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24 reviews in total 
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8 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Seagal...A Review....Opinions.....Comparisons!!!!!!!!, 2 December 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Here we go again, another Seagal DVD, made in Romania where low taxes mean it's cheap to film there. Steamroller Productions/Voltage Pictures have been cranking out these low-budget, time-killers quickly and because I've been watching Seagal's movies since I was a kid, I can't resist renting them, when they pop up at the video store.

Born To Raise Hell is not an improvement over Seagal's recent DVD releases but it does have its good points. It has a more structured plot and better music than some of his previous work. The fight scenes were a little short but adleast Seagal was more involved in them than his body double. The obligatory climactic fight was also over pretty quickly and the main bad guy didn't meet a very satisfying death. The shoot-outs were okay. I liked the gun-smoke in the air during the climactic shoot-out, but there was absolutely no recoil or kick when Seagal fired his shotgun. For such a powerful weapon, this looked a little odd.

These formulaic films always leave room in the budget for a small explosion or a car crash or both. In Born To Raise Hell a balcony blows up sending two guys to their death and as far as stunts go it looks okay.

If you didn't like the look of Seagal's previous DVD efforts, then this movie will not win you over. If however, like me, you've become used to the look and style of these films, then you know what to expect. So just go along for the ride and take it for what it is. A low-budget, formulaic Seagal action film.

The Storyline--Seagal is a drug enforcement agent in Romania. He's going after a fairly sadistic mid-level drug trafficker, named Castel, who enjoys bashing, raping, robbing and killing rich people. Using information from a low-level dealer and also a high-level trafficker, Seagal closes in on Castel. As expected in these type of films Seagal's partner is killed, making his mission more personal.

I'd also like to mention Seagal's body double again. I've noticed in a lot of these DVD's that Seagal will be talking to somebody, then a rear head camera shot will reveal the body double, before the camera cuts back to Seagal's face. You don't need sharp eyes to spot this because the double's hairstyle never quite matches Seagal's hair. I'm pleased to say that in this movie the double is less obvious because Seagal wears his jacket collar pushed up. This hides the neck and hairline making the double less of a standout. This was a good move on the production teams part to help hide this annoying problem. There is also a little bit of voice dubbing in the film, mainly at the start, but adleast the voice sounds similar to Seagal, unlike some other films of his.

P.S---I hadn't watched Seagal's first movie 'Above The Law' in quite a while, so I decided to put it on the other night. I noticed that his hair looks like it's balding from the front, his hair also looks very thin. His hair these days is very thick and full as if he's wearing a hair piece or uses spray on hair, maybe he had some kind of surgery? His hair is just so thick and fake and he doesn't have the high forehead, thinning hairline that he had back in 1988.

Also in 'Above The Law' Seagal sure could run and he looked thin, healthy and fit. Nowadays he can only manage a short lumbering jog and his face and stomach are bloated. Sometimes his face is so puffed up that it looks like he's had an allergic reaction to some bad shell-fish.

Well enough about that. Lots of people put on weight as they get older.

I like Seagal and I'll continue to watch his DVD's and other projects he brings out. He is less than a year away from turning 60 years of age and I wish him all the best for his future endeavours.

Saw (2004)
Diabolical....Unrelenting.....Unnerving, 25 May 2005

I am a huge fan of the horror genre and I know Leigh Whannell(actor,Saw) is also a horror enthusiast because I remember his comments when he was a movie reviewer on the TV show 'Recovery'.

The most outstanding feature of 'SAW' is its creative yet simple plot. The idea of a person forced to participate in a deadly game to save their own life, is a kind of morbid twist on reality TV shows. I feel that 'SAW' has the potential to spawn many sequels because its plot is so versatile.

The acting in 'SAW' is solid and convincing. Leigh Whannell surprised me with his competent performance. The mother and daughter who are gagged and tormented by their captor at gunpoint, both give gut-wrenchingly realistic performances. Overall, I felt that all the actors in 'SAW' gave 100% to their roles.

'SAW's plot has the ability to hook the viewer and draw them in and that makes for a truly gripping and enthralling ride. In terms of blood and gore 'SAW' isn't over the top or gratuitous. The film's striking element is its inventive script and its ability to build tension and dread in an enclosed claustrophobic environment.

Overall, I felt that 'SAW' was an accomplished and skillful effort. I'm sure we'll be seeing a few sequels to this fine horror/thriller. I also give 'SAW' credit for not making the killer's identity easy to discover for the viewer.

1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
The cheese drips from the screen., 23 May 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I just purchased Kickboxer 4 on DVD as a double feature with Kickboxer 5 and I must confess that my expectations were not high. Kickboxer 4 once again stars Sasha Mitchell(Kickboxer 2&3) as David Sloane and is directed by Albert Pyun(Kickboxer2&Cyborg) The first thing that struck me about Kickboxer 4, is its low budget and amateurish quality.

The movie begins by giving a rundown of the previous Kickboxer movies and quickly establishes how David Sloane was framed by his enemy Tong Po and sent to prison. It isn't long however before David is approached by the F.B.I and given a chance to seek revenge against Tong Po by entering Tong Po's one million dollar prize fight tournament.

In a silly subplot David's wife has been held prisoner by Tong Po for two years, so once David is accepted into the tournament, he sneaks around Tong Po's Mexican villa searching for his captive wife.

The dialogue in this film is pretty worthless and the film's only redeeming feature is the fight scenes which are frequent but fairly inferior. The most defective part of this film, is the character playing Tong Po. It isn't the same actor from Part 1&2 playing the part and I must say that the bad make-up job to make the actor resemble Tong Po looks ridiculous and completely laughable.

I don't recommend Kickboxer 4 to anyone, unless you're in the mood for pure cheese. I give the film 2 out of ten and even that is being generous.

2 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Unsatisfied.........................., 18 May 2005

I was a little disappointed with 'Wake of Death'. In my humble opinion 'Wake of Death' has a lot of wasted potential. The film could have been so much better, if a little more thought had been given towards the plot's structure and also the film's action scenes. The film has a few faults in the dialogue, which annoyed me. For example, one character is told by another that two men wearing ski masks entered a brothel and killed Andy Wang, however when this character repeats the story later, he only says one man entered the brothel and killed Andy Wang. There were other faults in the dialogue also, which bothered me.

The plot is simple and Van Damme gives a surprisingly solid performance but unfortunately the film suffers from amateurish direction. Sure, the film looks flash, but it's a case of style over substance. With a little polishing and tinkering, the script could of been improved, and this, I feel would have greatly benefited the film.

In terms of action scenes 'Wake of Death' was on the right track but unfortunately it never really takes off. Sure, we are given some fights and shootouts but it never feels like enough and I was left wanting more. If only Van Damme had thrown more punches and performed his trademark 360* degree airborne kick.

The film's biggest disappointment is its climax, or should I say anti-climax. I was expecting a grand finale fight between Van Damme and the main villain(Simon Yam) but to my surprise there is no end fight. This is made even worse, because the film teases us, by showing the main villain doing tai-chi early in the film, so we're given the impression he may be a martial artist. I couldn't believe that this film didn't have a big fight showdown at the end. The climax was a major disappointment.

Overall, I feel that 'Wake of Death' was a real missed opportunity for Van Damme. The film's bad points out weighed its good points but I can't say I hated the film. I give 'Wake of Death' a solid 5/10.

3 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
I would rather chew razor blades than watch this film., 11 May 2005

This film is so bad, it's not even funny. In fact, it's unwatchable, not to mention completely worthless. I've seen porno film's, with better production value's than this embarrassing movie. The film's lead actor is a pudgy man with a laughable 80's hairstyle, and each scene is set up, just so he can beat up some 'bad guys'. The fight scenes are preposterous and the dialogue is insupportable. The acting in this movie is so bad it's offensive and the film's plot could have been written by a 5th grader. In fact some scenes and dialogue make absolutely no sense. Bad guys sent to kill a woman by their boss, but instead they trash her apartment and then run away when she comes home!!!. Then, when they return to their boss and ask for a second chance, he shoots one of them. I admit that I stopped watching this film after 20 minutes, because it's too atrocious to tolerate. I've seen many film's in my life, but 'Stickfighter' is at the top of my list for unendurable grade Z garbage, and that's putting it nicely.

RoboCop 3 (1993)
43 out of 59 people found the following review useful:
So 'BAD' it's funny......, 23 April 2005

Robocop 3 is an 'insult' to the classic original. First of all, the character of Robocop is played by someone else and the result is just plain embarrassing. The film is very soft on violence, which was a poor decision on the director's part because the original film is notorious for its excessiveness and loved by fans. A PG-RATED Robocop is just a desperate attempt to cash in on the wider audience, which proves that the film was made by profiteers, rather than film-makers. This film is so bad, it's literally dripping with cheese. Robocop flying is an unintentional funny moment in the film and the part where Robocop drives a car off a bridge and lands on all four wheels, is just plain ridiculous. This film was the nail in the Robocop franchise's coffin. I honestly wish that it had never been made.

RoboCop (1987)
1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
The BEST sci-fi/action film ever made., 19 April 2005

Robocop is a first-rate, first-class, superior sci-fi/action movie classic. This movie can only be described as 'overkill'and that's why we love it. Unrestrained violence, eccentric characters,abusive foul language, an uncompromising setting, these are just some of the ingredients that round off this rare gem of a film. This film was made in the pre-C.G.I era, so that makes the film even more of an accomplishment. Go and buy a copy of "the directors cut" of ROBOCOP because everybody should have it in their DVD collection. Unfortunately this film was followed by two defective and substandard sequels. ROBOCOP 2 was a completely inadequate follow-up and ROBOCOP 3 was a weak and fraudulent third chapter. However, the original stands as a true testament to exemplary sci-fi/action cinema.

1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
I'll be in hell for breakfast........., 28 March 2005

I first viewed Leatherface:Texas Chainsaw Massacre III back in 1991, when it was released at my local video store. The film was short, only 79min long, but I knew the film had been mutilated by the MPAA(American Censorship Board) and this was clearly apparent when watching the film. However, as a horror film, it was still okay.

Now 13 years later, I purchased the DVD edition which contains both the R-rated movie and the Unrated one. The DVD also contains tons of bonus features. I must confess, I was extremely pleased to get my hands on this DVD, as I am a horror enthusiast.

The Unrated version is excellent. There is more blood, violence and terror. I feel that the film is under-rated and I honestly believe it's the best sequel in the Texas franchise.

It was interesting to compare the R-rated version with the Unrated one. However I do feel that the MPAA was unnecessarily harsh on the film. Silence of the Lambs is just as gruesome but that didn't go through MPAA hell did it. I guess that's because it had big name actors in it, like Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster.

I enjoy watching Texas 3 over and over. I like the film's pace and how the couple are stalked on the road by the huge utility. There is one scene that annoys me though. In the forest Benny is about to be killed by Leatherface but just as Leatherface raises the chainsaw in the air, the crazy girl yells "It's me you want, not him". So Leatherface kicks Benny in the guts and starts stalking the crazy girl as she runs away. Now, why did Leatherface kick Benny, it would have been just as easy and quick to have stuck the chainsaw into him and come back and collect his corpse later. Oh, well, it's just a minor flaw.

I am aware fan's of the original Texas film were annoyed at how Leatherface has a whole new family in this third installment. All I can say to them is, don't compare this film to the original, just go along for the ride and try not to make comparisons to the first film.

Among the bonus features on the DVD there is an alternate ending. However, after watching it, I felt it made little sense, I mean why does the cop car stop and then keep going? I like the film's real ending but Benny should not have survived, I mean c'min, the bloke had his head pushed onto a chainsaw and at the film's finale he returns with just a scratch on his head. Ridiculous to say the least.

There is no doubt that this film could have been better but judging the final product in it's unrated version I must confess it's a hell of a fun ride.

27 out of 30 people found the following review useful:
"She pollutes the air with her craziness", 26 March 2005

"She pollutes the air with her craziness", gotta love that line near the film's beginning. Damien:Omen II is an ambitious and entertaining sequel to the classic Omen. This film is an almost perfect stepping stone in the Omen trilogy, focusing on Damien Thorn becoming a teenager. The film obviously lacks the fresh originality of the first film but it still deserves credit for maintaining a sense of dread and menace when somebody crosses the young Damien Thorn. The death scenes are both chilling and creative and the film's trademark score is brilliant. As far as sequels go, Omen II is a solid effort, leading the pathway clearly open for the third chapter. In terms of comparison Omen II doesn't surpass the original but if you enjoyed the Omen then Damien:Omen II shouldn't disappoint.

3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
First-class, first-rate, movie MAGIC., 10 February 2005

An absolute masterpiece. Million Dollar Baby is an exemplary movie experience, commendable in every way. Seeing this film once, is definitely not enough. Hilary Swank gives a magnificent performance as an aspiring female boxer with a heart of gold. Clint Eastwood is outstanding as the grief-stricken boxing trainer, who reluctantly takes a chance on the zealous 31year old. Morgan Freeman is resplendent in his role, as a gym maintenance-man, who quietly observes his surroundings with a keen and intelligent eye. The supporting cast also deserve credit for their solid performances. Masterfully, directed by Clint Eastwood, Million Dollar Baby is truly 'one in a million'.

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