7 items from 2016
A peak in Jackie Chan’s U.S. movie stardom was “Shanghai Noon,” an amiable buddy action comedy that hung on the odd-couple chemistry between his straight-arrow Chinese emigre hero and Owen Wilson’s laconic, genially slippery Wild West outlaw. It was a pairing successful enough to prompt a sequel (“Shanghai Knights” in 2003), and now a sort of loose revamp in “Skiptrace.” But 16 years after “Noon,” the 62-year-old star’s boyish freneticism has finally succumbed to an understandable air of fatigue; it falls to new co-star Johnny Knoxville to take the majority of pratfalls, and supply the principal comic energy.
But then there’s energy to spare, if not much gray matter, in this amiable buddy action comedy wherein Chan’s straight-arrow Hong Kong cop is captor, then comrade to Knoxville’s genially slippery Yank con man. As directed by Renny Harlin, this Hk-u.S.-China co-production is a perpetual-motion-machine »
- Dennis Harvey
Kochi — “Kabali,” starring cult South Indian superstar Rajinikanth, has opened on a strong note worldwide. The film debuted on July 22 and has collected $36.6 million worldwide in five days of release, according to trade estimates.
This includes a five-day total of $22.3 million in India. In North America the film collected a robust $5 million in its opening weekend.
“Kabali” also earned $29.7 million ahead of its release from sales of satellite, music and other rights, according to producer Kalaippuli S. Thanu of V Creations. The budget of the film is estimated at $12 million.
Written and directed by Pa. Ranjith (“Madras”,) “Kabali” is largely set in Malaysia. Rajinikanth plays a Malaysian mafia don of Indian Tamil ethnicity who is released from prison after 25 years and proceeds to exact revenge on his adversaries.
The film’s Malay dubbed version is set to release on July 29, but will be different from the Tamil, Telugu and Hindi »
- Naman Ramachandran
Rajinikanth fans were in for a big surprise for they got the opportunity to witness the biggest spectacle ever! The legendary actor’s film Kabali is all set for release and to celebrate his fandom, the makers adopted a unique strategy to promote the film. Rajinikanth fans dressed in Kabali tees and face masks with a loudspeaker in town were taken for a ride in an open air double decker bus. The bus trailed through the streets of Mumbai stopping at important junctions where fans stepped out to dance to Kabali’s popular track Neruppu Da.
Guaranteeing oodles of fun and entertainment through the day the bus stopped at major Mumbai hotspots! Rajinikanth’s fever created a fan frenzy as they celebrated their superstar’s upcoming movie by painting a variety of Graffiti of Rajini on the walls of the city. What took the fan’s love and devotion to »
- Press Releases
At 5:30 a.m. on Friday July 22 the area around Mumbai’s Aurora cinema was packed. The atmosphere is festive. A frenzied crowd dances to the beats of a South Indian band. And others let off firecrackers periodically. The occasion is the release of “Kabali”, the latest film starring Rajinikanth, known to his fans simply as Superstar.
The cinema gates open at 5:45 a.m. and punters stream in. Every seat is taken. The first day first show of the film begins at 6 a.m. The crowd goes berserk when Rajinikanth’s name appears on screen and when he makes his first appearance the noise reaches a crescendo.
Rajinikanth, 65, made his debut in 1975 and over the course of some 200 films has achieved the kind of adulation that other Indian stars can only dream of. His previous release 2014’s “Lingaa,” was made for $12 million and grossed $22 million, modest by the star’s lofty standards. »
- Naman Ramachandran
Saban Films has debuted the official trailer for an action comedy called Skiptrace, starring Jackie Chan and Johnny Knoxville as the comedy duo. I thought Jackie Chan was done making these kind of movies? I guess not. Chan plays Hong Kong detective Benny Chan who reluctantly joins forces with American gambler Connor Watts to take down the drug lord who murdered his partner. This definitely looks cheesy, there's no doubt about that, but hopefully some of the action is entertaining otherwise what's the point of even making these kind of movies anymore. The full cast includes Fan Bingbing, Eric Tsang, Eve Torres, Winston Chao and Michael Wong. I'm not even sure if this is worth seeking out at all, but give it a shot to start. Here's the first official trailer (+ poster) for Renny Harlin's Skiptrace, direct from YouTube: Fists and feet are flying in this explosive action-comedy starring Jackie Chan and Johnny Knoxville. »
- Alex Billington
Remember the last time Jackie Chan played a Hong Kong detective on screen only to cross paths with a bumbling American idiot? It was the core dynamic that catapulted Brett Ratner’s 1998 action-comedy Rush Hour to a respectable box office haul, two sequels, and even a TV show over at CBS – one which doesn’t involve Chan nor his fast-talking co-star Chris Tucker.
But no matter, for Jackie Chan is portraying a very similar character in Renny Harlin’s Skiptrace, with Johnny Knoxville assuming the role of brash American gambler, Connor Watts. As the director behind both Die Hard 2 and Cliffhanger, Harlin has displayed a deft eye for action cinema throughout the years – barring the blemishes of Deep Blue Sea – though after the release of today’s international trailer, it’s difficult to imagine the filmmaker’s China-set adventure finding much of an audience – particularly in the west.
All style and little substance, »
- Michael Briers
Nearing the age of 62, Jackie Chan may have slowed down his rapid output a bit, but he’s still jumping head-first into the action genre. His latest film, Skiptrace, finds him under the direction of Die Hard 2 and Cliffhanger helmer Renny Harlin for the China-set adventure. Today now brings the first trailer for the action feature, which debuts in China this month.
Also starring Johnny Knoxville it follows a Hong Kong detective who hunts down a Chinese crime boss with the help of an American gambler. This first international trailer, which opts for flashy style over substance, has some nice-looking setpieces, so hopefully it’s a another strong actioner for Chan. Also starring Bingbing Fan, Eric Tsang, Winston Chao, and Eve Torres, check out the trailer and synopsis below.
- Leonard Pearce
7 items from 2016
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