Monday, August 31, 2015
This week's Hit List was an absolute blast to help put together. We've got new action shorts and reels of all kinds to snack on this week in addition to some brief updates on major projects that are forthcoming!
Anyone looking for grounded action cinema with a sprawling audience appeal needn't look further than Shank helmer Mo Ali. His latest offering, Montana, has earned quite the attention with actors McKell David and Lars Mikkelsen spearheading the story set in London and two generations of vengeance at the forefront of it all.
Saturday, August 29, 2015
At the expense of just a few years through development and production, writer and director R.L. Scott's new international action drama, Call Me King, has to be one of the most crisp and intriguing films to date. Actor Amin Joseph leads the cast with a sprawling narrative that sets just the right tone for an original story that not only goes beyond a merely confined crime drama, but one that could very well steer things into a sequel.
By The Power Of Greyskull! Attend A Screening Of MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE At The Egyptian Theater This September!
Friday, August 28, 2015
Director David Ayer shared an ensemble cast and crew photo via Twitter on Friday announcing the completion of principle photography for Warner Bros.'s upcoming DC Comics adaptation, Suicide Squad. Filming began back in April under the working title of Bravo 14, and just four months before it would break ground at San Diego Comic-Con 2015 with a current tally of well over 50.7 million views compared to that of the studio's forthcoming Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice now at over 45.7 million.
Chinese co-production status has opened the floodgates for numerous titles to benefit film production in recent years, as is the case for 7th Grade Civil Servant helmer Terra Shin's new $30 million dollar action comedy, Bounty Hunters, following its appearance at Cannes. Harmonious Entertainment Shanghai, Pegasus Motion Pictures, and Starhaus Entertainment are backing the Chinese-Korean co-production with Pegasus representing the film globally.
Variety that father-and-son producer duo Avi and Ari Arad are developing a big screen rendition of the hit shooter RPG, Borderlands.
Yes, I fully admit to being invariably biased when it comes to specific action film titles. Ernesto Diaz Espinoza's festival favorite and recent Dark Sky Films U.S. release, Redeemer, fits the mold with Chilean action hero Marko Zaror starring in the title role of a man seeking redemption for his previous atrocities through dispensing unmitigated vigilante justice.
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Deadline's continued coverage in music man-turned-film producer Jordan Schur's latest happenings with details for the new action thriller, Five Against A Bullet. The A-Team and Stretch helmer Joe Carnahan will be directing with a script written with Alex Litvak which focuses on five bodyguards tasked with protecting a mayoral candidate in Mexico's most powerful city when he is marked for death by a drug kingpin and his army after they murder his father and the previous mayor.
Yes, we know there's been an awakening. And yes, we've felt it...or whatever else anyone of us might be feeling aside from it in similar capacity. What we also know is actor John Boyega will be wielding a badass lightsaber in pure Jedi fashion as Finn opposite Adam Driver in the role of Kylo Ren who, judging by blurbs from around the web, either may or may not be a Sith.
While I would love nothing more than for director Anggy Umbara's latest, 3, to get a simulataneous release with other territories overseas, chances are we're more likely to end up waiting a really long time for that to happen. If it is to happen, I sincerely hope piracy doesn't affect it, because that would be devastating, and we can never have enough genuine and original action films in this day and age.
There's already some appeal from fans of Snowtown helmer Justin Kurzel in lieu of the the forthcoming release of his latest Shakespearean venture, MacBeth. For this, we have the upcoming live-action adaptation of the popular Ubisoft video game franchise, Assassin's Creed with Kurzel reuniting once more with his two MacBeth leads, actor Michael Fassbender and actress Marion Cotillard with a script that will evidently take a slightly different turn by way of its newest character addition, "Callum Lynch".
Wednesday, August 26, 2015
The second wave titles has been announced for next month's Fantastic Fest with a flurry of films, several of which are already hits from prior festival events. Fans eagerly awaiting to watch Patrick Stewart at his continual best in Jeremy Saulnier's Green Room, and folks who love epic sci-fi and suspense thrillers who can't wait to see Ben Wheatley's High Rise or Miike Takashi's Yakuza Apocalypse ahead of its October U.S. release will certainly get their wish on top of titles already on their radar via the first wave.
Deadline is reporting that Lionsgate's Summit Entertainment is teaming up with White Horse Pictures in their first cinematic venture for the forthcoming Roman period saga, Emperor. The goal will be a trilogy of films inspired by author Conn Iggulden's pentalogy of books published between 2003 and 2013, largely focusing on the political malfeasance and toxicity within the Roman Empire that loomed ahead for the lifelong friendship and subsequent fallout between emperor, Julius Caesar, and friend Marcus Brutus.
Den Of Geek is reporting that Man Of Steel 2 has been put on "permanent hold", which is a bit of a shock considering it was only last week that "The Death Of Superman Lives: What Happened?" helmer Jon Schnepp announced that Mad Max: Fury Road helmer George Miller was up to direct the film. Whatever it means, it's not to suggest that the film won't happen, especially since there's been a clear interest in making one now that Warner Bros. is well under way with its DC cinematic universe in addition to a potential Batman trilogy starring and directed by Ben Affleck.
There is not a lot of love lost for director Miike Takashi's 2013 thriller, Shield Of Straw, based on author Kiuchi Kazuhiro's 2004 Kodansha crime novel of the same name. Osawa Takao and Matsushima Nanako led the cast with actor Fujiwara Tatsuya central to the film's premise about a team of Fukuoka detectives who come under fire from swarms of vigilantes when a vengeful billionaire puts a meaty contract out on a Tokyo-bound convoy transporting a murder suspect.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Once upon a time, everyone's favorite Obama-hating aikido walrus, Steven Seagal, was poised to join the A-list of Hollywood action stars. By the early 90s, he'd starred in a string of gritty, violent actioners where he effortlessly beat entire barrooms full of guys into a bloody pulp. Young, hungry Seagal was a force to be reckoned with; it was finally time for him to ascend to the ranks of Schwarzenegger, Stallone and Willis.
The film that was set to get him there was Under Siege, a military thriller where he'd star alongside Tommy Lee Jones while being directed by Andrew Davis (The Fugitive). This was also the film where the American mainstream was introduced to martial arts knife fighting. We were all dazzled by the speed and intensity of the final knife fight.... but was that because it was truly awesome, or because we just didn't know any better?
Television has been loading up perpetually on action shows for the last several years with quite a few looking prominent as original offerings, including ABC's latest, Quantico. Actress Priyanka Chopra takes the lead in this female-centric adventure as one of dozens recruits attending the nation's toughest FBI training school, and with such a diverse and multi-angular cast of characters, you can definifely count on this one having its fair share of espionage, action and intrigue with the occasional plot twist or several.
Monday, August 24, 2015
Director Bradford May's new mixed-martial arts fight drama, Street, is finally getting its day on October 30. The film presents actor Beau Casper Smart in his latest debut role which has already been privy to a few exclusive screening and details are now finally trickling online for the film's limited releases with select cities throughout the U.S. and Canada via the official Facebook page.
The Hit List is back once again, and gladly it comes loaded once more with some amazing stuff from around the web!
The last fifteen years have proven notable for the British gangster genre. Terry Windsor's 2000 crime pic, Essex Boys, has especially been central to the genre with concentrated stories of underworld crime based on real-world headlines, and you can now chalk up the latest, Essex Boys: Law Of Survival, as another to bookmark in your collection this September.
One of the earlier fortunes I had in starting my blog back in 2013 was getting acquainted off and on with actor and stuntman, Sonny Sison. Granted, in months prior to that, I had just seen him in the 2008 action thriller, Broken Path, which is still one of the most fascinating films I had ever seen, and for a number of reasons.
Last week, I had the opportunity to share a dialogue with Sison about the film among several others within the span of his career in the past two decades. Having cut his teeth as an actor and stuntman over the years, primarily as a suit actor on the AmeriToku crossover series, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, and having recently worked with a number of familiar faces fans know and love, I would say there's plenty of reason to bookmark him as someone worth looking out for in the months ahead.
On an entirely seperate note, writing this and editing passage on a Saturday afternoon as you are just reading this I can't help but sit here and reflect on some of my past interview subjects. This definitely feels like another milestone and honestly, I'm really buzzed.
Ladies and gentlemen, Sonny Sison!
Film Combat Syndicate: Greetings Sonny, and thank you for taking the time to talk to Film Combat Syndicate. How has your year been going so far?
No complaints at all. I've been in Manila, Philippines since the beginning of the year working as a stunt/fight coordinator, or as the position is referred to here, "stunt director".
Sunday, August 23, 2015
There's no question that there will be plenty of more layers to the multi-branched Marvel saga of films leading up to the remainder of the third and final phase of the MCU. In the meantime, we have at least one of those layers slated to peel back on May 6, 2016 for the release of Captain America: Civil War as the good guys and gals defenfing humanity turn on each other, adding to the threat level from all sides.
Personally I've never been to a rave and nor would I have the time for anything like that. I can imagine they're all sorts of fun for anyone attending who enjoy mingling in a psychedelic ambience full of young people reveling in high-energy technomusic and what have you.
Friday, August 21, 2015
Warner Bros. has quite the full plate on its hands with their currently fluxating DC cinematic universe. With the course already set for Marvel and Disney, the key focus for Warner Bros. has been to develop its slate as things build up to the Justice League movies set for 2017 and 2019, though that hasn't been to solidly suggest there wouldn't be any more titles in between.
About a week ago, someone reportedly jumped the gun on the latest trailer for director Isaac Florentine's newest action thriller, Close Range. Thankfully, Bleiberg's Company B finally unveiled it online just a few days ago, and as of today, the film has a new poster as well, both of which you can check out right now.
There's no mistake to be made here when it comes to the vision director Park Heung-Sik had in mind for the release of his latest film, Memories Of The Sword. Actresses Kim Go-Eun and Jeon Do-Yeon and actor Lee Byung-Hun take the lead in this sweeping period tale full of sprawling beauty accompanied by tragedy and betrayal that properly befits the caliber of Korean drama storytelling - a point eloquently made by Joey Min in his latest review.
After a record-breaking opening night with a successful box-office run, Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ is finally making it's way to home release in October. FUNimation made the announcement on Thursday and pre-orders are now up and running, and not for nothing either with a package this stacked and full of goodies and offers.
Thursday, August 20, 2015
Actor Hugh Jackman only has but a few years to go in Fox's Marvel X-verse as Wolverine, so we're left with whatever teases may come our way until then. At any rate, it'll be fun looking ahead and observing the limitless prospects of his career with plenty of roles to look forward to, and anyone with an affinity for Greek epics and literature will surely benefit after this week.
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
Without a doubt, the past couple of years have been a true testament to actor and martial arts star Wu Jing in the wake of making his solo directorial debut, Wolf Warriors. Several leg injuries and a lengthy post-production process for an augmented 3D release notwithstanding, this latest patriotic action adventure will hopefully be the start of a great career on both sides of the camera for Wu after dominating the set with the likes of Donnie Yen, Sammo Hung and the late, great Darren Shahlavi over the years.
Tuesday, August 18, 2015
With the rise of Indonesian action cinema as of late, it's become evermore clear that superhero films are the market to tap into. Executive producer Sarjono Sustrisno (Guardian) and his team at Skylar Pictures learned this lesson well prior to founding Skylar Comics in 2013 with a slate of superhero franchises of its own, including the 2014 launch of female-centric comic book heroine, Valentine.
It's imaginably difficult to get anything done when you're only awake for barely ten minutes at a time, but that's the challenge met head on with actor and filmmaker Noel Clarke now on par for a U.S. audience with his latest UK-produced sci-fi action thriller, The Anomaly. STARZ-owned Anchor Bay is slating a select release on September 25 with home and digital releases on October 6 following pre-order availability on September 2, and with this, a new trailer began circulating this week.