2 and 2 together...all I read before was "A Hollywhite company is headed for a train wreck" and didn't pause to take a closer look at which one.

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  10. I have a lot of respect for Andy Lau. He's a terrific actor. Gong Li is one of my favorite actresses. I fist spotted her back in the 90's with "Raise The Red Lantern" and all her amazing films with Zhou Yimou.

    Martin Scorcese did his own version of Infernal Affairs called "The Departed." It can't touch the original, though I respect him as a director.

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  11. @ Ankh - Couple that with the irony of WB celebrating '50 Years of Quality' on TV. Yea, my inner frat boy is still spewing beer and laughing.

    @ Lenoave - So Martin Scorcese did his version of it, and now WB wants to remake the original...which is pretty much what Scorcese already did, and (I think) won an Oscar for? That tears it - the idea Lake in Hollywood is drier than the Mojave.

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  12. Oh God, I better put this screen away before the Hubby sees. Second only to Jet Li is Andy Lau. He owns the man's music, movies, pictures. He's a fanboy and hates to admit it. If he catches wind of this then I'm going to sitting and watching this for a week straight non-stop while the Hubby gushes.

    But I'll probably still sneak and watch it because the preview looks better than that cray-cray Mel Gibson version.

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  13. PS (and Hubby hates it when I do this too): Did you know that Takeshi Kaneshiro and I share a B-day? *bounces*

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  14. I just watched What Women Want on Netflix. The production value was really high, and overall I liked the movie.

    One thing I didn't like was the constant shoving of Russel Wong's English in the audience's face. It makes him look like a One Trick Pony when they do that. They do that in Korea to Daniel Henney, too. Annoying.

    It was a funny and sweet movie, good for date night... especially if you want a little eye candy to get your motor running, iykwim.

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