Sunday, December 17, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Sai Kung Waterfront, Sai Kung

Once again, back to the same strip of waterfront that we have now seen several times on this blog, usually as a stand in for Aberdeen (I still have no idea why supposed Aberdeen shots just weren't filmed in Aberdeen...).

This time we see the car pull up along See Cheung Street, which is the main street through this part of the old town/village. But it's not long before we are back at the old concrete pier as Scott and co board a sampan to go and see his ailing son with the police and triads not far behind.

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Salisbury Road, East Tsim Sha Tsui

The triad's daughter, who was once Biehn's girlfriend, offers to take Scott and MacGraw to see him on a boat in "Aberdeen". They get in a car and it can be seen turning onto Salisbury Road from Mody lane (next to the TST Centre - top picture) before turning around and heading back the other way.

Actually, this place hasn't changed at all, the only difference is the New World Centre in the far background (far left - middle pictures) has been demolished and is being replaced by something so monstrous I don't have the words to describe it.

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Former British Military Hospital, King's park

A few years ago, when I was looking at Yellowthread Street location, this building gave me a bit of a runaround because it seems to have gone virtually undocumented in terms of photographs other than a select few on FLICKR

Anyway, it turns out to have been the go-to place for hospital film scenes in the 80's and 90's. If you click on the Yellowthread Street link above you should be able to see a comment made by Jude Poyer regarding a few films he worked on that were also shot there. In China Rose we see, what I believe, is the back (north facing) side of the building being used as an establishing shot for where Scott goes after he gets injured helping his son escape the triads. It's a shame it's so brief but at least I know enough about the place now to recognise it when it pops up.

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Wong Tai Sin Temple, Kowloon

Scott finally gets to meet his son (played by Michael Biehn) in the old fortune teller alleyway in front of Wong Tai Sin Temple. But before that we are treated to some shots of (no doubt) real worshipers going hammer and tongs with the divining sticks as Scott picks his way through the masses.

Friday, December 15, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Wellington Street, Central

After having their strange lunch with old triad boss guy, the couple head out onto the street - surprisingly there are no geographical shenanigans going on here and they correctly exit onto Wellington Street. Most of the shops and buildings seen on the right (north) side of the street have already been demolished and replaced. Some fairly recently. The white building in the far back ground is called the Mandarin Building. It's still there but now dwarfed by its close neighbours.


The stone steps seen on the left here are where Staveley Street cuts across Wellington Street.


The couple notice they are being followed and turn down peel Street. The building in the penultimate picture with the metal windows is the Tai Cheung Pawn Shop - it's still there and hasn't changed.

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Lin Heung Tea House, Wellington Street

Scott finds a note on his pillow to meet someone the next day, so the pair head off for their rendezvous and are just about to leave when the old triad guy turns up. The venue for this meetup is the famous Lin Heung Tea House on Wellington Street. We saw it last on this blog when JCVD and Rob Schneider went there in Knock Off.


I've never been to this place (still on my to-do list) but I think this scene was perhaps filmed in the upper floor of the restaurant which has the rather nice wood decor. Perhaps someone is able to confirm?

Thursday, December 14, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Police HQ Arsenal Street, Wanchai

Just on the cusp of the line between Central and Wanchai is Arsenal Street where the Police HQ stands. The one that stands there now is new and the older version (pre-1990's redevelopment) can be seen below. Although the main site has been completely redeveloped, the building in the last picture is Caine House which is still standing.

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Star Ferry Pier, Central

When Scott realises something is up he races off to the Canton ferry to convince MacGraw to stay and help. In reality the Canton ferry is a Star ferry and it is leaving from the old Star ferry pier in front of Edinburgh Place. Sadly demolished in 2006 to make way for reclamation, it still feels like one of the worst development decisions made by the HK Govt.

Speaking of redevelopment, in the top screen grab at the back is the general Post office, itself now about to be knocked down and redeveloped (although I am not sure of the timetable for it). On the left is the Edinburgh Place car park.


Running through the old pier towards the boat and the ferry entrance/gangplank at the bottom.

Monday, December 11, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Kowloon City Ferry Pier, Kowloon

Crossing the harbour by vehicular ferry was still a common route in the 80's (the only vehicular ferry service now is for dangerous good vehicles barred - for obvious reasons - from using the tunnels). MacGraw and Scott take the ferry from an, as yet, unidentified pier and head over to the Kowloon City Pier at San Ma Tau Street. The key to identifying this location is the gasworks in the background. The gas works are still there on To Kwa Wan Road.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Aberdeen Harbour, Aberdeen

A quick trip to Aberdeen and the Tai Pak where Scott accidentally bumps into one of his neighbours from back in the US. They board the sampans along the seafront with Abba House in the background (before it had the word ABBA emblazoned across the podium level in large red letters) and the second shot shows the view across the harbour to the Ap Lei Chau housing estate and the old power station on the far right (since replaced by South Horizons).


Out on the water we get a view of the Tai Pak that will be familiar with anyone who has taken a trip through Aberdeen Harbour by boat. I even (almost) have my own version of this shot.


The last shot shows Brick Hill (far background) and a smaller, developed hill on the left. This view is now obscured by a high rise development called Broadview Court, built on the waterfront in 2001. It looks like the Aberdeen Boat Club (behind the sampan awning on the left) was around at the time but I think this was before the Aberdeen Marina Club was built.

Friday, December 8, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Ruttonjee Sanatorium, Wanchai

Following up a lead, the two main characters head to the hospital where the son is supposed to have passed away. The location is actually the former version of the Ruttonjee Hospital. According to notes on Gwulo.com, the sanatorium stood until 1991 when it was then redeveloped (and renamed) into the hospital that still stands on the site today.

Judging by some of the surroundings the location of the old sanatorium was more towards the Queen's Road East side of the plot - where the current multi-function building stands


We also get a slightly closer view of the old entrance when the two later exit the building.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

China Rose - George C. Scott (1983) - Eucliffe, Repulse Bay

In a nice little surprise, Eucliffe - the famous castle like mansion that once sat above Repulse Bay - makes a showing. In the film it is the house of a triad boss whose daughter knew Scott's son. The scene starts with a view from Repulse Bay Road looking back towards the Repulse Bay Apartments.


 The old driveway of Eucliffe seems to coincide with the modern day entrance into the development that replaced it (which goes by the rather bland- for HK at least - name of "56 Repulse Bay"). The old entrance can be seen in the next shot.


Once inside the driveway we can see the front entrance. I have no idea whether or not the place was still being lived in when this film was made, but it looks as though the small centre garden in the middle of the circular driveway was still being tended to (or quickly fixed up by the film crew?). The building still had a few years of life left before demolition, so it's feasible it was still being lived in at this time.


We even get a quick glimpse inside the hallway as the maid opens the door to let them in, and what looks to be a conservatory in the next scene - although , I must admit, I am only guessing that it was filmed inside the building. It would be great if anyone could confirm.