Archive for the ‘movies’ Category


rtmpdump is a utility to save to file video streams using the rtmp protocol. does, although recently they have changed their site to encrypt PIDs to easily do this.


Remakes of Asian horror films

Full disclosure: I am Asian (American)

Horror films are by their nature deeply personal. Whether you sit in a dark room by yourself, or in a theater with lots of people, the experience of feeling scared is something that is hard to explain or share with others, as invariably emotions, memories, and incidents from your own past are called up.

All this is to say that for people who watch a lot of horror films (and I am by no means a true afictionado), remakes are a very touchy subject, especially for foreign remakes.

My very first Japanese horror film was “Ringu” which was remade to “The Ring.” Ringu was absolutely the scariest thing I ever saw, and I am fairly certain it is still the scariest thing I will ever see. Although I was born and raised in the US, a lot of my cultural and social sensibilities have a distinctively Asian influence, which this film exploited. I have not seen the American remake, so I can’t and won’t comment on it.

Another impression-making Asian horror film I saw a few years ago was “The Eye,” a Chinese (Hong Kong?) film that, while not as drop dead scary as Ringu, was thought provoking and sensational (in both senses of the word). Much to my dismay, I found out today that they are remaking this movie as well, with Jessica Alba as the lead. I will probably not watch this, as it would be too painful. The lead actress in the original was cute, good looking in a girl next door way. Jessica, without discussing her acting abilities, is really more of a bombshell, a sexy siren. I think that alone will alter the mood and context of the movie.

An additional concern is the cultural sensibilities of horror films. A lot of what made The Eye scary was the Asian setting, subplots, and even scenery (especially the climactic ending scene). I don’t think the subtlety of the horror elements in the original will get translated properly in an American setting.

Having said that I will probably eventually see The Eye, just to see Jessica Alba.