THE HIT LIST - February 18, 2015

This week's list is a few days late putting together. It should have been up on Monday night but I had every intention of sharing one video that didn't release until the following evening. On a seperate note, I did manage to find a few teasers - one I decided not to include in this article because I wanted to learn a little more about it. It's a challenge I hope to overcome so I can share it provided its not too late, but anyway, here's this week's little gathering of goods!

It was last October that up-and-coming actor Ricky Barksdale was featured in full display on a teaser poster for the upcoming shortfilm, Blade: The Chronicles Of Eric Brooks. All fandom aside for its Hollywood predecessor notwithstanding, there's plenty of reason to endorse what's happening here, particularly with some of the impressive work accomplished by its director, Lang Yip over at Cinematic Fight Studio where he instructs, as well as coordinates fight action for film, and their work reel from last year delivers a good sampling of it. Alas, the team is preparing to shoot a teaser for the upcoming production of the fan film, which has a handful of people asking some specifics about what the story will entail. Barksdale addresses this and a few other things as well regarding the project in their newest video update, which in turn also serves as a small reminder of a few other projects well on their way.

Actor, stuntman and filmmaker Eric Jacobus's adoration for Hong Kong cinema has been pivotal in his career in echoing the stylistic needs for American martial arts action - specifically when it comes to stuntwork. His continual attentiveness to detail is worth noting in this regard as many of his videos on his official YouTube channel include reels and tutorials demonstrating any number of stunts, especially the various falls that you see on screen, and this week, he has a new tutorial specifically citing all the essentials in performing various back falls. If you're an aspiring stuntman, pay attention, because it could mean the difference between a successful stunt career, and something broken (for good measure, check out Eric The Redneck's Guide To Fallin' in the player just beneath).

How bad does it hurt? Well, that all depends on how you sell yourself as an action actor, as the guys over at Just Kidding Films have been demonstrating so well for the past several months now in their video updates ahead of the production of their yet-untitled feature film debut. Check out the video below!

Now that the lesson is over, let's take a look at some of these falls and more with new stunt reels by actress and stuntwoman Alyma Dorsey, stuntmen Renan Medeiros and Grant Steven, stuntman/stunt coordinator Don Thai Theerathada, Greg Rementer and his latest video with Paul O'Connor, Alvin Chon, Jacob Kabel, and actor and choreographer Dara Ours with G-Master Stunt Team, the crew behind the newly released Cambodian vigilante action thriller, Hanuman!

Now, let's get to some fight action, and for this I'd like to share this particular conceptual test fight from a while back featuring Tai Chi Zero and Tai Chi Hero co-star, actress Jade Xu. The video is part of an effort for an upcoming feature film titled The Inner District from independent filmmaker Julianne Block which is set in an alternative future Berlin with the wall still standing, ensuing in its fair share of drama and intrigue. The project's Facebook page has been up for a few years now so it still seems to be active and worth looking into. In the meantime, enjoy this little test glimpse into what life is like in...The Inner District!

Actress and martial artist Sascha Raeburn is currently making the rounds online with her hit webseries, Lost In L.A. with her own brand of comedic delivery. It's entertaining and worth looking up, although for me, doing so evidently brought me to this little gem she put together with choreographer Gary Quay in the 2013 short, Dragon Master, about a young girl's obsession to become a ninja with the help of a master, with a twist that packs quite a kick at the end. Enjoy!

This next video is a rough piece of work, but shows a nice little set of arramgements with Prateek Parmar and his team showcasing some dynamic kicking choreography practice. Hopefully they sharpen up and put something more solid together in due time. Baby steps! (H/T: Eric Jacobus)

As often as fight concepts make their way online from time to time, it's always cool to see such videos stemming from pre-viz work on feature films. Guillermo Del Toro's 2013 monster mech epic, Pacific Rim had a few good fisticuffs mixed in among its human cast with pre-viz work by veteran stunt coordinator Brad Allan, and this week we have a second one highlighting the one other fight scene with stand-in performances by Alain Moussi, Chris Mark and Eli Martyr. Check it out, and if you haven't seen Pacific Rim yet, it's available right now wherever movies are sold.

Did you enjoy your Valentine's Day? Clearly the folks over at EMC Monkeys and K&K Productions did, and to show for it, we have two other new videos from both respective groups - the first featuring this week's happy couple, Mickey Facchinello and Brendon Huor as they take playing footies to a whole new level, and the latest live-action short, Batman: The Bloody Valentine, which puts a pretty...well....creepy spin on the caped-crusader's longstanding battle against the Joker and his wave of criminal mayhem.

I kinda think K&K are onto something!

Speaking of Huor, whenever he's not acting or performing, he's choreographing and directing some of the biggest and best action sequences ever to hit the web, all lending marks of accomplishment with a notable A-list appeal. His craft can regularly be seen depicted in the work of directing duo, Thousand Pounds's own Chris Cowan and Haile Lee at their newly established production firm Epic Rival who have finally unleashed their hyper-kinetic live-action follow-up to their 2012 fan installment of Naruto Shippuden: Dreamer's Fight. This time, the battle takes audiences to the forefront of an epic scale test between two comrades, Tenten and Neji ahead of the forthcoming 4th great war between the Allied Shinobi Forces and the Akatsuki. Can Tenten's high-clasd marksmanship and bladed weaponry outmatch Neji's prowess and nearly all-seeing Byakugan? Find out and watch Naruto: Dance Of War in the player below!

The next two videos you're about to see come courtesy of independent filmmakers Bryan Sloyer and Nathan Quattrini with the first featuring action actors Jay Kwon and Manny Ayala - the latter who apparently did something very personal for the second one just beneath. Funny! Listen for it.

And finally, this is probably the best, most important video you'll see today...or this week, or month... or ever, depending on your preference. It comes from video essayist, filmmaker and critic, Chris Stuckmann whose newest video analyzes all that one needs to know about the current state of action movies from both an artistic as well as an ecomomic point of view. There are a lot of discussions online about what makes a good action movie and it's quite obvious that there are a lot of filmmakers who have absolutely know idea with what they are doing. From cameras to choreography and storytelling and more, Stuckmann breaks it all down to a cinematic science. If you want to direct movies, you may want to include watching this video in your repetoire of how-to's.

CLICK HERE to view last week's Hit List in case you missed it. Otherwise, subscribe to the channels above stay tuned in for next week's Hit List. If you or someone you know has QUALITY content you would like to share on Film Combat Syndicate, e-mail me at


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