Showing posts with label james hong. Show all posts
Showing posts with label james hong. Show all posts

16 December 2013

Blu-Ray Review - Big Trouble In Little China (1986)

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Genre:
Fantasy, adventure, comedy
Distributor:
Arrow Video
Rating:
12
BD Release Date:
16th December 2013
Director:
John Carpenter
Cast:
Kurt Russell, Kim Cattrall, Dennis Dun, James hong
Buy Big Trouble In Little China: Steelbook Blu-ray or Blu-ray [Amazon]

Big Trouble in Little China was made John Carpenter when some Hollywood success had came his way with Christine and Starman. Carpenter had redeemed himself in the eyes of Hollywood after the financial disaster of the now acknowledged modern classic The Thing. Carpenter was allowed to make the mad cap Big Trouble and in many ways he paid for it. It was dumbed by the studio in question 20th Century Fox and was a flop but as usual with Carpenter has became something of a cult classic in the following years.

Big Trouble stars Carpenter’s alter ego Kurt Russell as Jack Burton, a sort of an absurdist John Wayne type character. He meets old friend Wang and wins a card match against him. Wang doesn’t have the money and needs to pick him his fiancĂ©e from the airport but she is kidnapped for her green eyes and is selected to be a Chinese sorcerer David Lo Pan who is over thousand years old. They must rescue her before it’s too late.

It’s one of Carpenter’s most bizarre films, which is partly due to W. D. Richter’s re-write who was the director of the equally madcap The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. It was originally a western set in 1880s but Richter totally rewrote it only using the original idea of the sorcerer. It’s just truly ridiculous from the beginning to the end and that’s a lot of the appeal. It’s not trying to be serious and knows it’s stupid and ridiculous but that’s what appealed to Russell and Carpenter in the first place.

It’s a really fun film but John Carpenter would follow it with his anarchist masterpiece They Live! which becomes more and more relevant as the years pass. Kurt Russell gives a very fine almost screwball comedy esq. performance in the vein of Cary Grant in Howard Hawks’ films. The real star however is Dennis Dun as Wang who carries the film.

As usual with Arrow Video it boosts a fantastic transfer along with new interviews with Carpenter, Russell along with the cinematographer, producer Larry Franco and even a stuntman. It also includes the commentary, vintage featurette, deleted scenes and music video that were on the previous release.

★★★★

Ian Schultz


30 May 2013

Step Into The Cult Arena With Arrow Video This June With The Vineyard

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Arrow Video is pleased to confirm that James Hong's intoxicating cult-horror classic The Vineyard will be released on DVD on Monday 10th June via their ArrowDrome imprint.

We’ve all heard that wine has its health benefits. But what if it could help prolong your life… indefinitely?!

Crackpot scientist and celebrated winemaker Dr. Elson Po has made the ultimate discovery: the secret to everlasting life. As with all good things, however, there’s an inevitable downside; and a bunch of good-looking and horny youngsters, invited to Dr Po’s island under the premise of an "audition", are about to find out the hard way. As the vineyard starts to give up its dark secrets, these doomed teens will have to contend not only with Dr. Po and his kung-fu fighting henchmen but also with a rotting gang of marauding zombies!

A startlingly tongue-in-cheek mix of action, body-horror and undead terror, The Vineyard comes courtesy of writer/director/actor James Hong – character actor extraordinaire and star of such genre favourites as Big Trouble in Little China and Blade Runner.

Hailed as "the man of a thousand faces", James Hong is one of the world’s best loved Asian-American actors and cult stars. He is also, arguably, the most prolific. In an illustrious acting career spanning 50+ years, he has starred in over 450 film, television and video game roles and, at the tender age of 84, he shows no sign of stopping just yet.

Originally hitting the silver screen back in 1989, The Vineyard has aged gracefully, only now maturing into the bona-fide cult snifter that warrants the ArrowDrome treatment.

The newly re-vamped DVD release of The Vineyard comes complete with brand new artwork, a collector’s booklet featuring writing on the film by Calum Wadell, and the original theatrical trailer.



Pre-order Buy:The Vineyard [DVD]