Sunday, April 22, 2018

Noble House (Mini series) - Pierce Brosnan (1988) - Queen's Garden, Midlevels

I haven't looked at Noble House for a while but was recently contacted by a friendly chap, called Sean, who was living in Hong Kong at the time of filming. I can't post a link to the video he showed me but it was some home movie footage he took of the collapsed building set from the final episode.


Anyway, it turns out that the set was in fact a real slope up in the Midlevels.The film makers took advantage of the recently demolished Queen's Garden building at 9 Old Peak Road and used the slope behind the empty plot to stage the disaster scenes.

Before you get too excited, the slope no longer exists. Just after filming finished work began on construction of not just the new Queen's Garden but also another development behind it called Dynasty Court. The slope was removed and a podium was constructed on which Dynasty Court now stands. The driveway of Queen's garden covers the area where the cars are in the above screengrabs.

Anyway, a big thanks to Sean for letting me watch his excellent home movies and helping identify a location which I had never really considered possible to find. You can click on the location link below to see the exact spot.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Yellowthread Street (TV Series) - Bruce Payne (1990) - Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

A quick look back at episode 7 - Rummy's Cut - has revealed another location I missed out the first time. I have no idea why because its location is quite obvious as being the pedestrian bridge that spans Canton Road between the Silvercord Centre and what is now the Marco Polo Gateway Hotel. Also, it appears directly before this location which (almost) makes sense. Anyway, here it is. Not much has changed in the intervening time.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Yellowthread Street (TV Series) - Bruce Payne (1990) - Waterloo Road, Kowloon

Another Yellowthread Street location recently discovered, this time from Episode 5 - Angel Eyes. It's an opening shot of a road filmed as it's getting dark. The shops signs weren't much help this time but the layout of the road ahead made me think of Waterloo Road close to the intersection with Nathan Road. Actually, the opening image turned out to be a little west of Nathan Road at the junction with Shanghai Street. Most of the buildings seen in the images can still be found.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Invisible Waves - Asano Tadanobu (2006) - May Road Tram Stop, Midlevels

In the final post for this film, the two men are filmed riding the tram down to the station on May Road before alighting and catching a taxi to the waterfront.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Invisible Waves - Asano Tadanobu (2006) - Fisherman's Wharf, Macau

As Kyoji walks to catch his ride to Hong Kong from Macau's ferry terminal he walks past the under-construction giant volcano that was a brief feature in the extremely tacky Fisherman's Wharf "theme" park that runs along the waterfront next to the ferry terminal.


The volcano, much like the rest of Fisherman's Wharf, was a complete eyesore and it comes as no surprise to find out the place was demolished a few years ago. When it originally opened it had a river ride attraction inside but was closed almost immediately due to an accident that injured some tourists. Since then it has just been standing there looking increasingly incongruous (much like most of Macau's modern casino buildings) and was eventually demolished and replaced by...yet another casino.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Invisible Waves - Asano Tadanobu (2006) - The Peak, Hong Kong

Another part of Kyoji's commute sees him catching the Peak Tram up to the top terminus. The viewpoint looks like it may have been filmed from the Barker Road station area.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Invisible Waves - Asano Tadanobu (2006) - Peel Street, Central

After Kyoji is told to take a vacation , he gets all he needs from a rather mysterious "monk" (played by the ever annoying Eric Tsang) who is the caretaker of the small shrine at the top of the steps where Peel Street meets Staunton Street.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Invisible Waves - Asano Tadanobu (2006) - Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong

Kyoji seems to have a mammoth commute given that he lives in the middle of Macau and works as a chef for his Thai boss over in Hong Kong (seemingly at the Peak somewhere). Here is part of his commute as he arrives in Hong Kong on one of the turbocat ferries that shuttle between HK and Macau.


This is the expanse of harbour front between Kennedy Town and Central with The Belchers development at the far left of the top picture. The building with the ball at the top is the de facto administrative centre of HK because it is the Liason Office of the Central Peoples' Govt. It's basically where all the top CCP honchos in HK call the shots for the local govt to follow.

Invisible Waves - Asano Tadanobu (2006) - Rua do Barão, Macau

Invisible Waves is a Thai film directed by Pen-Ek Ratanaruang but featuring a cast from various backgrounds including the main character Kyoji, played by Asano Tadanobu who is perhaps now more famous for playing one of the "Warriors Three" (Hogun) in the Thor series of films. It was filmed in 2006 and shot in Hong Kong, Macau and Phuket in Thailand.

I was first made aware of this film back in 2013 via an email from someone calling themselves "Morgoth Bauglir". Morgoth wanted to know where a particular shot had been filmed in Macau. It's only taken me 5 years to get around to watching the film but here is the location in question. It's near to where the main character, Kyoji, supposedly lives and is called Rua do Barão. The steps start from the end of Rua dos Armazéns up onto the curve of Rua do Barão. We see it a couple of times on film as Kyoji makes his way to and from work in Hong Kong.

The steps at the end of Rua dos Armazéns

The steps lead up to Rua do Barão

Yellowthread Street (TV Series) - Bruce Payne (1990) - Mei King Mansion, To Kwa Wan

Another discovery from looking again at Yellowthread Street has revealed this location from the sixth episode, Fan Tan Man. Actually, this location was the focus of a post not so long ago for the live action version of Ghost in the Shell. It's Mei King Mansion in To Kwa Wan.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Code 46 - Tim Robbins (2003) - Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong

When Robbins finally returns home (after an accident that winds him up in hospital), the shots indicate he is in a hospital right in the middle of Central. Cue some rather nice images of the buildings surrounding the harbour before the zoom in (lower photo) between Jardine House and Exchange Square to indicate where the hospital is supposed to be.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Code 46 - Tim Robbins (2003) - Riviera Gardens, Tsuen Wan

On his return home, we see a shot of what appears to be Riviera Gardens in Tsuen Wan (seen from the south) as Robbins' car makes its way back home.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Code 46 - Tim Robbins (2003) - View from the Peak, Hong Kong

Here's another one of those films with a very limited connection to Hong Kong. It's set in a future where the population is controlled via screening and travel is limited to those who can get temporary insurance cover (issued as small cards called "papeles") in order to enter and exit major cities around the world. Tim Robbin's is a fraud investigator sent to Shanghai to find out who is behind the issue of some fake cards.

Towards the end of the film, Robbins' character mentions that he has to return to Seattle where his family live, but on film the establishing shots for his home life are all of Hong Kong. The credits mention the movie was shot on location but Hong Kong really seems to feature in a very small way.

Anyway, the first glimpse of Hong Kong we see is a night shot from the Peak area looking down to the harbour. The angle looks as though the camera was most likely positioned close to the junction with Peak Road and Magazine gap Road.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Yellowthread Street (TV Series) - Bruce Payne (1990) - Former Regal Kai Tak Hotel, Kowloon City

The former Regal Kai Tak Hotel still stands but is now called the Regal Oriental Hotel. When the airport was still in operation, and for a good few years after it closed, the hotel was connected to the terminal via a pedestrian bridge. The bridge has appeared on this blog previously during the posts for Bruce Lee in G.O.D: Shibôteki yûgi. It also pops up in episode 3 of Yellowthread Street.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Yellowthread Street (TV Series) - Bruce Payne (1990) - Sau Mau Ping, Kowloon

The opening scene to episode 3, Key Witness, takes place on top of a hill in Sau Mau Ping. There are a few clues to the location including the presence of the old Sau Mau Ping estate in the background of the scenes with Bruce Payne, the view of the Anderson Road Quarry behind Robert Taylor and finally a quick glimpse of a car escaping down what is now On Sau Road just below the service reservoir.

In the top picture below we can see the slightly taller Sau Ming House on the Sau Mau Ping Estate. The estate was largely demolished in phases throughout the 90's but Sau Ming House remains at the moment. It's handy because it gives us an approximate position of where Payne must have been for this scene and it lines up quite nicely with the hill that now supports the recently constructed On Tat Estate.

Anderson Road quarry at the back

In the lower picture you an see what was once the service road for the reservoir (Sau Mau Ping High Level Salt Water Service Reservoir - located up the slope on the left) but since the construction of the On Tat Estate has become a proper road connecting the estate with Po Lam Road.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Yellowthread Street (TV Series) - Bruce Payne (1990) - Hanaevilla, Tung Shan Terrace

Another one from the Yellwthread Street archives. This one is from the Episode 4, Middleman. It's the location where the ex-wife of the hostage taker lives. It's a grand old building called Hanaevilla on Tung Shan Terrace but is accessed via a sloped driveway from Stubbs Road area. We've seen it only once (briefly) before on this blog for a post a while back for Detonator 2: Night Watch. The building was constructed in 1959 making it quite a rarity for HK.

1989 Construction of Greencliff in the background

Yellowthread Street (TV Series) - Bruce Payne (1990) - D'Aguilar Street, Central

A bit of in-between-films time gives me a chance to go over old stuff and see if I can recognise anything that was missed previously. So here is a blast from the past and a zoom back to 1989 and the very first Yellowthread Street episode (called Power Play). One of the very first scenes in the series was Eden (Bruce Payne) having a drink in a bar before heading out and witnessing a man being chased by a gang. It looks to me as though Payne is walking down D'Aguilar Street (although since this was filmed the retaining wall at the back has been upgraded with smaller bricks) and stops at Wing Wah lane where he sees the chase.