Saturday Night at the Movies

25 07 2011

On Saturday evening I went to see Tranformers 3.  I had to use up my last two ‘group-bought’ tickets since Cars and Harry Potter, both originally scheduled for July are now both being released in August, in part due the propaganda crap-fest (so I’ve heard) ‘The Beginning of the Great Revival’, a story about how great the communist party is.  Obviously, the third installment in the Transformers franchise was better than the second, though those who’ve seen part two know that’s not a difficult feat.  It is not up to the standard of the original in the series though.  The story isn’t that great, and the film is pretty long coming in at two and a half hours.  I’m also becoming less and less of a fan of 3D films the more I see them.  So far I’ve seen 9 films in 3D that I can remember, and the only ones that have really wowed me have been Avatar, and the animations like Rio, How to Train Your Dragon and Kung Fu Panda 2.  The final Harry Potter film is coming out soon so I’ll have to find out whether it’s worth it in 3D.  Cinemas here have far more showings of the 3D versions of films than the 2D one. 

The other problem with watching films in the cinema here is subtitles.  I’m not talking about the movies carrying Chinese subtitles throughout the entire movie, I’m entirely fine with that.  What I’m annoyed by is the lack of English subtitles in films.  The films is advertised as the English version in the cinema, as some films are dubbed into Chinese.  Of the 9 3D films I mentioned earlier, 5 of those have had non-English dialogue, none of which carries English subtitles.  There’s also no English subtitles when locations are shown on screen.  Even if you can read the Chinese subtitles fast enough to understand the non-English parts, often you’re not prepared to have to start reading the subtitles because the language switches happen very quickly, and in the original English version you would only see subtitles when needed so you would instantly know to read them.  It shouldn’t be that hard to add the English subtitles, the original version already has them! 


No Room at the cINNema

28 07 2010

Before I moved to China to study, I often snapped up the chance to go and see previews of movies, usually at least once a month thanks to websites such as I haven’t had the chance to attend a free screening for a long time, until last night when I went to the cinema hoping to see The A-Team. Whilst we did arrive only minutes before the scheduled start time, we were told at the entrance that the cinema was full. My friends and I were not very happy, but unfortunately there was nothing we could do. One of my friends who still often attends the free screenings informed me that since the ushers at the cinema don’t check I.D’s and probably don’t check the names printed on the tickets, less-than-honest people photocopy their tickets and give them out to friends so the cinema gets full and hence those with legitimate tickets can’t get in. It’s free though so you can’t complain too much. What added insult to injury was that later, when we were in the pub doing the pub quiz, a colleague of my friend who did get in to see the film sent a text saying there were free seats in the cinema! We didn’t win the pub quiz either so we didn’t have a lot of success last night. I am looking forward to seeing Inception this evening though.

Study Study Study

3 06 2010

The end of my first year of my Master’s degree is fast approaching; in fact it’s approaching faster than the other students’ due to my haste in purchasing my flight back to the UK for the summer, so I’ll be leaving earlier than I’m actually supposed to. It’s not a huge problem since my teachers have kindly arranged for me to sit my exams either before I leave or after I come back.

However, exams are exams, and this means I have to spend much of my time studying for them, which isn’t the most interesting thing I could be doing, but it’s got to be done. I did have a nice break from studying on Monday night when I went to see “How To Train Your Dragon” at the cinema. It was a great film, though there were a lot of children there (Monday was Children’s Day here in China) so there was quite a bit of child-talk throughout the film but it didn’t turn out to be that much of a bother. Afterward I went to eat 绵绵冰 with my friend, which is a kind of ice cream. I don’t really know how to explain it other than making it is a very noisy process! Here’s a picture to help you out.

We had two bowls, one was like vanilla flavour, the other was mango. Usually I like to eat sweet things, but the mango one tasted too sweet for me so I ended up eating more of the vanilla. I would definitely recommend it though.