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A few reviews
Tiger on the Beat (1988)
Right from the canto-pop title song (in the style of songs like 'Eye of the Tiger') you know this Chow Yun-fat action-comedy is going to be fun, in a 'Bad Boys' type of way. Unlike his other serious action-hero roles, Chow plays a fairly lackluster underachieving cop, who even p*sses his pants in an early scene when a baddie puts a gun to his head. He gets partnered with a muscle-bound overachieving cop in the Jackie Chan mold (I wouldn't be surprised if they tried to get Chan to play the part) and they get mixed up with the sister of a drug trafficker. After an hour of delightfully wacky action there is a bizarre scene where our two lighthearted comedy "heroes" decide to really violently beat her up because she won't stop crying about her dead brother. What the f*ck?! It's like we've cut to a different movie where the same two actors are playing evil b*stards and I think the scene is actually supposed to be funny?! The madcap stunt-filled car chase that happens right after is so good it almost erases what just happened from your memory. Except in the scene after that she is suddenly madly in love with Chow and cooking a celebratory double-date banquet for him, his sister and his new partner (with the scars from her beating still on her face). The last 20-minutes is a hurricane of choreographed Hong Kong action violence. It keeps ramping up the mayhem from Kung fu, guns, and guns as clubs, to shotguns, shotguns on ropes, knives, bayonets and climaxes with an insane chainsaw duel. One of the greatest things I've ever seen. If you edited out that offensive abuse scene in the middle, you'd have a real OTT comedy gem.



Lovin' this theme song:

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(04-02-2020, 05:30 PM)TM2YC Wrote: King of New York (1990)

Stone cold classic!  This is where my love of Fishburne began.  My friends and I used to watch this all the time when it first came out.
 
(04-03-2020, 04:06 PM)TM2YC Wrote: Police Story (1985)
 cars are driven down through (and I mean through!) a shanty town ]

This is the real height of the film for me, just insane.  The homage in Bad Boys II was such a sheit swipe from this, it just made me hate that movie even more for reminding me of what a true awesome action film can be.
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American Factory (2019)

Quote from the awesome Union Rep speech at the end of the trailer: 'People working hard hasn't changed...what changed in America was rich people deciding they wanted to rewrite the rules to take advantage of working people.'  Respectfully, I'd refer him to the robber barons of the 1800s... this IS the American Dream, and it's no different for Chinese entrepreneurs like Jimmy Wang, as the film shows.  Full review: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...n-factory/

The Night Comes for Us (2018)

Honestly, watching that scene will probably give you a better idea of the film than the trailer.  It's visceral, incredibly violent, sometimes doesn't make much sense.  If you're watching this after either of the Raid movies, it's bound to be a disappointment, but some of these fights are a must-see for fans of the genre.  Full review: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...es-for-us/

Altered Carbon: Resleeved (2020)

This was horrible.  I didn't like the animation style, most of the acting, the relentless tropes, and really the story was garbage.  It even contradicts events of S1 of Altered Carbon.  Full review: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...resleeved/

I also watched a few fan-edits recently.  I wrote up reviews on their respective pages, but here are longer Letterboxd reviews:
Lifeforce (1985)https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/film/lifeforce/
Batman Forever (1995)https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...n-forever/
The Dark Knight Rises (2012)https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...ght-rises/
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(04-05-2020, 10:47 PM)mnkykungfu Wrote: American Factory (2019)

Quote from the awesome Union Rep speech at the end of the trailer: 'People working hard hasn't changed...what changed in America was rich people deciding they wanted to rewrite the rules to take advantage of working people.'  Respectfully, I'd refer him to the robber barons of the 1800s... this IS the American Dream, and it's no different for Chinese entrepreneurs like Jimmy Wang, as the film shows.  Full review: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...n-factory/

I’ve been thinking about doing an American Dream triple feature: Citizen Kane, The Godfather, and There Will Be Blood.
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Ingrid Goes West (2017)
Aubrey Plaza plays disturbed stalker Ingrid, just released from an institution and beginning a new obsession with L.A. "social media influencer" Taylor, played by Elizabeth Olsen. This pitch-black comedy explores the disturbingly thin line between a relationship with a stalker who believes you're a friend and all the other thousands of online strangers with whom you share every aspect of your life, as if they are your friends. Director and co-writer Matt Spicer approaches all the characters with sympathy. So Ingrid isn't just shown as being crazy, she's lonely and does have a conscious and some self-awareness of her problems. Taylor isn't just portrayed as vacuous and self-obsessed, she can be genuinely nice and has her own personal problems. However, the movie wisely begins by showing Ingrid attacking a previous stalking victim, so there is always a dark nervous tension over the rest of the performance, even when she appears to be normal and you are tempted to like her. O'Shea Jackson Jr. is a thoroughly likeable presence as Ingrid's landlord and love interest, a harmlessly self-deluded wannabe screenwriter. Billy Magnussen's over-egged turn as Taylor's drug-addict brother was the only character that rang false. The reveal of Taylor's husband's paintings was my highlight, I really laughed when we cut to them.

NSFW trailer:

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(04-06-2020, 01:18 AM)Moe_Syzlak Wrote: I’ve been thinking about doing an American Dream triple feature: Citizen Kane, The Godfather, and There Will Be Blood.

Wow, that would be a really heavy marathon lol  Good on ya.
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Project A (1983)
This farcical Jackie Chan/Sammo Hung/Yuen Biao film is pretty much "Carry On Hong Kong". The plot is some nonsense about pirates and inter-service rivalry between the Police and the Coast Guard, most of which goes nowhere. The script doesn't even bother to introduce the main antagonist until 5-minutes before the final big showdown, it's all about the jaw-dropping stunts and furious fight scenes and there are plenty of those. Chan jousts on a bicycle, re-creates Harold Lloyd's clock-hanging stunt and he gets lots of mileage out of jokes about grenades exploding. I think this is the first Sammo Hung movie I've watched and I can see why he is popular with audiences, he's such a charismatic physical comedian.

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^The Buster Keaton tributes are strong here.  You've gotta watch the sequel to this, which is arguably better!
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The Recovered

Ever wondered what if RedLetterMedia made a serious movie? Well The Recovered answers that question and it is not very good. It's slow, dull and the only good parts are the dream sequences. There's no humor and I just bored the whole time. And it's confusing, I had almost no idea what was going on the whole time and the ending doesn't help. Oh, and it might have inspired Slender Man. 
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Five Came Back (2017)

Documentaries can sometimes seem boring, especially ones that use a lot of really old film footage.  This one does a great job painting amazing yet identifiable portraits of these five famous directors.  What puts it over the top for me is the setup of having 5 modern directors give their insight covering each of the Golden Age directors.  For film fans, it's simply a must-see.  Full review: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...back-2017/

The Red Sea Diving Resort (2019)

^Slightly spoilery behind-the-scenes look at the real people the film was based on that works as a good companion to my full review.
I try to evaluate movies for what they are, not what I wished they were or imagine them to be.  Just what the director puts on screen.  It's hard not to wish for an alternate version of this story, though: one where CIA agents run a tourist resort and have to deal with cranky guests, German tourists looking for a fling, diving instructors who keep sleeping with the housewives.  The juxtaposition between having to keep up this frivolous cover in order to do the very serious work of smuggling out refugees would make a film with a lot of emotional ups and downs.  Sadly, that is not the film we get here.  Full review: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...ng-resort/

Life Overtakes Me (2019)

Soooo... I was unaware of any controversy about this one in the US, but in Sweden (where its story is) it is HIGHLY controversial.  Essentially, what the filmmakers are representing in the above presentation is a VERY one-sided point of view.  There is a ton of investigation and debate about this, but we see absolutely no hint of that in the film.  It honestly makes it kind of hard for me to even call this a "documentary"...it could potentially be more like "reality" TV.... full review: https://letterboxd.com/nottheacademy/fil...rtakes-me/
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