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What ELSE (other than KUNG FU) has everyone been watching?


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saltysam

Carlito's Way

Superb De Palma/Pacino collaboration, imo superior to the better known Scarface. The climax has to be one of the best ever.

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shukocarl1441996347
Posted (edited)

Doctor Who - The Web of Fear 1968 (6 episodes)

All or Nothing - The Small Faces (Documentary)

Freebie and the Bean 1974

Edited by shukocarl1441996347
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12 hours ago, shukocarl1441996347 said:

Is Paris Burning? 1966

London was in 1666, close enough?

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shukocarl1441996347

And God Said to Cain 1970

Terror Under the Sea 1966 1966

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AlbertV
Posted (edited)

Silent But Deadly (Paul Dale, 2016): From the director of this year's "so bad it's good" masterpiece Sewer Gators comes this film that no...it's not about killer farts, but a killer mime who terrorizes a group of teens who perform in an acting troupe. Definitely MST3K value, but director Dale (who plays a crazy TV reporter) means to make his films the way he does because he just loves making films with his friends for the fun of it. 

Paradise Highway (Anna Gutto, 2022): I'm used to seeing Juliette Binoche play roles that scream "aristocrat" or "socialite". However, here, she plays a southern American female truck driver who is forced to help her brother (Frank Grillo), who is in prison by carrying illicit cargo. When the package is a 12-year-old girl (played in a powerful performance by Hala Finley), the trucker learns she is to be trafficked and the two soon forge a bond while evading both the trucker gang and the FBI, led by Morgan Freeman and Cameron Monaghan, who pull off a buddy comedy routine when it calls for it.

The Reef: Stalked (Andrew Traucki, 2022): 12 years after he took us to The Reef, Andrew Traucki brings us back in a new thematic adventure where a PTSD-stricken ex-diver must face her demons when she and her friends go on a kayaking adventure only to be besieged by a great white. Teressa Liane (who could pass off as Margot Robbie and/or Samara Weaving's "sister") is excellent in the role of Nic, who gave up her love of diving after seeing her sister drowned from a domestic dispute. Great camerawork on the film and real sharks were used (no animatronics).

L.A. Aids Jabber (Drew Godderis, 1994): Originally called just Jabber, this shot-on-video was somewhat marketed as a horror movie, but it is actually a thriller about a 19-year-old man (the amazingly named Jason Majik of 1994's A Dangerous Place) who discovers he has AIDS (from a blood transfusion) and goes on a rampage against random people and those who got on his bad but jabbing them with syringes with his tainted blood. Very interesting directorial debut for former cult horror actor Godderis (Blood Diner and Evil Spawn) that plays out more like a character study. 

Hypochondriac (Addison Heimann, 2022): A gay young man finds himself going down a spiral of chaos and madness after he finds a phone with voicemails from his estranged mother, who tried to kill him when he was a kid and was forced into a mental institution. Heimann took elements from his life and constructed this really good psychological horror film driven by an excellent performance by Zach Villa. 

Edited by AlbertV
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masterofoneinchpunch

The Black Phone (2022: Scott Derrickson): don’t you love when you like a film more than you thought you would AND you saw it in the theater?  The crowd was the biggest I had been with in several months (not enough to gauge a collective interest, but more than I have been going to which has been well me in the theater).

I was also happy that I knew nothing about the movie going in.  Had not seen a trailer and now just looking at IMDB’s listing of this it tells quite a lot about the movie (like when you read the back of a BD/DVD and it gives way too much information).

Friday, I mentioned this film at Starbucks and a barista stated she hated this film.  I asked why.  She said because it scared her. Another barista stated, “Isn’t that what it was supposed to do?”  beating me to the punch.

This is an interesting mix of a film.  You have the Prisoners, A Walk Among Tombstones aspect to it, which is evident right away.  Then there is a supernatural element to it which was not evident right away.  I was wondering what a black phone had to do with it.  Then ahhh.  I understand.

Finny (Mason Thames) is grabbed by “The Grabber” in what every person should realize to stay away from: any van you cannot see well into.  He is kept prisoner, he does not know where, but there is a psychological game afoot.  Then there is an aspect of a black phone in the room that is disconnected.  It sometimes rings.

Spoiler for a lot of films: There is an Ethan Hawke horror movie aspect which reminds me of Charlton Heston in sci-fi films.

Ethan Hawke as “The Grabber” (sounds like a bad wrestling name) is effective, though you do not get much of the psychological aspect of him – though that would be a different film as this concentrates on the kid being kidnapped.  Still an interesting mask that he wears most of the time and always part of it around his victim (from what we have seen).  Now I doubt you would trust anyone who wears that mask in public.

There was an interesting aspect to the father (Jeremy Davies) which I liked.  He is a fully flawed alcoholic character, but his use in the film was one of pity (and the opposite that most horror films use a character like this). In a way the brother and sister take care of him.

I liked how many of the secondary characters interacted throughout.  They were not mere archetypes.  A lot of the situations were written well.

I was not scared, but I was intrigued on what was going to happen.  This is more of a thriller with a supernatural twist that in a way reminded me of Signs in its usage (think of everything that happens at the end). 

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DragonClaws
Posted (edited)

 

Good Will Hunting - (1997) - “How do you get fired for pushing a broom?”: Actors Matt Damon & Ben Affleck’s cleverly scripted nineties classic, with music video/movie director Gus Van Zant in the director’s chair. Plot- “The most brilliant mind at America’s top University is not a professor… he is the guy who cleans it floors, Will Hunting (Matt Damon). But Will is also a loyal, headstrong, penniless guy failing at the lessons of life and love with his college educated girlfriend Skylar (Minnie Driver). Facing a jail sentence after too many drunken brawls and run ins with the law, Will’s fate lies in the hands of a good-natured former Vietnam veteran turned teacher and therapist Sean (Robin Williams).” The story’s set in and around Boston, apart from some scene filmed at a college there. Most of the film was shot in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, doubling for the streets of Boston.
 
“Liberty, in case you have forgotten, is a soul’s right to breath, when it cannot take a breath. Laws are girded too tight. With Liberty man is a syncope”
 
The late Robin Williams gives a fantastic inspiring performance, as the streetwise educated Irishman from a tough neighborhood. Who is given the task of helping the wayward genius Will Hunting, by his life-long friend the talented Professor Lambeau (Stella Skarsgard). The reason that Matt Damon managed to afford the actor for this picture, was due to Williams agreeing to take a big pay cut. Saying he should not be the one to chew up a huge chunk of the budget. Which would then have had a negative effect on the rest of the production. The quick thinking/talking comedian, won an Oscar for best supporting actor in 1997, for his honest performance here. There's even a reference to Williams love of resistance weight training. He had a set of Nautilus machines in his garage at home.
 
- “You work out, huh”
- “Yeah”
- “free weights or Nautilus?”
- “No, free weights”
- “What do you bench”
- “285, what do you bench?”
 
There are some great interactions between his and Matt Damon’s characters. When you watch the pair in the touching well-known park bench scene. You can see why Robin Williams won the Award for his efforts here. It is an emotional and moving moment/scene, that changes the whole course of the story and all the characters in it. This is such a deep multi-leveled film; that you can view it many times and see new things. Both of their characters are very complex and share many similarities. Robin Williams character office, is set out like a baseball pitch. With the number of chairs, each representing the number of bases on a baseball field. Note, in one memorable scene Sean (Robin Williams) re-creates a famous Red-Sox baseball match.
 
“You dropped 150 grand on a fuckin education, you could’ve got for a $ in late charges at the public library”
 
Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s script also won an Oscar, for Best Original Screenplay. Matt Damon studied at Harvard, where some of the story is set. Ben Affleck’s parents also worked at Harvard as Janitors, which is where some of the story’s inspiration comes from. The pair both spoke at the campus in 2002, about increased living wages for all those employed on the campus. Ben Affleck would go onto direct the 2002 documentary called Occupation, about a sit-in organized by the Harvard Living Wage Campaign. Matt Damon wrote the dialogue, for the famous park bench set scene, when he was on Holiday according to an 1998 interview on U.S T.V with Charlie Rose. With little to no changes to the dialogue in the final version.
 
“You’re not perfect sport and let me save you the suspense, this girl you met, she isn’t perfect either, but the questions whether or not you’re perfect for each other, that’s the whole deal, that’s what intimacy is about”
 
English actress Minnie Driver (Sleeper’s) is great in a very naturalistic performance as Skylar. Will Hunting girlfriend, who accepts at him for who he is and challenges him to change. Tough, to highlight anyone one performance or actor here, as with any big ensemble film such as this one. You take any of the characters out of this story, and it would not work half as effectively. Stella Skargard (Ronin) never seems to deliver bad performance, his passionate and highly educated University professor who is in love of mathematics and numbers. Yet his character is just as interesting, as some the many others sharing screentime with the main stars. The story showcases many strong contrasts, such as well-educated students who can make the complex use of numbers and intricate equations, almost look like an effortless artform.
 
“What am I, fuckin sandwich welfare?, I think we should establish’ a good line of credit”
 
Who then get embarrassed by a young twenty-one-year-old genius, with no formal education who hangs around with his friends in Bars. Who then solves their complex mathematical problems in a single night, when they are all given weeks to study/solve it. Look out for Ben Affleck’s brother Casey Affleck in a minor ad-libbing supporting role. The weakest part of this film for me personally, was the low-key soundtrack. That said, its not really the score and the visuals that take centre stage in this one. There is a nice nod to Beat writers Alan Ginsberg & William S. Burroughs at the end of the picture, when the credits’ role. Little I can add, thats not havent already been said about this popular production many times already. In the unlikely chance you have not watched this film already, its one to search out. Special mention goes to stunt coordinator Jery Hewitt, who staged the films one fight scene. He played the leader of the Baseball Fury's in The Warriors (1979).
 
 
Edited by DragonClaws
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Yihetuan
Posted (edited)

X - Dir. Ti West [2022] USA

This slasher film got quite a bit of favorable press and positive reviews but I was at a loss as to why? This was laughable on many levels. The geriatric fx prosthetic makeup was hilariously bad, the gore & violence was pedestrian and there was little to no suspense. The entire ode to vintage exploitation and porn was terribly misplaced too (playing BÖC's "Don't Fear the Reaper" during a kill scene was as cliche as it gets). I read there is a prequel in the works but I have zero interest and will definitely skip it.

 

Edited by Yihetuan
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AlbertV

Bloody Oranges (Jean-Christophe Meurrise, 2022): An elderly couple who enter a dance contest in hopes to get out of debt. Their son is a lawyer whose latest client, a government official, is about to get his on corrupt charges. A young woman desperate for her first time and a psycho who tries to kidnap her but not before having revenge on the official for his downward spiral. This is a crazy dark comedy that pushes the envelope in the last act that is very shocking!

Beavis and Butt-Head Do the Universe (John Rice & Albert Calleros, 2022): The iconic dimwitted teens are back with Mike Judge returning to co-write and voice the duo, who in 1998 after accidentally burning down the science fair (where Beavis has the highest pitch ever from a nad kick) go to space camp and go on a mission that sends them to a time warp to present day. The gags are quite funny with them having one intention even though they are targeted and mistaken for aliens by the FBI and a former associate wants them dead. 

Dawn (Nicholas Ryan, 2022): A couple grab a rideshare but their driver, the eponymous Dawn, is a psychopath who believes she is some sort of judge, kidnapping people she deems immoral and kills them. Jackie Moore is pretty scary in the titular role while Jared Cohn (who is more known for his directing indie action films) and Sarah French do well as the couple who must find a way to escape Dawn with some twists and turns, including some crazy cameos from Eric Roberts, Michael Pare, and Nicholas Brendon.

House on Haunted Hill (both the 1959 and 1999 versions): I liked both, but feel the 1999 remake has a bit of an upper edge with an actual backstory behind the house where the original was just a house that the owner believes is haunted, but not really explaining why. Vincent Price is excellent in the original film while Geoffrey Rush channels his inner Vincent in the role of Steven Price in the remake. Jeffrey Combs has a great cameo in the remake as the crazed doctor who experimented in the now house, which was a former hospital. 

Suburban Sasquatch (Dave Wascavage, 2004): This was one of the last era SOV (shot on video) gems to be released where the title describes a Bigfoot creature who terrorizes both in the woods and makes its way to the suburbs on a massive killing spree. Yes, it's seriously funny and meant to be! It is up to a Native American warrior, a journalist, and two park rangers to try to stop the beast. There are some funny kills mixing CGI and practical effects. This film is being released on Blu-Ray Tuesday from the recently released Visual Vengeance, Wild Eye Releasing's new subsidiary focusing on SOV cinema. 

Death Count (Michael Su, 2022): A meshing of Saw and Battle Royale about eight people who wake up in a prison where a Phantom of the Opera-inspired Warden (Costas Mandylor) subjects the prisoners to either self torture or risk getting blown up by electronic devices on their necks. Very gruesome and graphic, this one has a great performance by Sarah French, who plays a teacher involved in this game and she soon learns some of her co-workers are involved as well as she tries to decipher the connection while all this is being streamed online. This prompts detective Michael Madsen to try to find the location.

Blood of the Dinosaurs (Joe Badon, 2022): Playing on the film festival circuit, Joe Badon's short film is a demented comedy that could serve as a Mister Rogers creepypasta. It basically is about a children's show host, Uncle Bobbo, who tells where oil comes from. It is 17 minutes long, but is funny and very crazy!!!

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Batman: The Killing Joke (2016) - 5/10

I never read the 1988 graphic novel so in regards to making comparisons I can't do nothing but only judge based on what I think of this animated adaptation. I enjoyed it but overall it was underwhelming. The relationship between Batman and Batgirl echoes the Batman-Robin (Dick Grayson) relationship which was unnecessary (not to mention

Spoiler

Batman having sex with Batgirl right after having a heated argument 🤷‍♂️😂)

, and the showdown between Batman and Joker was anticlimactic. I did like the flashback scenes of Joker's backstory as a struggling comedian which should've been shown more, and the action scenes. I can understand the controversy surrounding the source material. But even so, this one simply lacks the omph it needed to make the story stand out.

Batman: Hush (2018) - 6/10

This one fared better and was more entertaining. Maybe a bit too much when it comes to having all too familiar faces in the Batman villain gallery, some were given enough time to shine while others just show up briefly before exiting. Great action, great dialogue and interesting choice of characters featured here. One of the main selling points though, as the title suggests, as the use of the character of Thomas Elliot (aka Hush) and the way he was treated here was BOTH good and bad. Ever since playing the Arkham video games, I've always wanted to see Hush in a movie adaption. I thought this one was it. Sadly, I ended up being disappointed after learning that Hush 

Spoiler

was actually The Riddler in disguise all along.

What a way to waste such a potential villain. Oh well...

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DragonClaws

 

The Lost Boys - (1987) - "Rules, we got some rules around here" There has been a lot 80’s nostalgia themed shows and movies in the past decade. This entertaining Joel Schumacher directed movie is a big slice of the real thing. “Sam (Corey Haim) and his older brother Michael (Jason Patric) are average, everyday teens. But after they move with their mother Lucy (Dianne West) to a peaceful Santa Clara, California, things mysteriously begin to change”.

The local authorities, don’t seem to care about a clan of undead blood suckers led by David (Kiefer Sutherland). Who are now using their local population like it’s some open vampire supermarket. Lucky for Sam and his brother, there’s two brave young comic book reading vampire hunters Edgar (Corey Feldman) & Alan Frog (Jamison Newlander). Who know a thing or two about dealing with nocturnal blood drinkers.

- “I thought they were supposed to be in coffins?”
- “That’s what this cave is, one big coffin"

This comedic cult movie opens with a suitably fitting cover of The Doors song People Are Strange by Echo & The Bunnymen. Just one of a few nods to both bands, that are dotted throughout the picture. This movie was toned down for an R-Rating, with reductions to the nighttime attack on a group of young partiers. The usual prey for most if not all 1980’s screen stalkers? Actor Kiefer Sutherland mentioned one of the cuts made to this scene, in a Yahoo interview. “It’s sort of in the movie — they cut around it — but there was a guy on a beach and he was bald and they had made a prosthetic cast of his head. And the part of the scene that I loved the most was literally; it was like a cake: I ate the whole back of his head off and blood just went everywhere. I had been directed to just smile like a child having cake, and the two images were so frightening and scary.” source- https://bloody-disgusting.com/.../kiefer-sutherland.../ Actress Kelly Joe Minter had many of her scenes removed from the movie. Only this wasn’t due to censorship of any kind.

“Get a good sharp stick and drive it through his heart”

The Lost Boys re-imagined the vampire genre for young 1980’s cinema audiences. Giving the then stale horror sub-genre a whole new lease of life. It mixed the comedy and adventure of The Goonies (1985), with the much darker and adult horror movies that were popular at the time. Instead of the usual screen image, of the vampire being played by an older man. Here they are mostly played by young teen actors, who brought a new version of the horror character to life. Dressed more slightly and in sync with the time the movie was made. The mixed soundtrack really adds to this, not going for just your usual horror movie cues and jumps. The films not lost any of its charm, and its easy to see why its still so popular audiences of all ages.

“Holy shit, the attack of Eddie Munster”

Special Effect artist Greg Canoms make-up designs is one of the many reasons, the film looked so different at the time. His practical vampire effects pushed the image and look, of Bram Stoker most famous creation. He was also the man behind the far-out looking contact lenses, worn by the actors playing the stylishly dressed undead. Make up always puts strong emphasis on the eyes, and here that effect is used in a more twisted horror like way. With the pupils appear more like a fiery glowing red.

“Listen, just so you know, if you try to stop us, if you vamp out, I’ll stick you twice without even thinking”

Susan Becker’s costume work is what really gave the films villainous characters, a very different look.

“Costume designer Susan Becker worked directly with the actors to come up with their looks, giving each of the four main vampires a budget and sending them to Melrose Avenue to pick out their outfits. For leader of the pack David (Kiefer Sutherland), it probably wouldn’t have mattered what he wore. With unparalleled charisma and seductive smirk, what lady wouldn’t offer herself up for a bite on the neck? David’s look is understated, yet devastatingly cool, a long black overcoat, leather pants and gloves, which were worn to disguise Sutherland’s broken hand after he had fallen off his bike. And of course, he had that iconic blonde mullet. Of all the vamps, David most closely aligned with the ‘English gypsy’ aesthetic that Schumacher — a former costume designer himself — had envisioned, inspired by natty 80s band Arcadia and German fashion magazines.”
Source- https://fashionfollower.com/the-lost-boys-film-costumes/

"Your at the mercy of your sex glands"

Making up the catwalk ready Vampire clan are actors Kiefer Sutherland, Jami Getz, Alex Winter, Chance Michael Corbitt, Billy Wirth & Brook McCarter. This was director, actor producer Alex Winters second big screen role after playing a punk in cult cinema favourite Death Wish 3 (1983) starring Charles Bronson. He would go onto star in Bill & Teds Excellent Adventure (1989). Special mention goes to actor Edward Herrmann as Max, as the Master Vampire. Donald Sutherland’s son Kiefer, was only eighteen when he appeared here. Playing the charismatic bad boy ladies’ man, with a love of claret. Vampire characters were never presented this way, before The Lost Boys. With Christopher Lee in the old Hammer Horror films, often being the image audiences had of Dracula. Or the blue skinned Nosferatu styled creature, you got in the T.V movie version of Stephen Kings Salem’s Lot.

“Read the T.V guide, and you don’t need a T.V”

Filmed in and around the Santa Cruzbin & Santa Clarita, the often talked about bridge hanging scene. The Iron Horse Trailhead trestle bride the vampires hang from, is located of interstate 5 on the Magic Mountain Parkway, forty miles South of Los Angeles. This movie remains one of my favourites 80’s movies, there just should have been more screen time from Cory Feldman & Jamison Newlander’s characters.

 

 

 

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AlbertV

Fall Fight Shine (Charlotte Wincott, 2022): A 50-minute documentary that takes us to the science of substance use disorder (SUD). Why do we get addicted? How do we get addicted? Why one must can't seem to go one without another? The documentary not only gives us insight on SUD, but a subject's story about his addictions and his long road to recovery is told. And it's someone many fans will know: 90's B-movie action star Jeff Wincott. In 1997, at the height of his fame in the genre, he tried cocaine for the 1st time and a year later, he suffered a near fatal overdose on Sunset Blvd. Now having been clean and sober for 19 years, Wincott is not only ready for a comeback (his new film The Issue with Elvis was released earlier this year) but he's ready to tell his story in hopes that it will inspires others who suffer from SUD and can try to get help.

Behind Bars (Jeff Wincott, 2016): A 16-minute short film that serves as a semi-autobiographical account of Wincott, as he plays a former action star who is given a chance at a comeback. However, his addiction to steroid-infused protein bars gets the best of him when after a decade of being clean, our hero relapses. This is a great companion piece to the aformentioned Fall Fight Shine. You can see the whole film below. 

 

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morpheus

Where The Sidewalk Ends (1950)

Definitely not the Silverstein book, this film noir features Dana Andrews and Gene Tierney.  It did poorly at the box office, but an interesting watch within the genre nonetheless.

 

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Drunken Monk

Tenebrae (1982) - I think I've successfully become a fan of Giallo. Tenebrae is the perfect murder mystery. It's intriguing, hyper violent at times, dark and actually ends up being utterly bonkers. A magnificent journey of the macabre. I really liked this one and feel like I'm finally understand this genre. Tenebrae is a genuine masterpiece.

Under the Skin (2013) - Many, MANY people will hate this film. It's quiet and contemplative to the point that it it might feel a little pretentious. However, if you're a fan of highbrow cinema, you may very well love this one. I certainly did (I give it 5 stars). It's a ponderous little flick with some elements that might not even make sense. It leaves a lot up to the viewer. Dark, VERY creepy in places but with a strong sense of what's human running throughout. This really is a gem.

Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa (2013) - Alan Partridge is the single greatest comedy character of all time. That's all I need to say. I do feel like this film is uniquely British so some non-Brits might not get it. But it's so bloody good.

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Posted (edited)

Batman vs. Robin (2015) - 7.5/10

Far better than the last two animated Batman movies. Batman re-teams with his 10 year-old son Damian (after Son of Batman, which I hear is awful) dealing with problems and different resolutions as these two embark their crime fighting journey facing an unknown villain associated with The Court of Owls. Loved the build-up between every character, and how The Court of Owls was treated (also well-shown and told in Gotham). One thing that bugged me was Damian's brat-attitude in the beginning but I got over that as the story progressed. However, the biggest failure is how this adaptation captures his fighting spirit and overall technical skills and strength. Damian is just 10 years old and yet he is able to beat people way bigger and stronger than him. Heck, throw in Nightwing, and even Batman himself. I didn't buy that. Everything else was very good though featuring good characters and some of Batman's most favored villains.

Batman: The Long Halloween Part 1 - 9/10

This one is exceptional. The story shows Batman the detective, and the feared dark knight the way we would want to see, and the hero that cares for loved and important ones. Use of characters is great, dialogue is well-written and not out of place like previously seen and heard elsewhere, great action scenes, and we have a mysterious villain that secretly kills off mafia members and associates as a vengeance putting Batman, the cops and the local mafia scratching their heads thinking the true identity of the killer.

Batman: The Long Halloween Part 2 - 10/10

What continues for Batman and the cops to be a hunt for the unknown killer leads to many great twists which concludes with character reveals and resolutions that truly satisfies! The makers really saved the best for the last with Part 2. Nuff said.

Edited by DiP
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DragonClaws

 

Rambo: First Blood - (1982) - "God didnt create Rambo, I did": When ex special forces and Vietnam veteran John Rambo (Sylvester Stallone), visits a small North American town to see the last surviving member of his platoon. He is only met by prejudice and intolerance. When tough formidable local Sherriff Will Teasle (Brian Dennehy), refuses to let Rambo stay in his small sleepy logging town. A cutthroat razor trigger’s his severe PTSD, sparking off a carnage filled rampage. As the country he once fought for, pursues him across the cold, bare winter landscape.
 
“Is there any law against me getting something to eat around here?”
“Yeah, me”
 
During the opening scenes, there is a symbolic and very ironic town sign that reads ‘Gateway to Holiday land, welcome to Hope’. Brian Dennehy is fantastic as the Sheriff, who take his law too far this time. He is not painted as being an all-bad man, he is very similar to Gene Hackman’s character in Unforgiven (1992). He believes he is doing the right thing by keeping, vagrants like Rambo off his streets. Only there is more to Rambo than just being a violent vagrant who is looking to cause trouble. In the novelization, Teasel is a Korean war veteran. Something the movie did not choose to include in the final cut. The late Brian Dennehy has some of the biggest natural shoulder’s I have seen on-screen. The guy looks like Grizzly Adams, minus the big beard and vintage hunting attire.
 
“Damn it, this boy is hard to get a hold of”
 
Joan Chapmans editing and Ted Kotcheffs focused direction, keeps the films pace ticking along nicely. When compared with other movies in the series, the first one is low key. It is less about gung-ho action and heroics, and more about the long-term psychological effects that war has on people. There one death in the whole movie and it was done in self-defense, not cold-blooded murder. Sylvester Stallone was still in top physical shape from his then last picture, Rocky 3. It was this look, that helped to shape the 1980’s edition, of the super soldier character.
 
“In town you’re the law, out here it’s me”
 
The films pace really picks up, as Rambo flees his captors in the small prison sells where he is being held. A cutthroat razor is unwisely flashed near his face, like showing a red rag to bull. Not sure how they would have shaved the guy, by pinning him down this way. My mum was trained to use one, during her days as a trainee hairdresser in the 1960’s. Practicing on foam covered balloons, until you could shave one without making it pop. She stills own the ones her grandad used, during his time in the trenches in the artillery division. There the sharpest blades I’ve ever seen in my life, despite being a hundred years old now. Getting back on topic, Jerry Goldsmiths rousing score kicks in perfectly. As the story’s hero, grabs an unsuspecting stranger from a dirt bike and heads into the hills. Look out for a cinema screening The Godfather (1971) in one shot, a movie Sylvester Stallone once auditioned for.
 
“I’m going to get that son of a bitch, and nail that Congressional Medal of Honor to his kidney”
 
Shot mostly in the gorgeous Fraser Valley, in Canada British Columbia, between November 1981 and April 1982. The films star rides around in a vest and t-shirt. It’s not surprising, that Stallone came up with the idea, of having his character quickly cut up a poncho. Made up from some old tarpaulin that’s hanging around an old logging site. Which he said stopped him from freezing to death, while they shot during the coldest months of the year. The weather, really helps to bring out the films brooding atmosphere.
 
- “You’re the last of an elite group, don’t end it like this”
- “Back there I could fly a gunship, I could drive a tank, I was in charge of million-dollar equipment, back here I can’t even hold a job parking cars”
 
First Blood’s screenplay by Michael Kozell & William Sackhelm, was based on a 1972 novel written by David Morrell. Sylvester Stallone added some re-writes of his own, to a script that had been passed around Hollywood since the early 70’s. Going through ten directors, and about twenty different leading actors from Robert Redford to Robert De-Niro. The original story was much darker, and leaned more towards a horror movie vibe with Rambo being a villain rather than a hero. Stallone felt this was too dark and portrayed veterans too badly. Instead, he wanted to put the focus on the bad effect the government and societies rejection had on veteran soldiers during the 1970’s. Attacking the very people who had once risked their own lives to defend their country. Rambo is originally killed by Col. Trautman, but the ending was re-shot after test audiences reacted badly to the intended final scenes.
 
“We were in this bar in Saigon and this kid comes up, this kid carrying a shoe-shine box. And he says "Shine, please, shine!" I said no. He kept asking', yeah, and Joey said "Yeah." And I went to get a couple of beers, and the box was wired, and he opened up the box, fucking blew his body all over the place. And he's laying there, he's fucking screaming. There are pieces of him all over me”
 
The production had been plagued with many problems, filmed during one of the harshest Canadian winters was just one of them. A whole truck with $50,000 worth of guns was stolen, and never made to the set. In a mystery that still remains unsolved to this day. Kirk Douglas walked off the set, forcing the producers to hire Richard Crenna for the role instead. The first rough cut came in at over two hours and many people involved with the production, felt it had turned into a trainwreck. Many scenes were cut or shortened, to help improve the pacing and improve the overall picture. The bike/police car chase was originally played out for much longer. Flashback scenes were also removed, including actress Suzee Pai scene set in a Vietnamese brothel. Another omitted scene, see’s Rambo being driven out of a local diner.
 
“Don’t look at me, look at the road, that’s how accidents happen”
 
Look out for a young David Caruso one of the more level headed young deputies, he would go onto star in one of the many popular C.S.I shows. Special mention goes to actor Jack Starrat, as the hate driven bullying cop Galt. Hat’s off to stunt coordinator Conrad E.Pamisano and his extensive stunt team. For bringing the story’s many dangerous action set pieces to life on-screen. Many of the cast and stunt crew were injured while filming the more physical sequences. Knife maker Jimmy Lyle, was hired to make the main character survival tool of choice. With a few added extras in its handle, that had not been used in a movie before. Solid performances all round, Rambo Fist Blood remains one of the best action movies of the 1980's. If you read this far into my long winded ramble, thanks for reading.
 
 
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