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Seagal...A Review....Opinions.....Comparisons!!!!!!!!
2 December 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Here we go again, another Seagal DVD, made in Romania where low taxes mean it's cheap to film there. Steamroller Productions/Voltage Pictures have been cranking out these low-budget, time-killers quickly and because I've been watching Seagal's movies since I was a kid, I can't resist renting them, when they pop up at the video store.

Born To Raise Hell is not an improvement over Seagal's recent DVD releases but it does have its good points. It has a more structured plot and better music than some of his previous work. The fight scenes were a little short but adleast Seagal was more involved in them than his body double. The obligatory climactic fight was also over pretty quickly and the main bad guy didn't meet a very satisfying death. The shoot-outs were okay. I liked the gun-smoke in the air during the climactic shoot-out, but there was absolutely no recoil or kick when Seagal fired his shotgun. For such a powerful weapon, this looked a little odd.

These formulaic films always leave room in the budget for a small explosion or a car crash or both. In Born To Raise Hell a balcony blows up sending two guys to their death and as far as stunts go it looks okay.

If you didn't like the look of Seagal's previous DVD efforts, then this movie will not win you over. If however, like me, you've become used to the look and style of these films, then you know what to expect. So just go along for the ride and take it for what it is. A low-budget, formulaic Seagal action film.

The Storyline--Seagal is a drug enforcement agent in Romania. He's going after a fairly sadistic mid-level drug trafficker, named Castel, who enjoys bashing, raping, robbing and killing rich people. Using information from a low-level dealer and also a high-level trafficker, Seagal closes in on Castel. As expected in these type of films Seagal's partner is killed, making his mission more personal.

I'd also like to mention Seagal's body double again. I've noticed in a lot of these DVD's that Seagal will be talking to somebody, then a rear head camera shot will reveal the body double, before the camera cuts back to Seagal's face. You don't need sharp eyes to spot this because the double's hairstyle never quite matches Seagal's hair. I'm pleased to say that in this movie the double is less obvious because Seagal wears his jacket collar pushed up. This hides the neck and hairline making the double less of a standout. This was a good move on the production teams part to help hide this annoying problem. There is also a little bit of voice dubbing in the film, mainly at the start, but adleast the voice sounds similar to Seagal, unlike some other films of his.

P.S---I hadn't watched Seagal's first movie 'Above The Law' in quite a while, so I decided to put it on the other night. I noticed that his hair looks like it's balding from the front, his hair also looks very thin. His hair these days is very thick and full as if he's wearing a hair piece or uses spray on hair, maybe he had some kind of surgery? His hair is just so thick and fake and he doesn't have the high forehead, thinning hairline that he had back in 1988.

Also in 'Above The Law' Seagal sure could run and he looked thin, healthy and fit. Nowadays he can only manage a short lumbering jog and his face and stomach are bloated. Sometimes his face is so puffed up that it looks like he's had an allergic reaction to some bad shell-fish.

Well enough about that. Lots of people put on weight as they get older.

I like Seagal and I'll continue to watch his DVD's and other projects he brings out. He is less than a year away from turning 60 years of age and I wish him all the best for his future endeavours.
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Saw (2004)
7/10
Diabolical....Unrelenting.....Unnerving
25 May 2005
I am a huge fan of the horror genre and I know Leigh Whannell(actor,Saw) is also a horror enthusiast because I remember his comments when he was a movie reviewer on the TV show 'Recovery'.

The most outstanding feature of 'SAW' is its creative yet simple plot. The idea of a person forced to participate in a deadly game to save their own life, is a kind of morbid twist on reality TV shows. I feel that 'SAW' has the potential to spawn many sequels because its plot is so versatile.

The acting in 'SAW' is solid and convincing. Leigh Whannell surprised me with his competent performance. The mother and daughter who are gagged and tormented by their captor at gunpoint, both give gut-wrenchingly realistic performances. Overall, I felt that all the actors in 'SAW' gave 100% to their roles.

'SAW's plot has the ability to hook the viewer and draw them in and that makes for a truly gripping and enthralling ride. In terms of blood and gore 'SAW' isn't over the top or gratuitous. The film's striking element is its inventive script and its ability to build tension and dread in an enclosed claustrophobic environment.

Overall, I felt that 'SAW' was an accomplished and skillful effort. I'm sure we'll be seeing a few sequels to this fine horror/thriller. I also give 'SAW' credit for not making the killer's identity easy to discover for the viewer.
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4/10
The cheese drips from the screen.
23 May 2005
Warning: Spoilers
I just purchased Kickboxer 4 on DVD as a double feature with Kickboxer 5 and I must confess that my expectations were not high. Kickboxer 4 once again stars Sasha Mitchell(Kickboxer 2&3) as David Sloane and is directed by Albert Pyun(Kickboxer2&Cyborg) The first thing that struck me about Kickboxer 4, is its low budget and amateurish quality.

The movie begins by giving a rundown of the previous Kickboxer movies and quickly establishes how David Sloane was framed by his enemy Tong Po and sent to prison. It isn't long however before David is approached by the F.B.I and given a chance to seek revenge against Tong Po by entering Tong Po's one million dollar prize fight tournament.

In a silly subplot David's wife has been held prisoner by Tong Po for two years, so once David is accepted into the tournament, he sneaks around Tong Po's Mexican villa searching for his captive wife.

The dialogue in this film is pretty worthless and the film's only redeeming feature is the fight scenes which are frequent but fairly inferior. The most defective part of this film, is the character playing Tong Po. It isn't the same actor from Part 1&2 playing the part and I must say that the bad make-up job to make the actor resemble Tong Po looks ridiculous and completely laughable.

I don't recommend Kickboxer 4 to anyone, unless you're in the mood for pure cheese. I give the film 2 out of ten and even that is being generous.
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Wake of Death (2004)
5/10
Unsatisfied..........................
18 May 2005
I was a little disappointed with 'Wake of Death'. In my humble opinion 'Wake of Death' has a lot of wasted potential. The film could have been so much better, if a little more thought had been given towards the plot's structure and also the film's action scenes. The film has a few faults in the dialogue, which annoyed me. For example, one character is told by another that two men wearing ski masks entered a brothel and killed Andy Wang, however when this character repeats the story later, he only says one man entered the brothel and killed Andy Wang. There were other faults in the dialogue also, which bothered me.

The plot is simple and Van Damme gives a surprisingly solid performance but unfortunately the film suffers from amateurish direction. Sure, the film looks flash, but it's a case of style over substance. With a little polishing and tinkering, the script could of been improved, and this, I feel would have greatly benefited the film.

In terms of action scenes 'Wake of Death' was on the right track but unfortunately it never really takes off. Sure, we are given some fights and shootouts but it never feels like enough and I was left wanting more. If only Van Damme had thrown more punches and performed his trademark 360* degree airborne kick.

The film's biggest disappointment is its climax, or should I say anti-climax. I was expecting a grand finale fight between Van Damme and the main villain(Simon Yam) but to my surprise there is no end fight. This is made even worse, because the film teases us, by showing the main villain doing tai-chi early in the film, so we're given the impression he may be a martial artist. I couldn't believe that this film didn't have a big fight showdown at the end. The climax was a major disappointment.

Overall, I feel that 'Wake of Death' was a real missed opportunity for Van Damme. The film's bad points out weighed its good points but I can't say I hated the film. I give 'Wake of Death' a solid 5/10.
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Stickfighter (1994)
1/10
I would rather chew razor blades than watch this film.
11 May 2005
This film is so bad, it's not even funny. In fact, it's unwatchable, not to mention completely worthless. I've seen porno film's, with better production value's than this embarrassing movie. The film's lead actor is a pudgy man with a laughable 80's hairstyle, and each scene is set up, just so he can beat up some 'bad guys'. The fight scenes are preposterous and the dialogue is insupportable. The acting in this movie is so bad it's offensive and the film's plot could have been written by a 5th grader. In fact some scenes and dialogue make absolutely no sense. Bad guys sent to kill a woman by their boss, but instead they trash her apartment and then run away when she comes home!!!. Then, when they return to their boss and ask for a second chance, he shoots one of them. I admit that I stopped watching this film after 20 minutes, because it's too atrocious to tolerate. I've seen many film's in my life, but 'Stickfighter' is at the top of my list for unendurable grade Z garbage, and that's putting it nicely.
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RoboCop 3 (1993)
1/10
So 'BAD' it's funny......
23 April 2005
Robocop 3 is an 'insult' to the classic original. First of all, the character of Robocop is played by someone else and the result is just plain embarrassing. The film is very soft on violence, which was a poor decision on the director's part because the original film is notorious for its excessiveness and loved by fans. A PG-RATED Robocop is just a desperate attempt to cash in on the wider audience, which proves that the film was made by profiteers, rather than film-makers. This film is so bad, it's literally dripping with cheese. Robocop flying is an unintentional funny moment in the film and the part where Robocop drives a car off a bridge and lands on all four wheels, is just plain ridiculous. This film was the nail in the Robocop franchise's coffin. I honestly wish that it had never been made.
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RoboCop (1987)
10/10
The BEST sci-fi/action film ever made.
19 April 2005
Robocop is a first-rate, first-class, superior sci-fi/action movie classic. This movie can only be described as 'overkill'and that's why we love it. Unrestrained violence, eccentric characters,abusive foul language, an uncompromising setting, these are just some of the ingredients that round off this rare gem of a film. This film was made in the pre-C.G.I era, so that makes the film even more of an accomplishment. Go and buy a copy of "the directors cut" of ROBOCOP because everybody should have it in their DVD collection. Unfortunately this film was followed by two defective and substandard sequels. ROBOCOP 2 was a completely inadequate follow-up and ROBOCOP 3 was a weak and fraudulent third chapter. However, the original stands as a true testament to exemplary sci-fi/action cinema.
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10/10
I'll be in hell for breakfast.........
28 March 2005
I first viewed Leatherface:Texas Chainsaw Massacre III back in 1991, when it was released at my local video store. The film was short, only 79min long, but I knew the film had been mutilated by the MPAA(American Censorship Board) and this was clearly apparent when watching the film. However, as a horror film, it was still okay.

Now 13 years later, I purchased the DVD edition which contains both the R-rated movie and the Unrated one. The DVD also contains tons of bonus features. I must confess, I was extremely pleased to get my hands on this DVD, as I am a horror enthusiast.

The Unrated version is excellent. There is more blood, violence and terror. I feel that the film is under-rated and I honestly believe it's the best sequel in the Texas franchise.

It was interesting to compare the R-rated version with the Unrated one. However I do feel that the MPAA was unnecessarily harsh on the film. Silence of the Lambs is just as gruesome but that didn't go through MPAA hell did it. I guess that's because it had big name actors in it, like Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster.

I enjoy watching Texas 3 over and over. I like the film's pace and how the couple are stalked on the road by the huge utility. There is one scene that annoys me though. In the forest Benny is about to be killed by Leatherface but just as Leatherface raises the chainsaw in the air, the crazy girl yells "It's me you want, not him". So Leatherface kicks Benny in the guts and starts stalking the crazy girl as she runs away. Now, why did Leatherface kick Benny, it would have been just as easy and quick to have stuck the chainsaw into him and come back and collect his corpse later. Oh, well, it's just a minor flaw.

I am aware fan's of the original Texas film were annoyed at how Leatherface has a whole new family in this third installment. All I can say to them is, don't compare this film to the original, just go along for the ride and try not to make comparisons to the first film.

Among the bonus features on the DVD there is an alternate ending. However, after watching it, I felt it made little sense, I mean why does the cop car stop and then keep going? I like the film's real ending but Benny should not have survived, I mean c'min, the bloke had his head pushed onto a chainsaw and at the film's finale he returns with just a scratch on his head. Ridiculous to say the least.

There is no doubt that this film could have been better but judging the final product in it's unrated version I must confess it's a hell of a fun ride.
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7/10
"She pollutes the air with her craziness"
26 March 2005
"She pollutes the air with her craziness", gotta love that line near the film's beginning. Damien:Omen II is an ambitious and entertaining sequel to the classic Omen. This film is an almost perfect stepping stone in the Omen trilogy, focusing on Damien Thorn becoming a teenager. The film obviously lacks the fresh originality of the first film but it still deserves credit for maintaining a sense of dread and menace when somebody crosses the young Damien Thorn. The death scenes are both chilling and creative and the film's trademark score is brilliant. As far as sequels go, Omen II is a solid effort, leading the pathway clearly open for the third chapter. In terms of comparison Omen II doesn't surpass the original but if you enjoyed the Omen then Damien:Omen II shouldn't disappoint.
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10/10
First-class, first-rate, movie MAGIC.
10 February 2005
An absolute masterpiece. Million Dollar Baby is an exemplary movie experience, commendable in every way. Seeing this film once, is definitely not enough. Hilary Swank gives a magnificent performance as an aspiring female boxer with a heart of gold. Clint Eastwood is outstanding as the grief-stricken boxing trainer, who reluctantly takes a chance on the zealous 31year old. Morgan Freeman is resplendent in his role, as a gym maintenance-man, who quietly observes his surroundings with a keen and intelligent eye. The supporting cast also deserve credit for their solid performances. Masterfully, directed by Clint Eastwood, Million Dollar Baby is truly 'one in a million'.
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Commando (1985)
DVD version-hacked to pieces.
17 November 2004
I purchased "Commando" on DVD and it's heavily "cut". I've seen this film about 50 times on VHS and TV and I was so happy when I bought it on DVD but that happiness was only temporary. The DVD version is more censored than the TV version, what a shock. I paid $30 Australian dollars for a butchered film. If anything, DVD's are supposed to show more not less. I was so f***ing angry. I felt cheated and ripped off. I know that Commando, like many violent movies, gets censored for release in different parts of the world but the Australian VHS(video) release was the complete version but the DVD version has the following scenes censored. {1}When Kook, dressed as a garbageman shoots the guy while he's laying on the ground. {2}When Matrix snaps the black guy's neck on the plane. {3}When Matrix kills Kook at the motel, Kook's death scene goes for longer on the uncut version. {4}On the island as Matrix sets up bombs, he throws two daggers at once, killing two army men. {5}When Matrix grabs an army man and stabs him. In the cut version all we see is Matrix grab the army man. {6}The close up of Matrix cutting the army mans neck. {7}When Matrix shoots two army men bofore using his rocket launcher. {8}A number of close-up, graphic scenes of army men being shot by Matrix. {9}In the shed when Matrix stabs the army man with a pitchfork. {10}Outside the shed when Matrix stabs the army man with an axe. {11}Outside the shed when Matrix cuts the army mans arm off with a machete. {12}Longer, close-up scene of Bennett's death.

I want the uncut DVD of Commando. In Australia we should have the uncut version and not a censored version that was done for release in another country
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Angel Heart (1987)
"HOW TERRIBLE IS WISDOM WHEN IT BRINGS NO PROPHET TO THE WISE"
26 August 2004
Warning: Spoilers
A masterpiece, set in 1955. Mickey Rourke gives an absolutely flawless performance. Robert De Niro is perfectly cast in his role and as always he gives an exemplary performance. Lisa Bonet only got her role because she agreed to show her breasts in the movie. The director took full advantage of this, by building up to Bonet's bosoms eventual exposure. First, we see Lisa wearing a wet white singlet, with her nipples erect. Later, we see one breast exposed during Lisa's wild black mamba ritual dance. Then a little later on, we see both breasts exposed during Lisa's erotic love scene. In the mid 80's Lisa Bonet was the innocent daughter on the popular tv sitcom, The Cosby Show. She took the part in Angel Heart in an attempt to shed her innocent tv persona. It worked but her performance in the film is adequate at best. Upon Angel Hearts release in 1987, Bill Cosby spoke publicly about his outrage with Lisa's decision to show her chocolate buttons on film. However, the only thing Bill's media attention generated, were more ticket sales for the movie.

*************SPOILERS***************

Through a black magic ritual, a man sells his soul to the devil in return for stardom and he becomes a famous musician called Johnny Favourite{Mickey Rourke}.

Johnny Favourite, then, cheats the devil by kidnapping a soldier, celebrating in Times Square, having just returned home from the war. Through another black magic ritual, Johnny kills the soldier, whose name is Harry Angel, and takes over his identity, thus cheating the devil out of their contract.

Harry Angel is then drafted back to the war, returning a short time later with terrible facial injuries and memory loss.

One night, while in hospital, Harry Angel is secretly taken away by his wife and rich father in law, both of whom were accomplices in his scam to cheat the devil.

The father in law pays a doctor $25,000 to forge documents stating that Harry Angel is a permanent patient in the hospital.

With his new face still bandaged and having been dressed into a military uniform, Harry is dumped in Times Square which is once again welcoming home troops.

His wife and father in law perform a disappearing act and the drugged Harry awakens, removes his facial bandages and assumes he has just returned home from the war, his damaged memory unable to recollect any event preceding his arrival in Times Square.

Twelve years later, Harry Angel is a "dodgy" private investigator, when a mysterious man, named Louis Cyphre{Robert De Niro} shows up with a job for Harry. The high paying job is for Harry to locate the whereabouts of Johnny Favourite or at the very least discover if Johnny is alive or dead. Harry accepts the job, completely unaware of the truth and of the horror that awaits him.

Lousi Cyphre{pronounced Lucifer} is the devil and he has come to collect an old debt. The soul of Harry Angel.
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Angel Heart (1987)
"HOW TERRIBLE IS WISDOM WHEN IT BRINGS NO PROPHET TO THE WISE"
25 August 2004
Warning: Spoilers
A brilliant movie, set in the 1950's.

***********SPOILERS************

Through a black magic ritual, a man sells his soul to the devil in return for stardom and he becomes a famous musician called Johnny Favourate.

Johnny Favourate, then, cheats the devil by kidnapping a soldier who's celebrating in Times Square, having just returned home from the war. Through another black magic ritual, Johnny Favourate kills the soldier, named Harry Angel and takes over his identity, thus cheating the devil out of their contract.

Harry Angel is then drafted back to the war, returning a short time later with terrible facial injuries and memory loss.

One night, while in hospital, Harry Angel is secretly taken away by his wife and rich father in law, both of whom were accomplices in Johnny Favourate's scam to cheat the devil.

His father in law pays a doctor $25,000 to forge documents stating that Harry Angel is a permanent patient in the hospital.

With his new face still bandaged and having been dressed in a military uniform, Harry Angel is dumped in Times Square which is once again welcoming home troops. His wife and father in law perform a disappearing act and the drugged Harry awakens, removes his bandages and assumes he has just returned home from the war. His permanent memory loss making it impossible for him to recollect any memory preceding his arrival in Times Square.

Twelve years later, Harry Angel is a "dodgy" private detective, when a mysterious man, named Louis Cyphre(Robert De Niro} shows up with a job for Harry.

The high paying job is for Harry to locate the whereabouts of Johnny Favourate. Harry accepts the job, completely unaware of the truth and of the horror that awaits him. Louis Cyphre, is in fact, Lucifer and he has come to collect an old debt.

Unbeknown to Harry, the devil guides Harry's hand to kill those who were involved in the scam to deceive him.

In the gut-wrenching climax Harry discovers the truth and Satan collects what is rightfully his, the soul of Johnny Favourate.
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BETTER THAN PART 2
12 August 2004
I believe "The Karate Kid Part 3" is a worthy, entertaining and well-acted final installment in the popular trilogy. An improvement over Part 2, this final chapter couldn't have been done any better. Having watched Daniel and Mr Miyagi's relationship develop in the first two film's, Part 3's story threatens to break up their friendship, thus creating a perfect blend of tension and drama. Having Daniel train under the sadistic Cobra Kai teacher adds to the film's intensity. His relationship with Mr Miyagi further threatened by lies and heated arguments, Daniel(Ralph Macchio) gives a solid and engaging performance, proving that he is a competent actor. I found the film refreshing in many ways, especially in regard to Daniel's relationship with his female friend, which doesn't develop into a typical love-interest subplot like the previous two film's. This film may be a little on the dark side but in all honesty it's a decent finale to a very entertaining movie trilogy.
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Hard Target (1993)
UNCUT, UNCENSORED HARD TARGET.......REJOICE
27 July 2004
In 1993, I watched HARD TARGET at my local theatre and I was completely elated. As a Van Damme fan and John Woo admirer, I couldn't help but be impressed. Since that screening, I have viewed HARD TARGET many times and it never fails to entertain me. There was much anticipation for this film. Accomplished Hong Kong action-film director John Woo had been bought over to America, to give the english speaking world a taste of his trademark, unrestrained, high-intensity, violent action cinema. John Woo's unique ability to choreograph vigorous, razor-sharp, action scenes had won him critical apraise and a cult following. The Killer, Hard Boiled, A better tomorrow 1 and 2 are just four of the twenty-two films he had directed in his homeland. Now America wanted him and what America wants, America gets. From the beginning of production John Woo felt the tight grip of Corporate America restricting the excesses which had made him who he was."YOU CAN'T KILL SO MANY BAD GUYS IN ONE SCENE", screamed the higher power into the ear of Mr Woo. "WE HAVE A LINE WHICH CAN'T BE CROSSED". It was another example of America contradicting itself. They wanted Mr Woo's high impact style but they drew a line in the sand and this was something Mr Woo had never encountered before. He was always free to do as he pleased and after the film wrapped, he found himself going into the editing room time and time again, to tone and soften the film. Now, after years of viewing HARD TARGET on vhs, I finally own the dvd version. The Australian dvd version of HARD TARGET is uncut and full-on. Finally I can see the film as John Woo envisioned. A skilful, first-class, blood-spattered, bullet-crazy, action film. I am in heaven.
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8/10
Dirty Harry for Chucky Boy.
13 July 2004
Code of Silence is a solid and entertaining police thriller, which benefits from a number of factors. Chuck Norris is Chicago cop Eddie Kusack. Kusack's methods are tough but his motives are honest, similar to Dirty Harry, although not as deliberately extreme in his actions. Norris's performance is believable and his character is likable. I'm sure Norris's character in this film as well as his character in Lone Wolf MaQuade inspired the Walker Texas Ranger character. Although I believe Eddie Kusack is more raw and less cosmetic than Walker Texas Ranger. The supporting cast of Code of Silence also deserve credit for their competent performances.

Code of Silence has a well crafted plot which perfectly suits the Chicago setting. The story moves along nicely and is never boring. The action scenes are well staged but I personally believe the film would have greatly benefited from more fight scenes featuring Chuck Norris. I was also disappointed at the simplistic way the main villain dies in the film's finale. Rather than being shot in the back, I would have liked the villain to suffer a more fitting and eye-opening death scene or even better a showdown fight sequence between himself and Norris. However, Code of Silence is still superior action fair.
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Commando (1985)
"I EAT GREEN BERET'S FOR BREAKFAST AND RIGHT NOW I'M NOT VERY HUNGRY"
16 June 2004
"Daddy, what's that Army helicopter doing here?", "I'm not going away, if that's what you mean". In Commando, Schwarzenegger does in fact go away and in return the audience is given non-stop action at a break-neck pace. Director Mark L. Lester, who gave us, the awesome, CLASS OF 1984 and CLASS OF 1999, is also at his classic best with COMMANDO. While George P. Cosmatos was directing Stallone in RAMBO, Mark L. Lester was directing Schwarzenegger in COMMANDO and side by side these two films stand as action classics, making 1985 a memorable year for action cinema.

Sure, the film has some obvious faults but they take little away from the films adrenaline pumping impact. We can all see the wire attached to Sully's leg in the cliff dangling scene and the sudden repair job to the yellow porsche's left side. We can all see a quick glimpse of the blue mat at the bottom of the screen, as the stuntman roles of the roof after being shot and we also notice that a particular man dies twice in the movies climactic shoot-out. We can all see, the length of the M-16's ammunition belt miraculously change in length from scene to scene and Arnold's dry exit from the swamp after the aeroplane jump sequence. There's a couple more less interesting faults buts that's enough for now. Despite these minor flaws, COMMANDO is value for money action fare, entertaining and as subtle as a sledge hammer. It's a movie you can watch again and again and again.

One scene that deserves a laugh is when Arnold and the black lady are approaching the island in the aeroplane. "There it is", says the black lady as she points to the island which is less than a couple of miles in the distance and plainly visible. In reality, the island would have been spotted a heck of a lot sooner than that, don't you think?. Anyway, I'll finish up by saying, COMMANDO is an enjoyable film that nobody should miss.
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Tango & Cash (1989)
Absolutely "NO CREDIBILITY" in this movie.
15 June 2004
Yes, it's true, this film has got not one single believable scene in it. The opening scene is a rip-off from Jackie Chan's "Police Story".

In an attempt to establish Stallone's character as a courageous and reckless policeman, Tango(Stallone) parks his police sports car!!! and himself in front of a speeding oncoming truck, driven by criminals. Somehow, miraculously, Tango knew the truck would stop after firing a couple of shots towards the driver and "SURPRISE-SURPRISE" it does, "at the very last second". The two criminal occupants dive head first through the windshield and land conveniently at Tango's feet, "want to try on some jewellery, gentleman", Tango says, as he dangles a pair of handcuffs. The film gets worse, believe me.

The plot is simple, Tango(Stallone) and Cash(Russell) are two hot-shot cops from separate police departments. At first they don't know each other personally but they're both linked by their newspaper celebrity status as hugely successful cops, begrudging each other for the number one spot. Now comes the bad guy, a millionaire drug-guns lord who sets Tango and Cash up, so now the two big-shot cops end up behind bars, cracking one liner jokes as they try to figure out who set them up. The humour in this film is unforgivable. It's one unfunny, sixth grade level joke after another. In fact the script writer must have run out of one liner jokes, so he had Cash repeat one of Tango's earlier spoken one liners. The one liner that I'm referring too is the following line, "is that a proposal". Stallone says it to his captain in the films first half, in response to a marriage comment and Russell says it in the films second half to Stallone, in response to a marriage comment. How bad is that, the film repeats its jokes. Watch Tango and Cash if you dare.
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"MURDOCK, I'M COMIN' TA GIT YOU"
11 June 2004
Warning: Spoilers
Double crossed by "UNCLE SAM", Sly Stallone makes a radio call back to base and asks for the "STINKIN' BEAUROCRAT" who set him up. As lightning strikes and Sly's knuckles crack and tighten around the radio microphone, he slurs the following words, "Murdock, I'm comin' ta git you". After which he pulverises and electrofies his captors and escapes into the jungle p***ed as a rattle snake. They don't make movies like this anymore, Rambo is an old school action favourite, made at a time when stunt men could really hurt themselves and at a time when explosions weren't made on a computer screen. At its time of release the film was criticized for exploiting real life P.O.W's and a minority of the public, especially the men who fought in the Vietnam war were deeply offended by the film. Unfortunately those people made the mistake of taking the film too seriously. Rambo is a very entertaining action movie directed by George P. Cosmatos who also directed Sly, one year later, in Cobra. Mr Cosmatos shows real style in his direction and I would like to see him team up again with Sly for another project. Rambo is a real crowd pleaser of a film, destined to become a classic if it isn't already.
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Belly of the Beast (2003 Video)
Explaining Seagal's past in relation to the present.
8 January 2004
Seagal's life began to imitate a movie script, a few years ago. Life began to imitate art, when Steve reneged on his long standing contract with business partner Bill Nasso. Mr Nasso, who rightfully claims to have made Steve into a movie star was understandably devastated when Steve broke off their friendship and all business dealings. Mr Nasso had helped financially support Steve's films from the very beginning of Steve's career and he felt robbed of future profits that Steve's films would reap. Steve would soon find out, the hard way, that Bill Nasso had real life connections with the "mob". Steve's paranoia escalated, when he received death threats, while filming "Exit Wounds". His co-star Tom Arnold, was on the tv show "David Letterman" and he spoke of Steve's constant fear of being shot on the set of "Exit Wounds". "Steven would continuously nudge me and whisper, 'who is that person, what are they doing on the set', it was always just a member of the film crew. Steven's paranoia made the whole set very tense", said Tom Arnold, on the talk show "David Letterman". The reason, I'm digging up Steve's troubled past is because I believe it explains a number of current factors. I believe that Steve never truly recovered from the stress this situation caused him. I believe his sense of well being and general state of mind have been permanantly effected. Even to the point of putting his symptoms in the "post-traumatic stress syndrome" category. Steve's fear and anxiety is also the reason for his wieght gain. Instead of training and looking after himself, the aforementioned situation caused him to become reclusive and probably even caused him to embark on an eating binge. The consequences of Steve's over eating are very noticable in his more recent films. With "Belly of the Beast", I think Steve is getting himself and his career back on track. Don't get me wrong, "Belly of the Beast" is not a brilliant film but it is however a step in the right direction and that is a drastic change to the path his career had taken, post "Exit Wounds". Good-luck Steve, as a fan, I wish you the very best.
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Replicant (2001)
DOUBLE VAN DAMMAGE-DON'T BE TOO QUICK TO JUDGE.
2 January 2004
When I first viewed "Replicant", I was extremely disappointed. The movie looked cheap and Van Damme's clone character was embarrasing to watch, especially the dog biscuit eating scene. It was demeaning for both the viewers and Van Damme. However, upon reading praise about the movie, I decided to watch it again. I thought maybe I had misjudged it because I had such high expectations for the film. The second time around, I must admit, I thoroughly enjoyed the film. I just went along for the ride and didn't think too much, that's the key to enjoying the film, just switch off your brain and enjoy the ride. Director Ringo Lam's razor sharp choreography is right on target. The opening chase sequence where Michael Rooker's head narrowly escapes being squashed by a car speeding in reverse, is a very well shot sequence. The apartment explosion scene is also brilliantly shot, with debris falling onto parked cars and pedestrians. The scenes of violence are shot in typical Ringo Lam style, brutal, realistic and hard-hitting. I would have liked a longer fight sequence for the films finale. Having Van Damme perform a few more kicks and punches is hardly a huge demand for any films budget, so I say, "give us more martial arts". Actor Michael Rooker, who plays the detective, gives a standout performance. He single handedly holds the film together with the raw energy and serious tone he gives to his role. Ringo Lam is obviously aware of Van Damme's limited acting ability and despite playing two roles Van Damme has very little on screen dialogue. I congratulate Mr Lam for using his common sense in regard to the actors abilities and also for milking the most out of the film's 15-20million dollar budget. I recommend "Replicant" to the viewing public, but my recommendation comes with a caution. "Don't be too quick to judge the film and watch it more than once, because the film improves with each viewing".
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In Hell (2003)
DON'T MISS THIS AWESOME FILM
19 December 2003
In Hell is an entertaining film in a league of its own. The film moves along quickly, to establish why and how Kyle Lord(Van Damme) winds up in a brutal Russian prison. Van Damme deserves credit for his portrayal of an ordinary man thrown into an extraordinary situation and the harrowing transformation Kyle endures is both credible and sympathetic. Director Ringo Lam creates a nightmarish prison environment, full of misery and cruelty, a place completely devoid of happiness, a living hell. Medievil. Director Ringo Lam is one of my favourite director's. I've viewed all his films, foreign and American. Although In Hell is a brilliant film, it comes a close second to Ringo Lam's 1992 action masterpiece Full Contact, starring Chow Yun Fat. This subtitled, Hong Kong, classic is not to be missed by any Ringo Lam devotee. Ringo Lam's Full Contact is absolutely phenomenal, be sure to hunt it down, you'll thank me. In Hell has a powerful story that grabs the viewer by the throat and doesn't let go until the nail-biting climax. It's no surprise that Kyle doesn't fit in with the sadistic inmates and he's quickly sent to the "hole". In this tiny concrete cell, Kyle attempts suicide, first by hanging and then by bashing his head against the wall. Unfortunately for Kyle he's not successful and as he lays in the hole, which doubles as the prison sewerage outlet, blood dripping from his pulverised face, he recieves a spiritual message from his dead wife. The spiritual message, in the form of a moth, inspires Kyle to begin a grueling fitness regime. The prison guards see this as an opportunity to enter Kyle in a fight contest, called "sparka". Once having the desire to kill himself, Kyle now has the desire to kill others and he quickly finds supreme glory inside sparka as an invincable killing machine. In a moment of unbridled rage, Kyle snaps and tears the throat out of his opponent, using his mouth to bite and rip through the man's jugualar. Kyle realises he has become a monster and he decides not to fight anymore. The other inmates follow his example and soon sparka is no more. This puts the warden in a difficult position. He doesn't want to kill Kyle and make him a marta, instead he wants to force Kyle into one more fight. I won't tell you anymore, I don't want to spoil it. An awesome film.
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In Hell (2003)
BACK WITH A VENGEANCE
17 December 2003
Van Damme is back, better than ever, in a movie that is an absolute winner. Behind bars in a Russian hell-hole, where depravity and madness feed off each other, one man(Van Damme) starts to become something he despises. Once an ordinary working class husband, the corrupt system turns him into a bloodthirsty fighter, in an organised prison fight ring. Master director Ringo Lam creates a nightmarish and merciless prison environment, where the weak are raped and the strong prevail. This is Van Damme's best film ever and Ringo Lam proves once again that he is a force to be reckoned with. If Hollywood considers Van Damme to be "box-office" poison, then so be it, because it's their loss. "In-Hell" is a masterpiece in every respect. It's a story of brutality and redemption. Of one man facing his inner demons and overcoming incredible odds. In a hellish prison where the inmates are puppets and the guards are pulling the strings, one man stands alone and becomes the puppet-master with an instinct to kill and a desire to be reborn. Ringo Lam and Van Damme make a great team and I congratulate them. In-Hell is a brilliant film.
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In Hell (2003)
BACK WITH A VENGEANCE.....
16 December 2003
Van Damme's new film "In Hell" is a powerful, brutal and brilliant prison drama. Director Ringo Lam shows no mercy in creating a realistic prison environment, where there is no escape from the misery and sadism. The violence is painfully real and it matches the dark atmosphere of the film's setting. Van Damme has given us his best film ever. I have been worried for Van Damme ever since he made Universal Soldier-The Return. He seems to have been shunned by Hollywood and considered to be "Box-Office" poison. After Universal soldier-The return who can blame America for turning its back on him. Now, Van Damme is making these European direct to video films, all released by Millennium pictures. With "In Hell" Van Damme is forgiven for making "Derailed". In Hell is his best film and my favourite all time film. It's a story of victimisation behind bars. A story of a man becoming something that he despises. A story of madness and redemption. I congratulate Van Damme and Ringo Lam. They make a great team.
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