The easternKicks.com Podcast

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

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 30: The best of NYAFF 2021

August 17th, 2021

In this episode, we turn our eye to some picks from the New York Asian Film Festival (NYAFF), including an extended chat about Benny Chan's final film Raging Fire. Meanwhile Maja Korbeca chats to the "Grandmother of Hong Kong Cinema" Ann Hui, recipient of the NYAFF 2021 Star Asia Lifetime Achievement Award.  

This episode's timecodes   

00:31 - Episode introduction
02:16 - Back to live festivals with NYAFF and Raging Fire
15:36 - Hand Rolled Cigarette and Limbo
22:59 - Shadows and more from Hong Kong
28:59 - Maja interview with Ann Hui
41:41 - Some picks screening from  South Korea, including Spiritwalker, The Prayer and Midnight
49:38 - More picks including Three Sisters and Escape from Mogadishu
51:50 - Picks from Japan, including Last Of The Wolves and Junk Head
52:10 - Picks from Taiwan, including As You Like It, The Silent Forest and My Missing Valentine
58:13 - Outro

The New York Asian Film Festival continues with both in-person screenings and online until 22 August. 

Episode 21: The Woman Who Ran and Hong Sang-soo

December 22nd, 2020

This episode Tania Hall joins James and Andy for a discussion on that most idiosyncratic of Korean directors, Hong Sang-soo, and his latest film The Woman Who Ran. What is it that makes his films compelling, and where should you start?

The Woman Who Ran is currently streaming on MUBI from 20 December. Sign up now with MUBI via easternKicks and get 30 days FREE!

This episode's timecodes

00:31 - Episode introduction
01:08 - Discussion on The Woman Who Ran
24:54 - Where should you start with Hong?
32:32 - The influence of Hong Sang-soo on other directors
42:21 - Outro

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.

Episode 14: All aboard for Peninsula!

August 20th, 2020

We climb aboard one of the eagerly awaited Asian film releases this Summer, Peninsula. Looking back on the career of director Yeon Sang-ho, having made his name with animated films such as King Of Pigs, The Fake and Seoul Station before his breakthrough live-action global hit Train to Busan. We also hear how author and Neo magazine writer David West got into easternFlicks, and from another of our Udine Far East Film Festival Campus correspondents.

This episode's timecodes

00:00:32 - Episode introduction
00:01:17 - Peninsula intro
00:04:33 - Yeon Sang-ho's career
00:16:14 - Boarding the Train to Busan
00:23:38 - ...and onto the Peninsula: a review
00:36:17 - David West: How I got into easternFlicks
00:41:16 - Udine FEFF correspondent: Linda Santu Lama
00:45:08 - Outro

Episode 12: House Of Hummingbird

August 11th, 2020

This episode Phillip O'Connor joins us for a discussion about acclaimed coming-of-age drama House Of Hummingbird, while Roxy Simmons talks to the film's writer/director Kim Bora. We've got some picks from Prime, Netflix and more, and the first of our Udine Far East Film Festival Campus correspondents. Meanwhile, listen all the way through for a very special offer from our friends at Terracotta.

This episode's timecodes

00:00:32 - Episode introduction
00:01:46 - House Of Hummingbird discussion
00:28:16 - Kim Bora Interview
01:14:22 - Udine FEFF correspondent: Adora Tan
01:17:40 - easternKicks Picks: Double World, A Chinese Ghost Story trilogy and Labyrinth Of Cinema
01:24:13 - A special offer from Terracotta Distribution!
01:24:36 - Outro

Episode 10: Bae Doona – In Focus

June 18th, 2020

This episode we profile actor Bae Doona, focusing on career highlights with exclusive audio from an interview with the actor herself. Meanwhile film critic, producer and KoBiz English editor Pierce Conran tells us How he got into easternFlicks!

This episode's timecodes

00:32 - Introduction
02:20 - Beginnings
02:57 - The Ring Virus
05:27 - Barking Dogs Never Bite
07:05 - Take Care Of My Cat
09:34 - Sympathy For Mr Vengence
11:30 - Tube 
14:01 - Bae on her quirkier roles
14:38 - Linda Linda Linda
15:43 - Air Doll
17:44 - Bae on taking roles outside of Korea 
19:04 - The Host
19:27 - Bae on the popularity of The Host
21:19Bae on Bong Joon-ho
23:05 - As One 
24:39 - Bae on training for Sense8
25:34 - Cloud Atlas
29:18 - Bae on working with the Wachowskis
31:27 - Jupiter Ascending and Sense8 
36:49 - A Girl At My Door
42:20 - The Tunnel
43:32 - Kingdom
47:10 - The Drug King 
51:14 - Pierce Conran: How I got into easternFlicks
55:50 - easternKicks Picks: Massage Detective Joe and The Forest of Love: Deep Cut

Episode 8: Free(ish) Korean films

May 12th, 2020

With the UK and many parts of the world under lockdown, or just coming out of it, this episode we take a look at South Korean films you can watch for free, or at least 'free-ish', following on from the phenomenal popularity of Parasite. Hangul Celluloid's Paul Quinn joins us to give recommendations from the Korean Film Archive's YouTube channel, while our very own Roxy scours the depths of Netflix, Amazon Prime and finds some gems, despite the bizarre search results! 

This episode's timecodes

00:32 - Introduction
Paul's choices:
03:08 - 1) The Housemaid (1960)
11:26 - 2) Mulberry (1986)
16:37 - 3) Seopyeonje (1993)
22.05 - If it says it's Korean on Prime, what are the chances...?
Roxy's choices:
27.04 - 1) A Girl at My Door (2014)
35.56 - 2) Battleship Island (2017)
47.15 - 3) The Mimic (2017)
57.08 - James' pick from Netflix: Time To Hunt (2020)

Episode 2: A Parasite special

January 24th, 2020

For our second episode, Andrew and James are joined by Tania Hall to discuss Bong Joon-ho's Parasite in detail. Will he get an Oscar? Will the film's phenomenal success thrust Korean cinema into the mainstream? Listen and find out what we think. We also hear from lead star Korean actor Song Kang-ho.

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