films seen
average score
Alive and kicking


Detective Chinatown 3

Tang Ren Jie Tan An 3
2021 / 136m - China
Comedy, Mystery
Detective Chinatown 3 poster

With the West not really warming up to the Chinese blockbusters, it seems they're now targeting the other Asian markets around them. One of China's biggest blockbuster hits crosses over to Japan, hoping to find additional sources of income besides the local market. At least they were smart enough to hire plenty of local talent.

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Tang Ren and Qin Feng are invited to visit Tokyo in order to crack a brand-new case. They're not the only ones who are looking for the culprit though, other prominent Asian detectives are also joining the hunt. Meanwhile, the police aren't too happy with all these detectives trying to solve the case before them.

An impressive cast, ambitious action scenes, a fun mystery and deep pockets make this an enjoyable blockbuster. The Chinese sense of humor won't be for everybody and the film's a bit too long, with a little too much time spent on explaining everything to the smallest detail, but other than that this was some decent entertainment.

Detective Chinatown 2

Tang Ren Jie Tan An 2
2018 / 121m - China
Comedy, Mystery
Detective Chinatown 2 poster

Silly and over-the-top, sometimes a little annoying, but overall quite entertaining. Even though the film is 2 hours long, the pacing is incredible and there's hardly a dull moment. Baoqiang Wang's performance is crazy loud, then again it does fit this kind of film. Just some blockbuster buffoonery.

My People, My Homeland

Wo He Wo De Jia Xiang
2020 / 153m - China
Drama - Anthology
My People, My Homeland poster

Chinese pep talk. I think this is the second Chinese blockbuster anthology made with a single goal in mind: make China look good on the silver screen. It's no surprise these film have started to pop up over there now that their local market is booming, they're simply copying Hollywood's playbook.

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It's a bit of a bummer though, as these project tend to usurp quality directors (like Hao Ning here), forcing them to put out subpar films. The five shorts on display here aren't terrible, but their intentions are a bit too obvious and the film is so polished that it gets a little nauseating after a while.

China's most familiar actors (Bo Huang, You Ge, Baoqiang Wang, ...) are all present, the cinematography is nice and colorful and there are some quirky stories, but there's not enough variation, there's no grit and all the film offer the same self-boasting fuzzy feelgood nonsense. I hope this will be the end of it, but since these films are doing pretty well at the box office I doubt it very much.