I loved how basic the action was. It was very evocative of the late 80’s-early 90’s style. Yeah though, the action-comedy is tilted more towards the comedy as typical of Shane Black films. Also, how cool is it to see Keith David in a semi-major movie?
I’m not going to say Man With The Iron Fists is great, but I enjoyed it enough. It was probably a little overlong, maybe because I watched the director’s cut on DVD. It’s fun to look at, and even occasionally beautiful. The CGI gore is beyond awful and makes it look like some sort of “ironic” parody, which is a shame because you can tell it’s super sincere, especially the spiritual aspects of it (I thought the flashback was the best part, and I thought it was significant how it had the RZA both kissing a bible and living as a monk in a Buddhist temple). I think if it had practical effects on par with Riki Oh, I would recommend it without reservation.
I’ve really come around on CG blood. It’s kind of endearing now.
the only 007 films i’ve seen are ‘goldfinger’ and ‘on her majesty’s secret service’ and i only marginally enjoyed the latter, so i don’t have much of an attachment as well.
i like skyfall i guess because it’s so focused on the myth of james bond while not feeling like a deconstruction or self-satire thing or whatever. it’s like, i don’t know, a sculpture of a film. time’s moving on, mr.bond! you’re becoming a relic of the past. all the odds are against him, but when it’s [action scene] you get this stoic, unbelievably believable demonstration of skill and this taciturn posture and, i don’t know, power. it’s like he’s barely a human being, but like, in a quasi-poetic way?
the theme song really helps branding images in your head too, so there’s that
The song is great. I saw it in IMAX when it came out and that title sequence was just gorgeous.
kung fu killer is the Good 10’s donnie yen movie
he isn’t in that scene though lol
also i don’t know if the “ACTION” is good but Drug War is great
I keep seeing Drug War on top 10 lists of action movies in the past 10/20 years but I have yet to actually sit down and watch it. Maybe this weekend.
it’s pretty grim just as a general warning
I do appreciate that. I seem extra sensitive to that sort of thing lately.
Drug War messed me up for days after watching. That climax, yeeeeeesh.
I didn’t love Dredd. Watched it last night. I liked the aesthetic more than the action. It has shots where there’s jagged blue and purple fixed pattern noise running across the screen with cherry red digital squibs bursting against this lime green haze. I also appreciate the deadpan ironic authoritarianism.
If I were making some kind formal list I’d probably put it on though, I’m not super interested in having a catalogue of just my idiosyncratic taste.
Oh man I thought I was alone in finding the action kind of dull
I thought the action in Dredd was universally considered second to every other aspect of it, personally.
the action in Dredd (and most of the good parts of that film too) are just a clone of PWSA’s resi movies, it’s just nice to see someone other than him doing action type cinema that is so interested in architecture.
you just convinced me to watch dredd
Whoa where can i go to learn about PWSA Resident Evil architecture
The main interest of PWSA i gleaned from those movies was “my wife is like, super hot”
Been thinking about the differences in worldview between The Raid 2 and Kill Zone 2. They’re both hard R-rated modern day fight movies about cops and organized crime and both have just immense craft and they’re both as long as Gandhi. They even both have undercover guys getting arrested and starting prison riots, scenes where people use empty water cooler jugs as weapons, and villains who slouch over canes. So yeah.
The Raid 2 says that no matter how many motherfuckers you stab to death, there will always be someone else. Iko Uwais is alone in the world. The cops either can’t be trusted or they’re chasing you through the streets with lead pipes. The closest thing he has to a friend is a bratty pretty boy gangster you can’t wait to see catch a beat down. In a lot of ways, it’s about how everyone sucks equally, and about being strong enough to reject everyone’s path but your own, no matter the consequences.
Kill Zone 2 says there are good people in the world and that if you team up and punch enough people enough times, the violence will end. It’s a sincere story about self-sacrifice and it’s even literal because Tony Jaa’s daughter needs Wu Jing’s blood to keep living. The best scene is probably the one that has a shot of Tony Jaa doing a flying knee through a bus window, because it’s raining and it has ironically contrasting guitar music with a girl singing, and Tony Jaa does a flying knee through a bus window, and because Tony Jaa putting himself out there for a stranger because he’s just kind at heart is great.
honestly I think it comes off best in Afterlife because it mostly sticks to one location, but all of his films since he went to 3D have been very interested in space (not that it doesn’t crop up a lot earlier in stuff like AvP and the first Resi)
I think the resi films - for all people hate on them for not being like the games - actually play with really interesting ideas of videogame spaces (the single prison location of 4, the ~levels~ of 5, etc)
his other recent non-resi films emphasise this by bringing a similar approach to other ideas, Three Musketeers stands out for basically turning european politics into a tabletop board game.
Anderson’s obsession with space isn’t limited to his visual sensibility; it’s also at the center of his plots (Anderson wrote the screenplay for Retribution, as well as the other four Resident Evil movies). His films have a locked-room quality, where “story” is often synonymous with “setting;” many of them are set largely in a single (preferably cavernous) location: a prison (Resident Evil: Afterlife), a vast underground temple (Alien vs. Predator), a spacecraft (Event Horizon). As eventually revealed, the same is true of Retribution: its doppelganger-populated spaces-within-spaces-within-spaces are all part of a massive testing facility / live-action video game that pits the characters / players against a sinister computer—the Red Queen, named after the character from Through the Looking-Glass (Jovovich’s character is, of course, named Alice).