The easternKicks.com Podcast

A regular magazine programme about East Asian film, with the latest news, reviews and interviews

Episode 34 - The horror of Hong Kong!

October 27th, 2021

Yes, it's that time of year again, and we turn our focus to modern Hong Kong horror, from the tail end of the Shaw Brothers right up to Fruit Chan's Coffin Homes. Meanwhile, Niina and Stephen share some of their favourites...

This episode's handy timecodes   

00:00:49 - Episode introduction
00:02:18 - Why Hong Kong horror?
00:08:00 - Into the 80s
00:10:34 - Niina on Seeding Of A Ghost
00:13:51 - The evolution from Shaw Brothers
00:25:01 - The glorious descent into Category III
00:27:17 - The 1990s
00:38:07 - Post-handover and the 2000s
00:46:03 - Stephen on Hex
00:49:56 - The last decade
00:56:04 - The future of Hong Kong horror...(?)
01:03:17 - Outro

Episode 33 - Do you like calamari?

October 15th, 2021

This time we look at a certain very popular streaming series that seems to have taken over the world (or at least every news platform). That's right, it's Squid Game time! Meanwhile, James has a few more picks to choose from. And don't forget, you can still take advantage of a discount with our friends at Gweilo Beer! 

This episode's handy timecodes   

00:45 - Episode introduction
01:52 - Let the Squid Game commence
06:52 - Hwang Dong-hyuk, hardly a talent from outta nowhere
11:28 - Korea's so hot right now...
16:06 - High production values, quirky style
19:59 - Wrong-footed pacing
26:48 - Subtitle 'controversy'
30:32 - Superb acting performances
35:28 - How about those other controversies?
43:11 - Do You Want More?!!!??!
47:00 - Time for more easternKicks Picks
57:26 - Outro

Squid Game is streaming now on Netflix!

Episode 32 - Spotlight on… A Tale of Two Sisters

September 13th, 2021

This episode we look back on Kim Jee-woon's classic Korean horror more patterned wallpaper than John Lewis, A Tale Of Two Sisters, with help from Stephen Palmer and Yonah Sichrovsky. We also announce a new association with Gweilo Beer! Don't forget to get your discount! But most importantly, will someone explain what's going on to Yonah? Find out!

This episode's timecodes   

00:45 - Episode introduction
03:43 - An introduction to A Tale of Two Sisters
07:50 - The house of William Morris
13:18 - A very British Asian horror?
16:07 - The perfect moment
24:10 - When did the American Remakes start?
27:16 - The legacy of Two Sisters
33:56 - A good time to revisit
37:26 - Does it hold up?
44:33 - We finally work out the ending for Yonah (spoilers!)
48:27 - What else would we like to see getting the special edition treatment? 
56:59 - Outro

A Tale Of Two Sisters is available now on Blu-ray from Arrow Video.

Episode 24: Spotlight on… Battle Royale

April 16th, 2021

We revisit Kinji Fukasaku's classic Battle Royale and its sequel in honour of the new 4K UHD release. Why is it such a classic, even after 20 years? 

This episode's timecodes   

00:01:14 - Episode introduction
00:02:50 - Ready to rumble? It's time for Battle Royale
00:34:07 - Battle Royale II: Requiem. Why?
00:54:54 - easternKicks picks
00:55:54 - Outro

Battle Royale is released on Limited Edition 4K UHD Blu-ray 5-disc boxset from Arrow Video from 26 April 2021, with a brand new 4K UHD restoration of the theatrical and director's cut, two cuts of Battle Royale II on separate Blu-rays, and the soundtrack CD.

Episode 23: Indonesian Folk Horror special

April 13th, 2021

This episode we explore Indonesian Folk Horror, from the classics of the 80s to the new films of Joko Anwar, Timo Tjahjanto, as well as an exclusive interview with Kimo Stamboel about The Queen Of Black Magic.

This episode's timecodes   

00:00:31 - Episode introduction
00:02:47 - The Queen Of Black Magic review
00:08:52 - Comparison with the original The Queen Of Black Magic
00:16:06 - James chats to Kimo Stamboel
00:52:34 - Indonesian Horror, then and now; Satan's Slave and Satan's Slaves
01:00:39 - May The Devil Take You and May The Devil Take You Too
01:07:38 - Impetigore
01:16:19 - Outro

The Queen Of Black Magic is available to stream now from Shudder, along with the original and Anwar's Satan's Slaves and Impetigore. The original Satan's Slave is available from Severin Films on Blu-ray and DVD. 

Episode 22: Tokyo Dragon Chef vs Crazy Samurai

April 13th, 2021

James and Andy are joined by Life Of Action and action co-ordinator Mike Fury to chat about Tokyo Gore Police director Yoshihiro Nishimura similarly-titled (but somewhat less gory) Tokyo Dragon Chef, as well as looking back on the career of Japan's 'Tom Savini'. We also discuss the latest from frequent Nishimura collaborator Tak Sakaguchi, Crazy Samurai: 400 vs. 1, aka Crazy Samurai Musashi, featuring a 77-minute one-take.

This episode's timecodes

00:00:31 - Episode introduction
00:02:00 - Tokyo Dragon Chef review
00:17:10 - Yoshihiro Nishimura's career and previous work
00:32:22 - What happened to the Japanese 'splatterpunk' scene?
00:44:26 - What are the chances of online or Blu-ray releases?
00:53:44 - Crazy Samurai: 400 vs. 1 review
01:11:13 - Outro

Tokyo Dragon Chef is available now on digital and DVD from Terracotta Distribution. Crazy Samurai: 400 vs. 1 is on Well Go USA's streaming service Hi-YAH now, with a Digital, Blu-ray and DVD from March 2.

Episode 18: Hungry Ghost Halloween!

October 25th, 2020

Feeling brave? This time we’re celebrating Halloween as Andrew and James find some hungry ghosts of their own with unfinished business – namely Asian horrors that were overlooked in the post-Ringu boom of the early 00s! Meanwhile, some of the easternKicks team share their own unsung ghostly classics.

This episode's timecodes

00:00:31 - Episode introduction
00:02:11 - The Asian horror 'boom' of the 2000s 
00:06:28 - The New Blood (2002)
00:12:10 - Stephen on Inner Senses
00:18:02 - The Red Shoes (2005)
00:28:21 - Noroi: The Curse (2005)
00:34:43 - Niina on Yotsuya Kaidan
00:37:54 - Rule #1 (2008)
00:42:33 - Bunshinsaba (2004)
00:47:50 - Horror Hotline… Big Head Monster (2001)
00:51:37 - Asian horror on the streaming services: might we see a return to the 00s?
00:54:58 - Picks from Netflix and Prime
01:12:07 - Ant on Queen Of Black Magic and Boxers Omen
01:14:21 - Outro

This podcast includes original audio from trailers for the films.

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