BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Eureka/Masters of Cinema and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here.
Forum rules
Please do not clutter up the threads for MoC titles with information on pre-orders. You can announce the availability of pre-orders in the MoC: Cheapest Prices / Best Places to Buy / Pre-Orders thread. Any posts on pre-orders in any other thread will be deleted.
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
rapta
Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2014 5:04 pm
Location: Hants, UK

BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#1 Post by rapta » Sat Dec 22, 2018 12:25 pm

Coming soon... (2019)

User avatar
andyli
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 4:46 pm

Re: Forthcoming: The Fate of Lee Khan

#2 Post by andyli » Mon Dec 24, 2018 11:19 pm

This is kind of surprising. Since the newly restored Raining in the Mountain is doing the rounds I assume it is the next in line to receive a blu-ray upgrade.

User avatar
The Fanciful Norwegian
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 2:24 pm
Location: Teegeeack

Re: Forthcoming: The Fate of Lee Khan

#3 Post by The Fanciful Norwegian » Tue Dec 25, 2018 3:58 pm

Glad my pessimistic prediction about this one didn't hold up, though in my defense I don't think anyone predicted in 2017 that Eureka (and Janus too!) would soon be drawing on the Fortune Star catalog! Unfortunately I don't know how this augurs for The Valiant Ones—last year I assumed it was with Fortune Star, since it was part of the same two-picture deal with Golden Harvest as Lee Khan, but apparently Hu himself retained ownership of The Valiant Ones and I don't know for sure who has it now. But the Hong Kong Film Archive restored it a few years ago, so it might be Blu-ready providing the rights can be squared away.

User avatar
rapta
Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2014 5:04 pm
Location: Hants, UK

Re: TBD The Fate of Lee Khan

#4 Post by rapta » Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:49 pm


dda1996a
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 6:14 am

Re: TBD The Fate of Lee Khan

#5 Post by dda1996a » Wed Aug 07, 2019 3:55 pm

Reminds me I still haven't seen my Legend of the Mountain Blu for some reason...

User avatar
Grand Wazoo
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2007 2:23 pm

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#6 Post by Grand Wazoo » Thu Aug 08, 2019 12:05 pm

It's going to be weird watching a King Hu restoration without the dipped-in-piss look. Very excited for this.

Orlac
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 4:29 am

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#7 Post by Orlac » Thu Aug 08, 2019 1:07 pm

Legend of the Mountain seemed to avoid the yellowy look...

User avatar
Finch
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:09 pm
Location: Edinburgh, UK

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#8 Post by Finch » Thu Aug 08, 2019 2:14 pm

The Film Movement Blu-Ray is up to $40 on their website so this is a no-brainer. Now we need the people who did the resto on Lee Khan to work on The Valiant Ones and Raining in the Mountain (I wonder who has the rights for Come Drink With Me? still the Weinsteins?).

User avatar
The Fanciful Norwegian
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 2:24 pm
Location: Teegeeack

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#9 Post by The Fanciful Norwegian » Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:16 pm

Raining in the Mountain has already been restored by the Taiwan Film Institute. They worked with Ritrovata on their previous Hu restos, but there's no mention of them in the very detailed booklet the TFI put out on the Raining restoration, and they've spent the last couple of years upgrading and acquiring equipment with the probable goal of doing everything in-house from now on.

As for Come Drink with Me, the Weinsteins' rights expired some time ago. The American Genre Film Archive distributes it theatrically, but Celestial itself has the streaming/VOD rights. I don't know if anyone has physical media rights, but I'd wager not. In fact I don't think any Celestial-owned titles are currently in print on DVD or Blu in the U.S.
Last edited by The Fanciful Norwegian on Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
tenia
Ask Me About My Bassoon
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2009 11:13 am

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#10 Post by tenia » Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:34 pm

Orlac wrote:Legend of the Mountain seemed to avoid the yellowy look...
Oh it's visibly a Ritrovata LUT-handled work, no doubt about that.
However, they have been dialing back progressively how intense their LUTs are. Hopefully, it will very soon be visible on what is hitting the market (though IIRC, some already-available titles are already showing this evolution, but except OUATIC 3, I dont have any title hitting my memory right now).

User avatar
htom
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 1:57 pm

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#11 Post by htom » Tue Aug 13, 2019 9:04 am

The Fanciful Norwegian wrote:
Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:16 pm
As for Come Drink with Me, the Weinsteins' rights expired some time ago. The American Genre Film Archive distributes it theatrically, but Celestial itself has the streaming/VOD rights. I don't know if anyone has physical media rights, but I'd wager not. In fact I don't think any Celestial-owned titles are currently in print on DVD or Blu in the U.S.
I can confirm that Come Drink with Me currently streams on (Amazon) Prime Video in Canada with the Celestial logo at the front, but only with an English dub (unsure about the lineage for that track) as an option.

User avatar
feihong
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 12:20 pm

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#12 Post by feihong » Sat Nov 23, 2019 11:58 pm

The MOC disc looks amazingly sharp, and the image looks substantially more solid than on the Film Movement disc. I always thought of The Fate of Lee Khan was a little flat–looking amongst King Hu's more visually dynamic movies, but seeing the lively film grain, the movie has this new patina to it that looks really crisp and magical, and full of depth. It looks like a whole other movie, and I can see now how the visuals were always meant to be seen.

Also visible is how sweaty everyone is. It must have been exceptionally hot on the set. Is that Golden Harvest studios? People seldom seem to be dripping quite so much in the Shaw pictures.

The Rayns commentary is fine. It's very similar to the commentary on A Touch of Zen, but Rayns does talk a little more about Anger, the short film Hu made as part of the Li Han Hsiang portmanteau film. He talks about it so much it makes me wonder if maybe there are plans to put it out as well.

User avatar
rapta
Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2014 5:04 pm
Location: Hants, UK

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#13 Post by rapta » Mon Nov 25, 2019 7:24 pm

feihong wrote:
Sat Nov 23, 2019 11:58 pm
The Rayns commentary is fine. It's very similar to the commentary on A Touch of Zen, but Rayns does talk a little more about Anger, the short film Hu made as part of the Li Han Hsiang portmanteau film. He talks about it so much it makes me wonder if maybe there are plans to put it out as well.
I assume you mean the film Four Moods? I wondered if MoC might release that myself as it appears TWF restored that a few years ago, and they could've potentially tagged it onto A Touch of Zen or Legend of the Mountain (obviously they didn't). Now they might consider bundling it with The Wheel of Life, another anthology film Hu contributed to over a decade later. That's if they're not prioritising a release of The Valiant Ones or Raining in the Mountain (the latter has been restored by TWF very recently, so could easily appear in 2020).

More good news on the Hu front: 88 Films finally announced they'll be putting out Come Drink with Me in a couple of months! I'm looking forward to owning that one, though I don't expect it will look much better than the master I watched on Netflix a few years ago.

User avatar
feihong
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 12:20 pm

Re: BD 214 The Fate of Lee Khan

#14 Post by feihong » Tue Nov 26, 2019 4:22 am

There's been a very nice blu ray of Come Drink With Me out of Japan. I have that one, and it looks great. If they use the same master for the 88 Films version it will be quite nice indeed. Good grain, good depth of field, a bit better color timing than on the Celestial or Dragon Dynasty dvds.

It would be nice if they just extracted King Hu's sections of Four Moods and Wheel of Life from their feature-length films. I've seen Four Moods in its entirety, albeit without translation, and the other moods are enormously tedious. True, I didn't understand the dialogue, but get this; the first mood has no dialogue at all. But it does have an incessant, repetitive, droning percussive score that never lets up for more than a couple of seconds. The King Hu chapter stands out as by far the most intensely–realized section. Rayns says on the commentary he considers Anger maybe the finest work of Hu's Taiwan–based productions. He hedges a little, because after all, he's comparing it to Dragon Inn and Touch of Zen, but he seems very excited to talk about Anger on the commentary. The presence of Chin Hu as one of the waitresses causes him to flash back to her central performance in Anger, but Rayns also brings up Anger several other times during the commentary. Watching it cropped to 16:9, with no subtitles, it still looks lovely and exciting. Chin Hu seems very lively and interesting in the film. I remember hearing once that Maggie Cheung's belligerent innkeeper in the Tsui Hark remake of Dragon Inn was a character borrowed mostly from Chin Hu's character in Anger. I admit I didn't quite know what was going on in Anger, but I could see how Chin Hu's character could have been the inspiration for Maggie Cheung's character in the later remake. In Anger Chin Hu even looks a little bit like Maggie, and Maggie is clearly borrowing some of Chin Hu's body language for her role in Dragon Inn.

I believe Raining in the Mountain will probably be the next MoC release, and it is my favorite King Hu film, so I have no complaints there. Rayns says in the commentary that The Valiant Ones isn't being restored right now and he implies that it won't be released any time soon. He's not definitive about this, but his voice drops very low and he trails off talking about how because the film isn't owned by one of the major companies it isn't being restored and doesn't look like it'll be available...any...time...soon...and so forth. Kind of ironic that the only Hu was able to gain real control over proves to be the one major piece of his legacy most people can't see. I mean, I've seen the German dvd of the film, but I'm not so sure that counts as actually seeing the movie.

User avatar
swo17
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT

BD 215 Raining in the Mountain

#15 Post by swo17 » Thu Nov 28, 2019 10:48 pm

Image

Set in a remote Buddhist monastery in 16th Century China, Raining in the Mountain deals with a power struggle that ensues when the Abbot of the Three Treasures Temple announces his imminent retirement.

The ageing Abbot invites three outsiders to advise him on the critical choice of appointing his successor: Esquire Wen, a wealthy patron of the monastery, General Wang, commander-in-chief of the local military, and Wu Wai, a respected lay Buddhist master. Within the monastery, several disciples aspiring to the position begin to collude individually with Esquire Wen and General Wang. But these two invited advisers have come with seditious intent, scheming to obtain the priceless scroll housed in the monastery: the scriptural text of “The Mahayana Sutra,” hand-copied by Tripitaka. Meanwhile, convicted criminal Chiu Ming has arrived at the monastery to atone as a monk. He is assigned to safeguard the scroll at the house of scriptures, and encounters thieving rivals White Fox who poses as Esquire Wen’s concubine and General Wang’s fearsome Lieutenant Chang, who originally framed Chiu Ming for the crime he did not commit.

Selected as one of the Best 100 Chinese Motion Pictures by the Hong Kong Film Awards in 2005, The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present King Hu’s Raining in the Mountain on Blu-ray and DVD for the first time in the UK, from a new 2K restoration completed in 2018 by the Taiwan Film Institute.

SPECIAL FEATURES

Limited Edition O-Card [2000 units]
1080p transfer of the film on Blu-ray, from the Taiwan Film Institute’s 2K restoration
Progressive encode on DVD
Optional English subtitles
Original Mandarin audio, fully restored and uncompressed in its original monaural presentation
Brand new and exclusive feature-length audio commentary by critic and Asian cinema expert Tony Rayns
Beyond Description – A brand new video essay by David Cairns
Trailer
A collector’s booklet featuring new essays by Chinese-language film expert and author Stephen Teo; and Asian cinema expert David West, news editor at NEO magazine

User avatar
feihong
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 12:20 pm

Re: BD 215 Raining in the Mountain

#16 Post by feihong » Fri Nov 29, 2019 1:16 am

A feature–length commentary this time, will be pretty sweet. That's a nice–looking box, too.

User avatar
Michael Kerpan
Spelling Bee Champeen
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 1:20 pm
Location: New England
Contact:

Re: BD 215 Raining in the Mountain

#17 Post by Michael Kerpan » Fri Nov 29, 2019 1:29 am

When (more or less) will this come out?

User avatar
swo17
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 10:25 am
Location: SLC, UT

Re: BD 215 Raining in the Mountain

#18 Post by swo17 » Fri Nov 29, 2019 1:54 am

Feb 24

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#19 Post by domino harvey » Sun Dec 08, 2019 1:35 am

It's funny to watch the video essay on MOC's the Fate of Lee Khan release and see the piss restos stacked up against clips from this in real time. As for the film, I enjoyed it and found it entertaining, as I have all the other King Hu films I've seen, but I'm still not convinced there's much more to these works than being effective action movies. But a lot of movies with those aims can't even be that, so no shame there. I do think the back cover's claim that the film "anticipated" hang-out movies in 1973 is going to surprise fans of the most famous example, 1959's Rio Bravo!

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#20 Post by domino harvey » Wed Dec 11, 2019 2:45 pm

The Fanciful Norwegian wrote:
Tue Dec 25, 2018 3:58 pm
Glad my pessimistic prediction about this one didn't hold up, though in my defense I don't think anyone predicted in 2017 that Eureka (and Janus too!) would soon be drawing on the Fortune Star catalog! Unfortunately I don't know how this augurs for The Valiant Ones—last year I assumed it was with Fortune Star, since it was part of the same two-picture deal with Golden Harvest as Lee Khan, but apparently Hu himself retained ownership of The Valiant Ones and I don't know for sure who has it now. But the Hong Kong Film Archive restored it a few years ago, so it might be Blu-ready providing the rights can be squared away.
Watched the Valiant Ones after hearing it called a sister film to Lee Kahn in the extras and this surely must be a no-brainer release for any label already putting out King Hu films. It has almost wall-to-wall action, often exhaustingly so-- there's a funny sequence where a character keeps having to prove himself over and over to the king of the pirates that seems to never end. I don't think it's Hu's best, but it does have the cleverest visual idea I've seen in one of his films, involving a Go Board (those who've seen it know what I'm talking about)

Orlac
Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2009 4:29 am

Re: BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#21 Post by Orlac » Sat Dec 14, 2019 8:07 am

I wonder if any Taiwanese kung fu will one day get a restoration. We so need a better release of Master of the Flying Guillotine!

User avatar
Finch
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:09 pm
Location: Edinburgh, UK

Re: BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#22 Post by Finch » Sat Dec 14, 2019 1:52 pm

Dom, where did you find The Valiant Ones? Was it on a streaming channel?

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#23 Post by domino harvey » Sat Dec 14, 2019 1:56 pm

Nope, I watched a rip via back channels of a presumably bootleg widescreen DVD (it looks VHS-sourced) with burned in Japanese subs

User avatar
feihong
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 12:20 pm

Re: BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#24 Post by feihong » Sat Dec 14, 2019 5:57 pm

There is a German DVD of The Valiant Ones
https://www.amazon.de/Piratenbande-wei% ... 281&sr=1-6
with English subtitles. The quality is the same as what Domino described.

The Valiant Ones was restored by the King Hu Foundation something like 20 years ago, but no home video releases came about as a result of that restoration. i remember reading that the restoration had taken most of the foundation's budget and that they didn't have any funding to promote the film after that. There is an article from the Hong Kong film archive dated 2012 which describes a new copy of the film that went through wet–gate printing that year. The archive credits Raymond Chow for sponsoring the production of the new print.

User avatar
feihong
Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 12:20 pm

Re: BD 214-215 The Fate of Lee Khan & Raining in the Mountain

#25 Post by feihong » Tue Dec 24, 2019 8:27 pm

Turns out there is a lot of King Hu restoration going on right now. Here are trailers for gorgeous–looking restorations of

Wheel of Life
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rGhmCe-gGI

and

All the King's Men
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8_MwK2Fngk

I have an unsubtitled, cropped DVD of All the King's Men, but the quality is so bad I've never been able to steel myself to watch it. I've read a Time Out review that described it as being very hackneyed and dull, but then Time Out also compared Kurosawa's Red Beard to Dr. Kildare, so I'm not sure that either review is to be depended upon in the contemporary context. Surely the restored footage of All the King's Men looks gorgeous. This is also I believe the film where Cheng Pei Pei returns to play a major role for the director who made her famous, so there's some interest there in seeing that.

It turns out Wheel of Life has a giant helping of King Hu action, even after Tony Rayns kept telling us that Raining in the Mountain was the last of his martial arts films. Honestly, even the other directors work looks pretty interesting in this one. I've seen The Four Moods, albeit without subtitles, but Hu's segment, Anger, is the only short film in the omnibus that is worth seeing, I think. The others were stultifying and endless.

I hope these are coming down the line from Masters of Cinema. Then only The Valiant Ones and The Four Moods will need full–on restorations before it's possible to get a decent summation of Hu's career (though I suppose it's possible to watch any one of Hu's great films and get a sense of who he is and what he does).

Post Reply