THE HIT LIST - February 1, 2016

The weekend was a robust one! I saw a couple of movies, I reviewed one, and even posted a few trailers for two of this year's hotly-anticipated titles both here and here.


Rest assured, that didn't stop me from keeping up with my weekly keep here at Film Combat Syndicate's Hit List column, and this week's entries are now up. Free up your time right now, because the first playlist is ready with amazing stunt, fighting and tricking reels by Ilyana Eberhardt, Huang Vo, Shayan Safar, Shayna Bofill, Anthony Hoang, Gabriel Graves, Jon Miguel, Barry Nerling and stunt coordinator Tyler Hall with a new work reel of his own!


Onward to the test fights, and there are just a few that have made the rounds over the weekend enough to come under my radar, including a quick action skit by Greg Poljacik and Nate Hitpas titled Clinch Brush. Next up from there is the latest Tekken testimony from action actor and martial artist, Eric Jacobus, who has been hard at work since late last year putting out a slate of Tekken-inspired videos based on its characters. This time, it's as Bruce Irving, and as always, Jacobus does another fine job at literally matching all of the techniques and combos you see. He doesn't miss a beat, and I personally can't wait to see what his next character is (people have been pining to see him as Eddy Gordo or his counterparts, Christie or Tiger...I'm rather interested in what he'll do as Yoshimitsu if we are that fortunate.)

After that is a new video directly from Stunt Fighter Indonesia, a label hailing from stuntman Cep Hendra whose channel now hosts an awesome new test fight experiment in Pencak Silat between performers Reza and Resta. The last time many of us have seen Silat action this pure is The Raid franchise while it's worth noting that both films have certainly helped put Indonesia back on the map for contemporary action cinema, and so it's nice to see performances as spirited as these.

The next video comes from AJL Stunts with stunt performer David Conk joining Adam Lytle and a group of friends for a short action piece inspired by the 2D video game, "Hotline Miami". It's a delightfully violent bit of action for martial arts and fight choreography aficionados, and save for the CG blood and all, the execution is what matters and it doesn't disappoint.

The last video in the playlist comes from stuntman, up-and-coming fight choreographer and filmmaker Bryan Sloyer who is offsetting a new YouTube channel over the weekend with a slew of reuploads, but that doesn't discount some new content which now comes in the form of a Balintawak montage documenting the last several years as an Escrima practitioner. He really is one of the most contemplative and estudious purveyors of the art that I know of, and it shows in his work.


On to some promotional goods this week and for this, we have two poster to start with - one for the upcoming release of The Highway from director Eric Nguyen. A teaser trailer dropped online late last year and you can view it here or headover to the Lunar Stunts Action Cinema YouTube channel where you can access it directly, but feel free to check out the poster ahead of the shortfilm's online airing sometime this month.

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Click the album above again and you will see another poster, and this time it's for Sam Gosper's slick new upcoming shortfilm series, Circle Of Ninja, for which the trailer has arrived for its first installment, Hunt For Hiroshi. Abe Takehiro and David Vuong are among the cast headlining this latest effort in which the head of a major organization assigns an elite tactical unit to take out the perpetrator out for his blood.

The project itself is a milestone effort for Gosper and his crew who are based in Sydney, Australia as they aim toward beefing up the local film industry while Gosper hopes to bring Circle Of Ninja to the forefront of its own feature film production. To that end, you could even consider it as a proof of concept worthy of your attention as it moves ahead - and speaking of, you can watch a trailer for it in the following playlist to sample for yourself as great as it looks.

After that, you will see a trailer for the sequel to last year's premiere action comedy short, Two Bellmen, the media content debut of luxury hotel circuit JW Mariott in collaboration with the amazing feats of Substance Over Hype, with William Spencer and Caine Sinclair starring as Gage and Christian - two very different Bellmen with clashing methods on better servicing residents. It's Two Bellmen 2, and this time they're back on the job in Dubai, and on an epic search for a missing flashdrive. Rhythmic action, laughs and epic stunts ensue!

The last trailer comes with some intense and heavy visuals courtesy of the University of Texas at Austin's UT3D program, utilIzed accordingly by multifaceted filmmaker and VFX artist, Deepak Chetty. His newest shorfilm has long hit the ground running now in the form of Hard Reset, the UT3D's first MFA thesis project shot in stereoscopic 3D with a story focused a detective forced to choose where his loyalty lies when the android he loves falls subject to a virus that turns her into a sentient being.

Oryan Landa, Josephine McAdam and Holt Boggs star, and the project has already become an award-winning feat having earned its latest acclaim late last month at the Advanced Imaging Society’s 7th Annual Awards Ceremony for Best 3D Short. And judging by the trailer itself following its teaser from 2014, I'd say that award was well deserved, because special effects are absolutely stunning. Films like Blade Runner and Natural City are easily worth comparing.

Enjoy the trailers!


The last of the promotional goods come courtesy of independent filmmaker Noel Braham who is well into his film travels as of 2014 through his production banner Noel Braham Entertainment. His latest shortfilm with co-director Pokey Spears of Pokey Spears Productions in the form of, Star Wars: Exile, comes in the good graces of its record-breaking more mainstream backing a la The Force Awakens, and with Disney and Lucasfilm in tow for at least four or five more films, Brahman's efforts are far from late.

Plot details are on ice but screening dates have officially been set at the Historical LA Vista Theater in Los Angeles on Saturday March 5 between 11:00am and 12:30pm, followed by an Atlanta premiere on Saturday, March 12 between 1:00pm and 2:00pm at the Midtown Arts Cinema before digitally premiering on Sunday, March 13. And on that note, feast your eyes on the latest stills and poster before then!

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Now it's off to the shortfilms for the final playlist of this week's Hit List. The first run goes out for a run with a daring little parkour gig attributed to the hit game, Mirror's Edge. I've seen a few of these fan-inspired shorts and each of them have been fun to watch, and I sincerly hope it inspires a feature film adaptation because the source material looks hugely worthy of a shot at the big screen. Freerunner Will Sutton performs a la Go Pro.

The second shortfilm is one I'm lending an encore presentation to just two years after its release. It's called Dragon Lady, featuring Brendon Huor opposite PeiPei Alena Yuan in the title role as a fugitive on the run. It's one of my absolute favorite pieces in my time of covering independent online action thanks primarily to the work of Vlad Rimburg and you can read more about it here as well as view some photos from the project.

The third and final action short in the playlist comes from student filmmaker Pantit Pablo titled Fighterino. The acting is a little subpar but the action is watchable as is the narration with actors Gibb Yu and Den Delgado starring. The story here isn't very detailed and mainly suggestive but is still very intriguing and intense to look at while landing up-and-coming stunt director Eulver Presto another stint here in designing some gritty fight material.


And last and far from least, filmmaker Steven Petersen's newest proof of concept, Erebus, from a script by Craig Fernandez. The project hails from Petersen's Big Machine banner with a specific aim toward illustrating what Petersen's vision looks like for something that could go further if given necessary backing. Needless to say, this is something entirely worth lending an eye to for a feature film or a series - It's chock-filled with sci-fi, tech, dazzling visuals along with brutal and kinetic action thanks in large part to Aaron Toney who has been a subject of this blog on many an occasion.

Power Rangers: Dino Charge co-star Yoshua Sudarso stars here and delivers one of the best performances ever seen on film, and that's about all the lip-service I can offer at this point. Your best option is to see it for yourself and just KNOW you're in for a sweet, sweet piece of film.


Remember to check out last week's Hit List and subscribe to all the channels therein. And more importantly, if you yourself are a stuntman or a performer, or a filmmaker keen on making reels and shorts like these and you have something that you think deserves a place in our weekly Hit List, hit us up at filmcombatsyndicate@gmail.com!

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