Saturday, December 9, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Aberdeen Harbour, Aberdeen

A quick trip to Aberdeen and the Tai Pak where Scott accidentally bumps into one of his neighbours from back in the US. They board the sampans along the seafront with Abba House in the background (before it had the word ABBA emblazoned across the podium level in large red letters) and the second shot shows the view across the harbour to the Ap Lei Chau housing estate and the old power station on the far right (since replaced by South Horizons).


Out on the water we get a view of the Tai Pak that will be familiar with anyone who has taken a trip through Aberdeen Harbour by boat. I even (almost) have my own version of this shot.


The last shot shows Brick Hill (far background) and a smaller, developed hill on the left. This view is now obscured by a high rise development called Broadview Court, built on the waterfront in 2001. It looks like the Aberdeen Boat Club (behind the sampan awning on the left) was around at the time but I think this was before the Aberdeen Marina Club was built.

Friday, December 8, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Ruttonjee Sanatorium, Wanchai

Following up a lead, the two main characters head to the hospital where the son is supposed to have passed away. The location is actually the former version of the Ruttonjee Hospital. According to notes on Gwulo.com, the sanatorium stood until 1991 when it was then redeveloped (and renamed) into the hospital that still stands on the site today.

Judging by some of the surroundings the location of the old sanatorium was more towards the Queen's Road East side of the plot - where the current multi-function building stands


We also get a slightly closer view of the old entrance when the two later exit the building.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Eucliffe, Repulse Bay

In a nice little surprise, Eucliffe - the famous castle like mansion that once sat above Repulse Bay - makes a showing. In the film it is the house of a triad boss whose daughter knew Scott's son. The scene starts with a view from Repulse Bay Road looking back towards the Repulse Bay Apartments.


 The old driveway of Eucliffe seems to coincide with the modern day entrance into the development that replaced it (which goes by the rather bland- for HK at least - name of "56 Repulse Bay"). The old entrance can be seen in the next shot.


Once inside the driveway we can see the front entrance. I have no idea whether or not the place was still being lived in when this film was made, but it looks as though the small centre garden in the middle of the circular driveway was still being tended to (or quickly fixed up by the film crew?). The building still had a few years of life left before demolition, so it's feasible it was still being lived in at this time.


We even get a quick glimpse inside the hallway as the maid opens the door to let them in, and what looks to be a conservatory in the next scene - although , I must admit, I am only guessing that it was filmed inside the building. It would be great if anyone could confirm.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - The Peninsula Hotel, Tsim Sha Tsui

The Peninsula Hotel features a fair amount in this film both inside and out as it's the hotel where the two main characters are staying.


And some pictures of one of the corridors as well as the view from Scott's room. From the view outside the window it looks like this was filmed on the top (6th?) floor on the eastern side of the main section of the building.

Monday, December 4, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - US Consulate, Central

Up Cotton Tree Drive and back down Garden Road to visit the Consulate General of the U.S.A. As mentioned previously, at some point the external balconies were removed and replaced by the flat external wall that can be seen today. The building on the left in the top picture (and at the back of the bottom one) is The Helena May.
 

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Cotton Tree Drive, Central

One of the first things on the agenda when they land in Hong Kong is a trip to the US Embassy, which they start out on by heading up Cotton Tree Drive. The 1983 view of this area is vastly different compared to today. At the back we can see (from right to left) Fairmont House, almost brand new after being completed in 1982. Behind that is Bank of America Tower although at the time it was  called Carrian House (a big scandal revolved around it in the 80's). In front of them all is the Murray Road car park that was sold for redevelopment recently and behind that is Hutchinson House.

Now gone is the Furama Hotel and the small building next to it was Sutherland House. What's missing of course is the Bank of China Tower that was eventually built where all the cars are parked. Construction didn't start until 1985 though so this view shows the site after Murray Barracks had been dismantled but before the bank building construction started.


The second screencap shows the view up the road with the Murray Building on the right - currently being turned into a hotel - and the two towers of St Joseph's College further up the hill.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - General Post Office, Central

Further to my suspicion that the film company couldn't film at the HK-Macau ferry terminal (for whatever reason), the scene where Scott and MacGraw are supposedly disembarking from the ferry was actually filmed next to the Post Office on Connaught Place. Of course, it could be that at the time this was the point for disembarking due to construction of Shun Tak? I hope someone in the know can relieve me of my ignorance.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Ferry Terminal, Macau

Just when you thought we had left Macau for good, the scene of the hydrofoil arriving at port in HK was actually filmed back in Macau! The giveaway is the view of the Governor Nobre de Carvalho Bridge in the background - at a time when it could still be easily seen from the ferry terminal. I'm not sure why they filmed this bit back in Macau, but I am wondering if the crew couldn't get a permit (or it was too expensive for what was a TV movie) to film at the HK-side.

Friday, December 1, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal, Hong Kong

The film leaves Mainland China (i.e. Macau) for a brief moment as the two protagonists make their way to Hong Kong to follow up a lead. The establishing shot of the hydrofoil approaching the ferry terminal gives us a nice view of the waterfront along the western part of HK Island. Obviously this was made before the Shun Tak Centre towers were built - the eastern one opening the following year in 1984.

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Escola de Policia das Forças de Segurança, Taipa

Although now used as a Police Training School, hence the name (Escola de Policia das Forças de Segurança), this building was once part of the Portuguese Garrison in Macau and served as a barrack building. These days it is painted a rather bright red and access seems to be limited - perhaps also because of the new PLA barracks right next door - but back in 1983 it was white and looking a bit worse for wear.


The low lying buildings in the background are Taipa village and if you look closely in the background of the third picture you can see the distant hillside of Taipa Pequena and a few of the older houses that line Estrada Lou Lim Ieok. Looking at my copy of Jason Wordie's book on Macau, it looks like other than a paint job the building is unchanged, including its little stone staircase.