Tag Archives: RZA

G.I. Joe: Retaliation: Can The Rock and Bruce Willis Make It Better?

Seriously, how many movies are The Rock and Bruce Willis in this year? Every time I turn around there’s a new trailer out with one of them is in it. It appears that studios have it in their heads that these two will “spruce up” any movie. And while that might work in some cases (The Rock in Fast Five), it’s not for others (Bruce Willis in Alpha Dog, The Rock in The Tooth Fairy). So is it possible that bringing both actors in on G.I. Joe: Retaliation will  repair the damage done to our fanboy/fangirl hearts by Rise of the Cobra?

Cobra Commander, the way he should look. (image source: MGM)

Cobra Commander, the way he should look. (image source: MGM)

If we’re making a decision based on what we’ve seen in trailers, then the answer is a strong maybe. The trailers make that film look like it’s going to be an action-packed blockbuster but that’s what trailers are supposed to do. They’re supposed to get you hyped up. Trailers can be deceiving though (remember Funny People? Wasn’t funny at all!). I did notice some improvements from the first one. Snake Eyes doesn’t have a mouth anymore, they fixed Cobra Commander’s helmet, and they added Ray Stevenson to the cast (he really does make a movie better, i.e. Punisher: War Zone). However, Channing Tatum is still in the film (although I think he might get killed off). Two out of three ain’t bad, I guess.

I can’t help but feel that this film won’t be as great as I’m wanting it to be. The first film let me down greatly, as I’m sure it did many others, so it’s going to take something major to renew my faith in this series. Bringing back Storm Shadow helps, as long as his return from death isn’t because he’s a clone or something stupid like that. Clones, like zombies, are overrated. They’re staying true to the original series by bringing in characters like Flint, Lady Jaye, Roadblock, and Jinx, instead of making up new characters that no one is going to care about. And the side-of-a-mountain ninja battle looks like it’s going to be pretty epic. Not to mention, RZA is part of the cast as well, playing Blind Master. Being a fan of Wu-Tang, I find this to be awesome.

Is Storm Shadow a clone? Let's hope not. (image source: MGM)

Is Storm Shadow a clone? Let’s hope not. (image source: MGM)

With this film, I’m going to wait and see  before making my complete judgement. The trailer urges me to believe it will be better, but the trailers for the first film made me think it was going to be good, and I was let down. I don’t want to think that MGM is relying on The Rock and Bruce Willis to be the driving forces of this fill but there’s a good chance that is what they’re going for. Hopefully they’ve put a little more into this film than two blockbuster action stars and crossed fingers for good luck. A stronger script with a solid plot, talented actors that aren’t in need of an acting coach (I’m talking to you,Tatum), and some wicked action sequences are going to make Retaliation the better G.I. Joe film.



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Tarantino Returns!

I have a small list of certain directors that, when there’s news of them releasing a new film, I get a bit excited. And by “a bit,” I mean I get giddy like a little schoolgirl. Christopher Nolan, Zach Snyder, Rob Zombie, Guillermo del Toro, Joss Whedon…but none get my film-nerd fires burnin’ quite like Mr. Quentin Tarantino. [Seriously, you should have seen how much I geeked out for, as well as during the first viewing of, Inglourious Basterds.]

The man is an auteur of the best kind because he himself is a film-nerd. And you can tell how much of a nerd he is and how much he loves the art with all of his films. Each one is perfectly crafted with such enthusiasm, creativity, and passion that with each scene you feel as though you’re watching the film inside his head, seeing it as it was meant to be seen, as he truly wanted you to see it. But inside his head is one of those places you could say is a “nice place to visit but you don’t wanna live there.” It’s a bit too violent to call home, so let’s just be glad he lets us peek in the windows on occasion.

Finally! A Tarantino western! [image property of Columbia Pictures]

About a month or so ago, the trailer for Django Unchained was released and all the tingles started up again. I had heard news of Tarantino working on a new film but I wasn’t quite sure of what it was about. Just the name and three cast members: Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, and Leonardo DiCaprio. Those names were enough to hold my attention until more news was leaked. Then a few images came out and finally, the trailer. I sat patiently as I watched it, waiting and withholding my squeals until it was over. And when it ended, I set them free. I became so stoked for this film, even more so than before, that  it was very difficult to keep my head from exploding. I think the only thing that kept me grounded was the little part at the end that said it didn’t come out until Christmas. Which is a bit of letdown, but I guess it’ll help me learn some willpower or something.

RZA as “The Blacksmith” [image property of Columbia Pictures]

So after that, I thought the fanboy would be kept at bay but then this happened. Yup, that’s right, The Man with the Iron Fists. Not a film written or directed by Tarantino or anything, but a “Quentin Taratino Presents” film, and I’m still geeking out. I mean, I’d be geeking just for the fact that the whole film is an homage to the old Shaw Brothers martial arts films and that it stars RZA (I’m a fan of the Wu), Russell Crowe (Best Robin Hood yet), Batista (Dude’s a beast), and Lucy Liu (She was a bitch in Kill Bill, but she kicked ass). Oh, and let’s not forget that it’s written by RZA and Eli Roth, directed by RZA, and RZA is in control of the soundtrack. But slap “Quentin Tarantino Presents” on that and I’ve gotta change my shorts. The only thing that could make this film more perfect than it already is would be the addition of Billy Zane to the cast. [Note: I think Billy Zane is an AMAZING actor and would cast him in damn near anything.]  Sadly, I’ll have to wait for this one as well. It doesn’t release until November.

Billy freakin’ Zane.

Now there’s two films I have to eagerly wait until the end of the year for, and now there’s rumors of his next project being Kill Bill Vol. 3!

Sweet baby Jesus! I might not make it. My head just might explode. Or maybe Man with the Iron Fists and Django will hold me over enough until the third installment of Kill Bill (or whatever his next film is).

Just for fun, here’s my favorite Tarantino films (the one’s he’s written/directed), in order:

1. Pulp Fiction
2. Inglourious Basterds
3. Kill Bill, Vol. 2
4. Kill Bill, Vol. 1
5. Reservoird Dogs
6. Jackie Brown
7. True Romance
8. Death Proof

Which film(s) do you like best?

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