Day of Anger | aka Gunlaw (1967) Review

"Day of Anger" Blu-ray Cover

"Day of Anger" Blu-ray Cover

Director: Tonino Valerii
Writer: Ernesto Gastaldi, Renzo Genta, Tonino Valerii
Cast: Lee Van Cleef, Giuliano Gemma, Walter Rilla, Christa Linder, Yvonne Sanson, Lukas Ammann, Andrea Bosi, Al Mulock, Giorgio Gargiullo, José Calvo, HansasOtto Alberty Anna Orso, Benito Stefanelli, Nino Nini, Franco Balducci, Virgilio Gazzolo, Eleonora Morana
Running Time: 95 min.

By Kyle Warner

Sergio Leone’s westerns made a star out of Clint Eastwood, who was mostly thought of as a TV actor up until that time. And though it pales to the significance of Eastwood’s newfound stardom, the Leone ‘spaghetti westerns’ also revived the flagging career of actor Lee Van Cleef. After the success of The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, Van Cleef stayed in Italy and became one of the major stars of spaghetti westerns throughout the 60s and 70s. One of the finest westerns he made during that period was the 1967 film Day of Anger (aka Day of Wrath, aka Gunlaw).

Scott Mary (Giuliano Gemma) is the street cleaner in the small but prosperous town of Clifton. Scott’s a bastard that never knew his mother or father. His only friend in the world is the old man that runs the stables and imparts life lessons on how to be a good man. To the rest of the town, Scott’s the lowest of the low, and they bully him mercilessly. All of that changes when an aging gunfighter named Talby (Lee Van Cleef) rides into town. Talby seems to like the boy, or at least he treats him with more respect than Scott is surely used to, so Scott makes it his mission to become the gunfighter’s apprentice.

The film is interesting because it’s more than just a shoot ‘em up western, it’s also something of a morality play. Talby teaches Scott lessons that counter much of what the young man had learned from his first mentor – Talby teaches Scott how to be a killer. Talby’s plan involves taking over the town of Clifton through extortion and violence and Scott is entrusted to be his right-hand-man. The townspeople see the young man changing and they don’t like it, but why should he listen to them? Before Scott had been a man that was only suited for handling other people’s trash and waste, whereas now he has power over much of the town. At one point a resident says to Talby that he’s turned Scott into a rabid wolf. Talby replies, “He was always a wolf. You’re the ones that made him rabid.” Day of Anger is a tale of corruption as Talby – who also represents the long absent father figure – turns a harmless innocent into something violent and vengeful.

Much has been made about the fact that Day of Anger’s director Tonino Valerii (My Name is Nobody) started out as the assistant director to Sergio Leone. After working for Leone, Valerii went onto direct more than a dozen films, but never quite managed to escape his mentor’s shadow. You can see a bit of Leone’s influence on Valerii’s work: many of the scenes and characters have similarities to those you might see in a Leone film. However, stylistically they’re very different directors. Don’t go into Day of Anger expecting those signature shots that Leone’s famous for.

Day of Anger shows Valerii to be a great storyteller, but his visuals are not very impressive. The sets look too new, like they were just constructed and painted yesterday. One set – which, in all fairness, actually is constructed in the middle of the story so its newness is not an issue – is a saloon that Talby builds in Clifton, complete with giant wooden pistols acting as columns outside the front entrance. The saloon looks more like something you’d see in a modern day Wild West show or perhaps a tacky Texas-themed restaurant. It’s all a bit much. On another note, one of the film’s biggest shootouts has Lee Van Cleef and another gunman ride towards each other on horseback with single-shot rifles like they’re in some kind of a gunslinger jousting match. It’s exciting but I think it’s poorly shot because there’s very little done to establish setting and placement between the two actors. At one point the editing would make them seem within spitting distance of each other, and the next moment they’re riding towards each other and must be hundreds of feet apart.

I think the film’s strongest asset is the screenplay co-written by Valerii and Ernesto Gastaldi. It’s a script full of drama and good, quotable dialogue. Talby probably has to rank among Lee Van Cleef’s most complex characters. He begins the film as a hero and ends it as a villain. The character doesn’t change at all, but our understanding of the character changes, and I really liked that.

Day of Anger was released in two versions, the original 114 minute version and a shortened 95 minute version for international audiences. Both cuts, as well as Italian and English audio, are present on the new Blu-ray from Arrow Video. Interestingly, the shorter version includes an additional scene that doesn’t appear in the longer cut. This deleted scene is also included separately on the special features so you don’t need to go digging through the truncated version of the film in search of it. After receiving a new restoration, Day of Anger looks magnificent on Blu-ray. Fans that’ve only seen it on DVD before are in for a treat. Additional special features include an archival interview with director Valerii and new interviews with screenwriter Gastaldi and Valerii biographer Roberto Curti. My favorite feature is the interview with Gastaldi, who’s very energetic and tells amusing stories about Valerii and Sergio Leone.

Spaghetti westerns gave us a lot of classic films… and also a lot of stinkers. I think Day of Anger is one of the better examples of the genre that I have seen. It might fall a bit short of the classic status held by the Leone spaghetti westerns, but it’s a highly enjoyable film worth rediscovering. Fans of Lee Van Cleef’s westerns should definitely check it out, as it features one of the best roles of his career.

Kyle Warner’s Rating: 7.5/10

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New trailer for Takeshi Kitano’s new Yakuza comedy!

"Ryuzo and His Seven Henchmen" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"Ryuzo and His Seven Henchmen" Japanese Theatrical Poster

Following 2010′s Outrage and its 2012 sequel, Outrage Beyond, Takeshi Kitano is back for another round of Yakuza action. Only this time, it’s a comedy called Ryuzo and His Seven Henchmen, which is a playful nod to Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

According to FBA, the film is about a retired crime boss (Tatsuya Fuji) who calls up his old gang after he becomes the victim of a scam. The film also stars Masaomi Kondo, Akira Nakao, Akira Onodera, Toru Shinagawa, Ben Hiura, Yoshizumi Ito and Ken Yoshizawa.

Kitano wrote, directed and edited the film. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have a solid role, but he does have a cameo appearance. Ryuzo and His Seven Henchmen opens domestically on April 25th, 2015. Don’t miss the trailer.

Update: Watch the 2nd trailer (via Sam the Man).

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‘Young Guns’ director to make kung fu film ‘Legion of One’

"Young Guns" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"Young Guns" Japanese Theatrical Poster

According to SD, director Christopher Cain (Young Guns, The Next Karate Kid) will be directing Legion of One, a martial arts action film that tells the story about an orphan raised in the Shaolin Temple.

The US-China co-production will be executive produced by Jerry Weintraub (producer of the original Karate Kid trilogy, the 2010 remake starring Jackie Chan and the Ocean’s Eleven trilogy).

As of right now, there are no stars attached. Filming will most-likely commence once Gain completes his latest action-thriller, Terra Infirma.

Stay tuned for more updates!

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Cityonfire.com’s ‘Killers’ Blu-ray Giveaway!

Killers | Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

Killers | Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

Cityonfire.com and Well Go USA are giving away 3 Blu-ray copies of The Mo Brothers’ Killers to three lucky Cityonfire visitors. To enter, simply add a comment to this post and describe, in your own words, this music video.

We will be selecting a winner at random. Be sure to include your email address in the appropriate field so we can contact you for your home address. Additionally, you must ‘Like Us‘ on cityonfire.com’s Facebook by clicking here.

The Blu-ray & DVD for Killers will be officially released on April 7, 2015. We will announce the 3 winners on April 7, 2015 and ship out the prizes immediately.

CONTEST DISCLAIMER: You must enter by April 6, 2015 to qualify. U.S. residents only please. We sincerely apologize to our non-U.S. visitors. Winners must respond with their mailing address within 48 hours, otherwise you will automatically be disqualified. No exceptions. Contest is subject to change without notice.

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Three time’s the crime for the Johnnie To-produced ‘Trivisa’

"Breaking News" French Theatrical Poster

"Breaking News" French Theatrical Poster

An exciting project that has recently been announced by Hong Kong’s Media Asia Film Distribution is Trivisa, a new crime thriller to be produced by Johnnie To and Yau Nai Hoi (Eye in the Sky).

Three up-and-coming directors, Frank Hui, Vicky Wong and Jevons Au, will be helming the film with a cast that includes Richie Ren (Breaking News), Jordan Chan (White Vengeance) and Gordon Lam (Election 2). The film is about three notorious criminals who cross the border from China to make their fortune in Hong Kong.

We’ll keep you updated about Trivisa as we hear more. Stay tuned!

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Will Johnnie To explore eastern gangs with ‘The Old Guy’?

"The Old Guy" Promotional Poster

"The Old Guy" Promotional Poster

Another title announced at the 2015 Hong Kong International Film Festival is The Old Guy, an action film directed by Johnnie To (Fulltime Killer). So far, not much is known about it, but judging from the film’s poster, we’re thinking it’s in the “gangster” category for sure.

In fact, the preliminary poster design for The Old Guy generated some controversy when it was discovered that the concept art was a direct rip-off of David Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises (click here to see them side-by-side). According to HK Top 10, InLook, the film company responsible for the poster, had this to say: “This isn’t the film poster, only a concept design.”

In the meantime, To – who had nothing to do with the poster – is currently hard at work on the crime-thriller Three on the Road and the in-progress Eight & A Half, an eight-part anthology feature that he will direct alongside Tsui Hark, John Woo, Ringo Lam, Anne Hui, Sammo Hung, Yuen Woo-ping and Patrick Tam. To’s latest complete project, a musical titled Design for Living, will be making its theatrical debut sometime this year.

BREAKING NEWS: According to sources (via Sam the man), the Chinese media are reporting that Johnnie To has denied that he has anything to do with The Old Guy.

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Yoshihiro Nishimura is back with ‘Ninja War of Torakage’

"The Ninja War of Torakage" Theatrical Poster

"The Ninja War of Torakage" Theatrical Poster

The trailer for Yoshihiro Nishimura’s latest film, The Ninja War of Torakage, has just been released. The director behind such cult films as Tokyo Gore Police and Vampire Girl vs Frankenstein Girl is at the helm and also co-writes the script for this film.

Synopsis (via AsianWiki): Set in the Sengoku Period, Torakage (Takumi Saito) is retired ninja. He lives his life peacefully, but turmoil comes as he becomes involved a fight over treasures.

The Ninja War of Torakage stars Yuria Haga, Tatsuki Ishikawa, Ryohei Kuroyanagi and Eihi Shiina (Audition and Tokyo Gore Police)

The film is due for release in Japan in June 2015.

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Vincent D’Onofrio to give the ‘Magnificent Seven’ hell?

"The Magnificent Seven" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"The Magnificent Seven" Japanese Theatrical Poster

A remake of John Sturges 1960 classic, The Magnificent Seven is in the works by director Antoine Fuqua (The Equalizer). The film will be based off a  script by John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side) and Nic Pizzolatto (The Killing).

The original The Magnificent Seven – a remake itself of Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai - starred Yul Brynner, Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, James Coburn, Robert Vaughn, Brad Dexter, and Horst Buchholz. The plot involved seven American gunmen who are hired to protect a small village in Mexico from a group of Mexican bandits. Check out HKFanatic’s review for the original.

So far, the Magnificent Seven remake features the following all-star cast: Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Haley Bennett and Ethan Hawke.

Updates: Variety (via Sam the Manreports that Vincent D’Onofrio (Run All Night) is in talks to play the villain in the Magnificent Seven remake. Production is expected to commence next month.

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‘Ip Man 3′ to be Donnie Yen’s last action film?

"Ip Man" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"Ip Man" Japanese Theatrical Poster

Ip Man 3 is in the works – in 3D! Star Donnie Yen will return in the titular role, alongside director Wilson Yip. This time around, Ip Man’s most famous pupil – Bruce Lee – is set to have a much larger role in the story. “What is certain is that the film will begin with Bruce Lee becoming Ip Man’s disciple,” says screenwriter Edmond Wong.

Producer Raymond Wong claims the film will feature a much larger budget than the previous two films, with special 3D effects incorporated into the fight scenes, courtesy of the legendary Yuen Woo Ping.

So far, here’s what you can expect from the cast: Lyn Hung, Zhang Han, Max Zhang, Patrick Tam Yiu Man, Karena Ng, Kent Cheng, Louis Cheung and Leung Kar Yan (Beardy).

Update: In addition to Ip Man 3, here’s a list of titles Yen is currently working on: Iceman 2 (post-production), The Master (pre-production), Dragon City (pre-production) and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon 2 (post-production) and Noodle Man, his first starring role in a U.S. production.

According to Screen Daily, Well Go USA has already picked up U.S. rights for Ip Man 3, which begins shooting early 2015. “This film focuses on the master-student relationship between Ip Man and Bruce Lee… it also portrays Ip Man at a stage when he is searching for the real meaning in life,” says Ip Man 3 writer, Edmond Wong.

Donnie Yen has confirmed that Ip Man 3 will start shooting in March of 2015. Here’s what Yen told Flicks and the City (via EP): “We’re starting next March… it’s going to be my last time around playing Ip Man. I think the fans have been waiting for quite a few years. And I kind of didn’t want to take on this role again, and I was onto experimenting with different characters, different roles, until I’m ready. And now, I feel like I’m ready, so we’ll see. I’ll try do the best I can. And hopefully I can top the first two.”

Wushu practitioner Max Zhang (The Grandmaster) has supposedly joined the cast of Ip Man 3. It’s also said that that Zhang will have a duel with Donnie Yen. This news comes from Maz (KFC).

The much anticipated Ip Man 3 is due to commence shooting in 2 weeks, local media has reported. Donnie Yen will reprise the role that has made him an international superstar, and discloses that the film’s director Wilson Yip (who worked with Yen in SPL, Dragon Tiger Gate, Flash Point, Ip Man and Ip Man 2) has asked him to lose 30 pounds (approximately 14 kg) for the role. “This is mission impossible. I now weigh 145 pounds (approximately 66kg). I am worried I’ll end up in hospital after losing that weight. I may even die,” he tells the Hong Kong media. - Thanks to Sam the Man

For some time, Donnie Yen has been talking about it (see Special ID 2), but now the idea is a full blown reality: According to THR (via FCS), Mike Tyson will join the cast of Ip Man 3. The former heavyweight boxing world champion will take part in “some intense fighting” when he goes toe-to-toe with Yen. And just when the Ip Man 3 updates couldn’t get any more interesting: the unnamed actor portraying Bruce Lee will be laced with CGI enhancements to bring Lee’s on-screen image alive.

BREAKING NEWS: During a recent press conference (via DiP), Donnie Yen announced that Ip Man 3 may be the last action movie of his career. According to Jaynestars, this is what Yen told reporters about the future of his involvement in action movies: “Right now, the most important question for me is not whether or not my body can handle it, but whether or not a movie has creativity… thus, Ip Man 3 may indeed be my last action film.” May being the key word. We seriously doubt this.

Posted in News | 21 Comments

This new trailer with Lau Ching Wan is full of ‘Insanity’

"Insanity" Chinese Theatrical Poster

"Insanity" Chinese Theatrical Poster

A hot new trailer for Insanity, a psychological thriller by first time director David Lee, has hit the web. The upcoming film stars Huang Xiaoming (The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom) as a hotshot psychiatrist who goes head-to-head with a witty psychopath, played by Lau Ching Wan (Too Many Ways to Be Number One).

Insanity also stars Fiona Sit (Girls), Paw Hee Ching (Special ID), Alex Fong (Kung Fu Jungle), Michelle Ye, Michelle Wai and is produced by Hong Kong film auteur, Derek Yee (Shinjuku Incident).

Insanity has a domestic release date set in April 2015. Until then, catch the newest trailer (via Sam the Man).

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Watch Tony Jaa vs Paul Walker in ‘Furious 7′ + Jaa banned?

"Furious 7" International Theatrical Poster

"Furious 7" International Theatrical Poster

THE MOVIE: Director Justin Lin is stepping down from his post for now and is passing the baton to Saw and Insidious filmmaker James Wan, who will supposedly put a “gritty, ’70s revenge thriller” vibe on the next installment. Here’s an official plot tidbit: After Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) and his crew helped take down Owen Shaw, his brother Ian Shaw (Jason Statham) now wants revenge. Furious 7 (aka Fast and Furious 7) has a new release date set for April 3, 2015

In addition to Vin Diesel and Jason Statham, Furious 7 stars Dwayne Johnson, Paul Walker, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Lucas Black, Kurt Russell, Tony Jaa and Djimon Hounsou.

Updates: In honor of Paul Walker, Universal will donate some of the proceeds from the upcoming Fast & Furious 6 Blu-ray & DVD release to Walker’s charity Reach Out WorldWide. As far as the future of Furious 7, there has been some talk about scrapping the current storyline and moving the plot into a completely new direction.

THR reports that Chris Morgan, Furious 7′s screenwriter, is revising the script that could make use of scenes that were shot before Walker’s death. If the plan works, production may resume by late January. | THR (via Collider) reports that Walker’s character Brian O’Conner will not be killed off in Furious 7, but will instead be retired “in a way that the studio hopes will satisfy fans of the franchise and make use of the exciting footage of Walker.”

According to an official statement from F7′s Facebook page, Paul Walker’s real life brothers will step in as doubles for the late actor; there are several reports that Cody Walker (one of Walker’s real brothers) may be joining future installments of Fast and Furious as Brian O’Connor’s (Paul Walker) younger brother. | First trailer for Furious 7 is now available watch! | Big Game trailer. | Latest trailer and poster! | Extended clip, plus a new poster. | Korean trailer!

BREAKING NEWS: First the good news: A fight clip featuring Tony Jaa vs.Paul Walker! Now the bad news: Local media is reporting (via Sam the Man) that Fast and Furious 7 has been banned in Thailand, and the reason is… Tony Jaa! Somsak “Sia Jiang” Techaratanaprasert, founder of Sahamongkol Film International, claims that by appearing in Fast and Furious 7, the action star has breached a 10-year contract with the film company that won’t expire till 2023. Sahamongkol demands 1.6 billion baht (US$ 49 million) in compensation, calculated based on the costs of ‘buying’ Jaa from another company and promoting the films that made him a superstar. As a result of the claims, the Civil Court of Thailand has granted an injunction prohibiting the screening of Fast and Furious 7 in Thailand pending settlement of the breach of contract dispute.

Cityonfire.com is hoping you can take a minute to check out www.FrankandBeanz.com, a doggie apparel website that has just released their Fast & the Furrious clothing line. Part of the proceeds will be donated to Paul Walker’s charity, Reach Out World Wide (ROWW).

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Finally, here we are… 1st ‘SPECTRE’ teaser trailer!

"SPECTRE" Teaser Poster

"SPECTRE" Teaser Poster

THE MOVIE: Agent 007′s latest adventure, Skyfall, has gone on to become the most successful James Bond film of all time. With a final gross of over $1 billion worldwide, it’s no surprise that the Bond producers have asked Skyfall director Sam Mendes to return to helm Daniel Craig’s next outing as the super spy.

Bond 24 is officially titled SPECTRE (which stands for “Special Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion”). Returning cast members include Daniel Craig, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, and Rory Kinnear. New cast members are as followed: Christoph Waltz (who is playing Oberhauser, not Blofeld, as previously rumored), Lea Seydoux, Dave Bautista, Andrew Scott, Monica Bellucci and Stephanie Sigman.

Also returning is Jesper Christensen, who played the Mr. White in Casino Royale and Quantum of Solace. SPECTRE hits theaters in the U.K. on October 23, 2015 and in the U.S. on November 6, 2015.

Updates: Latino Review reported that John Logan (Gladiator), one of four credited writers on Skyfall, has already been hired to write the next two films in the franchise. | During a Charlie Rose interview (via Collider), director Sam Mendes explains why he finally decided to return to the director’s chair for Bond 24: “I cast a new M, I cast a new Moneypenny, I cast a new Q, I cast a new Tanner… I felt there was a way to create the second part of a two-part story.” The director also states that it will feel like a continuation of Skyfall.

Cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema (Interstellar) is taking over duties for Roger Deakins (Skyfall). In addition, Mendes will be shooting Bond 24 on film, as opposed to digital. | New Bond car (Aston Martin DB10) and the teaser poster. | Candid footage of Craig riding in a boat along the River Thames, courtesy of Collider. | First set photo of Craig, Seydoux and Bautista. | 1st Behind-the-scenes featurette for SPECTRE. Also, here’s the first official image of Bond himself. | 2nd Behind-the-scenes featurette, featuring director Sam Mendes.

New set videos ( 1 | 2 | 3 ), which hint a car chase in the streets of Rome. In addition, Collider reports that Stephanie Sigman (Miss Bala) has joined the cast as Estrella. | Teaser posters ( 1 | 2 ).

BREAKING NEWS: Watch the 1st teaser trailer for SPECTRE.

Posted in News | 5 Comments

Hard-hitting trailer arrives for Jake Gyllenhaal’s ‘Southpaw’

Jake Gyllenhaal in "Southpaw"

Jake Gyllenhaal in "Southpaw"

The first trailer has arrived for Jake Gyllenhaal’s new film Southpaw. This time, the fine actor teams up with director Antoine Fuqua (The Equalizer) and co-stars Forest Whitaker, Rachel McAdams, Rita Ora and 50 Cent to bring us what looks to be a hard hitting and emotionally intense boxing drama.

Synopsis: Billy “The Great” Hope (Gyllenhaal) is the reigning Junior Middleweight Champion whose unorthodox stance, the so-called “Southpaw,” consists of an ineloquent, though brutal, display of offensive fighting… one fueled by his own feelings of inadequacy and a desperate need for love, money and fame.

With a beautiful family, home and financial security, Billy is on top both in and out of the ring until a tragic accident leaves his wife dead and sends him into a downward spiral. His days now an endless haze of alcohol and prescription drugs, his daughter taken by Child Services and his home repossessed by the bank, Billy’s fate is all but sealed until a washed up former boxer named Tick agrees to take the bereaved pugilist under his wing so long as he agrees to his strict ethos.

Relentless and utterly committed to a fighter that thinks as much as he throws punches, Tick rebuilds Billy into a new man: one that is agile, fearsome and uncompromising in the ring while thoughtful, loving and disciplined outside of it. Now, as he works to regain custody of his daughter and mounts a professional comeback, Billy must face his demons head-on as he learns that, sometimes, your greatest opponent can be yourself.

The film, due to open in theaters on July 31, features music by Eminem and the trailer has premiered on his music channel on YouTube.

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New trailer for Steven Seagal’s ‘Mercenary: Absolution’

"Mercenary: Absolution" Theatrical Poster

"Mercenary: Absolution" Theatrical Poster

Steven Seagal’s upcoming film, The Mercenary: Absolution (aka Absolution), will officially mark the 6th time Seagal is working with director/producer Keoni Waxman (Force of Execution). The film is a sequel to A Good Man (2014), which was recently released on DVDThe Mercenary: Absolution also stars Byron Mann (The Corrupter) and Vinnie Jones (Escape Plan).

Plot: When an ex-operative is recruited by his old boss to assassinate an Afghan drug dealer, he begins to suspect a link between a drug smuggling operation, a sex trafficking ring and the US Government. | trailer. | Japanese trailer. | 3rd trailer.

Updates: Check out the latest trailer!

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Danny Glover finds a new ‘Lethal Weapon’ in ‘Ninja: Immovable Heart’

Ninja: Immovable Heart | DVD (Uncork'd Entertainment)

Ninja: Immovable Heart | DVD (Uncork'd Entertainment)

A ninja flick with Mad Max’s V8 Interceptor? You heard that right. Uncork’d Entertainment presents the DVD for the 2014 Australian martial arts flick Ninja: Immovable Heart, directed by and starring Rob Baard with Roger Neave and Danny Glover.

An “authentic” ninjutsu film cloaked in the cape of a superhero blockbuster, The Ninja : Immovable Heart brings together veteran action movie star Danny Glover (Lethal Weapon, Predator 2) and rising martial-arts star Rob Baard for a high-flying action-adventure that’s part Dark Knight, part Bourne Identity.

Reeve (Baard) is a member of an elite covert group who is captured, beaten and brutally tortured by the very government he used to work for. With the help of his old mentor John Carpenter (Neave), Reeve must strip away, and rid himself of the emerging demons of his past, so that he may understand the core essence of Ninjutsu.

The Ninja : Immovable Heart is part of a larger franchise that will soon include comics, a clothing line, and a TV series spin-off. The film hits DVD and Digital on March 3rd from Uncork’d Entertainment! Until then, don’t miss the film’s trailer!

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Banquet, The | aka Legend of the Black Scorpion (2006) Review

"The Banquet" Chinese Theatrical Poster

"The Banquet" Chinese Theatrical Poster

AKA: The Night Banquet
Director: Feng Xiaogang
Writer: Feng Xiaogang, Sheng Ke Yu
Producer: John Chong, Wang Zhongjun
Cast: Zhang Ziyi, Ge You, Daniel Wu Yin Cho, Zhou Xun, Huang Xiao Ming, Ma Jing Wu, Chun Hoi Liu, Fan Wei, Li Li
Running Time: 131 min.

By HKFanatic

Sometimes a film is less than the sum of its parts. The Legend of the Black Scorpion is a lavishly produced, visually sumptuous period film that brings the story of Hamlet to the Ten Kingdoms era of Chinese history. In front of the camera is an attractive cast including Zhang Ziyi, Daniel Wu, and Zhou Xun (Painted Skin remake). The film was directed by Feng Xiaogang (A World Without Thieves) and features action choreography by Yuen Woo-Ping, a living legend who needs no introduction. Yet somehow, this movie left me completely cold.

There’s no denying Hamlet is a difficult story to translate to film. Any screenwriting class will tell you that your protagonist needs to be dynamic – to make choices, react to events, and have an external as well as an internal conflict. The character of Hamlet is all about brooding, pacing, and internal conflict. He spends most of the story paralyzed with indecision. Shakespeare made it work but how do you do that in a 2 hour movie without it seeming, well, boring?

Daniel Wu is a talented actor but I’m not sure he takes well to the part of Hamlet. He spends most of the film looking teary-eyed and stricken with sorrow. Yet he doesn’t do much about it, as per the source text. It probably doesn’t help that that the costume department made his hair is taller than he is. There’s even a silly-looking scene where Zhou Xun combs his long locks for him while his hair is draped in a bubbling pond (I’d like to see one of those installed at my local salon).

Zhang Ziyi is the femme fatale. She’s very good at this kind of wrathful role but I can’t say her character is very likable. She’s manipulative and knows how to use sex as a weapon. Speaking of sex, this film is a bit more risque than I was expecting for what I assume is a Category II film. There’s a lot of caressing and moaning, people ripping their clothes, the King inquiring as to how well Zhang Ziyi’s previous husband – his brother! – satisfied her in bed. I’m not saying this is full on Sex and Zen territory but it comes closer than any other wuxia-style film I’ve seen.

It’s one thing for the story to be glacially-paced but the action suffers too. A bloody opening featuring plenty of severed limbs and decapitated heads builds up false excitement for the rest of the film. I almost wonder if Yuen Woo-Ping had too much creative control here: the fight scenes are so reliant on wires and slow motion that they feel more ballet than combat. Maybe it’s to cover for the fact that Daniel Wu isn’t a martial artist. But the “fights” are way too fluid and pretty. I want to see somebody actually throw a punch – not Swan Lake!

The Legend of Black Scorpion was Hong Kong’s 2006 submission for Best Foreign Film at the Academy Awards. China submitted The Curse of the Golden Flower. Despite their similar Western-ized titles and Shakespearen ambitions, the films couldn’t be farther apart. Curse featured sumptuous drama, a bravado performance from Gong Li, and fantastic fight scenes. In comparison, The Banquet is ornate and removed, like a pristine Chinese vase the viewer is only allowed to admire behind glass. The movie never pulls you in.

By HKFanatic’s Rating: 5/10

Posted in Chinese, News, Reviews | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

North American trailer for Donnie Yen’s ‘Kung Fu Killer’!

"Kung Fu Killer" Theatrical Poster

"Kung Fu Killer" Theatrical Poster

Well Go USA is bringing Donnie Yen’s latest action blockbuster, Kung Fu Killer (aka Kung Fu Jungle), to U.S. theaters on April 24th!

This high-octane, martial arts thriller reunites Yen with director Teddy Chen (Bodyguards & Assassins), as well as Wang Baoqiang (Iceman Cometh 3D).

Kung Fu Killer (read our review) follows a top-notch kung fu instructor (Yen) who is imprisoned for accidentally killing a man. But when a deranged killer (Baoqiang) begins targeting the best martial artists in Hong Kong, it’s up to Yen to stop him!

Updates: Check out Well Go USA’s new trailer for Kung Fu Killer.

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Bolo and Cary Tagawa have ‘The Whole World at Our Feet’

"The Whole World at Our Feet" Kazakhstan Poster

"The Whole World at Our Feet" Kazakhstan Poster

Get ready for Salamat Mukhammed-Ali’s The Whole World at Our Feet, a Kazakhstan-produced action film that features a mixture of stars you would never expect in the same movie: Bolo Yeung (Bloodsport), Don “The Dragon” Wilson (Bloodfist), Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (Mortal Kombat), Armand Assante (Judge Dredd), Tommy ‘Tiny’ Lister (Jackie Brown), Micheal Madsen (Reservoir Dogs) and Peter O’Toole (Lawrence of Arabia).

Not much is known of the plot, but judging from its 1st trailer, it looks like a whole lotta fun with its Mad Max/Machete-style approach. Filming wrapped back in 2011 and a worldwide release is expected soon.

Updates: Watch the film’s latest trailer!

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Sony snatches ‘Robotech’ for a live-action franchise!

"The Super Dimension Fortress Macross" Japanese DVD Cover

"The Super Dimension Fortress Macross" Japanese DVD Cover

After years of development hell, Warner Bros. is finally moving forward with their big screen, live-action adaptation of Robotech… wait a minute. We’ve heard this before, right? Does this mean third time’s the charm…

According to Deadline, Andy Muschietti, who directed the 2013 Spanish-Canadian horror film, Mama, is being eyed to direct. Michael Gordon (G.I. Joe: the Rise of Cobra) is writing the screenplay, and Gianni Nunnari (The Departed) and Mark Canton (300) are producing.

We first heard of the live-action Robotech movie back in 2008. At the time, Tobey Maguire was set to produce and Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back) was brought on board to write. Then, Robotech disappeared.

A few years later, news broke that Nic Mathieu (Spectral) was “officially” attached to helm the adaptation. Around this time, there were rumors flying around that Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street) was in talks to play one of the lead characters. Somewhere along the way, Maguire lost interest, Kasdan went on to scribe some flick called Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens and the idea of a live-action Robotech was once again shelved indefinitely.

Whatever the case was back then, the newest update – if it’s happening – is exciting news if you’re familiar with Robotech. If you’re not, here’s a brief history: 1985′s Robotech – which was basically mash up of three, unrelated Japanese cartoons by Tatsunoko Productions –  was one of the first titles responsible for igniting anime fandom.

On the surface, you can say that Robotech is about piloted, transforming robots that battle aliens (*cough* Pacific Rim); but what really made Robotech special was its edgy themes of love, death and war. It wasn’t your average happy-go-lucky G.I. Joe or Transformers episode. People got killed. Relationships were complicated. And the storytelling was fascinating. Simply put, if done right, a live-action Robotech could be epic.

Updates: Deadline reports that Sony has acquired the rights to Robotech and are planning on developing it as a worldwide franchise. It’s unclear if Andy Muschietti (Mama) is still attached as director, but we’ll be sure to keep you in the loop as we hear more. Hopefully it’s not another 3 years from now.

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Schwarzenegger terminates perpetrators to save ‘Maggie’

"The Last Stand" Japanese DVD Cover

"The Last Stand" Japanese DVD Cover

THE MOVIE: Arnold Schwarzenegger is boarding the zombie genre in a movie called Maggie, which is currently in post-production. Henry Hobson, director of the The Bureau: XCOM Declassified video game trailer, is set to direct from a Black List script by John Scott 3.

According to Variety, Maggie is set in a time when a “walking dead” virus has spread across the country. Schwarzenegger will portray “a father on a journey to help his daughter come to terms with her infection as she slowly becomes a zombie.”

Updates: Kick Ass 2′s Chloe Moretz was in negotiations to play Schwarzenegger’s daughter, but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts. | THR reports that Abigail Breslin (Little Miss Sunshine) will be playing Schwarzenegger’s daughter.

BREAKING NEWS: Watch the film’s first trailer!

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Boyka is back! Scott Adkins to shoot ‘Undisputed 4′ in June

"Undisputed II: Last Man Standing" Japanese DVD Poster

"Undisputed II: Last Man Standing" Japanese DVD Poster

Scott Adkins, the mega-talented actor and martial artist from Undisputed III and Assassination Games, let out a few tidbits of information over Twitter:

- When asked why Assassination Games was suspiciously low on action (as cityonfire.com detailed in our review), Scott said he and Jean Claude Van Damme tried to inject more fight scenes in the movie but there simply wasn’t enough time

- A script for Undisputed 4 is completed; both director Isaac Florentine and Scott Adkins want to make it; but it’s difficult to find funding. Undisputed 3 was not a big hit, due in large part to people pirating the film

- At this point, financial backers are more interested in funding a Ninja 2 than a Undisputed 4, despite the fact that Adkins’ Undisputed character Uri Boyka has developed a cult following among fans. “Go figure,” says Scott

Updates: Boyka is back! Audiences at Fantastic Fest are currently being bowled over by the visceral fight scenes in Ninja 2: Shadow of the Tear, the latest collaboration between Scott Adkins and director Isaac Florentine. Ninja producer Frank Di Martin also took to the stage at Fantastic Fest to reveal that screenwriter David White is hard at work on the screenplay for Undisputed IV, which will likely be Scott Adkins’ next project.

During an interview with Impact (via EP.com), Scott Adkins had this to say about Undisputed 4 while promoting Ninja 2: Shadow of the Tear: It’s great to do the festival circuit with films like this but I don’t think watching it at home will spoil your experience… the real problem is the piracy and I really would hope that people that enjoy these types of films. Let’s be honest, we don’t get that many anymore. I hope they support it by buying it on whatever platform when they get the chance because it is getting harder and harder to finance these films because they make no money. If you want Undisputed 4 then you’d better make sure you support Ninja 2 (here’s your chance to follow Adkins’ advice).

Update from the recent Seni Event. According to KFC, Adkins spoke of the long-awaited return of Uri Boyka in Undisputed IV. He mentioned the script is being polished as he and Isaac Florentine wants the character seen in the right frame of mind.

BREAKING NEWS: According to TAE (via FCS), Scott Adkins is shooting Undisputed 4 in June! Also returning will be director Isaac Florentine, choreographer Larnell Stovall and screenwriter David N. White.

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Photo of Lex Luthor in ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’

'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice' Logo

'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice' Logo

THE MOVIE: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is an upcoming movie intended to be a sequel to 2013′s Man of Steel. Zack Snyder is directing the film, written by Chris Terrio, from a story by Snyder and David S. Goyer.

The film stars Henry Cavill, Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne, Diane Lane, Jesse Eisenberg, Jeremy Irons and Holly Hunter.

Updates: Affleck and filmmaker Zack Snyder will create an entirely new incarnation of the character in Snyder’s as-yet-untitled project—bringing Batman and Superman together for the first time on the big screen and continuing the director’s vision of their universe, which he established in Man of Steel.“ | Variety reports that Gal Gadot (Fast & Furious 6) has signed on to play Wonder Woman. Additionally, Callan Mulvey (300: Rise of an Empire) is being eyed for a villain. | EW reports that Jesse Eisenberg (Adventureland) has signed on to play Lex Luthor in Batman vs. Superman.

Collider reports that Zack Snyder will shoot Batman vs. Superman back-to-back with JLA, which means a 2017 release for JLA. | Here’s the first look at Ben Affleck as Batman. Also, a peak at the new Batmobile in Batman vs. Superman, courtesy of Collider. | Collider reports that Batman vs. Superman (aka Man of Steel 2) is officially titled Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Also, the new logo has been revealed. | Variety reports that Jason Momoa (Game of Thrones) has signed up for the role of Aquaman in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. | First image of Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman. | The film’s release date has been moved up to March 25, 2016.

BREAKING NEWS: First photo of Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor, courtesy of Collider (via EW).

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Wong Jing’s 100th film to be the action-packed ‘Invincible 12′

"City Hunter" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"City Hunter" Japanese Theatrical Poster

One of the most exciting titles announced at the recent Hong Kong Filmart is Wong Jing’s 100th film as a director, titled The Invincible 12.

The veteran filmmaker directed his first film, Challenge of the Gamesters, in 1981. Since then, he has gone on to write, direct and produce a huge number of films, including some very commercially successful ones such as God of Gamblers, Royal Tramp and City Hunter.

To celebrate his 100th film as a director, Wong is going to make The Invincible 12, which he is planning to include a cast of 12 leading men whom he worked with previously. The actors he is considering include Chow Yun Fat, Jackie Chan, Andy Lau, Huang Xiao Ming, Louis Koo, Nick Cheung, Ekin Cheng, Daniel Wu, Shawn Yue, Nicholas Tse and Tony Leung Ka Fai.

Wong states that the film will be action-packed, full of pretty girls and a lot of fun for the audience. He is currently writing the script for the HK$ 300 million film, and filming will start in June 2016.

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He’s back! Watch the “living” poster for ‘Terminator Genisys’

"Terminator Genisys" Teaser Poster

"Terminator Genisys" Teaser Poster

THE MOVIE: Skydance Productions, Annapurna Pictures and Paramount Pictures 5th Terminator movie, titled Terminator: Genesis, is currently in post-production phase. The film is directed by Alan Taylor (Thor: The Dark World) and stars Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones), Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jai Courtney (A Good Day to Die Hard), Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty), Byung-hun Lee (I Saw the Devil), Michael Gladis (Knights of Badassdom) and Sandrine Holt (Once a Thief TV series). Catch it in theaters on July 1st, 2015.

Updates: According to Empire’s sources, the Terminator: Genesis story bears comparison to Back To The Future 2, which you’ll recall partly involves our heroes rushing ingeniously around and within the events of the first film.

In an interview with Collider, Arnold Schwarzenegger says he’s “honored” that studios have called him back to reprise his iconic roles in movies like Terminator, Legend of Conan and Twins 2. Especially in a world where characters are constantly replaced by new actors (i.e. James Bond, Spider-man). He also says that the new Terminator movie “has the same feel” as Terminator 2 (he’s obviously judging by its script).

According to Metro (via expendablespremier.com), after the first film of the new Terminator trilogy is complete, parts 2 and 3 will be filmed back-to-back in a period of over 9 months. In addition, Dayo Okeniyi (Hunger Games) has signed on to play the role of Miles Dyson (previously played by Joe Morton in T2).

The latest issue(s) of Entertainment Weekly provides some of the first official cast images (see: Cover 1 | Cover 2) from Terminator Genisys, plus a revealing plot teaser: “Sarah Connor isn’t the innocent she was when Linda Hamilton first sported feathered hair and acid-washed jeans in the role. Nor is she Hamilton’s steely zero body-fat warrior in 1991’s T2. Rather, the mother of humanity’s messiah was orphaned by a Terminator at age 9. Since then, she’s been raised by (brace yourself) Schwarzenegger’s Terminator—an older T-800 she calls “Pops”—who is programmed to guard rather than to kill. As a result, Sarah is a highly trained antisocial recluse who’s great with a sniper rifle but not so skilled at the nuances of human emotion. | First trailer. | Big Game trailer.

BREAKING NEWS: Watch the “living” poster for Terminator Genisys.

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Mark of the Devil (1970) Review

"Mark of the Devil" Blu-ray Cover

"Mark of the Devil" Blu-ray Cover

Director: Michael Armstrong
Writer: Michael Armstrong
Producer: Adrian Hoven
Cast: Herbert Lom, Udo Kier, Olivera Vuco, Reggie Nalder, Herbert Fux, Johannes Buzalski
Running Time: 96 min.

By Kyle Warner

In Europe between 1500 and 1750, countless people accused of heresy, blasphemy, and witchcraft were killed by agents of the Church. It didn’t take much to accuse someone of witchcraft and after an accusation was made not much could be done to save the poor man or woman (mostly women, I should think). Superstition and corruption led to many false accusations, of course. As depicted in Mark of the Devil, the accused would be tortured until they confessed, at which point they would be burnt alive. So, you either endure torture and deny the claims against you… or you go along with what they’re saying and die for your confession. Very much a lose-lose situation.

It’s all a very frightening part of human history that we don’t often like to look back on and talk about. So, when a film comes around like Mark of the Devil and throws all of that ugliness up on screen, people are going to take notice. And when the film was released in 1970, it was banned in multiple countries for its violent content.

When Mark of the Devil hit theatres in the US, posters proudly claimed that it was “the first film to be rated V for violence.” Filmgoers were handed vomit bags and it was sold as one of the most horrifying, disgusting films ever made. Apparently the MPAA was livid about the made-up V rating, as a false rating allowed all ages into the film which would’ve otherwise been rated R or worse.

Because the film’s legacy has so much to do with its gory depiction of torture, I feel the need to talk about the violence first. Mark of the Devil is a very unpleasant film. Men and women are tortured in awful ways and the film’s effects stand up to this day, making it all rather difficult to watch. When a woman has her tongue ripped out of her mouth you can bet that I gasped and cringed. However, in the age of ‘torture porn’ horror films like Saw and Hostel, perhaps Mark of the Devil’s violence doesn’t shock quite the same way that it used to. Still, it’s sickening to remember that some of the gruesome torture in this film is very much based on historical fact.

In the film Herbert Lom plays a renowned witch hunter and an incredibly young Udo Kier plays his apprentice. They arrive in a town where the local witch hunter has abused his power for too long, raping the women he desires and accusing of witchcraft those who deny his advances. The new witch hunters are expected to restore order, but it’s pretty clear that Lom’s character is just more of the same and ends up bringing only further suffering to these people.

Mark of the Devil has much in common with Witchfinder General, the 1968 horror film which starred Vincent Price. In some ways Mark of the Devil plays like the gorier, sleazier take on that similar story. But there’s a good deal of skill and talent involved in the making of Mark of the Devil. The production values are high quality, the location shooting looks good, the violin score is topnotch, and the actors bring respectability to the script. It is a sleazy exploitation horror film but it’s a superior sleazy exploitation horror film.

I think Herbert Lom is really good here as the self-righteous villain. Lom is probably best remembered for comedies like the Pink Panther movies, so his appearance in such a nasty horror film is kind of surprising. Equally interesting is Udo Kier, who had only been in two feature films up to this point. We know Kier now for mostly playing eccentric characters and villains, so it’s entertaining to watch him play the romantic lead here. He does a pretty good job of making his character both an opportunistic hero and an unforgivable part of the problem. Sometimes I wish he had dialed back the looks of romantic longing, though.

Mark of the Devil arrives uncut on the Arrow Video Blu-ray. The film’s picture quality looks good, with only a few shots appearing scratchy here and there. The Blu-ray is packed with special features including a commentary, featurettes, interviews, and a trailer. The commentary with director Michael Armstrong is a lively track. He talks about how he was fired from the film and replaced by producer Adrian Hoven, who would take over filming and handle post-production. Hoven also changed the original ending which would have brought the film into supernatural territory. The original ending has apparently been destroyed, but images of it pop up in other special features on the disc. Armstrong’s often funny even if he is understandably bitter about how some things turned out, and it makes for an entertaining commentary

The best featurette is the 47 minute Mark of the Times which talks about 70s British horror when Hammer Films was falling-off and a new wave of young filmmakers was taking over. Directors like Armstrong, Norman J. Warren, and writer David McGillivray share their memories of being a part of that film movement. Also interesting is Hallmark of the Devil which focuses on Mark of the Devil’s release in America by Hallmark Releasing, and talks about the controversial nature of their advertising and the success the film found in the US. Some of the interviews are a little dull because time has made memory fuzzy for much of the cast and crew. The Udo Kier interview is funny, though, because the actor clearly doesn’t want to be there. He even complains at one point that they’ve been talking for 20 minutes when he only agreed to 10. It’s a great release from Arrow: the uncut film, very good picture quality, options for both English and German audio, and a strong helping of extras that should make any fan happy.

Overall I find Mark of the Devil to be a difficult film to recommend because it’s not an easy film to like. Almost all the characters are rather despicable and the grueling torture is difficult to watch. Thing is, I was more impressed with the film than I expected to be, and I think it holds up pretty well four decades after its original release. I didn’t particularly enjoy Mark of the Devil but I definitely get why it has its fans.

Kyle Warner’s Rating: 6.5

Posted in Cults & Classics, News, Reviews | Leave a comment

Well Go USA nabs Jacky Wu and Scott Adkins’ ‘Wolf Warrior’

"Wolf Warriors" Theatrical Poster

"Wolf Warriors" Theatrical Poster

THE MOVIE: Special Force: Wolf Warrior (aka Wolf WarWolf or Warg) is Wu Jing’s second directorial project. You’ll likely recall Jing (also known as Jacky Wu) from recent movies like Sha Po Lang aka Killzone, in which he fought against Donnie Yen, as well as Legendary Assassin, which he also directed. No plot details or release dates have been set.

Special Force: Wolf Warrior also stars Scott Adkins (Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning), Kevin Lee (Pound of Flesh), Vincent Zhao (True Legend) Deng Ziyi (Pay Back), Sona Eyambe (Zombie 108), Kyle Shapiro (Dragon Blade), Samuel Thivierge (In the End) and Nan Yu (The Expendables 2).

Updates: The official Scott Adkins Facebook page has unveiled some new set photos from the upcoming Wolf Warriors, featuring Adkins and Jacky Wu. | First teaser trailer.

BREAKING NEWS: According to SD (via FCS), Well Go USA will be releasing Wolf Warrior in North American and Canadian theaters in April. Expect a Blu-ray/DVD release to follow shortly. Stay tuned for more details!

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Deal on Fire! The Last Supper | Blu-ray | Only $9.39 – Expires soon!

The Last Supper | Blu-ray & DVD (Random Media)

The Last Supper | Blu-ray & DVD (Random Media)

Today’s Deal on Fire is the Blu-ray for Lu Chuan’s The Last Supper.

The story focuses on the famous Hongmen Banquet, which was held in 206 B.C. by one warlord with the express purpose of assassinating his rival.

The Last Supper features an impressive cast, including Yu Liu (Curse of the Golden Flower), Daniel Wu (New Police Story), and Chen Chang (Crouching Tigger, Hidden Dragon). Don’t miss the trailer.

Order The Last Supper from Amazon.com today!

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Vivica A. Fox joins Will Smith-less ‘ID4′ sequel

"Independence Day" American Theatrical Poster

"Independence Day" American Theatrical Poster

During an interview with EW, Roland Emmerich (ID4, White House Down)  has revealed details about the upcoming ID4 sequels (ID Forever Part 1 and Part II), which will be set 20 years after the first film.

Here’s what Emmerich told EW: “The humans knew that one day the aliens would come back. And they know that the only way you can really travel in space is through wormholes. So for the aliens, it could take two or three weeks, but for us that’s 20 or 25 years.” Emmerich has hired James Vanderbilt (White House Down) to revise his first draft of the script.

Updates: Emmerich says Will Smith is too expensive to cast for the studio. | According to movies.com, Q&A, Emmerich stated that both Bill Pullman and Jeff Goldblum are on board for the ID4 sequel. | Movieweb reports that Independence Day 2 has a back-up script in case Will Smith doesn’t return.

Will Smith has turned down the ID4 sequel. | ID4 sequel is going through script re-write by newcomer Carter Blanchard (Diver). | Deadline reports that the ID4 sequel will start production in May 2015, with a release date still set for June 24, 2016.

According to The Wrap, Liam Hemsworth (The Expendables 2) and Jessie Usher (Survivor’s Remorse) will be starring in the ID4 sequel. Also, Jeff Goldblum is reprising his role as David Levinson.

BREAKING NEWS: According to Collider, Vivica A. Fox (Kill Bill) is set to return as Jasmine Dubrow.

Posted in News | 1 Comment

Drool on this trailer for Ringo Lam’s action flick ‘Wild City’

"Wild City" Teaser Poster

"Wild City" Teaser Poster

Hong Kong legend Ringo Lam, the action director behind gritty classics like City on Fire, Full Contact and Full Alert, is set to make his first film since 2007′s Triangle, which was a collaboration with Tsui Hark and Johnnie To.

The upcoming project is called Wild City (aka Intoxicated City of Mazes or Hustle) which will begin production in June, following a Summer 2015 release. Nothing is known of the plot, but it is an “action film” starring Daniel Wu (Shinjuku Incident) and Shawn Yue (The Guillotines). “I’ve always wanted to work with Lam, so I’m very happy that he asked me to be in his film. I hope we can start filming soon so I can learn from him,” Yue told Apple Daily.

Updates: Ringo Lam’s Wild City has recently started production in Kowloon, Hong Kong. The cast (see on-set photos) includes Shawn Yue (From Vegas To Macau II), Taiwanese singer Joseph Chang (Missing), and veteran actor Jack Kao (Full Alert). It was previously reported that Daniel Wu would be a part of the cast, but now it looks like that may not be the case. | Louis Koo (Flash Point) and Mainland TV actress Tong Liya have been added to the cast. | Film Comment has an interview with Ringo Lam, where he talks about Wild City.

Screen Daily has reported that Wild City is now in post-production and the tentative release date will be in the second half of 2015. Its international rights have been acquired by Hong Kong-based Distribution Workshop. The plot details have also become available: “A cop-turned-bar owner befriends a drunken woman at closing hours and finds himself pursued by her former lover and the thugs he employs. The chase turns deadly when the bar owner’s deadbeat brother and a suitcase full of cash enter the picture.” – Thanks to Sam the Man

BREAKING NEWS: Watch the first trailer for Wild City!

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Brett Ratner to remake Bruce Lee’s ‘Enter The Dragon’?

"Enter the Dragon" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"Enter the Dragon" Japanese Theatrical Poster

Yes, you read it right: Brett Ratner wants to remake Bruce Lee’s Enter The Dragon, the 1973 kung fu classic about a martial artist (Lee) who agrees to spy on a reclusive crime lord (Shih Kien) using his invitation to a tournament there as cover.

AICN reports that Ratner mentioned this idea at a recent screening of Rush Hour and reassured everyone that he is not trying to find the next Bruce Lee. Instead, he wants his film to be a ‘reimagining of Robert Clouse’s iconic showcase for Lee’s talents’.

What do you think of this news? Who would you like to see play Bruce, Shih, John Saxon, Jim Kelly, Bob Wall, Angela Mao and Bolo’s role? Share your thoughts in the comments section!

Posted in News | 10 Comments