Monday, December 17, 2012

All About Ah Long - Chow Yun Fat (1989) - New Clearwater Bay Road, Kowloon

Just a fleeting glimpse but it's there nonetheless as Chow and Sylvia drive away on Chow's moped.

The last couple of pics show - just - the flyover of the New Clearwater Bay Road (which these guys are steaming along) - which isn't so new anymore because it was built in 1980. Just ahead on the right hand side of the road is a small turnoff which marks the place where the New CWB Rd joins with the original CWB Rd.Once again a more recent picture courtesy of the ever-great Streetview.

I'm not sure where the camera would have to be in order to get the angle Johnnie To achieved for this shot, but I suspect it may have been somewhere on the side of Fei Ngo Shan - Kowloon Peak - which is to the immediate right of the road.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Friends - David Chiang (1973) - To Kwa Wan Road, Kowloon

In a scene where Fu Sheng is conspiring to get money for Chiang's artwork, we see him and his buddy crossing a rather busy road somewhere.

The giveaway in this shot ended up being the small gasometer's in the background. Thanks to fact that China Gas still has a site (although these small little gasometer's have been replaced by something much larger) at this very location along To Kwa Wan Road. Here are the screen grabs.

Okay, now you see the small gasometers in the background. But what about the building centre screen at the back? Well, this building is at 112-116 To Kwa Wan Road and is actually the end of a large development that was created in the early sixties, with about a dozen very short roads all backing onto Mok Cheong Street. As you'll see in my Streetview grab below, these roads (and that building) hasn't really changed much.
The part of the building that we can see was actually opened in March of 1961 and hasn't really changed that much. Check it out, it's the distant building just right of centre.

Anyway, continuing with the screen grabs we see Fu Sheng and friend crossing to the other side of the road and they eventually stop by the building there at 100 To Kwa Wan Road. Now, it has had a little bit of work done to its facade but actually this building is still around.

The vehicular entrance has been removed but the ground floor windows and first floor window shades (I mean the concrete wings that jut out from each window place) are still there. These are actually a very common feature of many 50's and 60's built buildings in HK. I kinda like 'em.

Anyway, To Kwa Wan is just one of those areas that has changed vastly in the past few years so I'm quite pleased to have been able to find this location looking fairly similar (at least recognisable) to its 1973 form.

Afew other things worth noting on the film shots were the old Airport sign (Kai Tak was loacted a short distance up this road), also the red/white circular bus stop signs. It may be hard for non-HK'ers to believe but these signs are still used extensively all over the territory. Finally, you can just about see the bottom of an old red 7-Up sign in the top set of pictures.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

All About Ah Long - Chow Yun Fat (1989) - Anderson Road Quarry

This is the place where Chow's character - Ah Long - works. It's such a prominent landmark in far eastern end of New Kowloon that I am sure it will crop up again and again as we look at more and more films. Anyway, here are the screen shots.

The quarry is soon to be the target of a beautification project. First quarried in the mid-60's (1964 - I think?) the place is considered to be one of Kowloon's major eyesores (along with all those too-high skyscrapers) and plans are afoot to green it as well as perhaps get a housing project underway there.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Friends - David Chiang (1973) - Kent Road, Kowloon Tong

Tricky one to spot this one but now I am living in the vicinity I managed to recognise some of the buildings that are still around.

The scene in Friends is when everyone heads over to Fu Sheng's house to pick him up in their jeep. The house itself I haven't yet found out (could be the same area, could be somewhere else - this is film after all) but as they drive away we get a shot of some buildings in the background that are actually fronting onto Cornwall Street. Here is the screen grab.

The building with the red trim is Hillsea Court at #10 Cornwall Street. Just to the left, coloured a deep green with some trees in front, is Villa Cornwall. Both buildings are still around and are very attractive 60's style low rise apartment blocks. All this means is that the Friends are actually driving up Kent Road on the opposite side of Cornwall St. Here is the modern Streetview.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

All About Ah Long - Chow Yun Fat (1989) - Yau Yat Chuen School, Kowloon

It's changed a little bit since 1989 - most notably a little bit of extra height has been added, as well as the front flag pole being removed (although the brackets can still be seen on the wall), but it is undoubtedly the same place that Chow's son attends school.

The thing that gave this one away for me is the house in the background of the second picture - it's a style very much still seen in Yau Yat Chuen, although that particular one has already been redeveloped. Anyway, here is the closest I can get using Streetview in lieu of me popping down there (actually, not that far from my current location, to be honest).

Saturday, December 8, 2012

All About Ah Long - Chow Yun Fat (1989) - Lung Ha Wan, Clearwater Bay

Not the first time this location has been used for a film, but this time we see it from a slightly different angle. This is where the shoot takes place for Chow's son on his BMX bike. A few background rocks and pinnacles show us where we are such as in the following screen grabs where we can see Table Island in the mid-background and Ung Kong (Bluff Island) is the far distance.

Lung Ha Wan (Lobster Bay) has two parts - both sides of a small bit of land that juts out from the main coastline. The NW side is popular with scuba divers (you can drive there) and was once a loading point for luxury car smugglers. The SE side we saw Paul Chin Pei standing on in this post and I note that Andi mentions it as being used in Trilogy of Swordsmanship.

The bit seen above though in All About Ah Long is the top part of the promontory. There is still a large open space up there that is popular with kite flyers.