Thursday, June 22, 2017

Das Mädchen von Hongkong - Joachim Fuchsberger (1973) - Wader Studio, Kwai Chung

I mentioned the area around Wader Studio in the last post and part of the old front wall has shown up in this film. It's the only identifiable piece of the studio that I can see (there are likely other bits but because of the general lack of information out there they are most likely going unidentified by yours truly).

Anyway, the giveaway in this shot is the large characters on the gate which are the Chinese name of the Wader studio (華達).

If you want to see where the gate was in relation to another post featuring the studio, then has a picture that will help.

This last shot of Joachim Fuchsberger was snapped looking out from the main gate back towards Castle Peak Road. The studio closed not soon after this film was made.

Das Mädchen von Hongkong - Joachim Fuchsberger (1973) - South China Cold Storage Building, Kwai Chung

The murder victim was running a business from a warehouse in some anonymous part of town. The chronology of events suggests its somewhere near a dock, but actually the no-longer-anonymous location was a real cold storage warehouse located in an industrial estate in Kwai Chung. Coincidentally, the warehouse was (and still is) located behind where the old Wader Studios were - but more about that in a later post.

Anyway, simply plugging the Chinese name (南華冷房大廈) seen in one of the grabs revealed the location. The road that runs by the warehouse is Wah Sing Street.

Looking down from the top of Wah Sing Street

You can see the Streetview grab below. The angle isn't great but it's nice to see that the vertical sign has managed to survive 45+ years (even if it's looking done for).

In one of those geographical conundrums, one scene later in the film has Fuchsberger heading to his friend's office (see below) with the warehouse clearly visible in the background. He is disturbed by the bad guys and what ensues is a chase over the roof tops of Tsim Sha Tsui!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Das Mädchen von Hongkong - Joachim Fuchsberger (1973) - 68 Deepwater Bay Road, Hong Kong

An easy one to get this one because we are given the address on film several times. The original building was redeveloped in 1978 - a few years after this film was made. The architectural company involved (AKAA) have a project page with a picture of the newer property:

As suggested by the webpage above, the owner is Sir Michael Kadoorie - head of the Hong Kong and Shanghai Hotels Company and China Light & Power etc. Whether or not he owned it in 1972 is uncertain, but I do have a friend who has been lucky enough to visit here and describe the underground garage where Sir Kadoorie stores his collection of cars. Apparently it has a sort of 'rotary' lift whereby he pushes a button and keeps it held until his choice of car pops up. I'm not sure where he keeps his helicopter though...

The house's name is "Miramar" and has a little bit of information about it here. Kadoorie was so keen to preserve the view from his house that he also bought #70 & 72 to stop anyone else from buying them and redeveloping.

There are a lot of great angles for this location, so this post may be a bit picture-heavy.

The bottom picture shows the view across the pool and over Deep Water Bay towards Middle Island in the distance. The house has been redeveloped,but it looks like the pool and view haven't really changed much.

We also catch a brief glimpse of #71 from the driveway. As far as I can tell that building has also been rebuilt at some point because the current version, despite it's art deco styling, doesn't appear to match the current one.

#71 Deep Water Bay Road

And there is also what appears to be a fake telephone box further down the road (on the lower side of #71).

Monday, June 19, 2017

Das Mädchen von Hongkong - Joachim Fuchsberger (1973) - Aberdeen Harbour, Aberdeen

From one harbour to another, Aberdeen features quite a few times in this film, largely because the film makers want us to believe that the murder victims rather plush house (we'll get to it in the next post) overlooks the Aberdeen Harbour.

There are some views of the floating restaurants in the opening credits (which also borrow footage from the earlier 1960's German productions we have already looked at), a nice sweeping view taken from the western end of the harbour entrance - most likely from Shak Pai Wan Road, and also some views of the Chinese Permanent Cemetery taken from the same direction. 

The HK Electric coal fired power station (now moved to Lamma Island)

Aberdeen Fisheries and Marine Office, lower right

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Das Mädchen von Hongkong - Joachim Fuchsberger (1973) - Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong

The last of my recently acquired German titles (available from filmjuwelen if you are interested), this one made at the tail-end of 1972 but released in 1973. Das Mädchen von Hongkong stars Joachim Fuchsberger as a tourist visiting a friend in HK only to find out he has been killed. The title is a bit odd because the so-called "girl from Hong Kong" is just an incidental character (played by Li Paelz in 'yellowface') who the main protagonist helps enter Hong Kong at the beginning of the film.

Anyway, the picture quality is excellent and there are some nice locations to look at, but we'll start off with the usual harbour views.

Red Dragon - Stewart Granger (1965) - Fei Ngo Shan Road, Kowloon Peak

Another car chase that ends up at the top of Kowloon Peak. I won't go sdo far as to say this film is a bit of a copycat of other German productions, but we have already had a car crashing into Lung Ha Wan courtesy of Weiße Fracht für Hongkong and that film also features a car chase up along Fei Ngo Shan Road. Then there was Heisser Hafen Hongkong which didn't feature any crashing into Lung Ha Wan but did also have a car chase up Fei Ngo Shan Road culminating in one of the cars crashing down the side of the mountain. So here is a similar scene in Red Dragon: a car chase up Fei Ngo Shan that culminates in a very similar car crash.

Edit: I found out that all of the German productions I've been looking at recently (Heißer Hafen Hongkong, Weiße Fracht für Hongkong, Ein Sarg aus Hongkong and Das Geheimnis der drei Dschunken (i.e. Red Dragon) all had the same producer -Wolf C Hartwig - so this probably explains why some of the locations and scenes appear to have some similarity.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Red Dragon - Stewart Granger (1965) - Lung Ha Wan Road, Clearwater Bay

You may recall a while back that in Weiße Fracht für Hongkong, Horst Frank deals with one of his loose ends by tipping her over the edge of Lung Ha Wan Road in a car. Well, he was at it again two years later in Red Dragon only this time he's trying to off Stewart Granger. Same part of the road though. It's blurry, but yet another car takes a dip in the sea and Granger manages to escape by clinging onto the cliff.

Red Dragon - Stewart Granger (1965) - Aberdeen, Hong Kong

One of the key scenes in this film involves an assassination attempt at the hands of a nefarious Aberdeen fisherman as Granger's character and sidekick are questioning a witness to the murder of the US spy. We start off with a shot of Granger walking down what appears to be Tung Sing Road with what appears to be the Tsung Man Building at the far background (beyond the red signboard).

This shot above shows Granger walking along the main road where it curves into the town. This is the old area (now a bus terminus) where the restaurant pontoons used to be before the waterfront was reclaimed. They head out onto the water to interview a rather younger looking Ho Li-yan before someone tries to off them with a dagger. You may remember this famous Chinese actor from an appearance on Shirley's World a few weeks ago.

Ho Li-yan

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

The Man with the Golden Gun - RTHK Podcast

For those of you with an interest in James Bond, Annemarie Evans from RTHK's Hong Kong Heritage radio show recently asked me to contribute for a small segment on The Man with the Golden Gun as a sort of tribute to Roger Moore and his recent passing.

You can hear my dulcet tones on the podcast at the following link. The James Bond bit starts at around the 20 minute mark. The program also has a large archive of past shows and are well worth a listen for anyone remotely interested in Hong Kong heritage and culture.

Many thanks to Annemarie for making me sound as though I actually know what I'm talking about...

Monday, June 12, 2017

Red Dragon - Stewart Granger (1965) - Kai Tak Airport, Kowloon City

The spy agency sends two agents to HK to infiltrate the smugglers who are illegally shipping electronic parts to Red China inside hollowed out logs. Michael Scott (Granger) arrives first but is soon followed by Carol (played by Rosanna Schiaffino) who has been recruited to take the place of the secretary - who was shot dead at the Botanical gardens.