About this Blog

I review films (world cinema, especially Japanese and Korean), with a preference for independent, arthouse productions or anything that has been under-appreciated.

Occasionally you’ll find drama commentary, book reflections, travel musings & possibly other things as inspiration strikes.

I’m rarely to be found without a camera. I’ll post pictures here on occasion, but more regularly on my photo tumblr (or on flickr). Working on all kinds of photo projects. Often seeking photo buddies to explore the world with (get in touch if you like).

Planned trips: Wayford Woods (aka Faery Forest) in Crewkerne, Somerset (April). Bristol for the International Balloon Fiesta (August).
Still more tentative for this year: Malaysia; Brazil; Copenhagen; Lisbon/Porto… and others.

Follow via:

Contact: alualune at hotmail com (insert the . as appropriate)

Languages: Deutsch, English, español, nederlands/vlaams. Learning 한국 and 日本語. Hopefully português in the near(er) future. And one day I might revive that high school français…

Places I have lived: Austria, Thailand, Taiwan, USA (NM), Belgium, Spain, Basque Country, The Netherlands, Scotland, Costa Rica and England. ♥ I’m a global nomad for life. 🙂

Location: Currently London-based, but occasionally swinging over to the European continent or Asia. And happily elsewhere, if the chance so arises.

I’m a Third Culture Kid and a UWC alumni, just in case you care. 🙂

28 thoughts on “About this Blog”

  1. aw too bad. I wanted to send you a PM and thought you’d have a contact form. I should have remember that we have way too many common points, and that’s an other proof! Just to let you know that I’m fine, and I did long for the time I could read your blog again (read: have some time for myself).
    Hope the new year has begun well for you!

    • I haven’t yet gotten around to making a contact form… but I think in the comments I make on your blog you should able to see my email address? You can always send me a PM via email 🙂

      It’s sounds like you’ve been terribly busy!

  2. Great blog – thanks very much for the link to A Year of Reading the World. If you have any suggestions for the list, let me know…

    • Hi Ann – I’m a bit slow answering you, sorry! I’m happy to link your blog, I just love your project. Hopefully linking it from here will get you more hits and more reading recommendations!

      I do have some suggestions:
      New Zealand: The Bone People (Keri Hulme). Love this one (although it might be too experimental for some).
      Also: Going West (Maurice Gee), which has the most amazing book trailer.
      Australia (which you tackled already, but still have to suggest this): Remembering Babylon (David Malouf) – love this one a lot too, although it took more than one read to appreciate this novel.
      South Africa: I’m a big fan of J.M. Coetzee, my favourite is, hands down, Age of Iron, I find it incredibly moving
      Lebanon: Memory for Forgetfulness (Darwish Mahmoud) – very stream-of-consciousness, so not for everyone. I think it’s brilliant, but I tend towards modern/postmodern/experimental writing, which of course isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.
      India: The White Tiger (Aravind Adiga), From Heaven Lake or An Equal Music (Vikram Seth).
      Argentina: Julio Cortázar – Hopscotch, his short stories, the quirky The Autonauts of the Cosmoroute, anything by him really!
      Brazil: Avalovara (Osman Lins).

      … I could go on… 🙂 I’ll try and find suggestions for your missing countries, since that would probably help you more!

      By the way, I’ve got copies of some of the above, which I’d be happy to lend you!

      • Thanks very much – I’ll look into these and add them to the list. I love Coetzee too. I’m not taking on any writers I’ve read before otherwise he would definitely be an SA contender. Happy Sunday

      • Makes sense not to include Coetzee – your list would get very, very long if you included anyone and anything!

        By the way, I think it’s very easy to miss the subscription option for your blog, I didn’t see it for the longest while. Perhaps do a separate page with subscription options (email, RSS, not sure if you are on Twitter?)?

        Happy Sunday to you as well – it’s looking sunnier than yesterday fortunately!

      • Great idea – thanks. I’ll get on to that asap. Yes, I am on Twitter @annmorgan30.

  3. Do you have an email we can send a press release to about an upcoming film release?

  4. Alua, I realized I don’t have your email. I’m in the midst of planning the trip more thoroughly and would like to set out time for you! 😀

    • You do! Check comments I have made on your blog – you’ll see the email.

      • And that’s where we all say, “Raine is an idiot….”

      • Or maybe “Raine has been really busy lately, has been doing a gazillion things and is still recovering from surgery so understandably she forgot about a tiny, irrelevant detail?”

        Happens to everyone I think! I’ll check my calendar and email you later.

  5. How very pleasant to stumble upon a woman writing about film, and East Asian film to boot!

    Let’s talk Chinese film some day.

    • I kind of get what you mean! In our London Asian Film Society (basically a whole bunch of us who are London-based and blog on Asian film we see at all the festivals and events here) women are clearly the minority (meanwhile, TV drama blogging seems to be dominated by females).

      Yeah, Chinese cinema…. one of the film cultures I need to explore more (I’ve got quite a few in past Trailer Weeklies posts that I want to see), because so far I’ve only reviewed 我十一 (Wo Shi Yi/11 Flowers) and 转山 (Zhuǎn shān/One Mile above aka Kora, China/Taiwan). I did recently watch She, a Chinese and Ufo before Her Eyes, and have some other films on review backlog – 竞雄女侠·秋瑾 (Woman Knight of Mirror Lake, China/Hong Kong), 我不卖身,我卖子宫 (Wo Bu Mai Shen Wo Mai Zi Gong/True Women for Sale, Hong Kong) and the Taiwanese 星空 (Starry Starry Night).

      Seeing 女朋友。男朋友 (Nyeobung-u. Nambung-u/GF*BF, Taiwan) next week at the Pan-Asian Film Festival too, which I’m looking forward to.

  6. Hi there,

    I just wanted to let you know that you are the lucky winner of the Coventry East Asian Film Society competition and that you have won 2 tickets to see Hong Kong Young Filmmakers Shorts Programme at Pan-Asia Film Festival in London! Please send me your name and telephone number to [-] to receive your tickets.

    Congratulations and thank you for entering our competition!

    Kind regards,

  7. I love your blog! I really need to watch more Chinese/Taiwanese films for practice. I don’t watch many Chinese films these days now I’m not in China I don’t hear about new releases and end up not researching or finding out what’s out there. I’ll be rummaging through your archives to find out what I’ve missed recently. Are there any GOOD Chinese (preferably Mandarin) films you’d suggest?

    • Thanks 🙂

      I have many more reviews of Japanese/Korean films than Chinese/Hong Kong or Taiwanese ones. The ones I have reviewed include Gf*Bf, One Mile Above, 11 Flowers, Big Blue Lake and A Simple Life (the last one is a must see), though I do have a whole lot which I’ve watched but haven’t had time to review yet (Ufo before Her Eyes; She, a Chinese; Lacuna; Woman Knight of Mirror Lake; True Women for Sale; Starry, Starry Night) and many more which I’d like to see (Honey Pupu, Winds of September, You Are the Apple of My Eye etc.).

      You can also check past Trailer Weeklies, because I feature any films I want to see there and you’ll find a few more Chinese/Hong Kong/Taiwanese films among them: Trailer Weekly Archive.

      Also check out the Translating China project, they’ve held film events in the past. I also keep my eye on the film programme at the Cornerhouse in Manchester as they have a Chinese film strand in cooperation with the Chinese Film Forum. I try to list these kind of events on my monthly Events post as much as I can (i.e. if I hear about them). I haven’t yet finished the April Events post (later today), but the Asian Movies Meetup will screen Ocean Heaven (Hong Kong, 2010) this month (free event).

  8. Hi there.
    I nominated you for a liebster award on my blog. Basically just a way to show I like your blog! Thanks as ever, for all your support.

  9. Hi, I was wondering if you know where I might be able to watch 11nin mo iru? Thank you

  10. Newbie said:

    Hi alua,
    as promised on Dramabeans I leave a comment after skimming through your wonderful blog.
    I’m determined to go into more detail and check out lots of your film reviews.
    As a fellow movie lover I must confess that I am really envious, that you live in London and have the opportunity to see so much Asian cinema.
    My oldest son is starting to take an interest in Japanese culture and anime now. May I ask you for a rec for a 14 year old kid as animes are not my forte?
    And as I see, that you speak German my farewell is besten Dank im Voraus. Hab’ einen schönen Tag. 🙂

    • Hi Newbie, thanks for stopping by. Hope you can find some films that interest you (and that you can also get hold of). I’m pretty spoiled by being in London, which offers many opportunities for seeing Asian cinema, especially those that will never get a release but only screen at very specialised film festivals. Where are you based?

      What has your son watched? What does he like in general? The first thing that comes to mind is of course Akira. I would say Ghost in the Shell too, depending a bit on how mature your son is (it’s more metaphorical/philosophical than Akira). I think any Studio Ghibli film can be watched by anyone of any age – I would suggest reading the synopses of the various films and letting your son pick the ones that interest him the most. Many do have female protagonists, but from what I’ve heard teen boys might be resistant to that at first, but then forget once watching. (That’s the magic of Ghibli for you.) Nausicaa, Mononoke and Howl might be good to start with. Being from 1984, Nausicaa does feel ‘older’ in terms of animation style, but its story is as aktuell as ever. Other anime to try: anything by Hosoda Mamoru (probably Summer Wars and The Girl Who Leapt through Time would be most appealing). Again, the latter has a female heroine, but if your son isn’t totally opposed to that, it’s a fabulous film.

      There are also the animations of the late Satoshi Kon, but they are bit more serious and geared towards for adults, so they might be a better fit when your son is a little older. I would also leave Shinkai Makoto for now, his anime are very much about expressing feelings (loneliness, sadness) – very beautiful, but maybe not the right kind of thing for a 14 year old.

      Other than animated films, I think anime series would be probably be something to your son’s liking. I have not seen many, but there are plenty anime blogs out there that would probably have good suggestions. Lost in Anime is one blog I would recommend. I liked Tsuritama, which is about ~14 year old boys, fishing and aliens. It’s quirky. Maybe Nodame Cantabile? It’s very quirky and maybe not the sort of thing I would start with, but if you son enjoys Japanese kind of humour, it’s definitely one not to miss.

      • Wow, that are a lot of recommendations! Thank you. Will look them up and hopefully we’ll find something to his taste. I know that he has already watched a couple of anime series online, but I have to confess I forgot the titles. If he chooses one of yours and we find a version he’s able to understand (his English is good, but he is still a pupil, so his vocabulary is limited) I’ll give a feedback. Thanks again.

        I’m located between Köln and Düsseldorf, the wonderful yet scenically charmless Rhineland with its funny and open-minded people, if I may say so myself. 😉
        Today we are enjoying an early spring with bright blue sky and lots of warm sun. Hope Londoners have the opportunity to go outdoors and smell the fresh air, too. Have a great Sunday!

  11. Hi alua! As said on DB I’m adding a comment here so we can work out details for a meet up and stuff =)

    (and because I have no idea, this would give you my email yes? Or am I being stupid and need to actually add it? Jetlag makes for a non working brain)

    • You do have to enter the email address… It won’t be publicly visible, but it will be visible to me. (Which is better, because that means no spammers will get hold of it.)


    • Nevermind, I got it! I didn’t see it at first. Little sleep, long day at work.

      • Haha no worries! Little sleep and long work days are never a fun combination. Neither is jetlag 😉

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