Sunday, August 9, 2009

Maggie Cheung, WestEast magazine, 2005

"WestEast", for those of us in the decaying rust belt of the United States, is a tantalizing and frustrating magazine. It shows up on the newsstands here less often than its quarterly publication schedule would indicate and the issues that do arrive are full of outstanding photography and graphics.

These are images of Maggie Cheung Man-Yuk which I scanned from a 2005 issue, which she guest edited. I don't know what a guest editor of a fashion magazine does other than get her picture on the cover and in a couple of features within--eighteen year-old fashion model Gemma Ward guest edited an issue of Australian Vogue and I think her pictures were in every article with pictures--but it resulted in an article by Maggie on the Hong Kong Tram. She writes that when she was very young in Hong Kong her family lived close enough to the tram line that she could hear the characteristic sound its bell made.

Some of the pictures are from a fashion spread, some from a feature of photos of Maggie on the tram plus a few others. It is difficult for me to judge images of Maggie Cheung since I have been enthralled with her since I first saw her onscreen in the 1988 Wong Jing masterpiece "How to Pick Girls Up", not a vehicle for stardom (or more than a paycheck for a few weeks' work) for any of the actresses involved. Kozo has a good review (which I don't full agree with) at LoveHKFilm . Given my heroine-worship of her I tend to think that any image of the divine Maggie is good although clearly some show her Magginess--to steal a phrase from Brian in his appreciation of her at his invaluable and slightly addictive site--than others.

So, here are the pictures that most captured my eye when going through this issue of WestEast.


  1. I also have this issue. FYI, even in "cosmopolitan" San Francisco, WestEast magazine is hard to find. In fact, I don't think I've ever seen it again at Borders, which is where I found this issue.

    It is a handsomely designed magazine. I must have been hypnotized by the pictures of Maggie, because I didn't even realize that there was an article by her about Hong Kong trams. Time to dig it out and give it a read!

  2. Would love to read Maggie's thoughts on Hong Kong trams... hmmm, I wonder whether that article's available on line!

    Also, it's interesting to learn that her family used to live close enough to the tram line to hear it. Seeing that she's of Shanghainese ancestry, I wonder whether they used to reside in North Point (a part of Hong Kong known at one point as Little Shanghai but, also, as Little Fukien at another point in time)... ;)

  3. Great photos there! (Has she ever taken a bad picture?)

    How to Pick Up Girls is pretty bad -- I remember that scene with Maggie taking one of the actors out for noodles at a street stall that was kind of cute.

    Did you ever see Behind The Yellow Line?

  4. duriandave--It is so uncommon to see an issue that it is beyond sporadic. The last one I saw was earlier this year. It was full of pictures of nude and partially nude male models which, while fine for gay men and hetero women it isn't a demographic of which I am a part. It had been shelved with the gay magazines--the shelvers at Barnes and Noble probably didn't recognize it, having seen it so infrequently.

    YTSL--I haven't been able to find even a website for the magazine in English although that is the language in which most of it is published. I hope there is something in Chinese since it is based in Hong Kong.

    That neighborhood sounds like the Lower East Side in NYC or Pilsen Park in Chicago, areas that are magnets for immigrants with the language, skin tone and restaurants changing every few decades.

    Glenn, kenixfan "How to Pick Girls Up" is not only bad it suffers the additional indignity of having been released in at least two possibly three versions, based on the kind of cuts that make no sense. I think it is the movie in which Maggie impersonates a fearsome girl gang leader from Vietnam.

    I haven't seen "Behind the Yellow Line"--it looks like a decent romantic comedy with quite a cast. So far my tally is 38 of her Hong Kong movies so there are still a lot for me to watch.

  5. I think it [How to Pick Girls Up] is the movie in which Maggie impersonates a fearsome girl gang leader from Vietnam.

    Actually, I think this bit is from Boys Are Easy (one of my favorite HK comedies, btw!).

  6. Hi ewaffle --

    Interesting evaluation of North Point! Hmmm... maybe... I guess it "helps" that a good part of the area is reclaimed land (so not "old" like Shau Kei Wan or Tai Hang) and, also, that a lot of buildings were built after World War II (North Point was where the Japanese landed on Hong Kong Island and so, as I'm given to understand, the area saw quite a bit of action and devastation.

    And duriandave: I remember Maggie doing a tough chick act in parts of "Boys are Easy" (that reminded me of her character in "The Heroic Trio") but don't recall that she was supposed to be Vietnamese! ;D

  7. YTSL, if I remember correctly, she was posing, according to the subtitles, as "Vietnamese Rose"!

  8. Hi once more duriandave --

    Okay, that rings a bell... Apologies for my memory loss... I think I was too fixated on Brigitte the great in that movie. ;b

    (And ewaffle -- sorry for taking over this thread!)