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February 12, 2010

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3D kung fu, love and lots of laughs at the movies

FEBRUARY is a golden time to release films in China, particularly since Chinese Lunar New Year's Day this year also happens to be Valentine's Day.

Animation, kung fu - and 3D kung fu - mystery and romance are on offer.

Fans of "Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf" are reveling in the sequel that has so far taken in around 100 million yuan (US$14.6 million) at the box office.

The small-budget film based on a hit TV series follows the adventures of a gray wolf family and their goat friends who unite to defeat the enemy tiger.

It is expected to be made into a series in which each of the 12 Chinese zodiac signs will be new characters to the hilarious story. Super Girl Zhou Bichang sings the theme song.

Kung fu films are a holiday highlight.

Hong Kong director Daniel Lee's latest romantic martial arts film "14 Blades," starring Donnie Yen and Kate Tsui, centers on a Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) secret agent Qinglong who fights to expose a conspiracy. He betrays his organization, goes on the run and falls in love.

"True Legend" is another highly anticipated martial arts film. It's the world's first 3D kung fu movie by the "master of kung fu choreography" Yuen Woo-ping. The film tells the saga of a legendary martial arts master named Su Can, or Beggar Su.

The holiday fare includes a few other romantic comedies and a detective film.

"Hot Summer Days," which takes place in hot summer days, features six intertwined love stories starring A-listers such as Nicholas Tse, Daniel Wu and Jacky Cheung. Touching stories show ordinary people seeking love.

"All's Well, Ends Well Too 2010," a sequel to the classic Hong Kong comedy series, is a love story about general Mai Bingrong and princess Yizhu, who is sent to China to study etiquette.

"Sherlock Holmes" follows a new adventure of the legendary detective and his partner Watson in a battle of wits and brawn with a nemesis whose plot is a threat to all of England.

Shanghai's film industry continued to thrive last year. Shanghai United Cinema Lines, the city's leading cinema chain, took in about 698 million yuan in box office receipts, a 41-percent increase over 2008.


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