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


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






Episode 44: the End of Year Show 2022

It's time for the End of Year Show! James and Andy look back on 2022, the highs and lows. Did anything change for Asian film? What were the big releases and trends? Will there be ranting about that certain recent survey? There's only one way to find out: listen!!! This episode’s handy timecodes 00:00:32 - Introduction 00:01:53 - What were the big releases? 00:08:25 - Decision to Leave, innit? 00:25:16 - Other key cinema releases 00:41:37 - Trends, what have we seen from different countries...


Episode 43: Infernal Affairs 20th Anniversary Special

To celebrate the 20th Anniversary of its original release, Stephen Palmer joins Andy and James to discuss the Infernal Affairs Trilogy starring Tony Leung and Andy Lau. Meanwhile, Phillip O'Connor shares his thoughts on the inevitable fates of our protagonists. This episode’s handy timecodes 00:00:32 - Introduction 00:03:00 - Context and concept 00:08:25 - Creative team 00:11:50 - Infernal Affairs 00:25:19 - Infernal Affairs II 00:40:29 - Infernal Affairs III 00:47:46 - Legacy and...


Episode 42: London Film Festival roundup

James and Andy take a look at Asian films screening at the 66th BFI London Film Festival 2022, and Andy chats to the director of Liquor Store Dreams, So Yun Um. This episode’s handy timecodes 00:00:32 - Episode introduction 00:01:27 - On to the festival, and the many films from Korea (?) 00:18:14 - So Yun Um interview, Liquor Store Dreams 00:37:18 - Films from Japan 00:39:09 - Films from Thailand and beyond, plus documentaries and more 00:52:25 - Thoughts on the festival 01:06:07 -...

Episode 41: Happy Anniversary, Squid Game?

On the first anniversary of the show debuting on Netflix and with a big win at the Emmys, we look back at the impact of Squid Game and ask what it really means for the future of both the creators and cast, and Korean film and TV in general... This episode’s handy timecodes 00:32 - Episode introduction 02:13 - For those that missed it...(what?) 14:02 - The success of the show, and creators and cast 26:40 - What does that mean for other shows? 44:57 - Wrapping up 48:37 - Outro

Episode 40: Making Waves

James and Andy chat exclusively about Focus Hong Kong's Making Waves, a Hong Kong screening programme coming to London from 8 to 10 July. Full disclaimer, they might have had something to do with it... This episode’s handy timecodes 00:31 - Episode introduction 01:43 - An introduction to Focus Hong Kong 05:00 - The Making Waves programme 06:19 - Comrades, Almost A Love Story and Peter Chan holo-presence 13:41 - July Rhapsody 18:32 - Anita 22:34 - Hand Rolled Cigarette 24:51 - Breakout...


Episode 39 - The Sadness special

To celebrate the global release of gruesome horror The Sadness on Shudder, James and Andy chat through the film, with an exclusive interview with the films director, Rob Jabbaz. This episode’s handy timecodes 00:31 - Episode introduction 01:54 - The Sadness, a quick explainer 08:39 - Rob Jabbaz interview 28:11 - Reactions to the interview 34:52 - easternKicks Picks! 42:40 - Outro The Sadness is available to exclusively stream on Shudder from 12th May.


Episode 38 – Spotlight on... Zatoichi

This time Jonathan Wroot, senior lecturer in film studies, joins James and Andy to chat in detail about the topic of his new book, Zatoichi! As well as the various influences and successors. And yes, we chat Rutger Hauer too! This episode’s handy timecodes 00:00:44 - Episode introduction 00:02:12 - Before we start, how did our guest get into Asian film? 00:06:05 - Kitano's Zatoichi, was it a remake? 00:13:10 - Let's go back to the start 00:17:08 - How star Shintaro Katsu's previous work...


Episode 37 – The Long Walk special

Seriously cutting into their Giallo viewing time, James and Andy chat to Laos film director Mattie Do and her other 'alf, screenwriter Christoper Larsen in detail about their superb genre-crossing sci-fi horror, The Long Walk and much more. This episode’s handy timecodes 00:00:31 – Episode introduction 00:02:16 – Interview with Mattie Do and Chris Larsen 00:52:32 – The easternKicks take on The Long Walk 01:08:05 – Outro The Long Walk is available on digital now via Light Bulb Film...


Episode 36 - The End of the Year Show

This episode is a real meeting of minds, as Panos Kotzathanasis of Asian Movie Pulse joins James and Andy to chat about the trends and topics of the year, all bizarrely summed up by titles of soul and funk songs (?) Meanwhile easternKicks regulars Niina and Theo share thoughts on their favourite films of the year. This episode's handy timecodes 00:00:44 – Episode introduction 00:02:39 – What's in Santa's hat (don't ask!) 00:03:33 – Smoke.Netflix.Chill 00:18:26 – (Get on the) Partyline...


Episode 35 – All Aboard... for Hellbound!

Is this deja vu? A Korean streaming series taking Netflix by storm. No, it's not Squid Game, but Train To Busan director Yeon Sang-ho's Hellbound. James and Andy chat about the series and wonder, will there be another? Meanwhile James has some more easternKicks picks. This episode's handy timecodes 00:00:44 - Episode introduction 00:02:28 - Putting Hellbound in context 00:07:52 - A brief synopsis 00:11:29 - How it fits with Yeon's other work 00:22:29 - Just what are the demons? 00:24:12 -...


Episode 34 - The horror of Hong Kong!

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...


Episode 33 - Do you like calamari?

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...


Episode 32 - Spotlight on... A Tale of Two Sisters

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...


Episode 31 – Spotlight on... Daimajin

Phillip O'Connor joins Andy and James for a detailed look at everyone's favourite diminutive kaiju, Daimajin, recently restored and on Blu-ray. Okay sure, he's tall, but he's definitely no Godzilla... This episode's timecodes 00:31 - Episode introduction 02:05 - Daimajin's origins 06:28 - Shall we talk about the, erm, plot? 12:27 - Some of the different elements of the films 22:08 - Daimajin's design and special effects 31:20 - Production and shooting 33:45 - Obligatory Steven Segal cameo...


Episode 30: The best of NYAFF 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...


Episode 29: PTU and Johnnie To's crime drama years

In this episode contributor Kaj van Zoelen joins James and Andy to revisit PTU and the classic crime dramas of Johnnie To. Will we ever see its like again? Meanwhile Stephen Palmer shares thoughts on a decidedly different example from To, My Left Eye Sees Ghosts. This episode's timecodes 00:00:35 - Episode introduction 00:01:38 - PTU review 00:24:01 - PTU and the HK crime drama resurgence of 2000s 00:52:10 - Stephen Palmer on My Left Eye Sees Ghosts 00:58:54 - James and Kaj share some...


Episode 28 - The World of Wong Kar-wai

In this special edition, we celebrate the return of Wong Kar-wai's classic in newly remastered versions to cinemas. Special guest Bede Cheng, Managing Director at L’Immagine Ritrovata Asia, the laboratory responsible for the new editions, joins us for a chat about the restoration process. Meanwhile, contributors Colette, Theo, Phillip, Yonah, Ethan and Stephen share their thoughts on the filmmakers work. We also have the perfect podcast fuel from Bun House / Wun's Tea Room & Bar. This...


Episode 27: Time & Tide & Tsui

On this episode James and Andy are joined by easternKicks contributors Phillip O'Connor and Fedor Tot to chat about the new release of Tsui Hark's 2000 action classic Time and Tide, and the director's career at point, with his fleeting dalliance with Hollywood and USA films, pairing with Jean-Claude Van Damme on Double Team and Knock Off. This episode's timecodes 00:00:33 - Episode introduction 00:03:50 - Time and Tide review 00:37:05 - Enter JCVD 00:40:52 - Double Team review 00:45:26 -...


Episode 26: One-Armed Jimmy

Join Andrew, James and easternKicks contributor Yonah Sichrovsky for some mainly 'armless fun, as we chat about kung fu classic One Armed Boxer, and director and star, the notorious Jimmy Wang Yu! This episode's timecodes 00:00:52 - Episode introduction 00:02:41 - One Armed Boxer review 00:19:20 - Jimmy Wang Yu: The main who would be Bruce? 00:34:28 - Will we ever see the popularity of kung fu films return? 00:44:09 - easternKicks Picks: James 00:54:54 - More easternKicks Picks: Yonah,...


Episode 25: Cliff Walkers and Zhang Yimou

We look at the acclaimed director's latest film, Cliff Walkers, as well his genre work over the last decade. While easternKicks regulars Phillip O'Connor, Maja Korbecka and Stephen Palmer join us for their thoughts on Zhang's work. This episode's timecodes 00:00:32 - Episode introduction 00:02:50 - Cliff Walkers review 00:28:10 - Other works 00:30:10 - Stephen Palmer on the 2008 Olympics 00:36:03 - A Simple Noodle Story aka A Woman, a Gun and a Noodle Shop aka 'Zhang Yimou's Blood Simple'...