Welcome back to our “Retro Reviews” column, where we explore both the movies you know and love, as well as the oft overlooked gems you should be spending more time with. Our seventh entry is John Woo’s operatic Hollywood bullet ballet, Face/Off (1997)…
When John Woo was five years old, his family fled from the civil war occurring in Guangzhou, opting to put down roots in a rough Hong Kong neighborhood. As he grew, Woo was recruited by the local gangs, his refusal of their invitations to join earning him numerous beat downs in the alleys of the Shek Kimp Mei slums. Hoping for escape, Woo often found refuge from the violence in two different arenas: the Christian church and the local movie houses. Both helped him develop an unshakable moral code, as the director is quick to cite the unflinching spirit of brotherhood found in Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid as easily as any passage in the Bible.
Throughout his career, spiritual and secular imagery amalgamated as he crafted numerous staples of Hong Kong action cinema (A Better Tomorrow I & II, The Killer, Hard Boiled), in which he often pitted two brothers-in-arms against the world, guns drawn and blazing (just like Butch & Sundance). All the while, he set his stories in the underworld he rejected as a boy, often seemingly attempting to understand the souls of the bad men who endeavored to corrupt his ethical fabric. But it wouldn’t be until he reached American soil and helmed his third Hollywood feature that he’d perfectly combine his fully ingrained interests with his search for identification in a childhood enemy. In many ways, Face/Off not only acts as the perfect culmination of Woo’s career up until that point, but also as the final masterwork in a long, celebrated filmography. (more…)
This week on the podcast: Sarah Moran stops by to help out with the Fall Movie Preview and the guys and Sarah discuss the syphilitic porn industry, Mermaid enhancement, Travolta The Toxic Avenger, and Superman and Wonder Woman getting naughty.
Also on the show: Jason, Jeremy, and Sarah discuss the drunken debauchery that goes on at Dragon Con (which she’ll be attending), the ridiculousness of the Doctor Who release date indecision, and the Royal Canadian White Trash Rock and Roll Wedding of Ramen Noodle Hair Guy and the Sk8Tr Grrl.
Then in DIRTY NERDY CONFESSIONS: Jason and Jeremy totally mail it in but Sarah saves the day by revealing that she once wrote… well you’ll just have to press play to find out, but it’s good and the hunt is on to find it so she can come back and read an excerpt.
Programming Note: Wanna be on the special Ask The Bastards episode? Email us! your questions or (even better) a recording of you asking your question and we just may use it on the show!
In the year of 1984, a small alternative film company by the name of Troma brought into existence one of the most ridiculous and enduring super heroes the world has ever seen. His name was The Toxic Avenger (no relation to Marvel’s Avengers) and the campy character was such a hit that he managed to stick around for more than 15 years, appearing in five movies, a comic book series and even his own cartoon. Now, someone is looking to remake the film. What’s even stranger, however, is that the rumor mill is claiming John Travolta is interested in joining the cast.
Being as how the main character is supposed to be just a bit younger than the 58-year-old Travolta, it’s likely that if the rumor is true he would be in some sort of supporting role as opposed to the lead. The original film wasn’t exactly known for its high production value or quality, but the producers approaching the project say they want to steer away from the camp that made the film such a cult classic in the first place, instead choosing to concentrate on a PG-13 action-comedy with an environmental theme to it.
Well, it may not end up being the most anticipated upcoming film, but if Travolta jumps on board, it could at least bring some people into the theaters. And hey, Travolta has starred in odder films over the years and is no stranger to being in very bad ones (Battlefield Earth comes to mind…). A Toxic Avenger remake might be right up his alley.
So, gentle Nerdreaders, is it really worth trying to take the horror and camp out of ol’ Toxie and remarket it for the casual movie-goer? Or are we looking at a big pile of shit waiting to hit the fan?
In commemoration of Quentin Tarantino’s 49th birthday yesterday, we bring to you a special “How it Should’ve Ended” of cult classic film Pulp Fiction. We get endings to the different stories in the film such as: Vincent Vega & Marsellus Wallace’s Wife, The Gold Watch, The Bonnie Situation, and Pumpkin & Honey Bunny. The changes in endings for all these stories do affect the overall storyline which includes the last story of ‘Pumkpin & Honey Bunny’. I do agree with ‘HISHE’ in the respect that it would have been an added benefit to have this film’s differentiated endings is a bit longer.
Now with Pulp Fiction out of the way, the crew of “How it should’ve ended” should take a chance with Kill Bill Vol 1&2. What other Quentin Tarantino film would you have changed the ending and how?
Everyone has heard probably that this year, the Oscars have jumped to 10 Noms to wittle down, and in talks for one of the slots is yours and my summer fave, Inglourious Basterds. Squeal lil piggies, squeal. (more…)