Wednesday, December 30, 2015

2015 Hong Kong movie Ip Man 3 (葉問3) at Hollywood Theater, from January 22.

The 2015 movie Ip Man 3 (葉問3) will play at the Hollywood Theater in Dormont from January 22. The South China Morning Post has a review and summary of the third instsallment of the biographical trilogy starring Donnie Yen:
Played by Yen with an effective blend of deadpan delivery and formidable combat skills, Ip Man has been portrayed in the series as a family man from Foshan in southern China who involuntarily gets sucked into epic battles. Having defied Japanese occupiers in Ip Man, set in the 1930s, and restored Chinese pride against British colonisers in Ip Man 2, set in 1949 Hong Kong, this long-awaited sequel finds the legend in a relatively peaceful period in 1959 Hong Kong.

Still, the stability of Ip’s low-profile life is temporarily disrupted when local thugs – led by the henchman (Patrick Tam Yiu-man) of corrupt American businessman Frank (Mike Tyson) – are sent to vandalise the primary school his young son attends. Ip puts his prowess to pragmatic use when he volunteers to stand guard with his protégés in the absence of police protection. There he befriends Cheung Tin-chi (Max Zhang Jin), a fellow parent and wing chun exponent who aspires to Ip’s accomplishments.
The movie was released in Hong Kong on December 24, and will play at the Hollywood Theater from January 22 to 27. Showtimes and ticket information are available online via the theater's website. The theater is located at 1449 Potomac Ave. in Dormont (map), and is accessible by Pittsburgh's subway/LRT at a block south of Potomac Station.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Pitt's Confucius Institute named among 2015 Confucius Institutes of the Year.

The University of Pittsburgh's Confucius Institute was named one of the 20 Confucius Institutes of the Year in 2015 at the 10th Confucius Institute Conference in Shanghai on December 5 and 6. It received the same honor in 2008, 2011, and 2013, and is one of five United States Institutes to receive the honor this year. An excerpt of the award text:
In 2015, the Confucius Institute hosted over 30 cultural events of various kinds, attracting more than a total of 37,000 participants. Among the "Confucius Institute Day" events, the Institute successfully held the '1st Pittsburgh Chinese Cultural Festival". This was in cooperation with fifteen local Chinese science and technology, language education, fok art and business organizations. This June, Madam Liu Yandong, Vice Premier of the People's Republic of China, visited the Confucius Institute at University of Pittsburgh, where she highly appreciated the Institute's achievements in teaching and used the expression "Only One" to describe its excellence.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

2015 Chinese movie Mr. Six (老炮儿) in Pittsburgh, from December 24.

The 2015 Chinese movie Mr. Six (老炮儿) will play at AMC Loews Waterfront from December 24. The introduction of a September Variety review provides some background:
“Kids these days,” sighs the lead character in “Mr. Six,” sounding like the grizzled hero in a late-career Clint Eastwood movie. Now well into his fifties, the neighborhood peacekeeper — played with stoical cool by China’s most popular film director, Feng Xiaogang — realizes just how little Beijing’s younger generation respects the old ways after confronting the gangsters who snatched his son. Constructed as the long, inward-gazing buildup to an epic showdown on a frozen lake, Guan Hu’s genre-subverting drama could just as easily be an elegy for a disappearing style of filmmaking — one that acknowledges the country’s obsession with flashy, street-racing culture, while determined to make a more substantive impact on a box office dominated by “Furious 7.”
The theater is also currently screening the 2015 Chinese movies Mojin - The Lost Legend (鬼吹灯之寻龙诀) and Surprise - Journey to the West (万万没想到:西游篇).

Tickets and showtimes are available at the AMC Loews Waterfront website. The theater is located at 300 West Waterfront Dr. in the Waterfront shopping complex in Homestead (map), across the Monongahela River from Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, and the rest of Pittsburgh.

Surprise - Journey to the West (万万没想到:西游篇) currently at AMC Waterfront.

The 2015 Chinese comedy Surprise - Journey to the West (万万没想到:西游篇) is currently playing at AMC Loews Waterfront. A plot summary, from the official site:
Surprise follows the day-to-day misadventures of a character called Dachui Wang as he navigates though various modern and classic situations.

The little monster Wang Dachui, who was born with sharp ears & simple magic, made him different from the ordinaries. The local monster king, he thought he was. But to his surprise, on the one hand, his fate has changed since the encounter with Tang Monk, Monkey King, Piggy & Sand Monk. On the other hand, the meeting with Wang Dachui also should have been the great 82nd disaster to the four.
The movie was released in the US on December 18, and Pittsburgh is one of 17 cities in the country to carry it. The theater is also currently screening the 2015 Chinese movie Mojin - The Lost Legend (鬼吹灯之寻龙诀).

Tickets and showtimes are available at the AMC Loews Waterfront website. The theater is located at 300 West Waterfront Dr. in the Waterfront shopping complex in Homestead (map), across the Monongahela River from Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, and the rest of Pittsburgh.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Regional cuisine of Northwest China, tea, and Sexy Beijing in two "A Very Jewish Christmas" dinner parties in Shadyside, December 24 and 25.

Shadyside's Leaf & Plate is hosting two "A Very Jewish Christmas" dinner parties on December 24 and 25.
Drink tea, eat regional cuisine from Northwest China, and watch a TV show hosted by American expats in China, discovering unknown Jewish communities in Beijing!
The event is $40, and the menu is listed in the flyer above. Those interested in going should register and pre-order by emailing leafandplate at

Leaf & Plate is a tea house and restaurant that opened a few months ago at 5884 Ellsworth Ave. (map), and is run by the organizer behind the local Northwest Chinese Restaurant Pop-Up events.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Lunar New Year celebration in Squirrel Hill, February 6 - 21.

Via Uncover Squirrel Hill.

Squirrel Hill will host a two-week-long Lunar New Year celebration from February 6 through 21. A brief summary from NextGen:Pgh:
We are planning to host Pittsburgh's largest Chinese new year parade in the heart of its most socio-economically diverse neighborhood - Squirrel Hill. Dragons, drums, fireworks, and fun! ... and plenty of dumplings - and pierogis! - too :)
More details to follow as Lunar New Year gets closer.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

New Chinese movie Mojin - The Lost Legend (鬼吹灯之寻龙诀) in Pittsburgh from December 18.

The 2015 Chinese movie Mojin - The Lost Legend (鬼吹灯之寻龙诀) will play at the AMC Loews Waterfront theater from December 18. AMC Loews provides a summary of the movie starring Chen Kun, Huang Bo, Shu Qi, and Angelbaby:
Based on the #1 Best-Selling Treasure Hunting Novel in China, MOJIN - THE LOST LEGEND brings to the screen an epic fantasy adventure about a trio of legendary grave robbers, the Mojin, who are enjoying the retired civilian life hawking goods on the mean streets of New York City, until they are propositioned by a shadowy and mysterious client. They accept the job and return to their roots, raiding the secrets and treasures of ancient tombs in China under the guise of an archaeology study. As each hidden passage is unearthed, it triggers extraordinary challenges that put their friendship, loyalty and life to the ultimate test. In the vein of blockbusters such as Indiana Jones, The Mummy and National Treasure,MOJIN - THE LOST LEGEND will take you on a wild journey from the streets of New York to the mysterious dungeons and treasures of the deep abyss.
The film will be released in China and the US on the 18th. Tickets and showtimes are available at the AMC Loews Waterfront website. The theater is located at 300 West Waterfront Dr. in the Waterfront shopping complex in Homestead (map), across the Monongahela River from Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, and the rest of Pittsburgh.

Mojin - The Lost Legend is the next in a series of new Chinese-language films that have played in Pittsburgh in 2015, in a city where new Asian releases were never seen just a few years ago. The list of this year's Chinese-language releases in Pittsburgh is comprised of:
* Somewhere Only We Know (有一个地方只有我们知道) in February
* Let's Get Married (咱们结婚吧) in April
* Saving Mr. Wu (解救吾先生), Lost in Hong Kong (港囧), Goodbye Mr. Loser (夏洛特烦恼) and The Witness (我是证人) in October
* Our Times (我的少女時代) and The Assassin (刺客聶隱娘) in November
* Fall in Love Like a Star (怦然星动) in December.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Hayao Miyazaki film series at Row House Cinema, December 11 - 17.

The Row House Cinema will show My Neighbor Totoro (となりのトトロ), Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (風の谷のナウシカ), Princess Mononoke (もののけ姫), and Spirited Away (千と千尋の神隠し) as part of a Hayao Miyazaki film series from December 11 to 17. Showtimes are now available online, and three of the four movies---My Neighbor Totoro not included---will have "Kids Will Be Kids" screenings where a younger and more-rambunctious crowd may be expected.

The single-screen theater is located at 4115 Butler Street (map).

Meet and greet with visiting Chinese artists at Manchester Craftsmen's Guild, December 10.

The Manchester Craftsmen's Guild is hosting visiting ceramic artists from China and will hold a meet and greet on December 10. The event runs from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at 1815 Metropolitan Street on the Northside (map), and is free and open to the public.

"Ask Xing Chinese", "Chinese Storytime" at Carnegie Library in Squirrel Hill on December 14.

The Carnegie Library in Squirrel Hill will host "Ask Xing Chinese" again on Monday, December 14.
Have you ever wanted to learn a new language? Xing has returned for another season to present beginner level Chinese instructions at the Squirrel Hill Library! Class will be held on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of the month from 6:30PM -7:45PM.
Also on the 14th, the Squirrel Hill library will host the monthly "Storytime: Chinese and English" program from 1:30 to 2:00 pm in the Children's Room.
Celebrate the city's diverse culture as we explore new words through songs, action rhymes and stories in both English and Chinese. For children birth--5 years and their parents or caregivers.
The library is located at 5801 Forbes Ave. (map) and is accessible by buses 61A, 61B, 61C, 61D, 64, and 74.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Furoshiki Gift Wrapping Event at Maridon Museum, December 10.

The Maridon Museum will host a Furoshiki Gift Wrapping Event with Jae Brown on Thursday, December 10. Furoshiki is "a traditional Japanese wrapping cloth traditionally used to transport clothes, gifts, or other goods." Guests are requested to bring a gift no larger than a shirt box to wrap; scarves will be provided. The event starts at 6:30 pm and the cost is $10. Reservations are required and can be made by calling the museum at 724-282-0123.

The Maridon, an Asian art museum, is located at 322 North McKean St. in downtown Butler (map), roughly 40 miles north of Pittsburgh.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

New Taiwanese restaurant coming to old laundromat in Squirrel Hill.

When I had an apartment in Squirrel Hill a few years ago I would have to visit the Shady Avenue Coin Laundry several times a week. It was in the gray building behind the Starbucks on the corner of Forbes and Shady Aves., and was best known for being a complete dump. A third of the machines would be out of order or too filthy to use; the drop ceiling was stained and missing tiles; the faucets were either broken or spewing out water onto the floor; and the walls were obscured by broken and gutted vending machines. Once I walked in on a photographer at work who had chosen the location because he needed a decrepit setting for a photo shoot.

Anyway, construction started recently on the Taiwanese restaurant that will move into that space at 1711 Shady Ave (map), which was purchased earlier in the year by the same people putting in Hi Sound KTV around the corner. Details are sparse, but the owner is a former chef at the Rose Tea Cafe around the corner.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Chinese movie Fall in Love Like a Star (怦然星动) in Pittsburgh from December 4.

The Chinese movie Fall in Love Like a Star (怦然星动) will play at AMC Loews Waterfront from December 4. A summary, from China Radio International:
Starring China's hottest young actor Li Yifeng and actress Yang Mi, the movie seeks to bring into focus the delicate relationship between celebrities and their agents.

The movie's story revolves around the secretive love between an aspiring actor played by Li and his agent played by Yang in an industry that encourages young actors to remain single in the public eye for fear of losing fans, especially female fans. After a series of misunderstandings and misfortunes, the lovers finally go public.
The movie will be released in China on December 3. Tickets and showtimes are available at the AMC Loews Waterfront website. The theater is located at 300 West Waterfront Dr. in the Waterfront shopping complex in Homestead (map), across the Monongahela River from Greenfield, Squirrel Hill, and the rest of Pittsburgh.

The World of Kanako (渇き) at Parkway Theater, from December 4.

The Parkway Theater in McKees Rocks will show the 2014 Japanese movie The World of Kanako (渇き) from December 4. A Village Voice review writes of it:
The first thing you'll notice about blood-soaked neo-noir The World of Kanako is its hyper but never manic pacing. Most shots last about two seconds, lending a disorienting rhythm to the exhausting gamut of stomach-churning violence that ex-cop Akikazu (Koji Yakusho) exposes himself to during his search for missing daughter Kanako (Nana Komatsu).
There are four showings: December 4 at 9:00 pm, and December 6, 7, and 9 at 7:00 pm. The theater is located at 644 Broadway Ave. in McKees Rocks (map), a few miles west of the North Side.
Random find at Dollar Spree in Greenfield: Chinese Tide (汰渍).

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