5 items from 2016
It’s the tail end of the twenty-first century and Earth has nearly overstayed its welcome with dwindling resources and over-population. Scientists believe they can release the CO2 pockets underneath Mars’ surface and move the Red Planet from -50 degrees Celsius into a human-friendly temperature and atmosphere. So mankind sends rockets of moss and cockroaches to commence the process, a half-century passing before a team of colonists can finally journey forth. Everything should be ready for this hand-selected group under Ko Honda’s (Shun Oguri) supervision: go to Mars, kill the cockroaches, and return home with stories of our salvation via a new frontier. It sounds so simple and yet no one is prepared for what they’ll find because no one but Honda and the Japanese government know the truth.
- Jared Mobarak
Stars: Dustin Nguyen, Scott Adkins, Sahajak Boonthanakit, Gary Daniels, Prinya Intachai, Kane Kosugi, Ammy Chanicha, Steven Clarke, Natalie Lorence, Yuhkoh Matsuguchi, Damian Mavis, Charlie Ruedpokanon, Ron Smoorenburg | Written and Directed by Wych Kaosayananda
Ahhhh, movie marketing – that most venerable of fib-tellers… 2 Guns: Zero Tolerance is the latest movie from writer/director Wych Kaosayananda, who previously helmed Ballistic: Ecks vs Sever and Tekken 2 (which I liked a lot more than most it would seem). Now when I say latest, it’s the latest Version of this film released. You see, 2 Guns: Zero Tolerance has something of a troubled history. Not only does this film have nothing to do with the Denzel Washington/Mark Wahlberg film 2 Guns; it also doesn’t really star Scott Adkins!
- Phil Wheat
Pray For Death, 1985.
Directed by Gordon Hessler.
A peaceful Japanese family move to the Us but fall foul of a crime syndicate, forcing the father to unleash his inner ninja.
“You should learn karate one day, Dad. You may need it” say the two young Saito boys Takeshi and Tomoya (Kane and Shane Kosugi respectively) to their father Akira (Shô Kosugi) during a play fight. However, the two children aren’t aware that their father isn’t just their boring businessman dad but really a highly skilled ninja warrior who carries around a lot of guilt after the death of his brother during a fight at the temple of his sensei Kaga (Robert Ito). Akira and his American-born wife Aiko (Donna Kei Benz) decide to move »
- Amie Cranswick
Stars: Shô Kosugi, James Booth, Donna Kei Benz, Norman Burton, Kane Kosugi, Shane Kosugi, Matthew Faison, Parley Baer, Robert Ito, Michael Constantine, Alan Amiel, Woody Watson | Written by James Booth | Directed by Gordon Hessler
Pray For Death was the second film – outside of the Ninja Trilogy – to feature Sho Kosugi in a lead role and is easily one of, if not the, best film Kosugi has ever made. The film sees Shô Kosugi star as Akira, a Japanese businessman who, jaded by his job and looking for a better life for his family, moves to America. He opens a restaurant with his wife and kids but his world is shattered when he stumbles upon the headquarters of a sinister gang, led by crime lord Limehouse Willie. Wrongfully accused of stealing a precious necklace, the gangsters begin a rampage of murder that takes the life of Akira’s wife and threatens »
- Phil Wheat
Director: Takashi Miike
Writer: Kazuki Nakashima
Given his mindboggling output, it would be strange not to have a most anticipated list not featuring Japanese auteur Takashi Miike, who usually has several projects premiering during any given year. As far as we can tell, he only has one title scheduled for release in 2016, the intriguing Terra Formers, a live action manga adaptation which sounds an awful lot like Paul Verhoeven’s Starship Troopers (1997). Humans deposit some moss and cockroaches on Mars in hopes of fostering an inhabitale environment for later use on the Red Planet. In the year 2599, they return to find a species of dangerous humanoid cockroaches. The production is the first Japanese film to shoot in Iceland. A cast headlined by Rinko Kikuchi (Babel; Pacific Rim) has us even more excited for what sounds like one of Miike’s most extravagantly gonzo creations yet.
Cast: Rinko Kikuchi, »
- Nicholas Bell
5 items from 2016
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