Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Let me just say this at the very start...

This movie is crap!!!!

It is so belabored by angst ridden twenty somethings that you will be the one who wants to commit suicide. There's so much unrequited love, it's sickening. These are pretty people in a pretty terrible movie.

Let's talk action. There's some, but it sux. As far as actual MA choreography, there might be about 2 whole minutes interspersed throughout the film. Thus, there are no fights even meriting a number, much less any sort of description. Most of the action is visual f/x as these guys have crazy chi powers. When you think things are about to get interesting, rest assured that they don't.

I bought this used, and paid more than I should have for it. Merry Xmas to me.:tinysmile_angry2_t::sad::cry:

All in all, this movie would be more aptly title Bangkok Asinine.

DO NOT GET THIS!!!! AVOID!! AVOID!! AVOID!!

This is possibly the most hilarious mini-review you've ever written, I can actually sense the exasperation through your words.

Dude, that's 2 duds in a row. You're really putting yourself through the ringer lately. You have to end 2014 with at least a review of a movie you enjoyed! Get 'Kung Fu Zombie' or 'A Fistful of Talons' in your DVD player over the festive period!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
BANGKOK ASSASSINS

Let me just say this at the very start...

This movie is crap!!!!

All in all, this movie would be more aptly title Bangkok Asinine.

DO NOT GET THIS!!!! AVOID!! AVOID!! AVOID!!

Spot on! I would've added one thing though... "Maybe worth a rental... of a wrecking ball to smash all copies of this crap film! Watching this movie was like having an excitement enema! :tinysmile_angry2_t:

I couldn't agree more....WTH was with the Dragon Ball-like sequence at the end...it started having a bit of potential like Crippled Avengers but it just went ugh...left a bad taste in my mouth.

No dude, you did the enema the wrong way! :xd: LOL Yeah, just reading the review here made me feel annoyed all over again like I did when I watched it. Maybe it will be better the second time? :tongue: NOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :cry:

This is possibly the most hilarious mini-review you've ever written, I can actually sense the exasperation through your words.

Yup, you nailed it. Wish I had read your review before suffering through this garbage. I think I turned it off halfway through though. It's rare that I don't finish a film, but... I just couldn't waste any more time on it.

Dude, that's 2 duds in a row. You're really putting yourself through the ringer lately. You have to end 2014 with at least a review of a movie you enjoyed! Get 'Kung Fu Zombie' or 'A Fistful of Talons' in your DVD player over the festive period!

Oh yes! As I've seen them both I would love to read your review of either (or both) of these. I promise you they will each entertain you. :nerd:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks like I'm going to have to seek out "A Fistful of Talons" and "Kung Fu Zombie", but for now its...

CHAMPIONS (2008) Running time: 116 mins.

Stars: Dicky Cheung, Xie Miao, Priscilla Wong, Debbie Goh, Yu Rongguang, Xu Xiangdong, Maria Cordero, Li Fai, Michael Wai, Chi Long, Xiao Ming Yu, Eric Li, Liang Ziqiang, Liang Ziili, Mable Cho, Qiu Shuang

Traditional Chinese Martial Arts Director: Siuming Tsui

Action Choreographer: Kong Tao Hai

Dir.: Siuming Tsui

Synopsis

China is preparing to send athletes to the 1936 Olympic games in Berlin. While no martial arts are to be part of the games, there is to be an opportunity to showcase them during the closing ceremonies. Many martial artists, like Cheung Fung (DC) and Shue Po (XM), and their schools vie for the opportunity and honor to represent their country. Unfortunately government funds for sponsorship are cut, and the athletes must find some way to raise money. There are many benefactors, but a ruthless gangster has his own designs and seeks to destroy donated goods right as the deadline for the Olympic games approaches.

Fight #1 --- Shue Po (XM) vs kidnappers

Lots of wire-assisted stunts here, but there are some good falls. The choreography is a bit unrealistic. This is really more of a chase sequence.

Fight #2 --- Master Hon Fai vs thugs

Hon is a female Tai Chi master, and not a whole lot of this looks anything like Tai Chi. It's very stylized and over-exaggerated. Plenty of wire-assists, too. Meh.

Fight #3 --- Cheung Fung (DC) vs Master On (XX)

Master On is an Eagle Claw stylist. There's lots of wire-assists, but some good kicks. Some classical techniques appear in places. For some reason the editing speeds up in spots as if wanting to simulate under-cranked sequences, but not knowing how, and it's sort of ridiculous. When Master Cheung Chi Kong (YR) steps in, the fight gets better with a better depiction of Tai Chi and more intricate exchanges.

Fight #4 --- Tournament tryouts

This is kind of cool with lots of styles on display. Some sparring occurs, but it's short. This section could have done with more fleshing out, as many styles aren't included, but it's the best bit so far.

Fight #5 --- Cheung Fung vs Shan (?)

Not a bad fight at all. The exchanges are short, but it segues into a pole fight, which is short, too, but decent enough. (The character is DC fights here is never really named, but based on my deduction of the end credits I believe it is Shan who is played by Eric Li.)

Fight #6 --- Olympic qualifications

Unfortunately, Cheung Fung and Shue Po are pitted against one another. It's a really good fight with very intricate choreography and minimal wire-assistance. We are treated to Mantis style vs Mantis style.

Fight #7 --- Big Fight at the Warehouse

Best fight!!!! I honestly wasn't expecting this. There's so much switching up of who's fighting who, it's hard to detail, but the choreography is really solid with lots of nice exchanges. Even the wire-assisted stunts work in the flow of everything going on. (And if you're familiar with my taste in choreography and loathing for wire-work, that admission is high praise.) A very rewatchable end fight with an 80's actioner charm!

The plot is...the plot. Personally I found it to be very boring. Get ready for some very nationalistic/patriotic diatribes and speeches, like in almost every stinking scene. The humor is funny sometimes, others not so much. The love story is...well, there's a love story.

I guess my problem with this movie is it's trying to be both a dramatic piece and an action film. If it had put more energy into the dramatic aspect, I believe the action would have tanked. If it had done the reverse, the fights probably would've been way better in the beginning, but the drama would have been super-sappy.

What really surprised me is the way the fights/action got progressively better. Usually with these newer Chinese MA films, it seems the pace is set at the beginning, and then that's what you're stuck with for the next 90 minutes. I'm so glad this wasn't the case here. It really redeemed the movie in my viewpoint.

I was impressed with the 2 leads, and I'm hard pressed to think of anything I've seen them in before. Xie Miao has a quality reminiscent of Yuen Biao, and I'd have loved to see him do more of his stunts/fights based solely on his natural physicality. Dicky Cheung almost seemed to be channeling Jackie Chan at points in the film, and even shares a bit of a physical resemblance. He's expressive, and has a lot of natural charm on camera. I'm not sure what sort of MA training he's had. Initially I wasn't too impressed with him, but as the film went on that changed. He sells his fights, too. That's always a plus.

I know this has been around for a while, and like me, you may have been passing this by. If you can score it for cheap used like I did, jump on it! If not, at least try to view it for yourself somehow. It's your call, but I say it's certainly worth your consideration. You may end up impressed with it like I was.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I enjoyed Champions (2008) as well. I always remember Xie Miao in Jet Li's 'New Legend of Shaolin'.

Dicky Cheung is very good in this and I am surprised how good his martial arts is in this movie.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The plot is...the plot. Personally I found it to be very boring. Get ready for some very nationalistic/patriotic diatribes and speeches, like in almost every stinking scene.

I remember reading the plot of this one and deciding to give it a miss, and based on this comment, I doubt I'll ever give it a go. I don't need elaborate plots to enjoy a kung-fu movie, but the tale of a Chinese team trying to get to the Olympics just isn't my thing.

Does Yu Rongguang not have any action in this?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Does Yu Rongguang not have any action in this?

2 fight scenes, 1 in the middle and part of the end fight. They're some of the better stuff, too, for what little he's in this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

EXTREME CHALLENGE (2001) Running time: 89 mins.

Stars: Ken Chang, Patricia Ja Lee, Jacqueline Li, Yeung Chuen Li (aka Jun Ngai Yeung), Paul Rapouski

Action Choreographers: Jack Wong Wai Leung, Christopher Chan Sai Tang, Antonio Caprio

Dir.: Stephen Tung Wai

Synopsis

At the eve of Y2K, The Power Net Show is holding a worldwide martial arts tournament called the Extreme Challenge, the first to ever be broadcast over the Internet. The winner will win 5 million dollars, plus a lucrative contract as a spokesperson for a sports merchandise company. Kuang Kin (KC) and Jin Fang (YCL) have the same master, but different attitudes towards the competition. Tang Ning (PJL) is a girl whose father is a world-renowned master, and she wants to do well enough to establish herself as a contender. Maxfield (PR) is a professional martial arts fighter who knows that his age will become an issue in the future, and is looking for a win and a contract on which he can retire. Who will be the champion?

Fight #1 --- Elimination Round 1

It's a free-for-all/obstacle course, and it's pretty cool!!! (Think "MXC {Most Extreme Challenge}"/"Takashi's Castle" but with contestants pausing to duke it out.) There's lots of quick cuts, but it works here to showcase different fighters and their skills. Lots of good techniques and kicks!

Fight #2 --- Elimination Round 2

This time scaling a tower to a zip-line, and again this is pretty cool! More quick cuts that work to showcase the action. Some nice kicks and punches, and a few sweeps. The only thing that seemed amiss was that people fell off the tower, but you never saw them hit the ground. I mean...Come on!

Fight #3 --- Jin Fang w/staff vs Borman w/nunchucks (Scott Adkins)

Good fight!!! Some really nice pole work, and Adkins is surprisingly good with the chucks! It's a dazzling fight with intricate exchanges. Unfortunately...SA loses.

Fight #4 --- Maxfield w/escrima sticks vs Takeshi w/baton & shield

This is fast and furious! Some nice stick work from PR. It does seem a bit one-sided though. Very intricate choreography, and looks like it hurts even with padding.

Fight #5 --- Tang Ning w/tonfas vs Borwick w/staff (Nikki Berwick)

Chick fight!...and it's good! A tad short though. Excellent use of tonfas in this. I don't think they get displayed enough.

Fight #6 --- Kuang Kin w/staff vs Somchai w/sticks

Another dazzling, intricate fight! Love the pole techniques here, and some of it is blindingly fast with good takedowns and hits.

Fight #7 --- Jin Fang vs Tang Ning

Wow, this was really good! Fluid, versatile exchanges, nice use of hand strikes and low kicks, and it's brutal at times. Powerful fight! Good stuff!

Fight #8 --- Kuang Kin vs Maxfield

This is sweet! Good choreography here with some excellent kicks. It's has a fast flow, and there's even a hint of "shapes" work in places from KC.

Fight #9 --- Kuang Kin vs Jin Fang

Best fight!!! Good end fight!!! There are some really great techniques in here! The opponents are evenly matched in skill. and there is a greater use of "shapes" here, especially Eagle Claw. Love the kicks! Many rewatchable moments!

Plot-wise, the movie is meh. You've seen this sort of thing before.

Acting-wise? Meh. They say stuff.

What I really like about it is that it has this 80's feel to it as far as props, costumes, sets, and dialogue. If this had actually come out then, it would have been the bomb, an instant classic!!! I could have done with a little less dialogue and a little more fighting, but that's always the case with me.

I've eyed this movie for a couple of years, and decided to break down and get it specifically because Scott Adkins is in it. Unfortunately, he's only in it for some of the elimination round skirmishes (in which you don't see a whole lot of him) and his sole fight scene. Still, that is one killer fight!

What I didn't expect was how good the film's fights would be as a whole. They are short, but there are a lot of them, and they are packed with solid choreography. I was essentially impressed with everyone, even some of the bit players. KC and YCL are especially good as screen fighters with choreography that showcases some classical kung fu moves and postures. PJL was cute and impressive in her own right, and I couldn't really tell that she was doubled all that much. And PR? Once you see him, you'll immediately recognize him as the tall dude who used the rings with little red lasers on them when he fought Jet Li in Hitman, and he also worked in Thunderbolt with Jackie Chan. He's no joke with the escrima sticks either. (He was the 1996 Full Contact Stick-fighting Champion.)

I am so glad I scored this! Lots of rewatchable fights! Hate that Adkins didn't have a greater role, but it is what it is, and it's got some good fu. It's a hidden gem, and if you can find it, GET IT!!!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good review...I felt the same way when I saw it all those years ago. If you didn't notice, the character of Takeshi was played by none other than the film's director himself, Stephen Tung Wai :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally some positive (even VERY positive actually) review. :bigsmile: Was worried you'd be caught in a whirlpool of bad movies. :xd:

Good review...I felt the same way when I saw it all those years ago. If you didn't notice, the character of Takeshi was played by none other than the film's director himself, Stephen Tung Wai :)

Funny, GDYY just posted this. :tongue:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

EL GRINGO (2012) Running time: 99 mins.

Stars: Scott Adkins, Christian Slater, Yvette Yates, Erando Gonzalez, Israel Islas, Sofia Sisniega, Georgi Karlukovski

Stunt Coordinator: Borislav Iliev

Dir.: Eduardo Rodriguez

Synopsis

The Man (SA), or El Gringo as he's come to be known, enters the little town of El Fronteras with 2 million dollars in stolen drug money. All he wants to do is pass through on his way to Acapulco. What he finds are corrupt cops, desperadoes, and a local gang who paint their faces like El Muerte (Death) that all loathe strangers. Quickly he becomes an immediate target, and eventually the reluctant savior of this destitute little town.

Fight #1 --- The Gringo vs 3 dudes outside a shack

A short but vicious fight. Good impact on the punches, and there's a couple of kicks, too. It's a little hyper-edited, but not too bad. It works.

Fight #2 --- The Gringo vs 6 gang members

The editing really mars this. It's too jumpy and too close up to tell what's going on at times. There's some good punches, and it's a brutal fight, but it's not shown as it should be. This could have been a great fight scene.

Fight #3 --- The Gringo vs El Jefe (GK)

Good fight!!! Although it is a bit of beatdown for SA, he gets in some good licks, starting off with an awesome double drop kick. It's comical, too, because his opponent only stops beating the snot out of him whenever his hat is knocked off. Once he's picked it up and dusted it off, he goes right back to pummeling Adkins. It's more of a brawl, but SA uses a few MA moves. GK is a big guy, and he intercepts many of Adkins' attempted kicks. It's kind of funny that this fight didn't exactly go the way I thought it would, and yet I really enjoyed it.

Fight #4 --- Run & Gun

This...is...KILLER!!!! There are a couple of really nice kicks, a takedown or two, and assorted punches, all interspersed in an awesome gun fight. This is one of the best R&G sequences I've seen in a long time. The choreography in it is concise, and it has a great flow. And there's plenty of neat situations in how SA takes out the bad guys. The only thing some of you may quibble about is the use of CGI blood. I don't care. It looks cool here. This is just a fun sequence. It's Run & Gun Fun!!!!!

Plot-wise, the story is nothing new, but it's kind of neat that the director interjects aspects of Western films into it. (That's Western as in an oater or cowboy flick.) I enjoyed the humor in it, though some of it was a bit contrived. Still, Adkins has some whimsical lines that tickled my funny bone. Christian Slater gets to ham it up what little he's in the film. There's one particular single word line that really stood out at the crooked police chief's station.

This is not an MA flick though there's a little in it. It could have done with a little more, but the action sequences are enjoyably solid. The end is a little anticlimactic for me. A showdown I just knew was coming didn't occur. That's not to say it wasn't a good ending. Just not the one I was hoping for.

I initially wrote this film off since it didn't showcase Adkins' MA talents, but it's a good effort on his part. His acting is good, and the action delivers. If you're a fan, you should jump on this. It's a solid B actioner with some rewatchable moments. Get it!!!! (Oh, and Manowar does the closing credits song titled..."El Gringo". It's not bad.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Courtesy of One Armed Boxer...

21 RED LIST (aka 21 RED TREATY) (1994) Running time: 90 mins.?

Stars: Zhang Feng-Yi, Lau Sek-Ming, Alexander Lo Rei, Ngok Hung, Teddy Yip Wing-Cho, Chang Jian-Li, Hung Kin-Wing, Chan Yue-Ching, Suen Yuk-Fung, Kei Yim

Action Director(s): Alexander Lo Rei, Hung Kin-Wing

Dir.: Chong Yan-Gin

Synopsis

4 thieves are commissioned and sent to Shanghai to find and steal the Chinese/Japanese treaty.

Fight #1 --- Chi Che (CJ-L) vs white suited servant

Very short but very nice! There's some good bootwork here with impact and lots of chalk dust flying!

Fight #2 --- Break-in at US CIF building

Tons of good stuff is going on here!!! The standout fight is Chi Wu (ALR) using a pair of truncheons against US and Chinese soldiers. Honestly the whole scene of the thieves vs soldiers is a whirlwind of kicks and machine gun fire with a ton of falls. Some of it is ridiculous, but oh...my...word!!!! It made me want to start flinging myself into the furniture it looked so fun.

Fight #3 --- Bar fight with Japanese patrons

An arm wrestling match turns sour and Chi Che (CJ-L) singlehandedly takes on the Japanese, but only for a little bit as his friends join in. Some good falls here.

Fight #4 --- Chi Wan (LS-M) vs gang of samurai

Not bad. It's short, but there's some decent swordplay and 1 nice triple kick thrown in the mix.

Fight #5 --- Chi Che (CJ-L) vs horde of samurai

Oh, this is good!!!! There are some wire-assisted stunts here, but it's great to see guys flying through the air and smashing through lattice and wooden pillars. Some good kicks here and the swordplay is okay.

Fight #6 --- Chi Wan (LS-M) vs Chi Wu (ALR)

Very brief. Not even a fight really, and it's a lot of wire-work. Meh. This is really more of a dramatic confrontation between two friends, but it could've been a whole lot more.

Fight #7 --- Chi Wan (LS-M) & Chi Yin (KY?) vs samurai squad

Holy cow!!!! This is way too short! Good fight! Insane falls! Killer kicks! Decapitations! Cleavings! DUDE!!!!!!

Fight #8 --- Chi Wan & Chi Yin vs Wu Chin (ZF-Y) & Kiki (NH)

Great fight!!! Chi Wan and Wu Chin have a duel with katanas. It's grueling fun, and there are a lot of wire-assisted stunts. But the Best Fight goes to Chi Yin (KY?) and Kiki (NH). These two women have at it hand-to-hand, and it's absolutely brutal in places. This is what the fight between the two men should have evolved to, but sadly didn't. These girls don't look to be doubled either, and they take some crazy falls.

The plot of this is pretty good, though it drags a little at times. It's a 90's movie with an 80's HK actioner feel. So the acting is a bit campy and you can anticipate how some of the characters with respond to certain situations. But it moves along at a pretty good clip. I didn't get bored, that's for sure.

I wish I could properly ascertain who the girl is playing Chi Yin. I checked the HKMDb and only 2 names on the cast list didn't include photos. Me and OAB kicked it around and think it may be Kei Yim. The name sounds feminine, but what do I know.

This is a Taiwanese film, and it's nuts with stunt work. It's almost like the premise of the film was "What can we make people fall into?" Every foot is given a fresh dusting of chalk for the next kick. The choreography is intricate at times. But it's the impacts that will have you going "Whoa!" This movie has a ton of rewatchable moments!

My thanks to OAB for sending this to me. If you favor the HK actioner flavor, track this down and get it!!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Awesome review ShaOW!linDude! KUNG FU BOB had equally high praise for this one, and your review has made me want to put it back into the DVD player for a re-watch asap!

It's a movie which is definitely all about the falls, and like you mention the finale is brutal. It makes me want to go and research how many other movies Alexander Lo Rei choreographed on his home soil, it's like he took everything he learnt from his movies with Robert Tai and cranked it up to 11!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

FALCON RISING (2014) Running time: 101 mins.

Stars: Michael Jai White, Neal McDonough, Jimmy Navarro, Millie Ruperto, Lateef Crowder, Masashi Odate, Hazuki Kato, Laila Ali

Action Choreographer: Larnell Stovall

Dir.: Ernie Barbarash

Synopsis

John Chapman (MJW) is a former Navy SEAL suffering from post traumatic stress, a guilty conscience for surviving where his teammates died, and suicidal tendencies. When his sister (LA) is attacked while in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Chapman flies down to see to her and learn what happened. He learns she has stumbled onto a crime ring of drug and sex trafficking perpetuated by corrupt cops and the Yakuza.

Fight #1 --- Chapman (MJW) vs 2 convenience store robbers

This is short and brutal and depicts Chapman as a man you don't want getting his hands on you.

Fight #2 --- Carlo (LC) vs favela (barrio) thug

Another short one, but LC gets to showcase his Capoeira skills a bit. This guy always amazes me, and there's a beautiful sweep that segues into a roundhouse kick.

Fight #3 --- Chapman vs favela homies

Good stuff! MJW is fluid and savage here, doling out a butt-kicking with a look of annoyance. There's some really nice combo's here, and Stovall's choreography is easily identifiable.

Fight #4 --- Chapman vs Yakuza men

Great fight! I wish this had been a bit longer. There's more good combo's and impacts. One thing I really liked was that this fight shows how well a properly executed block can inflict damage, and MJW makes a point to finish off his opponent once he's down. It ends with a beautiful hook kick.

Fight #5 --- Chapman vs Hirimoto (MO) w/sword, Thiago (JN), & Carlo (LC)

Best fight! 3-on-1 action!!! Some intricate choreography with lots of interplay among the combatants. I wish LC would've been utilized a little more here, but it's satisfactory. It eventually comes down to Hirimoto w/sword vs Chapmman w/pipes similar to tonfas. This was some nice weapon play though the finishing move could've used a little more of that WOW! factor.

I found the story interesting, and I liked the main character (who doesn't really receive his codename until the end). Chapman had a certain similarity to that of Riggs in the "Lethal Weapon" franchise though he's not as manic. Still it was an interesting thing to see White play this kind of character.

The thread for this film contains many varied opinions about the action/choreography. Personally, I liked it. My only problem is that I wish the scenes had been a bit longer, and that White and Crowder would've had more of a 1-on-1 go at each other. I liked seeing White use weapons and hope he does more of this in the future. Stovall is a talented choreographer, and he and White have done many projects together. The combo's are fun and intricate, as well as full of power and impact.

This is meant to start a franchise, and I'm looking forward to seeing more of Falcon beating the daylights out of bad guys. As long as the plots are serviceable, and White is given a good supportive cast of talented screen fighters to battle, I think this will become a highly enjoyable franchise.

While it's currently available to rent or view on Netflix, I wholly encourage fans to support this effort, and GET THIS!!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MISFIRE (2014) Running time: 88 mins.

Stars: Gary Daniels, Vanessa Vasquez, Fabian Lopez, Justin Nesbitt, Michael Greco, Luis Gatica

Fight Choreographer: Gary Daniels

Dir: R. Ellis Frazier

Synopsis

Cole (GD) is a discredited DEA agent on a leave of absence due to his mistaken shooting of a Mexican undercover officer. His ex-wife Sarah, who has left him for his brother Johnny (MG), is a journalist working in Mexico. When she goes missing, John is arrested. He calls in Cole for help. Cole teams up with photojournalist Gracie, who works with his ex-wife. Together they track down Sarah, who has fallen into the hands of a banker and his son who launder money for the cartels.

Fight #1 --- Cole vs gunman

Short. How short? 2 punches, 1 flip, and 1 kick to the face of downed opponent. Sigh.

Fight #2 --- Cole vs goon w/a knife

Shorter. How much shorter? An arm bar and a low roundhouse kick to the face. Meh.

Fight #3 --- Cole vs 2 clothing store goons

Still short. One gets 2 punches and a sweet jump-spinning back kick. The other one gets an elbow, a flip, and a punch to the face. Oh, come on!

Fight #4 --- Cole vs head goon

This is better, but it's too little too late. Still, there's some nice moves on GD's part: a spinning back kick, and a triple chop to the neck. It's a little longer, but not by much, and it ends with an anticlimactic choke out.

I love Gary Daniels, and I'm glad he's getting to do more starring roles again but...well, there's just nothing really good to say about this movie.

The plot brings nothing new to the table. The acting is belabored with drawn out dramatic pauses. The love interest is forced and unbelievable. And the action is ho-hum at best.

But you say, "Wait, ShaOW!linDude! You always say that the plot really doesn't matter to you." It doesn't...if the action is of a sufficient quality to offset it. Sadly, that isn't the case here, thus I am a bit more critical and less forgiving.

There's lots of action in the form of shoot-outs, but they are atrociously staged. Guys walk and run in the open and couldn't hit the Alamo with a Gatling gun if they were positioned 3 feet away. The locals act like shoot-outs in the street are a daily occurrence. They don't bother to run or take cover. Some even drive up in the line of fire and stop to glance around bored out of their minds. Just like anyone watching this movie.

The minimal, I mean microscopic, amount of hand-to-hand combat comes late in the 2nd half, and it's just never that exciting. I'm glad GD got to choreograph it (and I believe this is the 1st time he's ever done that), so he showcases a few moves that he's known for. But he's a fantastic screen fighter, and there's just nowhere near enough of it here. He probably did what he could, so I'll assume that the director did himself a great injustice of not allowing GD more time to properly throwdown in this.

The movie is aptly named Misfire because that's exactly what it does. AVOID!!! AVOID!!! AVOID!!! My suggestion to you is to miss this and fire up one of Daniels' better films like Rage or Recoil or Bloodmoon (with the late Darren Shahlavi).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dude, this sounds like it was a torturous watch. To be honest I never expect American B-martial arts movies to be anything less, so not all together surprising. Unless it has Scott Adkins or Eric Jacobus in it, I normally steer well clear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only Gary Daniels film I've seen (not counting City Hunter and The Expendables) is White Tiger. It wasn't all that great. I guess his PM films were better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The only Gary Daniels film I've seen (not counting City Hunter and The Expendables) is White Tiger. It wasn't all that great. I guess his PM films were better.

Recoil is quite fun. It has over-extended car>motorbike chase and usual storyline about vendetta works better than in many bigger budget flicks.

:nerd:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Recoil is quite fun. It has over-extended car>motorbike chase and usual storyline about vendetta works better than in many bigger budget flicks.

:nerd:

I think I saw the finale to that. Didn't that have Gary Daniels moving through a construction site, beating mobsters up one by one?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The minimal, I mean microscopic, amount of hand-to-hand combat comes late in the 2nd half, and it's just never that exciting. I'm glad GD got to choreograph it (and I believe this is the 1st time he's ever done that), so he showcases a few moves that he's known for. But he's a fantastic screen fighter, and there's just nowhere near enough of it here. He probably did what he could, so I'll assume that the director did himself a great injustice of not allowing GD more time to properly throwdown in this.

Actually he choreographed two of his earliest films, AMERICAN STREET FIGHTER (with co-stars Ian Jacklin, Kent Ducanon, and Dennis Reese) and FULL IMPACT. He also choreographed HAWK'S VENGEANCE with Jeet Kune Do expert Cass Magda, who played the film's villain.

I think despite the limited martial arts, it wasn't meant to be a full-on martial arts film. Thankfully, he's re-teamed with the director for a more martial arts orientated film that is supposed to come out later this year, I think the title is now RUMBLE.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Actually he choreographed two of his earliest films, AMERICAN STREET FIGHTER (with co-stars Ian Jacklin, Kent Ducanon, and Dennis Reese) and FULL IMPACT. He also choreographed HAWK'S VENGEANCE with Jeet Kune Do expert Cass Magda, who played the film's villain.

Been years since I've seen American Street Fighter or Full Impact, but I thought I did a mini-review of Hawk's Vengeance. Guess I'll have to scroll through and see.

I think despite the limited martial arts, it wasn't meant to be a full-on martial arts film.

Ah ha! But it should have been!

Dude, this sounds like it was a torturous watch. To be honest I never expect American B-martial arts movies to be anything less, so not all together surprising. Unless it has Scott Adkins or Eric Jacobus in it, I normally steer well clear.

It's a mixed bag for sure, but there are some gems out there. Like Albert said, this probably isn't meant to be a full-on MA flick. It just misfired on every level.

The only Gary Daniels film I've seen (not counting City Hunter and The Expendables) is White Tiger. It wasn't all that great. I guess his PM films were better.

Please, please, please, track down a copy of Bloodmoon. It's a little cheesy in places, but that movie is fun and very much in the 80's HK actioner vein.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Courtesy of One Armed Boxer...

21 RED LIST (aka 21 RED TREATY) (1994) Running time: 90 mins.?

Stars: Zhang Feng-Yi, Lau Sek-Ming, Alexander Lo Rei, Ngok Hung, Teddy Yip Wing-Cho, Chang Jian-Li, Hung Kin-Wing, Chan Yue-Ching, Suen Yuk-Fung, Kei Yim

Action Director(s): Alexander Lo Rei, Hung Kin-Wing

Dir.: Chong Yan-Gin

Synopsis

4 thieves are commissioned and sent to Shanghai to find and steal the Chinese/Japanese treaty.

Fight #1 --- Chi Che (CJ-L) vs white suited servant

Very short but very nice! There's some good bootwork here with impact and lots of chalk dust flying!

Fight #2 --- Break-in at US CIF building

Tons of good stuff is going on here!!! The standout fight is Chi Wu (ALR) using a pair of truncheons against US and Chinese soldiers. Honestly the whole scene of the thieves vs soldiers is a whirlwind of kicks and machine gun fire with a ton of falls. Some of it is ridiculous, but oh...my...word!!!! It made me want to start flinging myself into the furniture it looked so fun.

Fight #3 --- Bar fight with Japanese patrons

An arm wrestling match turns sour and Chi Che (CJ-L) singlehandedly takes on the Japanese, but only for a little bit as his friends join in. Some good falls here.

Fight #4 --- Chi Wan (LS-M) vs gang of samurai

Not bad. It's short, but there's some decent swordplay and 1 nice triple kick thrown in the mix.

Fight #5 --- Chi Che (CJ-L) vs horde of samurai

Oh, this is good!!!! There are some wire-assisted stunts here, but it's great to see guys flying through the air and smashing through lattice and wooden pillars. Some good kicks here and the swordplay is okay.

Fight #6 --- Chi Wan (LS-M) vs Chi Wu (ALR)

Very brief. Not even a fight really, and it's a lot of wire-work. Meh. This is really more of a dramatic confrontation between two friends, but it could've been a whole lot more.

Fight #7 --- Chi Wan (LS-M) & Chi Yin (KY?) vs samurai squad

Holy cow!!!! This is way too short! Good fight! Insane falls! Killer kicks! Decapitations! Cleavings! DUDE!!!!!!

Fight #8 --- Chi Wan & Chi Yin vs Wu Chin (ZF-Y) & Kiki (NH)

Great fight!!! Chi Wan and Wu Chin have a duel with katanas. It's grueling fun, and there are a lot of wire-assisted stunts. But the Best Fight goes to Chi Yin (KY?) and Kiki (NH). These two women have at it hand-to-hand, and it's absolutely brutal in places. This is what the fight between the two men should have evolved to, but sadly didn't. These girls don't look to be doubled either, and they take some crazy falls.

The plot of this is pretty good, though it drags a little at times. It's a 90's movie with an 80's HK actioner feel. So the acting is a bit campy and you can anticipate how some of the characters with respond to certain situations. But it moves along at a pretty good clip. I didn't get bored, that's for sure.

I wish I could properly ascertain who the girl is playing Chi Yin. I checked the HKMDb and only 2 names on the cast list didn't include photos. Me and OAB kicked it around and think it may be Kei Yim. The name sounds feminine, but what do I know.

This is a Taiwanese film, and it's nuts with stunt work. It's almost like the premise of the film was "What can we make people fall into?" Every foot is given a fresh dusting of chalk for the next kick. The choreography is intricate at times. But it's the impacts that will have you going "Whoa!" This movie has a ton of rewatchable moments!

My thanks to OAB for sending this to me. If you favor the HK actioner flavor, track this down and get it!!!!!

I found a post linking to this review from OAB elsewhere and it certainly sounds worth watching.

OAB, who did you get this from? I take it, it wasn't an official release? And also, I don't suppose there has been any news of an official release or fan restoration of "mirage" a.k.a. "mirage of martial arts." In recent months that I am unaware of?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×