lördag 21 december 2013


After the three movies about renegade cop Johan Falk, director/creator Anders Nilsson called it quits. The Third Wave was supposed to be the concluding installment in the series.

But a few years later he found inspiration for a television series about his lone wolf protagonist from the swedish headlines; There was a scandal about a secret swedish crime fighting unit using illegal means of bringing down organized crime. One of those illegal means was using a civilian as an undercover informant. An informant that actually performed various illegal activities in order to protect his cover.

This is probably nothing new in the States, but here in Sweden, organized crime is a relatively new threat and the legislation about handling them has been lagging behind the times.
The moral ambiguity of it and the insight into howstressful it would be playing an informant is part of what is interesting and fresh about the tv-series and because of it the focus shifts from Falk to the undercover informant in question,Frank Wagner played by Joel (the new RoboCop)Kinneman. Johan Falk becomes his handler and the relationship between them is central to the arc of this suspenseful series.

As this is the first entry in a new context for Falk, it introduces all of the characters relevant to the series. Falk comes back to Sweden after being stuck behind a desk at Europol in Brussels looking for some action. He is offered a job in a special unit against organized crime whose methods lies in the grey area of the law and one of them is handling civilian informants,something that is not even legal. Falk has his doubts about the methods involved throughout the series, which I think is good and also debunk a lot of the criticism that the series acts as a proponent for fascism. The series continues throughout to show how problematic such an approach would be and what effect they would have.
As I have stated in previous Falk-reviews I think the more socially relevant issues might be more interesting to scandinavians but it might also be interesting for genre fans to see familiar genre conventions operate within a different national context.  Don´t expect the spectacle of american actionfilms, but as with the other films in the series it relies heavily on realism, and the quality of the writing when it comes to the plot and character ,even though  the dialogue is just as bad as previous efforts.
There are currrently twelve feature-length episodes that cover this story-arc  and there are six more in development that is probably going to shift its focus elsewhere storywise. What path Nilsson has decided to take with these is anyones guess, I know I am excited for more.

lördag 14 december 2013


I am glad this movie exist. I never heard of the books before.These are very interesting times we live in.There is so much stuff being put out and despite the medium of Internet of advertising your product, it is still possible for good shit to slip under your radar. But moviestudios are good at one thing. Getting your attention.

There has been some moaning about the casting of Tom Cruise as Reacher, since Reacher is a gigantic,muscular and intimidating character in the novels. I can see that. The problem with adaptations from books to film is the individual visualization process of books,of how everything should look like according to people. There are a million different intepretations, which is one of the reasons books are such a great medium. but focusing on only one aspect of the books seem kind of onenote. Sure, getting the character right is important, but translating him, marketing him, making an audience aware of the character is very important as well. And without a high-profile name as Cruise I probably would not even have noticed or bothered about the books. For instance, apparantly there was an adaptation of  the first John Rain-novel. John Rain,who is that, you say? Exactly. I wouldn´t say that the movie was  directly responsible for me seeking out the books, but when I was browsing through the bookstore this summer, I noticed a large amount of them had the name Lee Child and they all seem to have kind of pulpy titles and when I saw "A Jack Reacher Thriller" I remembered the movie and the name and I knew I would perhaps be into it. So its not a bad thing at all to be able to spread the awareness of a franchise and if it takes a household name to do that, then perhaps sacrifices must be made.

Five innocent people gets seemingly randomly gunned down by a sniper.,The cops find the killer but they cannot get an confession out of him,. only the message "get Jack Reacher" and  Reacher starts . unwhillingly at first,working with  the defense lawyer Helen Rhodin to find out what really happened.


One of the problems with how the movie portays Reacher compared to the novels.The movie only shows how great Reacher is at everything. In the books his flaws are presented as well. He can´t run fast, he is a shitty driver etc. Partly because he is a big guy.The driving part is the only real flaw of the representation of the character. He is just too good a driver compared to the books.  Also the carchase is completely made up for the film. But since this movie reminds me more of a gritty realistic 70´s action tough guy movie, you´ll have no complaints from me regarding the addition of a carchase. It is just that Reacher does not drive well in the books. So by removing the more awkward aspects of Reachers character and instead  making Reacher as awesome as possible also makes him harder to distinguish from other  movie action heroes .

Then there is a real dumb selfconscious sequence where Reacher explains to  Helen and the audience about his way of life and "wouldn´t everyone want to live like me?" Reacher would never do that, but I kind of get of what they were trying to do; since this is the first in a possible movie franchise, getting the idea across about what Jack Reacher is about to non-readers. I did not like it though.

The plot behind the shootings is reminiscent of similar tactics by the killer in a previous Reacher-novel: The Visitor. Hiding in plain sight. Disguising the true motives and  their target but instead of making it look like a serial killer it is made to look like the irrational work of a massmurderer going rampage.

The movie deals with the exposition parts quite good´. The books are very plot-heavy, usually filled with scenes with people sitting in a room explaining the plot, but McQuarrie has found a way to make it visually more interesting. The script of the movie also does a good job of streamlining the plot by removing a lot of fat from the book, characters and plots being reshaped to fit better into a sleek two hour action spectacle.It might annoy readers familiar with the book. But the plot feels as result a bit tighter and a lot of elements are condensed really well, like the Zec character and were he came from. And as a whole the movie is a successful adaptation. It is not  entirely true to the book but should be seen as  natural. After all it´s about catering to  a contemporary cinema goers sensiblities, making them more aware and interested in the character and hopefully get to read the books. I hope so.

UPDATE:  I reviewed the very first Reacher book on another blog:

lördag 7 december 2013


I kind of like the title revengeance, because it is about time Carpenters neglected sequel came to a forefront. It is a satirical commentary on not only totalitarian bullshit but  Carpenter also explores a multicultural , eclectic and really goofy  Los Angeles.  In  Escape From New York you were met with a cold hostile environment. Los Angeles is much more vibrant but in a way more dangerous. I have yet to visit these cities, is it actually true? New York being a colder, but safer place and L.A being diverse and energetic but dangerous at the same time? I probably shouldn´t pass judgment until I experience them for myself.

Making the president much more of a biblical lunatic, might also be something Carpenter was seriously afraid of happening. That the most fanatic fringe of the republicans would get total power and this is the result of it. The whole cold war aspect is gone. It used to be cold fascism and inhuman solutions in the old movie, but now madness without a particular enemy (except domestic "moral" decay) has taken power and all bets are off. The president is crazy!

The plot is basically the same, but I feel the context has shifted. The religious aspect of this totalitarianism is really creeping me out. Cliff Robertson  as an eerily prophetic parody of George W Bush, where this character is motivating his decisions using the Bible. The crazy fuck is  even willing to sacrifice his own (admittedly blue-eyed and stupid) daughter and would not  bullshit about it. He even has a mobile electric chair to execute her on spot!. Jesus,you bastard. You really think Jesus would have signed up for this ,you cooky religious fucker?

Then we have the prison that is L.A. There are some likable characters here. Carpenter uses the token hippie (Peter Fonda) and the celebrity chasing coat-turning Map to the Stars Eddie(Steve Buscemi). Eddie is the typical career chasing idiot who only serves whoever is in charge of the moment. Sounds like some bitter as shit critique of Hollywood from Carpenters side.  Fondas character is a lot more sympathetic. He is more an outsider like Snake and Snake has also easier to band with  him as a result. 

Then we have George Corraface as the Che Guevara looking motherfucker Cuervo Jones who is driving around in the most pimpest dollheadwearing car that I have ever seen. I am sorry , Duke Of New York ( A Number One), but your lanterns on your car is shit compared to this pimpmobile. He also has these  deadly Thunderdome- esque  events that are so enjoyable in these post apocalyptic movies. At least he is a great dictator, like some Roman ones, knowing how to quell a rebellion. Giving them bloodthirst to calm the masses. Not bad thinking,hombre.

And then we have , Bruce Campbell as the Evil Plastic Surgeon. What a great character in a really creepy scene where fakeness rules. It is a disturbing satire on the obsession of human perfection that is part of the Hollywood myth and a great scene depicting just that.

It feels like I am just scratching the surface on this movie, but it must have been some sort of an angry way of telling what a hard time Carpenter has had making movies in America but in Europe he always seems to have enjoyed greater critical acclaim. Hollywood  is here being portrayed as an exclusive kind of world,in the shape of  a prison from the outside and where Snake (Carpenters alter ego) is neither a caught in the Hollywood hype, nor is he a puppet for the government. He is despised by both worlds and as a result he terminates the world.  Snake as a character motivates that "change only leed to the same thing" or something like that, which probably means that no matter who is in charge it will always stays the same. A very cynical world view, but also a movie that feels truthful to that view. Then the world shuts down and now perhaps Carpenter (Snake) can shape a new future. John Carpenter,please come back. We need you. We need your revolution.

tisdag 3 december 2013


Whereas Executive Protection dealt with the possibility of foreign mafias operating and penetrating Swedish borders, The Third Wave is much more high concept. The tagline for the film is "A continent is about to be stolen" pretty much sums it up. Apparently the term  Third Wave itself refers to the possiblility of how fascism can arise (democracy takes pride in individualism, but is harmful for the common good is an argument) and part of that is integrated in the third Johan Falk story.

Johan Falk has retired. He has this great bad ass monologue about how he does not believe in the democratic justice sytem anymore and intend to build a heavily fortified home for his family and the first asshole to come through will be shot on sight. Here we see a different Falk at work. Already he operated out of the system in the second film, but he did contact the police at the end. Here he seems much more disconnected from the system, it is almost postapocalyptic so. He is not concerned of how organised crime slowely infiltrate the european community, slowely corrupting the system until a personal death affects him. Then shit is on and he is hunting down the people behind it and in the process a huge cogwheel in european organised crime.

The villain this time should be recognised by an international audience. It is the same guy who played Göring in Inglorious Basterds : Sylvester Grothe. to be honest though, he is just a henchman to the powers that be, the suits. But he is still great and sleazy.

Shit is going down in Europe and Falk has to save the day
As previous review, I do not want to spoil the plot, it is much more international in scope, has a bigger international cast and a heavilier use of english dialogue. Unfortunately one of the films biggest gripes I have with it is just the english dialogue. Why could not the british actors  complain about some of the most obvious mistranslatings and point it out to the director and rectify it? Very poor indeed and it is just too bad that an otherwise narratively and such cinematic strong thriller would hinder at poor dialogue.

Otherwise it is very interesting how the series has progressed from an fantastically swedishly imagined copthriller to a more broad international thriller with higher stakes, I think this is where the creator Anders Nilssson intended the series to end, but then real  things happened in Swqeden and  more films were to come.

I have yet to spoken about the soundtrack to these fil,ms, but Bengt Nilsson is the genius behind them and are available on Spotify. They contribute so much to the films you need to acknowledge its presence:

Bengt Nilsson

torsdag 21 november 2013


Executive Protection is the second movie in the serie about renegade cop Johan Falk and it is also the first in the series  broadening the scope of the story by integrating the threat of foreign organized crime trying to get a foothold in Sweden. Who else is better to deal with the threat than lone wolf Falk?

Johan Falk has been suspended from the police force after the events from Zero Tolerance and he is being contacted by an old friend of his; Sven Persson (Samuel Fröler) who is being extorted by a foreign mafia. The downsized Swedish police force is stretched to thin to actually help out so Falk gets them in touch with  a private security firm, I guess the ronin or the gunfighters of  Seven Samurai or The Magnificent Seven, since this movie seem to owe a big part of the story to Kurosawa and/or Sturges movie. These are basically hired guns who is hired to protect them from the outlaws trying to squeeze them dry, much like the roaming villains of aforementioned flicks.They  then proceed to secure Persson´s house with surveillance equipment and reinforced windows and doors to try to fend off the threat. 

Falk is ready to take on villainous foreign mobsters.

What is particular great about this movie is how it sets up the stakes, the plot is so straightforward and tight, 
there is basically not one dull moment and it is tense throughout. Compared to most swedish thrillers this is perhaps the most american, but the settings and the themes or motifs are so Swedish, like the first movie that it makes it kinda unique. There are some very clever use of sounddesign at the climax. I am not gonna spoil anything, but this is one helluva actionpicture. Where american movies excell at the sheer spectacle of the action, with explosions, where Sweden cannot compete in terms of resources, Nilsson uses the plot,story and characters to  much more extent than American actionfilmmakers and in that sense the action becomes much more involving. Executive Protection is a great example of how an international cinema with little money can create action that may not be spectacular in itself, but assimilated into the story.
There are some poor english-speaking dialogue, but that hopefully does not distract from this otherwise fine slice of genre film for anyone who appreciate actionfilms. Also, there are some generic plot devices in use here, but I find them to be used to great suspenseful advantage.

Here is the haunting opening theme to the movie. It is fucking awesome and unusual:

As I mentioned in teh first review; here is an Amazon-link of getting the first three Falk-movies on Region 1:

söndag 17 november 2013


Swedish action-cinema has been a pretty obscure little genre. Action has always been looked down upon by so called "cinephiles" and critics. Whenever an action picture has been made, it was usually an attempt to copy american actionmovies in all its excesses  without attempting to add a local Swedish contemporary flavor to it. No wonder it has been laughed at, the attempts have been abysmal at best and embarrassing at worst, until Anders Nilsson´s Zero Tolerance was released.Now the laughing has stopped.

Ironically, Nilsson was tutored by the Swedish exploitation filmmaker Mats Helge Olsson (The Ninja Mission) who put out the most generic (but still fun) "americanized" actionpictures that was laughed at.
Nilsson learned the craft by directing dozens of ninjapictures which led up to his first mainstream film, which he co-wrote with Joakim Hansson.

Zero Tolerance focuses on ex military  Johan Falk,detective in the Gothenburg police force , a lone wolf who has some cooperation-issues with fellow officers, a typical cop action movie convention.
Like many great cop action pictures, it takes place during Christmastime (Die Hard, Lethal Weapon) and Falk (Jakob Eklund) stumbles upon a robbery, pursues the suspect which leads to a shootout leaving an innocent bystander victim for a stray bullet from the movie´s antagonist Leo Gaut (Peter Andersson). Three witnesses saw the whole incident and now Gaut is wanted for murder. However, Gaut uses an informant within the police to get the names and adresses from the victims to threaten them from testyfying, leaving the witnesses between a rock and a hard place, since inSweden, a person is by law forced to witness or jailtime might be the consequence.

Johan Falk in action

The witnesses refuse to point out Gaut, leaving Falk to take measures into his own hands, but soon he is framed for assaulting Gaut and Falk himself becomes a wanted man and alone need to find evidence of his innocence as well as going after Gaut.

Gaut is an intimidating villain. Great performance by Peter Andersson

What makes Zero Tolerance so exciting is that as a genre piece grounds itself in a Swedish reality. The action is akin to Swedish film making sensibilities, unlike previous efforts. It is highly realistic and serves the plot of the film. Reminding you of great 70´s pictures like Bullitt or The French Connection. It might not be spectacular in terms of staging, but the suspense of the movie makes them thrilling to watch. Nilsson also exhibits a great sense of cinema by giving the audience visual cues or clues of what is going on in the story below the surface.

Falk is a great mythic hero with a troubled past. He shares some similarities with Lethal Weapon´s Martin Riggs with his background, where his one true love getting killed in a carcrash. Howevere, Riggs wife was murdered, we never find out the circumstances of this tragic event that shaped Falk´s personality into the shutoff lone wolf he is, shutting everyone out.

Zero Tolerance is the first in a long line of Johan Falk adventures. There were two also theatrically released sequels as well as an ongoing feature-length television series that consists of twelve (!) movies. I intend to review all of them, since these movies really need an international audience. While the themes might play better with a nordic or swedish audience, the mythic qualities of the hero and the story should appeal to a broader audience.

Zero Tolerance is available to purchase as part of a Johan Falk trilogy boxset (Region 1) here:

The soundtrack to this series by Bengt Nilsson is incredible.


onsdag 5 juni 2013


I am a huge Walter Hill fan. Creator of legendary tough guy movies such as Extreme Prejudice,48 Hours, Southern Comfort and Last Man Standing.

This movie plays more into the buddyaction-genre of Hills previous efforts as 48 Hours and Red Heat, but with less emphasis on laughs and more on grit and hardedged violence.
At first I was a bit disappointed ,since the leads (Sly and Sung Kang) are both each others complete opposites, usually the outcome is some sort of enjoyable banter  between them.I don´t think that worked if it was ever meant to. The dialogue is terrible.  Perhaps I am a bit Shane Blacked by now. And by that I mean,I expect witty comebacks and one-liners out of the movie´s ass Lethal Weapon or The Last Boyscout-style.

But I realized, I liked it more than I thought I did after my watch. Shit I did not like at first was the cheap look of it, the terrible camerawork at some of the action and the whole feel of it was straight-to-dvd. But it felt gritty, unremorseful and unapologizing as a pulpy lowbrow 90-minute  b-movie. And for that it was good.

I think my expectations were a bit off the mark.when popping this motherfucker in my dvd-player. Sly has come of some seriously over the top actioners of recent and then going back for something more intimate was a bit of a change.I liked that it has pretty much the feel of a Walter Hill movie. It is macho as hell and violent as shit, but not too fancy. I would not expect large CGI-scenes in a Hill-actioner. He is about  old school action, about the characters sense of honor which they will not bend and that is why they collide and makes them special and fun to watch.

It was not one of Walter Hills greatest, but I welcome the grandfather of gritty action-movies back to the scene. We need you!

måndag 3 juni 2013


I was just recently converted to the juggernaut franchise that is The Fast and The Furious  and going into the theatre on a high after witnessing Fast5 for the first time ever on bluray.
Previously I dismissed the franchise as an empty excuse to showing cars and female bootys with sweat running down their legs (and possibly James Spaders cum).

Now I am convinced that the 1970´s carmovie action craze is back in style for real. I just did not get it until now. I am a slow learner. I never noticed the the stoic motifs in the previous ones until it was shouted at me with a blowhorn in the fifth installment. I feel so stupid. But there might be more than that behind this blockbuster.

The motifs of honor,brotherhood,friendship and family. A set of traditional principles and values lacking in cinema today and apparently in society as well. Call me oldfashioned, but shit like that is important. Not the paygrade you get after sucking someones dick in a closet, but the respect of friends,family and the responsibliity by owing up to whatever debt you have.  I am regrettably aware of  myself  being guilty to some of these sins, it is painfully clear to me. So it is kind of nice (and scary) to see people bringing in some of the traditional values into the douchebagcentury of alltime to enlighten us about the importance of having a set of morals.

The plot is spectacularly dumb and retarded, which may come across as a contradiction to what I said previously. And it is. And that is what makes it great. The juxtaposition of stupidity and sincerity. The ambivalence behind it  might actually work to make people to start thinking about what makes these movies so phenomanally successfull. The last two installments has been HUGE hits and instead of being a douchenozzle about it being unrealistic, you might wanna start thinking about what makes them tick amongst audiences. because if you think it is all about blowing shit up ( which is great! Contradiction alert!) you might start thinking about your own set of morals. I know I have.

torsdag 30 maj 2013


If you want your franchise or genre to grow it is important to make people think about the  what makes it work . UNISOL:DAY OF RECKONING is such a movie.Part action, part existentialism, part David Lynch and part Cronenberg .That is one helluva movie. One thing it is not and that is a  singularminded straightup action extravaganze. It´s more than that.

Some people dismiss this movie as just garbage, because it does not fit in within their own perception of what an actionmovie should be. Either they think it is boring or that the movie is "pseudo-intelligent". it has not enough action and it fails being smart. The low rating the movie earned on IMDB just proves the flaws of that website.

It is not a movie for a bunch of friends to watch on friday night,ordering pizza,drinking beer and having a laugh. You need to commit. And actionmovies usually does not require that and perhaps that is why it could be easily dismissed. For real  actionfans the admiration and appreciation of the movie sure enough are genuine. But it seems like it is just the actionsequences that get the praise, it´s little else.

It all began with the previous installment,REGENERATION. At the end of the movie the military injected Deveraux  with  double doage (of whtever it was) since they were desperate to stop the bomb at the nuclear plant. it wassaid they would not be able to control him afterwards  and sure as shit the shortsightedness of the U.S military  comes to fruition. He went rogue and when we get to DAY OF RECKONING Deveraux has built a guerilla resistance consisting of other UniSols he managed to reprogram to fit his own purpose.

The existentialistic motifs were also planted in REGENERATION with Dolphs character going off the rails,breaking programming, because of his identity crisis. By killing his creator who did not give Andrew Scott an answer to his existance, Scott decides to activate the bomb and in that process  trying to end his own cycle of returning as another clone. The "Waiting for Godot" kind of eternal spiral,waiting for someone to give you a sense of purpose. This

The whole identity crisis gets blown up into a fullgrown theme in DAY OF RECKONING.
Adkins character goes on this journey of selfdiscovery and has the opportunity to cleanse himself of the terrible memories of watching his supposed family to be brutally murdered, but he chooses to keep the memories, because even if they are not real, the memories fills him with a  purpose in life. An identity-defining moment not to become a puppet for neither side,not the state or Deveraux.  

Deveraux is a strange antagonist. Why does John (Adkins) want to kill Deveraux?What threat  do Deveraux present to the protagonist? The reason is because Deveraux is an obstacle to the path for our hero to gain an identity or a purpose in life.The moment John accept that the memories are his own and believes them ,even if they are fake, John feel the need to take revenge on Deveraux to make the memories real. By killing Deveraux, he makes the memories legit. He chooses to believe the memories are real, because it defines him as a person. And Deveraux  at the end is allowing John his identity by submitting at the end.  What kind of bad guy in an actionmovie does that?

That is a pretty cool revenge-angle.Who the real enemy to John is vague to say the least. You could also say the REAL enemy is the government who actually brainwash John with these memories for their own purposes to assassinate the rogue UniSols and in particular Deveraux.

It is not a simple question of good vs evil as the protagonist versus antagonist aspect of actionmovies usually are.  That is what is so subversive about the movie. And I love it for that!

onsdag 29 maj 2013


If THE EXPENDABLES franchise is going to be able to get past the nostalgia factor surrounding it, it could probably be a good idea for Sly to actually utilize the recent or upcoming actionstars to their fullest potential, instead of casting them in pointless fillout-roles as he previously have done.

Seriously,who remember the great Gary Daniels from the first one? I had to watch the movie three times to actually notice him. Scott Adkins fared better in the sequel, the confrontation with Statham was a bit on the short side, but apparently they had very little time to shoot that scene so it did end up quite good considering.

THE EXPENDABLES cannot rely on the old guys forever. What I like about the franchise is that it takes the larger-than-life old school DIRTY DOZEN approach with a bunch of wellknown weathered badasses on an impossible mission. With bringing on new people with each installment they become known to the public and after awhile considered just as much as veterans as the Sly,Dolphs or Stathams of the current bunch of legendary mercenaries.

Just don´t cast people like Liam Hemsworth. I liked him in EX2, but he is not one dedicated to action, for him it is just a springboard to "better films", so stick with guys known for their dedication and loyalty to the genre. The physicality of doing action requires certain individuals with a certain mindset. It cannot be about career-egos, or else the genre will most certainly die. A guy like Darren Shahlavi could really boost a franchise with his skills. He has a villain face like no other and can perform the shit out of a movie. Watch BLOODMOON or TAI CHI BOXER to see him at his best. He is chewing up the  scenery,spitting it out and roundhouse kick it to the dumpster and walks away.

We  also have guys like Cung Le from DRAGON EYES, Andrei "Pitbull" Arlovsky  from the UniSol-franchise, Thailands wonderboy Tony Jaa or  THE RAIDs Iko Uwais and Yayan "Mad Dog"  Ruhian. If  these peole can get more iconic performances it can inspire other people to take up the reign just like Bruce Lee or Jackie Chan inspired aforementioned acrobats.

There is absolutely no reason to stick with the metafictive,tongue-in-cheek postmodern references in a franchise when you have plenty of people battling to take a prestigous place among gods of action. It will only lead to stagnation hanging on to the past.

Action does not need to die, it just need people to inspire further.


I never thought I was going to say this, but I have fast become a furious believer of this actionpacked franchise. The themes of badassness marks this installment for the very first time in a big way. They jhave always been there, but the code of honor or the strong sense of family outside the society is more prevalent here.

In fact what I like is the idea that a family can exist outside the norm of the society. it doesn´t necessarily means two kids,a wife and a goddamn mortgage that are the kind of spoonfed thoughtpatterns of family system that  society relies on.Sure they are a gangster family with the usual movie-motifs of brotherhood and honor, but you don´t see much of that in movies anymore. I´d say that as far ass badassery goes, it blows THE EXPENDABLE-franchise out of the water in many ways.

Its a much better and genuine film  because it does not rely on nostalgia and also much more sincere in its testosterone-induced manliness. THE EXPENDABLES is kind of the equivalent of a coverband playing other peoples classic songs, because thats what the audience wants.They want the nostalgia, they want to hear the one-liners or the guitarriffs or whatever that they grew up with. They don´t want to hear the coverbands own tunes or what they can bring to the music. They are stuck in nostalgia and will eventually fade away, because eventually there is noone left who wants  to hear them.

FAST FIVE has of course a history, but it is a franchise not afraid to alienate fans of the original by going its own way. It´s a movie that decided to focus more on the heist aspects of the franchise , the stoic aspects of the characters and removing the nauseating streetracing from the previous installmenst which ,quite frankly, stunk. Now they have actually made a movie that has a lot of the elements I like to see in a big summer blockbuster and with a climax that surpasses anything seen earlier in the movie. The kind of action progression throughout the piece that most movies lack these days.With each action sequence the better and more spectacular they become.  A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD had the most spectacular scene at the beginning of the movie and the rest of the movie could not live up to it, doing the movie a terrible disservice in that way.

To sum it up. The future of action has to do with the execution, not being to dug in to the past. Nostalgia is a fleeting thing. But a good film lives forever.

måndag 27 maj 2013

DREDD (2012)

When most people think of Judge Dredd, it is because of the Stallone actioner from 1995 and not the very funny comic book sci-fi satire from british publisher 2000AD.I´m not sure if people would have though if not the interest of making fun of "cheesy" movies had caught  on the Interweb and getting some late undeserved recognition that way.If not,I still think that movie hurt the possibility of further ,more proper,installments in a series that never have gotten a chance to break into a real franchise. It was a big budgeted studiomovie that fell victim of the system.This is independantly produced.

This movie is far from "cheesy", it´s a gritty cop-actionmovie. The science fiction setting could easily have been substituted for perhaps a bordertown in the old West or a regular apartment complex with some slight adjustments. It is RIO BRAVO and ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13 in one.

Dredd is being told to evaluate a rookie-judge, also a mutant with psychic abilities by the name of Anderson and her first day on the job. Which is a real shitty day,being trapped inside an apartment complex ruled by druglord and bitchqueen Ma-Ma played by Game of Thrones´ Lena Headey. For Dredd it´s just another day in the deepend. Think THE RAID and you get the picture. If you still don´t get it,google it. It´ll help.

I reminds me of a lot of 80´s-90´s copactionmovies where  a more seasoned veteran is forced to work alongside a partner despite reluctance. The twist here is that Dredd is not the individual action hero prototype that likes to "bend the law" " or "trust his own instincts" over factual evidence. He is a strict lawman and order is needed in a post-apocalyptic world where the city is just a few steps away from anarchy.

There are plenty of things to like about this particular copmovie. For one, it´s not holding back on the grisly deaths. See, there is this drug in the movie called slo-mo and here is a picture of a severe sideeffect by taking it:
The sideeffect: getting a cool death.

It is a very stylish addition and makes for some fantastic looking shots in the slow mo shootout. The cinematography is great throughout the picture  with a lot of vibrant colours that´s usually lacking in most movies today. A lot of other cool setpieces are in this besides the druginduced shootout. Shit like this:
A "bright boy" failing to comply Dredd.
Also,some other severe headinjuries, including exploding heads and..well. I am not going to spoil all the gory details of this fine piece of adapted fiction.

What I like about this new interpretation of a culturally important piece of art is that they bring back the original comicbook concept of Dredd. The judge, jury and executioner part in the comics was dropped early on and the  Dredd in the comicbooks I have read have not condemned perps to death and executed them on the spot, but here he does.

In fact the Megacity One is being portrayed as a city on the verge on collapse and that justifies the harshness of the judicial system and after watching this talking motion picture (in full color,not available in black and white) I can understand the need of bringing order.How the hell they are going to fix a social system with an unemployment rate of 97%  however is beyond me.

In the comics with its insane logic they explain that people grow up with the very notion they will be unemployed, its part of the elementary  education system where kids are being taught that they have no future and should pick up a hobby of some sorts so they don´t go insane. Personally I don´t think a hobby is the solution.Collecting stamps  or solving crossword puzzles are not existential solutions,I think. Then again, the suicidal rate of Megacity One is unsurprisingly astronomical. In one issue they describe this "sunday night fever" where unemployed people  every sunday go on mass-suicides like lemmings. A ridiculous and fantastic piece of comicbookery, Judge Dredd is.

Pro Tip: Read the comics, watch this movie and forget about the Stallone-version. 

tisdag 14 maj 2013

Mission Objective:

This is my new blog dealing with actioncinema,all kinds of actionsploitation and all things badass in cinema. From Clint Eastwood to Jason Statham and Tony Jaa. Why? Because action is the most important artform ever. Its language is international and can be crossculturally adapted. A roundhousekick is still a roundhousekick no matter what language. Everyone can understand the awesome power of a good kick to the head or the burning sensation of a third degree burn from a bigass explosion.No misundertandings or translation errors. It just hurts as hell.

I also try my best to be a good writer and not go on any self-indulgent nerd-rampages regarding shit I don´t like. I aim to rise above that. That´s my personal goal with this blog.

I´m not always going to be posting reviews of movies I love, but try to discuss the pros and cons of the individual flicks I look at. English is not my first language so bear with me if  my grammar is not perfect.

I previously wrote on another blog:The Cinemashitter. But, please do not visit it. It´s pretty crappy and could possibly hurt your eyesight by reading some of the reviews there.Not recommended. Eyesight is pretty important. I might repost a few reviews, to see if I have grown as a writer or still  stuck in my old ways of writing shit.  Speaking of shit, my first step on my agenda was removing that very word  in the title of my new blog. At least one improvement. I can´t promise the word won´t appear in my reviews, though. I don´t like to limit my vocabulary.

I´m not sure the title makes any sense, but it sounds action-ey enough and gives an idea about what kind of movies I will be covering. The posting of reviews might be on a unregular basis and take some time to write because I like to do stuff as good as I can before I show them to global actionfans.So no reviews every day, perhaps once a week.

Please give me feedback at how the blog looks and how I can improve it. I consider it,like my writing, a work in progress. 

Stay tuned!