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International Eye Candy December 9, 2008

Yes, boys and girls, once again it is Todd from Twitch here to dazzle and astound with yet another collection of wonders and oddities from around the globe. Once again it is time for International Eye Candy. But before beginning with the Eye Candy proper I'm going to take a wee moment of your time to plug a little something. Twitch is trying a little something new this weekend for three days only – December 12th, 13th and 14th – we will be streaming a complete film for free within our pages. Why mention this here? Well, let's just say I read the talkbacks and have noticed - *ahem* - a certain fondness for free movies amongst the IEC readership. It's all about you, kids, it's all about you. The film in question is Robert Pratten's MINDFLESH, a very Cronenbergian stew of sex, psychosis and alien invasion. You can find trailers for it here. So, once again, that's MINDFLESH, for free, on Twitch this coming Friday through Sunday. And there aint nothin' cheaper than free. There, now. And to thank you for sitting through my little advertisement I now present to you the brand new poster for Phil Claydon's LESBIAN VAMPIRE KILLERS. Life is better because this film exists. And now onwards! We begin our trek in Hong Kong with the first teaser for STORM WARRIORS, the digital backlot sequel to hugely successful kung fu fantasy STORM RIDERS. Production on this is being handled basically in the same style as 300 by the Pang Brothers, who have a tendency to be light on story but very high on visuals and, speaking as someone who saw a good but more than is included in this teaser during AFM, this is looks absolutely gorgeous. It's a long way from being released yet – almost exactly a year – and nowhere close to being done but it's looking good so far. Check the STORM WARRIORS teaser here Anybody out there catch Natasha Arthy's FIGHTER when it screened at Fantastic Fest? A fantastic little film, this is, anchored by a real life national champion martial artist who also happens to be one fine actress, and the brand new UK trailer is also fantastic, though also one of the most incredibly misleading trailers I've seen in ages. This is not – I repeat not – a film about vigilante justice, though it is nice to pretend it is for the minute and a half the trailer runs. I think they stuffed clips from every action sequence in the film into there … Check the FIGHTER trailer here Anybody eat any sort of Asian noodle soup today? Or Thai food of any variety? You sir? You over there? Okay then, do NOT watch the trailer for upcoming Thai horror flick MEAT GRINDER. Believe me, this presents possibilities you just don't want to dwell on. I know we've all heard stories about restaurants serving cat meat but this … this one goes into the canon of squirmingly uncomfortable food films right next to Fruit Chan's so-damn-good-I-can-never-watch-it-again DUMPLINGS. Be aware: this one brings the gore. < href=>Sample the MEAT GRINDER here I know remarkably little about Russia's GENERATION P other than the fact that it's based on a popular novel and charts the life of a slacker turned petty black-marketeer turned full on gangster as the old Soviet Union shakes off it's communist ways and embraces capitalism. It manages to look hard-assed and nostalgic at the same time, such a difficult trick to pull off that I simply must see it at the earliest opportunity. Check the GENERATION P trailer here ICHI THE KILLER director Takashi Miike doing a goofy, physics-defying, big budget, live action adaptation of a popular anime series? Is there anything else you really need to know about YATTERMAN? I love Miike in family-friendly mode – ZEBRAMAN is a big favorite of mine – and this looks to fit the bill nicely. We've posted early teasers for this one before but those showed next to nothing. The first proper trailer has just arrived and it's much better, giving a first proper look at characters, environments, mecha, everything a growing boy needs. Check the YATTERMAN trailers here Forget THE 36TH CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN, the Master Killer is going to Bollywood, baby! That's right, Gordon Liu himself is playing a major role in upcoming Bollywood action comedy CHANDNI CHOWK TO CHINA and whoever realized that the old Shaw Brothers aesthetic is a perfect fit with Bollywood song and dance is absolutely brilliant. I loved the first teaser for this but a full length theatrical trailer and music video have both just arrived and the more I see the more I like. Sure, it's Bollywood so it'll be half an hour too long but tell me you're not itching to see more of Liu slinging that bowler around after checking the trailer … Join CHANDNI CHOWK here! I have never had a teacher like Haruka Ayase. I have never had a gym teacher that looked anywhere remotely as good as she does and I've never had a teacher who looked as good as she does agree to show me her breasts if I only go out and win a volleyball tournament. But that's what she does in OPPAI VOLLEYBALL, a film the prdocuers say is based on a true story. Given that Ayase is a pretty serious, very popular up-and-coming actress in Japan there's virtually no chance that she's actually going to flash any skin whatsoever in this film but, good lord, those marketing guys are geniuses. OPPAI VOLLEYBALL makes sports fun again! Hmmm … it looks as though Korea is starting to get interesting again, thanks in no small part to the slowly surging wave of young, independent film makers there. And one of the more interesting projects coming soon is WRITTEN, a surreal psychological thriller about a man who wakes up in a tub full of water missing a kidney and gradually comes to realize that he is a character in a movie still in the progress of being written. Fun concept – albeit a tough one to pull off – and a pretty gripping visual style make this one to watch. Check the WRITTEN trailer here Okay, that's enough Asia for a bit, we're going to France now where production is well underway for BANLIEUE 13: ULTIMATUM, the sequel to the hugely popular action flick released here as DISTRICT B13. Nope, no trailer yet but the producers have been releasing a steady stream of behind the scenes videos, a stream that arrived at number 13 last week. And what to do with your 13th peek at B13? Show off your fighting, of course, with a clip showing star/choreographer Cyril Raffaelli planning, rehearsing and then tearing through a fight at full speed. Sweet! Answer the ULTIMATUM here From France we hop over a border or two to Austria where we find director Andreas Prochaska back at his old, bloody tricks in the full trailer for his slasher picture DEAD IN THREE DAYS 2. Yup, the original was the first slasher ever produced in Austria and it was such a big local hit that they started immediately on the sequel. Prochaska doesn't really aim to re-create the genre with these things but he shoots lean, nasty film and that can go a looooooong way. Get DEAD here Need a break from all the blood and violence? How's about a bit of animation to cleanse the palette? Tom Moore's BRENDAN AND THE SECRET OF KELLS has been long in coming but it's just about done now and while the story is a bit of an odd choice for a kid's film – the Book of Kells is a famously ornate hand painted Bible from Ireland and its creation figures large in the story here – but it gives Moore a stunning visual language to muck about in and muck he does. Very, very pretty stuff. Check the new KELLS trailer here Looking to scratch a more abstract animation itch? Then I recommend a trip to Poland where you'll find animation house Platige Image – one of the truly great unknowns in the world of animation – and the trailer for their latest short, CHICK. Platige does simple stunning work – I've never seen anything from them that I haven't absolutely loved – and this is no exception. Simple, striking, stunning. Take a look at CHICK here South-west now to Spain, and the brand new trailer for RAMIREZ. The subtle serial-killer flick had it's world premiere as a work in progress at the Sitges festival in September and is now just about ready to be unleashed on the world at large. The trailer's one tight little piece of work but the real draw here has got to be the voice over guy. Seriously, this guy's brilliant. Check the RAMIREZ trailer here FOREVER ENTHRALLED should have been Chinese auteur Chen Kaige's triumphant return to form after the botched genre experiment that was THE PROMISE. It is, after all, the sort of film where he first made his name, a lush period drama revolving around the live of a famed opera singer, played here by Zhang Ziyi. All the early press was strong and then Kaige got swept up in the storm surrounding Edison Chen's sex photo scandal, a scandal that forced Chen's retirement from Hong Kong film. And, no, Chen's not in this film but Gillian Chung – one of his well photographed partners – is, or at least she was until the family of Mei Lanfang – the aforementioned opera star – complained that her involvement would tarnish the image of their beloved ancestor. So out Chung went, her entire part simply edited out of the film. Can it survive the hack job? Nobody knows yet but the first trailer looks awfully good. Check the FOREVER ENTHRALLED trailer here Sometimes stupid is fun and Danny Trejo battling evil surveillance robots definitely qualifies as both. It's EYEBORGS and it's got a brand new trailer. Whee! Check the EYEBORGS trailer here We're nearing the end now but before we wrap things up we head back to Japan and upcoming animated feature HELL'S ANGELS. Now, how's this for a creative team. The director drew the Japanese RETURN OF THE JEDI manga adaptation. The character designer worked on Shinichiro Watanabe's SAMURAI CHAMPLOO. Creatures? Yeah, the guy who did those also worked with Guillermo Del Toro on HELLBOY. Expectations high? Damn straight. Trailer living up to them? You betcha. Check the HELL'S ANGELS trailer here And, finally, we finish up back in Korea with A FROZEN FLOWER. The latest film from the director of A DIRTY CARNIVAL and ONCE UPON A TIME IN HIGH SCHOOL finds him jumping n the historical epic bandwagon. But, you know, Yu Ha wouldn't be Yu Ha if he was content with doing things the same was as everyone else and so he's gone and made his big historical epic a gay one, casting major heart throb Zo In-sung – about to go on his mandatory military service for a couple years and thus free of any backlash worries – as a gay bodyguard to the king. Gay or not, however, it all falls apart if the film isn't any good and the trailer looks fantastic. Check the FROZEN FLOWER trailer here

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