Friday, April 21, 2017

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Jordan Road Ferry, Yau Ma Tei

This one is a bit more interesting compared to the usual Jordan Road ferry pier because of the red painted sign that appears in the background.

I might be wrong but this looks to me like an advert for the yet-to-be-built Ferry Point estate, or at least the first buildings on that estate that were erected. The smaller writing on the left in the lowest pictures says 建築地盤 (gin juk dei pun) which basically means "construction ground". But if you look at the larger characters on the left I believe they say 文英樓 (man ying lau) i.e. Man Ying Building which is the name of one of the blocks within the estate. Along with the neighbouring Man Yuen Building these two were the first in the estate to be built and were open by 1964 - two years after this film was made. The picture on the wall is the artists impression of how the estate would look after completion. It's a pity we can't see it in higher resolution.

So it looks like the movie caught the area just prior to the building work being started for the Ferry Point Estate.

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - 41a Conduit Road, Midlevels

Most people will recognise this building as the one that stood in for the hospital in Love is a many-Splendored Thing, with Jennifer Jones running up the terraced hillside at the back of the property. In this film it stands in for itself - as the Foreign Correspondents Club. Before it was the FCC, it was a private villa, called The Fairview, owned by the Mok family.

We don't get to see quite as much of the place as we did in the other film but seeing as the place has long since been confined to history, any glimpse is a bit of a treat for nostalgia fans.

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Fei Ngo Shan, Kowloon

Immediately following the car around Peak Road it suddenly appears on Clearwater Bay Road about to turn up Fei Ngo Shan Road up to Fei Ngo Shan (aka Kowloon Peak). I can't say for sure if the scenes between the turning into the road and arriving at the top are all filmed on Fei Ngo Shan Road, but it wouldn't surprise me. Once at the top there are some great views to be had.

Clearwater Bay Road into Fei Ngo Shan Road

At the top the car gets stuck in the passageway where Fei Ngo shan Road crests the ridge. We've seen this section of the road multiple times on this blog but most recently was here (second picture down).

Next we have a rather spectacular car crash down the side of the hill. I doubt this sort of stunt would be allowed so easily now, but you never know.

Lion Rock can be seen on the left with Beacon Hill beyond. 
There's that cutting again in the background
Those hillocks in the centre now have an electricity pylon on them

Finally, there's a really spectacular view over to the actual peak of Kowloon Peak/Fei Ngo Shan. That ridge is fairly overgrown now but still has a trail along it.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Peak Road, The Peak

Okay, to make up for the lack of views in the last post, I hope this one is a little better. It's the view from Peak Road looking out towards Lamma island. In this case I can almost match the same angle using Streetview grabs. So once again, many thanks to Streetview :-)

In the above and below pictures, you can see the low wall with the gaps is the same one back in 1962. Sadly, the prominent modern haze prevents us from getting a nice clear picture of Lamma from Streetview - so I shall try and head up in the summer and grab some nicer ones.

This next picture is a little further round the corner (not too far) but you can see the nice views down towards Aberdeen Harbour.

And finally as the car drives past the camera we get a nice clear view over to Mount Kellet. Most of the buildings have been replaced by now. Not surprising really given the fact that this is prime HK real estate here. But it's nice to see that the mid-rise apartment block on the left - Block B of La Hacienda - is still around.

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Yee Wo Street, Causeway Bay

One of many in-car scenes where identification can be difficult and not always worth it due to the very small amount of the location that can be seen, but anyway, this one was easy because of the Paterson Street sign in the background. This means the car was travelling eastbound on Yee Wo Street.

I wonder if the cream- coloured building with the street sign on it is the same one Thomas identified in this post from Shirley's World. He mentioned is was the Dairy Farm depot. That location is about 50 yards down the street from this junction so it might be the same building.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Lung Yu Restaurant, Kowloon

The Lung Yu restaurant makes another appearance on this blog, this time though it's supposed to be a hotel. If you recall my very first post on this place, back when I was exploring I Spy locations, you'll see that the building it was in (on the corner of Battery Street and Jordan Road) is still around but now houses a bank.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Kai Tak Airport, Kowloon City

Some nice shots of the airport from this film. In the initial shot we are being told that this plane is leaving Tokyo bound for Hong Kong, but as you can see they just filmed a plane taking off at kai Tak and then another one coming in to land. The landing shot is interesting because it's got a not often used angle from a camera placed between the runway and Kowloon City to capture the plane swooping over the tops of the buildings.

Taking off from Tokyo? No.
The actor with Horst Frank is Tien Feng. A very famous HK actor

I would leave it there, but there is another bunch of screencaps taking in other parts of the airport worth seeing. The following shot shows us looking back towards Checkboard Hill. You can just make out the checkerboard immediately above the guy's head. But what I didn't know is that the hill also used to have a spinning radar dish on top. You can see it just above and right of the checkerboard.

There's also this brief shot of the old Dairy Farm Aircraft Caterers building in the background. I'm not sure where this used to stand before the terminal was rebuilt, but it might be of interest to anyone who was around at the time.

And finally a look towards Beacon Hill at the far end of the Kowloon mountain range. In the mid distance is a housing estate that I'm not sure what it was called but it seems to correspond to where I think the old Lo Fu Ngam Resettlement Area was, but I'm not sure as I thought that was further back, so if anyone can clue me in please feel free to leave a comment. From this angle it looks as though Checkerboard Hill is largely hidden behind the conical hill that holds the Chinese Christian Cemetery.

Heisser Hafen Hongkong - Horst Frank (1962) - Wader Studios, Kwai Chung

The year before Horst Frank and Brad Harris filmed Weiße Fracht für Hongkong they were in HK to film another German potboiler by the name of Heisser Hafen Hongkong (English title: Hot Harbour Hongkong). Once again, Horst Frank plays the baddie whilst Brad Harris takes on the role of a HK Police Inspector.

Coincidentally, after only just recently talking about Wader Studios over on, the building cropped up at the start of this film standing in for a factory in Japan. The exact location seems to be elusive with various places given but I think the theory that the Wah Tat Industrial Centre was built on the old site holds more water simply because the Chinese name of these buildings is the same as the Chinese name for the studio (華達 - Wah Tat).

 The position might be further confirmed by the third picture which shows the opposite side of the Castle Peak Road. The type of stone shown on the opposite bank is very similar to the road bank opposite the factories today - although there has been extensive further excavation to widen the road and also to create the Shek Lai playground.

The Way of the Dragon - Bruce Lee (1972) - Tin Ping Shan, Sheung Shui

Shooting forward to 1972 and a film I should've covered a long time ago but simply forgot - largely because there is only really one scene that was filmed in an identifiable HK location.

Way of the Dragon was filmed, guerrilla-style, on the streets of Rome (and nearby) with all the interior shots (Chinese restaurant, bosses office, back alley and final fight with Chuck Norris) shot at Golden Studios in Diamond Hill. The exception is this confrontation scene with Bob Wall and Whang In-sik that was filmed in Sheung Shui.

The picture below is a crop from a Government aerial picture (taken in 1973) that I obtained some time ago. It's of the large sandy area where the filming took place the year before. Look carefully at the bottom edge of the picture and you can see a small dark circle. It's a well that can be seen in the background of the second screencap which gives a good idea of where filming took place.

The buildings at the bottom of the picture form part of what was once part of a restaurant and "country club" called the Twin Dragon City Restaurant at the top of a small hill (Tin Ping Shan). The hill, the restaurant and most of the sandy area were redeveloped into the current Woodland Crest residential development and unfortunately for us - as you might be able to tell from my comparison 3D GoogleEarth shot - the area used in the filming now largely sits underneath the private garden and tennis courts of the development.