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Armed Response (1986)

Armed Response (1986)

It's the eighties! The synth, the style, the Japanese, the bar... it's got all those good things a movie of the sort really needs, complete with a slow intro and cliche (but likable - or non-likable depending on the type) character. Tough guys all over. Love it.

It's a movie of the times, simple and rough, detailing a derailed artifact trade - which a Japanese crime boss just happen to have a great interest in.

I recognize some of the tough guys too: Ross Hagen, Mako, David Carradine and Lee Van Cleef. All good. And the guy who's face they keep zooming in on - the disfigured henchmen earned a roll by those unique traits of his. And of course there's a girl. It's nothing fancy, but it's good action, as flashbacks to the eighties always entail. Those were the days.

 rated 3/5: not bad

Armed Response (2017)

Armed Response (2017)

For a WWE movie this one really exceeded my expectations! I was thinking it'd be yet another S.W.A.T. type movie. A bad ass team on a mission with a tinge of DOOM. Wesley Snipes being one of few redeeming elements.

Low and behold it went way further. It turned into a House on Haunted Hill with a conscience. A secret government project that... wait, that's probably a spoiler. Watch it if you want to find out more!

The build-up does take a long time, there's no denying that, but in the end it feels worth it. I'm used to movies starting out good, then getting worse and worse as they go, and in the end you end up disappointed. But this one was the other way around. They saved the best for last, and everything leading up to that moment seems worth it after all. Matrix-style existential sci-fi horror. Pretty cool. Reminds me a bit of Ghosts of Mars, too.

There are definitely some loose ends, like the whole family flashback in the beginning that ended up not serving a purpose at all, and when the bad guys actually start getting spooked they could've upped it a few notches, but for the most part it's a solid. Props and effects. Plots and setting. Not bad.

 rated 3.5/5: not bad at all

Immortal Fist - The Legend Of Wing Chun (2017)

Immortal Fist - The Legend Of Wing Chun (2017)

It started like a B-movie, but bang! Goes where you don't expect it.

It's both definitely a movie with both tight budgetary and martial artistic restrictions, but it's got a cool cover, Silvana Caminiti's a suitable main character, and there's definately no artistic restriction to it. The whole movie is like a homage to the lore of old samurai fan fiction, fighting anime and what-not. Big Bleach vibes - they even have some of the official music. And then there's that Jackie Chan-inspired boob grab scene that eh... that could've been better. The comedy's basic but not bad.

Some people may not understand the value here, they may not see the dityzing around, running and flipping in attempted choreography and fiery orange range of the otherworld as meaningful or artsy enough, but it really feels like a passion project. If you're a fan of the genre then you'll probably like this. If not... well then you'll probably find it pretty meaningless. It's creative Shounen fighting fantasy action with a girl in the lead role, and it's really not bad at all.

Maybe they could've chosen a less epic-sounding title, though. Expectations.

 rated 3/5: not bad

The Dragon Unleashed (2019)

The Dragon Unleashed (2019)

Two topless shots, paintball firefights, head-exploding props, a bad-ass ninja suit, roses, romance, saturated, hazy summer colors, a strange bond, a fun encounter, a somber scope on world politics and an ambiguous end.

I'm not entirely happy about the ending, or the pacing, the clunky choreography and the lacking foundation with regards to the relation, but I love the rest of it, I like the style. I like the fights. I like the characters, the mood and the message. It might be the start of something. A brave but budget-limited attempt. But maybe all they really need is a new fight choreographer. Someone like Donnie Yen, who seems to have a flare for those romantic bits too. This could've been awesome all the way.

And roses. You really don't see a trail of those too often in a movie like this. It's a refreshing little cameo.

 rated 4/5: fo shizzle

Golden Job (2018)

Golden Job (2018)

A heist goes wrong, and a band of brothers split up, and one of them turns into a villain.

It's a not all that simple story of deceit and family, with plenty of chases and action sequences along the way, some sadness, some live life advice, and that typical (awesome) bittersweet Chinese end sequence.

If it wasn't for the special effects and somewhat fragmented development I feel like this would have really been a good movie. The chases had a little Fast & Furious to them, and the action sequences were AWESOME, both the firefights and the hand-to-hand stuff, but it falls short somewhere. They had the right story, the right talent, impressive scenery and budget and everything, but the direction comes off a bit too bland. A bit too aimless.

Maybe it's a cultural thing. I did enjoy it though. Having been to Budapest recently it was a great bonus to see the sceneries there from a whole new perspective too. And if I ever get the chance I wouldn't mind visiting Monte Negro next. Seems like an amazing place. The places in this movie are most definitely all amazing. In that regard it does the title justice. Good watch.

 rated 3.5/5: not bad at all

5G Apocalypse - The Extinction Event (2019)

5G Apocalypse - The Extinction Event (2019)

What can I say about this one really? Go watch it. Even if you don't believe it. Even if you feel like it's all a bunch of conspiracy mumbo jumbo. Go watch it.

Part of me wishes they'd manage to make it sound a bit less far-fetched, mixing facts with what seems like theories not really substantiated by truth... but then again what if it really is true? Another part of me really appreciates that there are people out there uncovering truths like this, true or no, because if they are then people really need to wake up. And if they're not... well at least they're making people aware of the worst case scenario. What could be. What can be. The potential for abuse that so many seem too unwilling or to naive to ever believe.

Wake up, people. Watch this. It might not be all true, and it might not be perfect, but some of it most definitely is, and even if you don't believe the rest of it: those bits matter.

 rated 4/5: fo shizzle

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