Thursday, June 27, 2019

Godzilla vs. Destroyah - Takuro Tatsumi (1995) - Nathan Road, Kowloon

A final post from Godzilla vs. Destroyah and another quick shot from Nathan Road. This time we are a little further along to the north where Bowring Street joins onto Nathan Road. The camera was placed somewhere in front of the Shamrock Hotel looking north. The glass fronted building on the left is the Pearl Oriental Tower on the corner of Bowring Street.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Godzilla vs. Destroyah - Takuro Tatsumi (1995) - Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

Our next post from Godzilla vs. Destroyah shows our reptilian friend shooting laser breath and knocking down buildings on Nathan Road in TST. These images show the view taken from the southern end of Nathan Road where Mody Road joins onto it, so that would place Godzilla stomping around at the southern end of Kowloon Park.

You can see the Yue Hwa sign and the Emperor Watch and Jewellery one a bit further up the road on the left hand side. Interestingly, there appears to be a place called the "Wuthering Heights Pub and Restaurant" on the corner of Mody Road. It's not one I've heard of before but perhaps someone else remembers it.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Godzilla vs. Destroyah - Takuro Tatsumi (1995) - Wanchai, Hong Kong

A quick hop, skip and jump over to Wanchai as Godzilla then stomps past Central Plaza whilst continuing to wreak devastation to the surrounding area before popping across the harbour to give Kowloon some grief.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Godzilla vs. Destroyah - Takuro Tatsumi (1995) - Aberdeen Harbour, Aberdeen

Almost immediately after causing a plane to make an emergency turn away from his gnashing teeth and laser breath, Godzilla pops up to wreak havoc amongst the patrons of the Jumbo Floating restaurant. Cue some rather dodgy looking back projected mayhem shot around the restaurant and also the pontoons over at Shum Wan Pier Drive.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Godzilla vs. Destroyah - Takuro Tatsumi (1995) - Lion Pavilion, The Peak

A quick brief shot from the Lion's Club Pavilion on the peak from this film. This is the calm before the storm because Godzilla doesn't rear his ugly head (literally) until the night time. 1995 looks about right for this view because you can just see some of the West Kowloon Reclamation behind the pavilion roof. Incidentally, this is the view that matches, more or less, my own pictures from this time (my first trip to Hong Kong was a month long sojourn in November of 1995).

Godzilla vs. Destroyah - Takuro Tatsumi (1995) - Kai Tak Airport

More airport action from our next film which uses some brief Hong Kong locations at the very beginning of the film before switching back to Japan for the remainder of the movie. In this film, a newly radioactive Godzilla pops up in Hong Kong harbour and lays waste to a few places before disappearing again. This time he has glowing red spines and is essentially a walking nuclear time bomb.

In the opening scene we see a Qantas aircraft coming in to land at Kai Tak and then later, as the plane takes off in he evening, Godzilla pops up at the end of the runway and the jet just manages to veer out of the way before catastrophe strikes.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - Kowloon City, Kowloon

The bombing sequence (actually, the plane is just opening its cargo doors and dropping all its luggage) is edited so that footage of planes landing at Kai Tak is cut into shots of people on the streets looking up and being showered with suitcases. The landing shots include a bunch of quick edits of planes flying over Kowloon City area which I have been able to identify below.

The curvy building used to be on the corner of Lung Kong Road
(part of the non-curved section remains)
Looking towards Hau Wong Road from Nga Tsin Wai Road
(before the Kowloon City Govt Complex was built)
Corner of Prince Edward Road and Lung Kong Road
Nga Tsin Wai Road between Nam Kok and Nga Tsin Long Roads
Flying over Ma Tau Chung Road

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - View Over Kowloon Tong, Kowloon

One of the first shots we have from the "bombing" sequence is a view across Kowloon Tong. This angle of this shot tells me that the film makers were most likely on Checkerboard Hill filming the west approach of a plane landing at Kai Tak.

The low rise neighbourhood in the foreground is Kowloon Tong with the large open building site being the location of where Parc Oasis was subsequently built in Yau Yat Chuen (although that site wasn't completed for another 12 years!). The small hillock on the left is Woh Chai Hill in Shek Kip Mei and if you look closely you can see the red/white striped chimney from the old Lai Chi Kok incinerator behind Garden Hill at the far right of the image.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - Kai Tak Airport, Kowloon

The final sequence of the HK section of this film involves a Cathay Pacific plane pilot having flashbacks to when he was a bomber pilot during Pearl Harbour and convincing himself he was back there. We see the plane taking off over Kowloon and then a few brief flashes of various locations as the plane flies overhead dropping luggage onto the streets.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - Hotel Miramar, Tsim Sha Tsui

The hotel that Michel and co spend most of their time at is the old Hotel Miramar that used to sit on the north side of Kimberley Road. The lad where the hotel used to stand now houses the Mira Place mall and the hotel itself has been moved to a new building on the opposite side of the road and undergone a brand rename to "The Mira".

We get to see a bit of the interior and exterior. The interiors consist mainly of the famous Miramar Theatre Restaurant which was last seen on this bog when I looked at another French comedy, Bons Baisers de Hong Kong.


The next image looks like it might be near the lobby area of the hotel, however, this version of the Miramar was gone before I ever was able to set foot in Hong Kong and so will have to rely on the memories of others to confirm one way or another (please feel free to leave a comment).


In the last part of the sequence we see the main characters walking outside the hotel, crossing Kimberley Road, with the sweeping gold front of the hotel behind them.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - Aberdeen Harbour, Aberdeen

The hospital that Michel's accident prone cousin is taken to is a floating structure on Aberdeen harbour. At first I thought they may have used one of the local floating restaurants, but an examination of the wording above the door on the last image leads me to believe it was the local community centre. The Chinese above the door reads (R-L) 海上大會堂 which my rudimentary Chinese tells me is "Floating Town Hall" or words to that effect. The Jumbo gets a look in as well but only as a bit of the background.

海上大會堂

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - Nathan Road, Yau Ma Tei

One of the brief shots as Michel travels around Kowloon is a quick look along a section of Nathan Road. The large red 中橋 sign in the distance (low centre right of top image and far right of the lower one) marks the building on the north east corner of the junction with Waterloo Road. This was the Chung Kiu Chinese Products Emporium, one of the big Chinese products stores of the time. The area this was shot was the block between Man Ming Lane and Waterloo Road.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - The Belvedere, Plantation Road

Michel and co get in the middle (by mistake, courtesy of a crooked colleague) of a drug tug-of-war between two criminal factions. The criminal bosses, one a Westerner the other Chinese, are taking it in turns to upstage each other at a garden party somewhere on the Peak.

After a significant amount of searching, it turns out this rather lovely house was "The Belvedere" - the former so-called "Taipan house" of the Shell oil company.

There's an angle from the other side of it over here on FLICKR courtesy of Andrew Tse, but the film company only shot from the opposite side in the front garden terrace. I'm not sure when the building was knocked down (sometime around 1994/95), but it was turned into (as is always the case with these larger old land plots) multi billion dollar luxury houses - in this case five of them - built in 1997.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - Former Peak Hotel Terrace, The Peak

We're staying at the Peak for this next shot because I find it quite intriguing The scene involves Michel's cousin (who always takes out insurance through his cousin's company and then always costs them money by getting into trouble and making a massive claim) who has been duped by the approach of an attractive girl. She leads him up to what looks like an old terrace on a bit of a promise and then proceeds to push him off the top.

The angle of the shot (you can see the Lion Pavilion in the background of the first image) suggests to me that this old terrace might have been the raised platform on which once stood the famous Peak Hotel. The hotel was demolished before the Second World War but it looks like the retaining walls of the podium/terrace it used to sit on stayed around for a lot longer - perhaps up until the Peak Galleria was constructed?


Note Findlay Path and Findlay Road in the lower part of the next two images. The Peak Galleria now stands where this part was filmed, so all traces of the old structure appear to have been removed - perhaps around 1989 when the site development started?

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Banzaï - Coluche (1983) - Lion Pavilion, The Peak

On to the next film, this time 1983's Banzaï starring French comedian, Coluche. It centres around Coluche's character, Michel, who works for a travel insurance company and his usual desk based work life is thrown into chaos when he is given the responsibility of going to various countries to help out any of the company clients that have run into trouble. The film was shot in France, New York and Morocco with the final part of the film taking place in Hong Kong.

The opening shot of Hong Kong is from the Peak and the dialogue moves down to a couple of characters (one of them supposed to be Michel's layabout cousin) who have just met at the Lion's Club Pavilion.