Friday, January 18, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Mang Kung Wo Road, Sai Kung

The chief executive candidate, Mr Xo (Kenneth Tsang), has a female English assistant called Rachel (played by Raquel Cassidy). She also happens to be the ex-wife of our intrepid investigative journo (played by Anthony Hayes). As you would expect of a powerful person's right-hand woman, Rachel lives in what looks like a very plush house with large outdoor deck containing a pool and gazebo. It took me a while but I managed to track it down to a large private house in Sai Kung district literally at the end of the road.

I wonder whose house it is? The only way to reach this place is via a track that looks like it was put down by the Water Supplies Dept. The only sign at the start of the road simply states "Kei Pik Shan Village Supply Tank".

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Stanley Sewage Treatment Works, Stanley

David and Jonah head to the refuse depot from where the truck that killed their wife originated. In the show it quite obviously says "Shatin Refuse Depot" on the various images they are examining but in reality the place they visit (replete with "Shatin Refuse Depot" signs) is in fact the subterranean Stanley Sewage Treatment Works. It appears to have been quite a ground breaking bit of engineering (when HK was capable of doing that stuff) to move the treatment pools and associated heavy plant to this cavern system with an aim to creating a nicer environment for Stanley village dwellers.

The green board/display thing on the left in that last photo helped me find this place because I could just make out the "Drainage Services Dept" emblem at the top left of it. The actual entrance to this place is on Wong Ma Kok Road near to the prison.

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Lockhart Road, Wanchai

Not a major location but a quick shot showing off some of the LED lighting in Hong Kong. These particular signs are along Lockhart Road in Wanchai. I'm going to hazard a guess that the "Hotel Beverly" is of the hourly room type.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - View over Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon

I reckon the makers of Strangers had recently watched Ghost in the Shell because there are some similarities in some of the establishing and mood setting shots used in both. We already saw a use of the same pier location in one of my first posts (Tong Shui Road Pier) but here is a view over TST that is very similar in angle to this one in Ghost in the Shell.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - LKF 29, Central

The last major scene of episode 2 is when Lau Chen meets her girlfriend at a bar/club. This was filmed on the open 2nd floor of Onfem Tower (renamed LKF 29) located at the top of Wyndham Street, opposite the Fringe Club. The building in the left background of the lower image is St Paul's Church on Glenealy.

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - FEHD Quarters, Sai Yee Street

David and Lau Chen's flat makes another appearance in Episode 2, however, I recently went for a wander in the area and took a quick photo of the section that was used in the filming and I can confirm that only the exterior was used. The reason is because it appears (from my photo) that the end doorway used for the flat is in fact the entrance to the building's stairwell! You can see the Exit sign above the lintel in my photo (see last image).

The first image shows Jonah (John Simm) getting out of a cab on Sai Yee Street with the FEHD building behind him. On the left is where the Mongkok Road pedestrian bridge where it turns left to continue on towards Mongkok East station and the (now named) Moko mall. It looks like sometime in the past the bridge either connected to or was intended to connect to the FEHD building. It's been blocked off for as long as I can remember.

Snapped on 13th January 2019

Monday, January 14, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Lau Fau Shan, Yuen Long

David and Jonah's mysterious wife kept a small bolt hole out in the middle of nowhere. I'm not sure about the actual building used, but the build up to the scene was filmed with Jonah and Lau Chen arriving at the bus terminus in Lau Fau Shan followed by them walking through the village.

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Mido Cafe, Temple Street

David Chen goes to talk to his former police colleague, Felix, at the local after-hours cop joint. It turns out they have taken over the Mido Cafe on the corner of temple Street as their watering and karaoke hole.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Ngong Ping Village, Lantau

Jonah goes for a wander to experience some of the places his wife wanted him to see. He's describing his experiences to his sister back in the UK and mentions he visited the "ancient city". It turns out he was talking about Ngong Ping Village, probably the furthest example of something "ancient" in Hong Kong that you could get.

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Wooloomooloo, Wanchai

Another rooftop scene, this time for a party where one of the Chief Executive candidates (played by Stuart Ong) comes over to give Porter a piece of his mind. I've never been here (or to any of the Wooloomooloo branches) but it seems to be one of the more popular rooftops to enjoy some drinks at.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Tin Hau Temple Square, Yau Ma Tei

Jonah and David go for a coffee to discuss their common issues at the open square in front of the Yaumatei Tin Hau temple. The last time we saw this on the blog was when a scene in Blackhat (filmed in 2013 but released in 2015).

Friday, January 11, 2019

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Canal Road Flyover, Causeway Bay

Here's a view of Canal Road which looks to me as though it was probably shot from the top of VPoint, a location I covered a few posts ago. You can just see the side of Times Square on the left of the shot. The old building occupying centre stage is the Wing Tak building, built in 1972.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - The Society for the Promotion of Hospice Care, Shatin

This is another fairly newly built building (which makes it a bit more challenging to find given the age of Google's Streetview and 3D imagery in HK) that was used by the production. In the show it is used for establishing shots for Sally Porter's (the vice consul) high rise apartment residence. However, in reality it only reaches about 4 storeys and so the camera never reveals the space above the building. It appears mainly in episode 2 and we get to see a couple of brief shots of the reception area as well. This place even has its own website.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Tsim Sha Tsui Waterfront, Kowloon

After getting hold of a powerbank to charge his drained phone, Jonah is able to retrieve the last voice message left by his wife as he walks along the waterfront.

The Yin and Yang of Mr Go - James Mason (1970) - Sutherland House, Chater Road

As a little break between Strangers episodes, here is a real tough one finally identified by Arthur Yau, who, along with Thomas Ngan, has been instrumental in identifying some really obscure locations over the past few years. The location is the Bank of Tokyo and it had some very large characters on its road side wall identifying it as such. The screen images below show what appears to be the entrance.

I really had no idea where this was but Arthur found an obscure old picture here, which places this at the ground floor of what was Sutherland House, at the corner of Chater Road and Club Street. Sutherland House was the building that for many years had the circular "BAYER" advertisement at the top. It was a prominent advert that featured on many a night time panorama.

Anyway, I believe Sutherland House was demolished in the early 90s to make way for the former Ritz Carlton hotel. The latter was one of the shortest lived buildings in Hong Kong's history and only lasted for 15 years between 1993 and 2008 before once again being demolished to make way for the current CCB Tower.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Chungking Mansions, Tsim Sha Tsui

One of the few 'interiors' of this show that was actually shot on location. Jonah goes to Chungking Mansions in order to find a charger for his phone, which has remained bereft of life since before he left the UK.

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - View from the Lion's Pavilion, The Peak

This is the view from the Lion's Pavilion on the Peak. The tiny stone lion is part of the pavilion balustrades. No, that's not an orange filter being used on the camera lens, it is a common light seen here in the evenings and is down to air pollution.

Friday, January 4, 2019

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - Central Walkway, Hong Kong

Another of the characters introduced in the first episode is the investigative journalist who is trying to get some dirt on the local political shenanigans. This scene was filmed along the covered walkway that runs from Jardine House and IFC area down to the Central Ferry Piers.

Strangers - John Simm (2018) - FEHD Quarters, Sai Yee Street

David Chen lives with his daughter, Lau, in a rather spacious apartment by HK standards. I've since read that pretty much all of the interiors were filmed back in the UK at the beginning of 2018, however, I should say that the building used in the show is an old Colonial Govt quarters, so the size of the studio set might actually be fairly close to reality given the generous size of Govt accommodation of old.

Anyway, this is the old accommodation block for the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department. The FEHD came into being after the abolition of the (democratically elected) Urban Council, but I suspect the building has been around a bit longer than that given its architecture.

We get quite a few nice views up Sai Yee Street and also along Mongkok Road - you can see the roof of the walkway from the East Rail station as it turns a 90 degree angle just outside the apartment building.

View from apartment area along Mongkok Road walkway