For this week's Unsung Anniversaries, we go with a pretty deep cut to celebrate the 25th anniversary of American Ninja 3: Blood Hunt, and in the process talk a little bit about the history of 1980s movie making powerhouse Cannon Films, what happens when a franchise has to recast its lead, and why the film has two standout performances from cult acting icons that almost make it worth watching.
Alarmingly misguided, horribly directed, astoundingly racist, and insanely incomprehensible, the McG/Luc Besson/Kevin Costner team-up 3 Days to Kill best's last week's previous low water mark set by Winter's Tale as the worst major studio release of 2013 so far, leading us further down one of the worst starts to any year in film history.
It would be easy to pithily dismiss a documentary like Tim’s Vermeer, the feature directorial debut of Teller from noted magician and pundit duo Penn and Teller, as something akin of a Mythbusters-styled lark, or even worse as a filming of a forgery. But as with the great work of art the film’s protagonist is trying to understand, there’s a far deeper meaning on scientific, emotional, and artistic levels coming into play.
Dark, twisted, and emotionally disturbed in ways almost too delightful and clever to spoil, the coal black comedy Cheap Thrills certainly lives up to its name and then some thanks to clever writing and solid performances.
The dull, repetitive, student film feelng, and drab looking AKP: Job 27 certainly wears its influences on its sleeve, but it’s the perfect example of someone who can show a fundamental understanding of the filming techniques of vastly better iconic filmmakers while missing the point entirely of how they can connect to an audience or tell a story.
We review the one new film at The Bloor this week, a look inside the US Federal Reserve in Money for Nothing, and look ahead to a slew of events over the next two weeks, including return engagements of all of this years Oscar nominated documentary features, the Oscars themselves, several returning series, and an appearance from famed stand-up comedy icon Paul Mooney.
Part Titanic styled doomed romance, part Gladiator styled revenge flick, and part late 90s volcano disaster film, Paul W.S. Anderson’s liberally not-ripped-from-the-history-books take on the destruction of the Italian city of Pompeii in 72 A.D. is clichéd to the hilt and unabashedly cornball, but you can’t say it isn’t hitting all of the high notes perfectly.
While time will only tell if Hayao Miyazaki’s latest film, the World War II era period piece The Wind Rises, will be the animation auteur’s final feature, if it turns out to be true he’s certainly ending his career on a high note.
Blending interviews, archival news footage, animation, and staged recreations, Fly Colt Fly look at one of the biggest folk hero criminals in American history does a fine job explaining how one teenager who posed a concern to many could become an icon to others.
While essentially nothing more than a made for TV puff piece designed to make its main subject look as human as possible while participating in one of the world’s greatest bloodsports, Takedown: The DNA of GSP looks at Montreal Mixed Martial Arts maven Georges St-Pierre in an entertaining and informative light.