FORMULA 51 (2001)

Formula51

Directed By: Ronny Yu
Written By: Stel Pavlou
Cinematography By: Hang-Sang Poon
Editor: David Wu

Cast: Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Carlyle, Emily Mortimer, Meatloaf, Rhys Ifans, Ade, Sean Pertwee

Elmo McElroy is a streetwise American master chemist who heads to England to sell his special new formula – a powerful, blue concoction guaranteed to take you to ‘the 51st state.’ McElroy’s new product delivers a feeling 51 times more powerful than any thrill, any pleasure, any high in history. But his plans for a quick, profitable score go comically awry when he gets stuck in Liverpool with an unlikely escort and his ex-girlfriend and becomes entangled in a bizarre web of double-dealing and double-crosses.

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THE DAY AFTER TOMMOROW (2004)

DAYAFTER

Directed & Story By: Roland Emmerich
Written By: Roland Emmerich & Jeffrey Nachmanoff
Cinematography By: Ueli Steiger
Editor: David Brenner

Cast: Jake Gylenhaal, Dennis Quaid, Dash Mihok, Emmy Rossum, Sela Ward, Jay o. Sanders, Rick Hoffman, Ian Holm, Arjay Smith, Tamlyn Tomita, Austin Nichols, Glenn Plummer, Adrian Lester, Nestor Serrano, Perry King

Jack Hall, paleoclimatologist, must make a daring trek from Washington, D.C. to New York City to reach his son, trapped in the cross-hairs of a sudden international storm which plunges the planet into a new Ice Age. Continue reading “THE DAY AFTER TOMMOROW (2004)”

THE HUNT (2020)

Directed By: Craig Zobel
Written By: Damon Lindelof & Nick Cuse
Cinematography: Darran Tiernan
Editor: Jane Rizzo

Cast: Betty Gilpin, Hilary Swank, Ethan Suplee, Emma Roberts, Ike Barinholtz, Glenn Howerton, Amy Madigan, Wayne Duvall, Sturgill Simpson, Reed Birney, Macon Blair

“Twelve strangers wake up in a clearing. They don’t know where they are — or how they got there. In the shadow of a dark internet conspiracy theory, ruthless elitists gather at a remote location to hunt humans for sport. But their master plan is about to be derailed when one of the hunted, Crystal, turns the tables on her pursuers.


This movie is full of action and a rather surprising amount of violence. Though keeps a dark sense of humor throughout and flips the script a little. 

As the victims trying to survive the hunt are more Americana types who are usually villainized on social media and the hunters are emote the liberal elites who seem to find everything somehow insulting and must be corrected. 

The film doesn’t seem to take any side but shows there are good and bad in both and this is all taken to the extreme. The second scene is great as far as setting the tone. As we see familiar actors and types of characters who we assume will be the hero and then we see some of them taken down and through the first 30 minutes, we are never quite sure who to follow, trust, or believe. 

We are kind of put into the similar mindsets of the hunted characters constantly questioning what is going on. So enough our hero or anti-hero played by Betty Gilpin who stays a badass throughout and whose character had the same kind of sarcastic swagger that most male Action heroes have. Luckily at no point does her look or attractiveness has anything to do with her survival or getting the upper hand. This is a tar making role and she handles it well.

The film is over the top violent that after a while it becomes a joke itself as well as feels ridiculous at times.

Though there is mention of minorities. The film still doesn’t have any amongst its cast which is a lost opportunity the film seems to want to avoid. As that may make the film Have to more make a decision. Though it might have also given more of a point of view. 

Hillary swank as the villain would have been more interesting seeing her in the heroic role but that might have been too expected. It’s nice to see her in movies again. I only wish she was getting bigger roles. Though her hand to hand fight with Gilpin is the third act and one of the best action sequences in the Film. 

The film never quite slows down. As when it comes to the ending it feels like barely any turn has passed. So that this film feels like a breath of fresh air. 

Directed by Craig Zobel is shocking as his films are usually more humanistic dramas and comedies. This is the first more action-oriented mainstream movie he has made and he passes with flying colors. Showing himself to be more a journeyman director. 

The fact ironies in this movie are Intentional. As showing how all of this started. This is a worst-case scenario of what it seems like is going on in the world when it comes to personal politics. This is more a satire that fits in with movies such as BATTLE ROYALE, THE PURGE, MAYHEM, and THE BELKO EXPERIMENT. Though this film not as dark in the spirit, it might more remind or be a companion piece to THE RUNNING MAN or SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST.

Grade: B-

EXTRACTION (2020)

Directed By: Sam Hargrave
Written By: Joe Russo
Based On A Story By: Joe Russo, Anthony Russo & Ande Parks
Based on the Graphic Novel “Ciudad” By: Ande Parks
Cinematography: Newton Thomas Sigel
Editor: Ruthie Aslan & Peter B. Ellis

Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Golshifteh Farahani, Adam Bessa, Rudhraksh Jaiswal

In an underworld of weapons dealers and traffickers, a young boy becomes the pawn in a war between notorious drug lords. Trapped by kidnappers inside one of the world’s most impenetrable cities, his rescue beckons the unparalleled skill of a mercenary named Tyler Rake, but Rake is a broken man with nothing to lose, harboring a death wish that makes an already deadly mission near impossible.

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HAYWIRE (2011)

Editing, Cinematography & Directed By: Steven Soderbergh
Written By: Lem Dobbs

Cast: Gina Carano, Ewan McGregor, Michael Fassbender, Channing Tatum, Bill Paxton, Michael Angarano, Michael Douglas, Antonio Banderas

Freelance covert operative Mallory Kane is hired out by her handler to various global entities to perform jobs which governments can’t authorize and heads of state would rather not know about. After a mission to rescue a hostage in Barcelona, Mallory is quickly dispatched on another mission to Dublin. When the operation goes awry and Mallory finds she has been double crossed, she needs to use all of her skills, tricks and abilities to escape an international manhunt, make it back to the United States, protect her family, and exact revenge on those that have betrayed her.

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RUSH HOUR 2 (2001)

Directed By: Brett Ratner
Written By: Ross LaManna & Jeff Nathanson
Cinematography: Matthew F. Leonetti
Editor: Mark Helfrich & Robert L. Lambert

Cast: Chris Tucker, Jackie Chan, John Lone, Zhang Ziyi, Roselyn Sanchez, Alan King, Harris Yulin, Kenneth Tsang, Maggie Q, Ernie Reyes Jr, Jeremy Piven, Saul Rubinek

It’s vacation time for Det. James Carter and he finds himself alongside Det. Lee in Hong Kong wishing for more excitement. While Carter wants to party and meet the ladies, Lee is out to track down a Triad gang lord who may be responsible for killing two men at the American Embassy. Things get complicated as the pair stumble onto a counterfeiting plot by L.A. crime boss Steven Reign and Triad Ricky Tan, an ex-cop who played a mysterious part in the death of Det. Lee’s father. Throw in a power struggle between Tan and the gorgeous but dangerous Hu Li and the boys are soon up to their necks in fist fights and life-threatening situations. A trip back to the U.S. may provide the answers about the bombing, the counterfeiting, and the true allegiance of sexy customs agent Isabella. Then again, it may turn up more excitement than Carter was looking for during his vacation.

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THE ASSIGNMENT (2016)

Directed by: Walter Hill. Written by: Walter Hill & Dennis Hamill Cinematography: James Liston. Editor: Phil Norden

Cast: Michelle Rodriguez, Sigourney Weaver, Tony Shaloub, Anthony LaPaglia, Ken Kirzinger, Caitlin Gerard, Zak Santiago, Anthony Griffith

After waking up and discovering that he has undergone gender reassignment surgery, an assassin seeks to find the doctor responsible.

In the past this films plot might have been considered high concept, but now while a kind of interesting idea. It ends up becoming more of a who cares situation. That other then it’s

Story the rest feels heavily cliched and hard hitting just to go through the motions. Where after awhile you don’t care about anything happening.

it’s a shame Michelle Rodriguez finally Seems to have found the right role. Even with a well known action director Walter Hill. As she seems to be more interested in action roles in her career and ends up usually being a supporting player. Here she has the lead role.

Though it offers her nothing new or that strong as far as material or quality.

As for the sex change her character goes through. Even before she looked like she was in. Make drag and had a supposed chiseled chest and body hair. Once she has the sex change in the movie it just looks like she shaved and grew a chest. Which makes the scene when she meets up with an old conquest who barely recognizes her all the more u intentionally funny.

It seems interesting in these films the worse punishments the main characters go through is to be forced to love life as a female. The film tries to present that as only cruel considering the character but the movie seems to have that attitude.

The film plays somber and never seems to have enough energy to keep the audience interested. As it tries to have a jazzy mood but comes off as more a typical straight to streaming thriller.

The progressions which are animated to make us beleive they are in bigger major Cities and locations seems inspired by the dvd cut of his move THE WARRIORS. Which have animated inserts during scenes.

The film Seems to want to be a frantic character price with a thriller impact but feels tone deaf. That tries to be different and wants to say something but feels so misguided

Michelle Rodriguez speaks liek she is InnA 1940’s gangster film which only shows that the film is aspiring for many things and is making no sense and not in a bar shit crazy way but in an embarrassingly bad way.

Sigourney Weaver seems to be a one not villain whose beliefs and actions seems there only because there has to be a reason for all of this and writing it off as an experiment seems so trivial.

Largely, the film s boring as when there are action sequences they go by so quick and without any excitement. Even towards the end, With such an esteemed cast one would expect better.

Grade: F

SPENSER CONFIDENTIAL (2020)

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Directed By: Peter Berg
Written By: Sean O’Keefe & Brian Helgeland
Based On Characters Created By: Robert Parker
Based On The Novel By: Ace Atkins
Cinematography: Tobias A. Schliessler
Editor: Michael L. Sale 


Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Winston Duke, Alan Arkin, Iliza Shlesinger, Michael Gaston, Marc Maron, Bokeem Woodbine, Colleen Camp, Post Malone, James Dumont 


When two Boston police officers are murdered, ex-cop Spenser teams up with his no-nonsense roommate, Hawk, to take down criminals.

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LUCKY DAY (2019)

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Written & Directed By: Roger Avary
Cinematography By: Brendan Stacey
Editor: Sylvie Landra 


Cast: Luke Bracey, Crispin Glover, Nina Dobrev, Clifton Collins Jr., Mark Dacascos, David Hewlett, Cle Bennett 


Red, a safe cracker who has just been released from prison, is trying to hold his family together as his past catches up with him in the form of Luc, a psychopathic contract killer who’s seeking revenge for the death of his brother.

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THE UNTOUCHABLES (1987)

untouchables

Directed By: Brian DePalma
Written By: David Mamet
Suggested By A Book By: Elliot Ness & Oscar Fraley
Cinematography: Stephen H Burum
Editor: Jerry Greenberg & Bill Pankow 

Cast: Kevin Costner, Robert DeNiro, Sean Connery, Andy Garcia, Charles Martin Smith, Richard Bradford, Billy Drago, Patricia Clarkson, Don Harvey, Jack Kehoe, Del Close 

During the era of Prohibition in the United States, Federal Agent Eliot Ness sets out to stop ruthless Chicago gangster Al Capone and, because of rampant corruption, assembles a small, hand-picked team to help him. Continue reading “THE UNTOUCHABLES (1987)”