Chen Kun leads fantasy actioner ‘Zhong Kui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal’

"Zhong Kui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal" Teaser Poster

"Zhong Kui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal" Teaser Poster

Currently in production is a 3-D action fantasy film titled Zhong Kui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal, directed by Zhao Tianyu (Deadly Delicious) and starring Chen Kun (Young Detective Dee) and Li Bingbing (Detective Dee & the Mystery of the Phantom Flame). Additional cast members include Winston Chao (1911), Yang Zishan (So Young!), Bao Bei-er (The Four) and recording artist Jike Junyi (The Voice of China).

Here’s the plot, according to THR: “Zhong Kui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal tells the story of legendary Chinese anti-hero Zhong Kui, a young man endowed with mysterious powers who is forced into a battle among the realms of Heaven, Earth and Hell in the course of his attempt to save his countrymen and the woman he loves.”

Zhong Kui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal is set for a domestic release on February 19th 2015, Chinese New Year. We’ll keep you updated with the latest regarding this project. Stay tuned!

Updates: Here’s a few more promotional images from Zhong Kui: Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal.

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The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 40th Anniversary Edition | Blu-ray & DVD (MPI Media Group)

"The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 40th Anniversary" Theatrical Poster

"The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 40th Anniversary" Theatrical Poster

RELEASE DATE: September 16, 2014

MPI Media Group presents the Blu-ray & DVD for Tobe Hooper’s 1974 cult horror film Texas Chain Saw Massacre. In this new 40th Anniversary Edition, the classic film has undergone a new 4K restoration by NOLO Digital Film. In other words, get ready to see it as if it were filmed yesterday – check out the amazing detail in the new trailer!

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 40th Anniversary Edition is being released in three different versions: Standard Blu-ray Edition, a 2-Disc Blu-ray Special Edition; and on DVD.

Pre-order The Texas Chain Saw Massacre: 40th Anniversary Edition from Amazon.com today!

Posted in DVD/Blu-ray New Releases, Other Notable Titles | 1 Comment

Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon (2013) Review

"Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon" Chinese Theatrical Poster

"Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon" Chinese Theatrical Poster

Director: Tsui Hark
Writer: Chen Kuo Fu, Tsui Hark
Cast: Mark Chao, Feng Shaofeng, Kenny Lin Geng Xin, Kim Bum, Angelababy, Deng Chao, Carina Lau Kar Ling, Hu Dong, Chen Kun, Sheng Jian, Ma Jing Jing
Running Time: 133 min.

By Paul Bramhall

Tsui Hark has long been one of Hong Kong’s most prolific creative forces. He’s directed countless movies which are considered Hong Kong classics, from the excess of Zu: Warriors from Magic Mountain to the re-invention of Wong Fei Hung in the Once Upon a Time in China series, to unintentionally creating a Spanish speaking Brazil in Time & Tide. However out of all the genres he’s worked in, the one that he keeps coming back to is the wuxia. His breakout movie in 1979, The Butterfly Murders, was a wuxia styled murder mystery, it could be argued that the whole wuxia new wave of the early 90s was kicked off by his movie Swordsman in 1990, before he returned to effectively de-construct all that had come before with 1995’s The Blade, and then again returned to a more grounded and earthy wuxia world with Seven Swords, made a whole decade later in 2005.

It seems the post-2010 Tsui Hark has returned to the genre he clearly has a lot of love for. After a number of misfires, the release of Detective Dee and The Mystery of the Phantom Flame saw him return to solid commercial film making, and the result was a resounding success. Hark seemed to forego his usual genre hopping habits, and returned in 2011 with another wuxia, The Flying Swords of Dragon Gate, a re-make of the 1992 New Dragon Gate Inn of which he was the producer, which itself was a remake of the King Hu original. The re-make of a re-make was a solid effort, with Hark making effective use of 3D, and further continued the refreshing tone that was set by his previous effort of being an unpretentious action romp, free of the usual naval gazing that most wuxia’s had embraced in the post Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon world.

Unusually, Hark decided to stick with wuxia for a third time in a row with the release of 2013’s Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon, a prequel to the Andy Lau starring 2010 production. It’s a movie to be approached with caution by the more traditional minded Hong Kong movie fan. Hark has never been shy of using new technology, and both Detective Dee and The Mystery of the Phantom Flame and Flying Swords of Dragon Tiger Gate made liberal use of CGI, sometimes it was remarkably effective, sometimes Hark’s ambition went beyond his budget and things got a little video gamey. However while both of those efforts were anchored by mega stars Andy Lau and Jet Li respectively, here Young Detective Dee is portrayed by the relatively unknown Taiwan star Mark Chao.

So, with the promise of an action adventure filled with CGI and 3D, it’s a safe bet that the majority of HK fans who like their movies free of any visual trickery or gimmicks won’t even give this one a second glance. I confess to being a member of that majority, however I’m glad that I did decide to check out Hark’s latest vision. While his previous two efforts were solid but not without their hiccups, Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon proves that Hark has found his rhythm with this new wuxia world he’s trying to create. Or perhaps ‘new’ is not quite the correct word to use, rather those wild and adrenalin fuelled wuxia movies of more than twenty years ago have effectively been brought into the 21st century. The energy that was created with the over the top wire work is still there, however it’s now ably backed up with, and sometimes replaced by, CGI, and somehow the combination works.

The cast definitely help proceedings, while filling the shoes of the Detective Dee that Andy Lau created should be an intimidating task, Mark Chao makes the character his own, as a younger but seemingly no less confident Dee, who has just taken up his role in the Justice Department. While at this point in most wuxia tales a plot will be introduced involving some kind of mysterious character attempting to take over the martial arts world, here we have a much more refreshing and unconventional problem. Authorities believe that there’s a sea monster on the loose, and it’s up to Dee and his Justice Department cohorts to get to the bottom of it. Of course, somewhere along the way it’s revealed that there is a mysterious character, and this being a 2013 movie, it should be no spoiler to mention that instead of trying to take over the martial arts world, their goal is to take over China.

Hark thankfully is a skilled enough film maker to make these details throw-away, at no point does the movie steer into China flag waving, and it all fits in with the plot in a way that feels natural and doesn’t ruin the flow. Yuen Woo-ping should probably have taken a few notes from Hark before making True Legend. Of course, such a detail could also be classed as being throw-away based on the fact that the movie is called Rise of the Sea Dragon. This is a wuxia movie, so of course a sea monster doesn’t typically fit into the type of environments that lend themselves to this kind of storytelling. But this is also a Tsui Hark movie, and as a result, we are indeed given a fully realized, suitably epic sea monster, and it provides a satisfyingly thunderous conclusion. For anyone with home theatre systems, Young Detective Dee gives the sound system a mighty fine work out.

It would be unfair to give all the credit to Hark though, because as with his previous two efforts, he brings back Yuen Bun as action director. Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon not only sees Hark fully realizing the potential of how to use the latest technologies, but Yuen Bun also seems to find the balance here of how to create an effective action sequence without going overboard. While the fight in the sandstorm tornado that was supposed to be a highlight of Flying Swords of Dragon Gate ended up coming across as cartoonish and fake, here Bun reigns things in and keeps the action fast, fluid, and entertaining, while never taking things too far that it looks like a bunch of pixels flailing at each other. There is a real feel in Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon that both Hark and Bun are in full control of what they’re creating onscreen, and as an audience, this translates into two hours of solid entertainment.

Paul Bramhall’s Rating: 8/10

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Deal on Fire! The Raid | Blu-ray | Only $9.99 – Expires soon!

The Raid: Redemption Blu-ray & DVD (Sony Pictures)

The Raid: Redemption Blu-ray & DVD (Sony Pictures)

Today’s Deal on Fire is the Blu-ray for The Raid: Redemption (aka The Raid). You’ve seen The Raid 2: Berandal, now it’s time to revisit the original! It’s a rookie (Iko Uwais) and his special forces team vs. every killer, gangster and thief in a fifteen-story apartment block building. This groundbreaking martial arts spectacular is considered one of the best action movies of our time!

Read our reviews for both The Raid and The Raid 2, as well as our exclusive interview with the director behind the brilliant brutality, Gareth Evans!

Order the The Raid from Amazon.com today!

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Jackie Chan to return to the ‘Armour of God’ series with ‘Chinese Zodiac 2′

"CZ12" Chinese Theatrical Poster

"CZ12" Chinese Theatrical Poster

While promoting Police Story 2013 in Singapore last year, Jackie Chan mentioned the possibility of a sequel to 2012’s Chinese Zodiac (aka CZ12), which would technically mean the 4th chapter of the Armour of God series.

Update: Asian Hawk fans, rejoice! Looks like Chinese Zodiac 2 (aka Armour of God 4) is becoming a reality. Here’s some news according to a recent Variety article: “On completion of Dragon Blade, Chan will next shoot English-language actioner Skiptrace before taking the lead role in Chinese Zodiac II, a sequel to the Chan-directed and starring comedy action hit of December 2012.”

There is no word of any additional cast members, or if Chan will be directing Chinese Zodiac 2 himself (all previous Armour of God films were directed by Chan). Obviously, it’s way too early for details, but we’ll keep you in the loop as we hear more news.

In addition to Chinese Zodiac II, there are a number of rumored and in-development Chan projects in the works, including Rush Hour 4, Karate Kid 2, Wolf Flag, Manhattan and even a “silent movie” with Zhang Yimou. - Thanks to Film Combat Syndicate and Super Chan’s Blog for pointing this out!

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Rampage: Capital Punishment | Blu-ray & DVD (Phase 4 Films)

Rampage: Capital Punishment | Blu-ray & DVD (Phase 4 Films)

Rampage: Capital Punishment | Blu-ray & DVD (Phase 4 Films)

RELEASE DATE: August 19, 2014

Phase 4 Films presents the Blu-ray & DVD for Uwe Boll’s Rampage: Capital Punishment (aka Rampage 2). It’s the return of violent anti-hero Bill Williamson (Brendan Fletcher). This time he has plans to change the world by exacting vengeance on the rich, and ripping Washington apart!

Boll has definitely made some horrible movies in the past, but if you’ve seen 2009′s Rampage or 2013′s Assault on Wall Street, Boll has proven himself to be a competent filmmaker. If Martin Scorsese is the master of gangster film, then Boll is the master of making flicks about people goin’ postal! Don’t miss the trailer!

Pre-order Rampage: Capital Punishment from Amazon.com today!

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John Woo and Tsui Hark to join forces for an action movie

"A Better Tomorrow 2" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"A Better Tomorrow 2" Japanese Theatrical Poster

In the late 1980s, director John Woo and producer Tsui Hark dominated the heroic bloodshed scene with the classics A Better Tomorrow and A Better Tomorrow 2. Unfortunately, the success of these films led to creative differences between the two. The duo ultimately clashed and went separate ways. Hark took over directing duties for A Better Tomorrow 3 and Woo went on to do The Killer. Their partnership was over.

Now, 25 years later, an article hints that the two have patched things up and may join forces for a new action film. According to kungfucinema’s mark187, who translated the story, this may be a two picture deal between them (i.e. one directed by Woo and produced by Hark; the other directed by Hark and produced by Woo).

The thought of Woo going back to his A Better Tomorrow roots is an action fan’s wet dream. And the fact that Hark is involved makes it even wetter. With Woo, Hark and Ringo Lam (see Lam’s comeback) helming a string of shoot ‘em ups, Hong Kong action cinema will explode in the next few years, just as it did 25 years ago. And who knows… maybe Chow Yun-Fat is more than likely to reunite with the guys that made him an international superstar.

Update: John Woo has just wrapped up his upcoming film, The Crossing. His next film will be Flying Tigers, followed by his remake of Seijun Suzuki’s Youth of the Beast. After Beast, he’ll be going back to his “heroic bloodshed” roots with Tsui Hark. In a recent interview with Jaynestars, here’s what Woo had to say: “Tsui Hark and I both cherish the times when we used to work together and would like to rekindle our working relationship. We’d like to make two films together, in the spirit of A Better Tomorrow. At this point, we’re just thinking about the script and have no concrete dates for shooting. But this is something we’re both looking forward to.”

BREAKING NEWS: In our last update, Woo said that he would like to team up with Hark to do an A Better Tomorrow-type movie. Now it looks like he’s interested in doing a wuxia movie with him instead. Here’s what Woo recently told Yahoo: “I hope to work with Tsui Hark on a Wuxia film… he is a genius at his craft and has a lot of ideas.” - Thanks to DiP!

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Deal on Fire! Brothers Five | Blu-ray | Only $10 – Expires soon!

"Brothers Five" Blu-ray Cover

"Brothers Five" Blu-ray Cover

Today’s Deal on Fire is the Blu-ray for 1970′s Brothers Five, directed by Lo Wei (The Big Boss). This 1970 Shaw Brothers classic stars Cheng Pei-pei (Come Drink With Me), a woman who must reunite the Kao brothers to rid the Teng Lung Manor of killers whilst avenging the murder of their father. Also starring Lo Lieh (Dangerous Encounters of the First Kind), Chang Yi (The Victim), Yueh Hua (Vengeance is a Golden Blade), Kao Yuan (Edge of Fury), Tien Feng (Man Called Tiger), Unicorn Chan (Way of the Dragon) and many more! Get it while it’s cheap!

Order Brother Five from Amazon.com today!

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Frank Grillo locked in for Patrick Hughes’ ‘The Raid’ remake?

"The Raid" Theatrical Poster

"The Raid" Theatrical Poster

Director Patrick Hughes, who is currently putting finishing touches on The Expendables 3, is set to remake the 2011 Indonesian action film, The Raid.

According to Variety: “While the film may not have the same martial art fighting styles included in this film, Hughes’ background with heavy action should  should satisfy both fans of the originals and auds not familiar with the original films.”

Interestingly enough, while starting production on The Expendables 3 last year, Sylvester Stallone tweeted: “We believe we can do better than the The Raid, which was an excellent film… Raising the bar…”

Gareth Evans, the director of The Raid, commented on Stallone’s tweet in our recent interview with him. Here’s what he had to say: “I prefer to focus on the fact that he praised the film and by singling it out as something he wants to compete with is a major compliment to what we achieved with so little. Sure it’s possible they will succeed, likewise we’re setting out to top the first film with The Raid 2 – and watching the edit, I think we have. None of this is nor should be a competition between filmmakers – when I go out and watch an action movie I hope it’s well made, entertaining and also inspiring to give us ideas on how we can improve our own game. I wish them and anyone else out there making an action film every success, I know personally how f–king hard it is to make these films. So yeah, it’s all good spirited.”

According to The Wrap, Chris and Liam Hemsworth are being eyed for the remake. | For the remake, Hughes has the best wingmen money can buy: Gareth Evans, the director of the original, will serve as executive producer; and its stars and key martial arts choreographers, Iko Uwais and Yayan Ruhian, will be staging the hand-to-hand action

In a recent interview with Crave, Gareth Evans shared his ideas on the remake: “Me on a personal level, I’d f*cking love to see them put Scott Adkins in there. I’m just going to say that right off because I just think he’s great and I’ve wanted to work with him before. For him to be able to get a real, good fucking solid role like that in a studio film where it’s all about gearing up towards martial arts, something that he’s fully capable of, it’d be great. Michael Jai White would be great as well, all these guys. I could geek out about all the guys I want to see in these films and hopefully they get a chance.”

Director Patrick Hughes has opened up about “his take” on his upcoming The Raid remake: “The thing that blew my mind with that film was the aesthetics and the fight sequences but also the simplicity of the premise, and there’s so much you can do with that. So our take on it is really interesting and I feel like if anything what I want to do is elevate the emotional aspect of it…”. In addition, Hughes also talks about the remake’s premise, which will follow a DEA task team that goes on secret Navy SEAL-style missions who work across borders.

Several days ago, Collider (via deadline) reported that The Raid 2 remake would start filming in September. Today, Variety reports that production for the remake has been delayed until the first quarter of 2015. Also, in addition to the rumor of Chris and Liam Hemsworth leading the cast, the following names are now unofficially tied to the project as well: Luke Evans, Anthony Mackie, Frank Grillo and Ethan Hawke.

BREAKING NEWS: Looks like Frank Grillo (The Grey) is one of the three main stars “officially” attached to The Raid remake. Here’s what Grillo told Collider: “We were officially offered the film, and so that was gonna go in September and now that doesn’t go until January. So, you know, that’s the way the movie business is. You’re officially attached until there is no more movie, you know? But yeah, this is something that I’m planning on doing. Yeah… I’m one of the three main characters and, you know, I’m excited about it. I can’t wait to actually go do it because it’s gonna be Americanized, but not overtly Americanized. It’s really gonna keep a lot of what made the first Raid so great.”

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Deal on Fire! Alien Anthology + Prometheus | Blu-ray | Only $19.99 – Expires soon!

"Alien Anthology + Prometheus" Blu-ray Covers

"Alien Anthology + Prometheus" Blu-ray Covers

Today’s Deal on Fire is for the Alien Anthology 6-Disc Blu-ray set, which includes Alien, Aliens, Alien 3 and Alien Resurrection plus a log pile of extra features. In addition, you’ll also get the Prometheus Blu-ray! For about $4 a movie, this is one deal you don’t want to be alienated from!

Order the Alien Anthology + Prometheus Bundle from Amazon.com today!

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Watch kung fu movies for FREE right now on ‘Iron Fist TV’!

"Iron Fist TV" Promotional

"Iron Fist TV" Promotional

A couple of weeks ago, the announcement of Mill Creek Entertainment’s Iron Fist TV starting circulating the web. Now, we’re here to remind you just how badass Iron Fist TV really is.

You can access Iron Fist TV on your portable device, your computer, or even in the comfort your living room with a Roku player. Whichever you choose, many action-packed classics are ready to be discovered with a touch of a finger!

Iron Fist TV features an assortment of hard-to-find martial arts, monster films and TV shows from the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, featuring selections from Flying Fists of Kung Fu, The Great Impersonators and When Monsters Attack. Also, watch episodes of Fight! Dragon, Iron King, Super Robot Red Baron and Ultraman. Plus, new content will be added regularly!

With Iron Fist TV, you have the option of watching these completely FREE – or – for a low fee of $4.99/month (100% ad-free). For more information, watch the trailer or visit www.IronFistTV.com.

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Lee Jung-Jae is a martial arts star forced to fight in ‘Big Match’

"The Thieves" Lee Jung-Jae Teaser Poster

"The Thieves" Lee Jung-Jae Teaser Poster

Releasing later this year is Big Match, a South Korean martial arts flick from director Choi Ho (Bloody Tie). The film stars Lee Jung-Jae (The Thieves), Shin Ha-Kyun (Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance), Lee Sung-Min (The Unjust) and BoA (Girls on Top). Here’s the first photo from Big Match, courtesy of filmsmash.

Plot from asianwiki: Choi Ik-Ho (Lee Jung-Jae) is a martial arts star with talent for action and humor. But one day, he is framed for murder. Ace (Shin Ha-Kyun ) is a game planner, who makes a game for the Korean upper class. He is a villain who makes a city into a big gameboard through technology. Ace and Choi Ik-Ho become adversaries as Choi Ik-Ho jumps into the game to save his brother.

Big Match is set to be released domestically in the 2nd half of 2014. - Thanks to Albert V

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Universal picks up Wong Fei-hung flick ‘Rise of the Legend’

"Rise of the Legend" Promotional Poster

"Rise of the Legend" Promotional Poster

A Chinese martial arts film called Rise of the Legend, is currently in production. Roy Chow (Nightfall) is directing and Christine To, who co-wrote Jet Li’s Fearless and Vincent Zhao’s True Legend, is listed as a scriptwriter. Rise of the Legend will reportedly focus on a younger rendition of real-life folk hero, Wong Fei-hung, played by Eddie Peng (Tai Chi 0).

Throughout many decades in Chinese cinema, Wong Fei-hung – martial artist, physician and revolutionary - has been portrayed by various stars: Kwan Tak-hing played him in dozens of films between 1940 and 1980; Gordon Liu played him in 1976′s Challenge of the Masters and 1981′s Martial Club; Jackie Chan played him Drunken Master Drunken Master 2; and both Jet Li and Vincent Zhao played him in the Once Upon A Time In China series from 1991-1997.

Updates: Two Hong Kong legends have signed on to the film! None other than Sammo Hung (Pedicap Driver) will portray Wong Fei-hung’s mentor, while Corey Yuen (Righting Wrongs) will handle action choreography.

We’ve got your first look at Eddie Peng in the role of Wong Fei-hung, as well as news that Hollywood actor Byron Mann (Ryu in the 90′s Street Fighter movie) will have a role in the picture. | Promotional image from Rise of a Legend has been released, courtesy of Chinatimes.com.

BREAKING NEWS: According to Deadline, Universal Pictures International will co-produce Rise of the Legend. They have also acquired all international rights, including North America and excluding Asia. Also, here’s a recent promotional poster. – Thanks to Film Combat Syndicate

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Zhang Yimou prepares for action blockbuster ‘Great Wall’

"House of Flying Daggers" Chinese Theatrical Poster

"House of Flying Daggers" Chinese Theatrical Poster

Acclaimed filmmaker Zhang Yimou (Hero, House of the Flying Daggers) is preparing to direct Great Wall, a 15th century period flick revolving around the origin and construction of the Great Wall of China. For those expecting a bland historic lesson, think again. Great Wall is being described as a “fantasy epic,” as well as an “action blockbuster” by Zhang himself.

According to Variety, this is what Zhang had to say about Great Wall: “It is an action blockbuster…The story is very important, and I have to do a lot of preparation for the various cultural elements in the film. Then comes the visual effects and action, which I like a lot. It’s very different from my last film.”

As of now, no cast or shoot dates have been announced, but as soon as we fetch details, we’ll be sure to fill you in!

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Here’s your first look at the world of ‘Jurassic World’

"Jurassic World" Promotional Poster

"Jurassic World" Promotional Poster

THE MOVIE: The fourth installment in the Jurassic Park franchise is titled Jurassic World. Directing the film will be Colin Trevorrow (Safety Not Guaranteed). There are no plot details, but the film has a release date for June 12, 2015. So far, the cast includes Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jake Johnson, Nick Robinson, Ty Simpkins and Irrfan Khan.

Chances are his script will bear no resemblance to an earlier one from The Departed‘s Willian Monahan that floated around the web back in 2007. That draft had a soldier of fortune returning to Jurassic Park with the help of some genetically engineered mini-T-Rexes who obeyed his commands like domesticated dogs. We’re not even making this up!

Updates: Nothing ground-breaking but Spielberg has confirmed he will be producing JPIV rather than directing it. He also says it’s too soon to discuss the project. | HitFix relays word that Universal has assigned Rise of the Planet Apes screenwriters Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver to work on the screenplay.

Universal has announced June 12, 2015 as the official release for Jurassic Park 4, which is officially titled Jurassic World. Also, be sure and watch the “pitch” video. | Deadline reports that Universal is in negotiations with Josh Brolin (Oldboy) to join Jurassic World. | Deadline reports that Vincent D’Onofrio (Full Metal Jacket) will be the film’s main villain. | AICN has some concept art for what the brand new and fully operational Jurassic Park may look like. Sorry – no more cool jeeps, JP fans!

BREAKING NEWS: Here’s a new pack of cast photos, featuring Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Nick Robinson and Ty Simpkins, courtesy of Collider.

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Deal on Fire! Hero | Blu-ray | Only $8.99 – Expires soon!

"Hero" Blu-ray Cover

"Hero" Blu-ray Cover

Today’s Deal on Fire is the Blu-ray for Zhang Yimou’s 2002 wuxia film Hero, which stars Jet Li (Flying Swords of Dragon Gate), Tony Leung (Bullet in the Head), Maggie Cheung (Police Story), Chen Daoming (Infernal Affairs 3), Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) and Donnie Yen (Special ID).

Hero revolves around a nameless soldier (Li), who embarks on a mission of revenge against the fearsome army that massacred his people. The film features fight choreography by the legendary Tony Ching Siu Tung (Duel to the Death). Be sure to read our reviews for Hero.

Order Hero from Amazon.com today!

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New international posters for Dwayne Johnson’s ‘Hercules’

"Hercules" International Theatrical Poster

"Hercules" International Theatrical Poster

THE MOVIE: Having enduring his legendary twelve labors, Hercules (Dwayne Johnson), the Greek demigod, has his life as a sword-for-hire tested when the King of Thrace and his daughter seek his aid in defeating a tyrannical warlord.

Opening on July 25, 2014 is Hercules (aka Hercules: The Thracian Wars), directed by Brett Ratner (Rush Hour). In addition to Dwayne Johnson as Hercules, the upcoming film also stars John Hurt, Rufus Sewell, Ian McShane, Joseph Fiennes, Rebecca Ferguson, Peter Mullan and Irina Shayk. Watch the first trailer.

Updates: First trailer. | First clip. | Second trailer.

BREAKING NEWS: Two new international posters: 1 | 2 – Thanks to impa.

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Trailer for ‘Ninja Turtles’ historical documentary ‘Turtle Power’

"Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" Japanese Theatrical Poster

Turtle Power: The Definitive History of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is an upcoming documentary that explores how a bizarre idea went from independent comic book to a global sensation that included cartoons, live-action films, video games and toys.

Written and directed by Randall Lobb, Turtle Power: The Definitive History of the Teenage Mutant Ninja, features interviews with the creators and the affiliates who were there from day one.

Celebrate the 30th anniversary of Leonardo, Donatello, Michelangelo and Raphael by catching it on DVD and Digital HD on August 12, 2014. Until then, don’t miss the trailer.

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Green Ice | DVD (Scorpion Releasing)

Green Ice | DVD (Scorpion Releasing)

Green Ice | DVD (Scorpion Releasing)

RELEASE DATE: August 5, 2014

Scorpion Releasing presents the DVD for 1981′s Green Ice, directed by Ernest Day (1978′s The Professionals TV series). An electronics engineer (Ryan O’Neal) and his gal pal (Anne Archer) travel to South America, where they become involved in a plot to rob an emerald smuggler (Omar Sharif) of his fortune. Green Ice features a title sequence by Maurice Binder, the creative genius responsible for most of the James Bond titles sequences. In fact, check out its similarity on youtube. I’m surprised EON didn’t give him sh*t about it!

Pre-order Green Ice on Amazon.com today.

Posted in DVD/Blu-ray New Releases, Other Notable Titles | 1 Comment

Sorceress | Blu-ray & DVD (Kino International)

Sorceress | Blu-ray & DVD (Kino International)

Sorceress | Blu-ray & DVD (Kino International)

RELEASE DATE: August 19, 2014

Kino International presents the Blu-rayDVD for 1982′s Sorceress, directed by Jack Hill (Foxy Brown, The Big Bird Cage). With its gratuitous nudity, hilarious dialogue, abundant special effects, and a thrilling score from future Oscar-winning A-list composer James Horner (Terminator 2: Judgement Day, Titanic), Sorceress is a fine piece of entertaining schlock. Definitely one of the most wackiest titles of the 80s barbarian film trend, made famous by 1982′s Conan the Barbarian. Watch the trailer.

Pre-order Sorceress from Amazon.com today!

Posted in DVD/Blu-ray New Releases, Other Notable Titles | 1 Comment

Chinese and Korean posters for ‘Transformers: Age of Extinction’

"Transformers 4: Age of Extinction" Korean Theatrical Poster

"Transformers 4: Age of Extinction" Korean Theatrical Poster

THE MOVIE: In Michael Bay’s Transformers: Age of Extinction (aka Transformers 4), a mechanic and his daughter make a discovery that brings down Autobots and Decepticons – and a paranoid government official – on them. The film stars Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Kelsey Grammar, Sophia Myles and Stanley Tucci. Transformers: Age of Extinction opens in 2D, 3D, and IMAX 3D on June 27th.

Updates: In a TMZ interview (via Collider), Michael Bay states: “The movie will continue four years from the Attack on Chicago; which is in the last movie. So it’s going to still have the same lineage.” | Collider reports that Paramount is apparently hoping to set Transformers 4 in mainland China.

Much like Iron Man 3 before it, Michael Bay’s latest sequel Transformers 4 will be a Chinese co-production. This will involve adding Chinese actors to the cast as well as select location shooting in China.

Deadline reports that Chinese actress Li Bingbing (Resident Evil: Retribution, Triple Tap) has been added to the Transformers 4 cast. | AICN has your first look at a redesigned Optimus Prime and two of his Autubot friends in car form. | The teaser poster. | Super Bowl trailer. | New poster. | Newest trailer. | New poster. | IMAX poster. | Newest poster, plus Collider has new images of Opimus Prime and Bumblebee. | New trailer. | New trailer. | Newest poster. | TV spot, courtesy of Yahoo.

BREAKING NEWS: South Korean poster and Chinese poster for Transformers 4: Age of Extinction.

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Deal on Fire! The Assassins | Blu-ray | Only $4.99 – Expires soon!

The Assassins Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

The Assassins Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

Today’s Deal on Fire is the Blu-ray for Zhao Linshan’s The Assassins (aka Bronze Sparrow Terrace or Bronze Sparrow Platform). This period actioner stars Chow Yun Fat (Let the Bullets Fly) and is written by the screenwriter behind Zhang Yimou’s Hero.

The Assassins focuses on Cao Cao (Chow Yun Fat), a prominent warlord who became the head of the central government in China towards the end of the Han dynasty. The film explores areas of military tactics, love, and the relationship between father and son. It also depicts two assassination attempts on the warlord.

Order The Assassins from Amazon.com today!

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‘War of the Arrows’ director returns with ‘Roaring Currents’

"Roaring Currents" Korean Theatrical Poster

"Roaring Currents" Korean Theatrical Poster

Two years ago, Well Go USA released War of the Arrows on Blu-ray and DVD. For fans and critics alike, the film hit the bullseye for its breakneck pace, compelling plot and engrossing battle sequences. Now, the film’s director, Kim Han-Min, is back with another period actioner titled Roaring Currents.

According to asianwiki, Roaring Currents depicts the Battle of Myeongryang, which took place October 26, 1597. The battle involved Admiral Yi Sun-Shin (Old Boy and I Saw Devil’s Choi Min-Sik), who had only 12 ships under his command, against the Japanese navy which had over a hundred ships (led by Ryoo Seung-Ryong of The Target).

Roaring Currents releases domestically on July 30, 2014. Watch the trailer, thanks to Film Combat Syndicate.

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Pre-order Japan’s live-action ‘Gatchaman’ at DDDhouse.com

"Gatchaman" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"Gatchaman" Japanese Theatrical Poster

For a generation of kids who grew up in the early 80′s, much of their favorite Saturday morning fare was – unbeknownst to them – anime that had been dubbed and re-edited from Japan. Thus, Japan’s Macross became Robotech and Beast King GoLion became Voltron.

Along those same lines, the long-running Japanese anime Gatchaman was introduced to American audiences as Battle of the Planets. The show followed a group of super-powered young people (who may or may not be cyborgs) tasked with protecting the Earth from the villainous aliens of Spectra.

Now, Japan’s live-action movie based on the series is available on Blu-ray at DDDHouse.com for a June 13th pre-order. In case you haven’t seen it, watch the trailer!

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Deal on Fire! The Assassin’s Blade | Blu-ray | Only $9.36 – Expires soon!

Assassin's Blade Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

Assassin's Blade Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

Today’s Deal on Fire is the Blu-ray for for Jingle Ma’s Assassin’s Blade (aka The Butterfly Lovers), starring Wu Chun (14 Blades), Charlene Choi (The Twins Effect) and Hu Ge (1911).

Assassin’s Blade is based on the Chinese legend of the Butterfly Lovers, but in a wuxia setting. Think of it as William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet meets Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. The film features fight choreography by the legendary Ching Siu-tung (House of the Flying Daggers).

Order The Assassin’s Blade from Amazon.com today!

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Deal on Fire! Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon | Blu-ray | Only $8.96 – Expires soon!

"Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" Blu-ray Cover

"Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" Blu-ray Cover

Today’s Deal on Fire is the Blu-ray for Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Named “Best Picture of the Year” by over 100 critics nationwide! Two master warriors (Chow Yun-fat and Michelle Yeoh) are faced with their greatest challenge when the treasured Green Destiny sword is stolen. A young aristocrat (Zhang Ziyi) prepares for an arranged marriage, but soon reveals her superior fighting talents and her deeply romantic past. Featuring stunning martial arts choreography by Yuen Wo Ping (Kill Bill Vol 1). Be sure to read about the upcoming sequel, starring Donnie Yen!

Order Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon from Amazon.com today!

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June is a hot month for martial arts DVD and Blu-ray releases!

The Chef, the Actor, the Scoundrel | Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

The Chef, the Actor, the Scoundrel | Blu-ray & DVD (Well Go USA)

For those of you looking to add a number of exciting Blu-ray & DVD titles to your collection, get ready for one hot list! The month of June is jam-packed with countless butt-kicking classics, a crazy Chinese comedy and a critically acclaimed Korean drama!

Whether you’re looking for some old school kung fu action (The Angela Mao Ying Collection, The Great Impersonators, Way of the 5 Finger Death Strike) or prefer something newer (Gina Carano’s In The Blood, Brawl aka Fighting Fish), you’ll be pleased with the batch of titles coming out this month. For your convenience, we listed them by day of release.

If you’re interested in purchasing the titles, we’re hoping you’ll click on our Amazon.com links to show your support towards cityonfire.com.

In return, we’ll continue to highlight lesser-known martial arts/Asian cinema gems at the beginning of each month. As always, we appreciate your help. After all, it’s you, our visitors, that keeps us going. Thank you!

In The Blood
Releases June 3
Anchor Bay presents the Blu-ray & DVD for In The Blood. When her husband goes missing during their Caribbean vacation, a woman (Gina Carano) sets off on her own to take down the men she thinks are responsible. In the Blood is directed by John Stockwell (Into the Blue) and stars Gina Carano, Stephen Lang, Luis Guzman, Amaury Nolasco, Cam Gigandet, Danny Trejo, Treat Williams, Ismael Cruz Cordova and Yvette Yates.

Bushido Man: Seven Deadly Battles
Releases June 10
Shout! Factory presents the Blu-ray & DVD for Takanori Tsujimoto’s Bushido Man: Seven Deadly Battles. Upon returning from a pilgrimage across Japan, the warrior Toramaru arrives with tales of seven epic battles against Japan’s most legendary fighters. As Toramaru’s philosophy dictates that he “know the enemy by eating his food,” each masterfully-choreographed fight is preceded by a helping of his prey’s favorite dish. Starring Mitsuki Koga (Shinobi: Heart Under Blade), Yoshiyuki Yamaguchi and Masanori Mimoto.

Brawl | aka Fighting Fish
Releases June 10
Lionsgate presents the DVD for Brawl (aka Fighting Fish). Mike moves to Thailand to start a new life when he is robbed and left with nothing… until he meets Yo, a skilled Thai boxer, and his beautiful (and handicapped) wife. The new friends soon enter an underground fight club called “Fighting Fish” in order to make the money they need to survive. Starring Jawed El Berni (Ninja 2), David Ismalone (Beautiful Boxer) and Suchao Pongwilai (Ong Bak).

Iron Fist Frenzy
Releases June 10
Mill Creek Entertainment presents the 13-disc DVD set for Iron Fist Frenzy. This collection includes 50 movies. Prepare to unleash a fury of immortal martial arts masters with this 50 movie set of kung-fu classics! This thrilling collection of jaw-droppin flicks brings together a colossal assortment of martial arts genre films from the 70s, 80s and 90s. From the ultimate Shaolin masters to the legends of kung-fu, theses hard to find cult classics are sure to delight, with 50 times the high-kickin humor and adrenaline pumpin action! Note: Click on the Amazon link to see included titles.

100 Greatest Martial Arts Classics Collection
Releases June 10
Mill Creek Entertainments presents the 26-disc DVD set for the 100 Greatest Martial Arts Classics Collection. Over 140 Hours of Kung-Fu Combat! Knock yourself out with 100 high flyin’ and punch packin’ Kung Fu films! This thrilling collection of jaw-droppin flicks brings together a colossal assortment of martial arts madness. From the ultimate Shaolin masters to the legends of Kung-Fu, theses cult classics are hard to find and sure to delight with high-kickin humor and adrenaline pumpin action! Note: For a full listing of the film’s includes, click here. Note: Click on the Amazon link to see included titles.

Way of the 5 Finger Death Strike
Releases June 17
Mill Creek Entertainment presents the 3-disc DVD set for the Way of the 5 Finger Death Strike. This 12 movie collection includes Blind Warrior (1987), The Bravest Fist (1974), The Challenger (1980), Five Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes (1977), A Hero’s Tears (1979), Kingfisher the Killer (1981), The Mighty Four (1980), Ninja Avenger (1982), The Rage of Wind (1973), Ring of Death (1980), Triple Impact (1992) and Woman Avenger (1980). You may also be interested in Mill Creek’s first two volumes.

Angela Mao Ying 5-Film Collection
Releases June 17
Shout! Factory presents the DVD set for The Angela Mao Ying 5-Film Collection. This 6 film, 3 disc set includes 1973′s When Taekwondo Strikes, 1974′s The Tournament, 1974′s Stoner, 1976′s The Himalayan, 1976′s A Queen’s Ransom and 1977′s Broken Oath. Other actors who star alongside Mao are 007′s George Lazenby, Bolo Yueng (Enter the Dragon), Sammo Hung (Ip Man 2), Yuen Biao (Dragons Forever) and Carter Huang (Big Trouble in Little China). Update: A Queen’s Ransom and Stoner will be the extended cuts, which run longer than the their U.S. releases.

The Great Impersonators
Releases June 17
Mill Creek Entertainment presents the 3-disc DVD set for The Great Impersonators. This 12 movie collection includes Dragon Lee’s Big Boss 2 (1978), Bruce: King of Kung Fu (1982), Bruce vs. Iron Hand (1979), Crazy Couple (1979), Enter the Game of Death (1978), Great Hunter (1975), Kung Fu Genius (1980), Kung Fu Warrior (1980), Marvelous Stunts of Kung Fu (1979), Mission for the Dragon (1981), Return of the Red Tiger (1978) and Showdown at the Equator (1978). You may also be interested in Mill Creek’s first two volumes.

The Attorney
Releases June 17
Well Go USA presents the DVD for The Attorney. An attorney (Song Kang-Ho from The Host and The Good, the Bad, the Weird) moves from being a very successful lawyer just out to make money to one who cares about the civil liberties of an activist high-school student (Im Siwan) he defends. The story is based off a web-toon by Yang Woo-seok, who also is a first time director of The Attorney.

The Chef, the Actor, the Scoundrel
Releases June 24
Well Go USA presents the Blu-ray & DVD for The Chef, the Actor, the Scoundrel. Directed and written by Guan Hu (Design of Death), who calls this film “mass entertainment,” revolves around the fate of two Japanese scientists, who are captured in Beijing during World War II Sino-Japanese War in 1942. The film stars Zhang Hanyu as The Actor, Huang Bo as The Scoundrel, and Liu Hua as The Chef.

Looking for new import releases?
If you’re looking for a new import release, please visit DDDhouse.com. The trusted retailer carries new and upcoming releases that are not yet available in North America, such as Donnie Yen’s The Monkey King and Chow Yun-Fat’s From Vegas to Macau.

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Seed of Darkness | DVD (Tokyo Shock)

Seed of Darkness | DVD (Tokyo Shock)

Seed of Darkness | DVD (Tokyo Shock)

RELEASE DATE: August 12, 2014

Tokyo Shock presents the DVD for the 2006 Malaysian-Chinese film Seed of Darkness (aka Nephesh Seed), directed by Michael Chuah (Fist of Dragon). In the tradition of Japanese horror classics The Ring and The Grudge! A woman decides to undergo an “in-vitro fertilization process” in Singapore to have a child of her own. 7 years later, after moving to anew apartment, the child begins to behave oddly and insists she can see the “non-existent” father. Starring Amber Chia, Juin Juin Leong, Vick Teo, Alvin Wong, Sze Sen Wong and Zun Yap. Watch the trailer.

Pre-order Seed of Darkness from Amazon.com today!

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Schwarzenegger shows his battle scars in ‘Terminator: Genesis’

"Terminator" Japanese Theatrical Poster

"Terminator" Japanese Theatrical Poster

THE MOVIE: Skydance Productions, Annapurna Pictures and Paramount Pictures are currently filming a 5th Terminator movie called Terminator: Genesis. The upcoming movie will be 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).

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).

Collider reports that Byung-hun Lee (I Saw the Devil) will play the T-1000. Also, Michael Gladis (Knights of Badassdom) and Sandrine Holt (Once a Thief TV series) have joined the cast. | A couple of photos of Schwarzenegger on the set of the new Terminator movie in costume (well, sorta), courtesy of The Arnold Fans. | Here’s a few set photos from a scene that takes place in 1984, judging from the cars. | New photos of Schwarzenegger as the T-800.

BREAKING NEWS: More photos of abattle-scarred Schwarzenegger. - Thanks to expendablespremiere

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Pre-order ‘Once Upon a Time in Shanghai’ at DDDhouse.com

"Once Upon a Time in Shanghai" International Poster

"Once Upon a Time in Shanghai" International Poster

DDDHouse.com now has Once Upon a Time in Shanghai on Blu-ray & DVD for a June 19th pre-order. Keep in mind that the DVD version is Region 3 coded, so you will need a multi-region DVD player to view the movie. Fortunately, the Blu-ray version is coded for region A, so it’s good to go on your current North American Blu-ray hardware.

Once Upon a Time in Shanghai is a martial arts film directed by Wong Ching Po (Let’s Go!) with action choreography from the legendary Yuen Woo-ping (The Matrix). The plot involves a laborer who moves to Shanghai in the hope of becoming rich, but ends up using his kung fu skills to survive. The cast includes Phillip Ng (Bodyguards & Assassins), Andy On (Special Identity), Luxia Jiang (True Legend) and Sammo Hung (Kill Zone). Watch the trailer.

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