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On the Box: Girls Behaving Badly


In the Player: Die Hard 5*


Heavy Rotation: CKY


Sore Thumbs: Die Hard Vendetta GC










You’ve probably all seen it on the frontpage by now, but yes the world exclusive I promised last week is an FAQ and screenshots of what should be the ultimate Bruce Lee videogame. I’ve had a lot of feedback on it both positive and negative and basically, it’s a big deal to what is probably a pretty niche audience. Videogame fans in general probably aren’t too worried either way, but most Bruce Lee fans, and certainly those who love videogames and have had to put up with piss-poor titles bearing the great one’s name (the Xbox game, anyone? Or how about Dragon?) really love it.




To me it’s awesome the last GOOD Bruce game I played was Bruce Lee on the Commodore 64 (I even went out of my way to download the ROM and a C64 emulator just to play it), and aside from that we’ve had nothing. Well, using the Game of Death suit that AKI so kindly put in VPW2 on the N64, I made a few CAWs to mess around with, but this is should be the first genuinely good Bruce game in twenty years. So anyway, I’m happy with it, even though it wasn’t the Stone Cold interview or anything else that people might have hoped for.




Another see-nothing do-nothing week of DVD news, so I’ll bolster it with some more banter. I posted a review of Jackass Volume 2 which has had some good feedback. There are some funny screen grabs of Johnny and co. hurting themselves, so it’s probably worth checking out just for that.




Since everyone seems to be talking about them, I’ll give my two on the “big 3” SuperBowl movie trailers. I thought the The Hulk trailer was pretty cool. I’m not a huge Banner fan, but they seem to have got the CG pretty spot on (even if digging up Lou Ferrigno or painting Dave “The Rage” Nelson would have been cheaper). And the tank-tossing scene looked perfectly okay to me. Which segues (™ Scott Keith) nicely to The Matrix Reloaded and… ‘the scene’. People have complained about the new Matrix flick in every way possible, from “too much eye candy that’s already played out” to “more weak-as-shit, silly plot that’s just gone even sillier”, but insanely, nothing has caused more controversy than a single visual effects shot: exactly how does a car hood crumple when a digital incarnation of an evil omnipotent gatekeeper jumps onto it?




Perhaps my feeling on the question are summed up by my phrasing of it: it’s a ridiculous fucking question to even be talking about. “Oh, a car hood wouldn’t crumple like that.” “Ah, but Agent Smith has superhuman ‘Matrix physics’, and he can smash concrete and stuff.” Christ almighty, IT’S JUST A PIECE OF EYE CANDY. Jesus, if you’re gonna start nitpicking shit in that film, there are plenty of gaping story points you can start on before even getting to the VFX. I thought it was a neat shot, maybe it looked a little odd, but hell if you can buy into all that hokey quasi-religious stuff in The Matrix but you can’t overlook one effect, you plain and simple don’t deserve to be watching movies. And it’s not like you aren’t all going to go see the damn film anyway.




As for Terminator 3… hoo boy. I dunno who that monkey-faced Ben Stiller lookalike is that they’ve cast as John Connor, but the guy looks like a total dweeb, hardly the lovable rogue that Edward Furlong managed to capture at only 10 years old. I really have trouble buying into the guy as the saviour of the human race, but nowhere near the amount of trouble I have buying into some skinny blonde chick as a badass killing machine that’s gonna kick Arnie’s ass. This isn’t some male chauvinist shit or anything like that, but the whole female terminator thing seems to consist of her standing still and looking pretty while they CG some stuff on her arms. I dunno what her background is, but the bitch is STIFF she just doesn’t have any physicality about her. She’s good at standing still looking cute, but she doesn’t move with menace, she doesn’t have any facial expression that conveys calm, steely hate. Fuck me, a pre-op, bulldog-faced Chyna would’ve been ideal if this was the road they wanted to go down (and I know Arnie was pushing for her, but ultimately she was rejected because she went and femmed herself up). I hate to say it, but Scott Steiner would’ve been PERFECT for the role. He must have killed one of the casting directors or something, because God knows it can’t have been his lack of acting ability that got him rejected from a fucking Schwarzennegger movie. Anyway, some of the HKs looked cool, although there looked to be some dodgy R.O.B. robot style terminators knocking around, and Arnie is starting to look a little long in the tooth. They probably should have left the series where it was.




Well, that’s all the banter I’m ready for. HOW ABOUT SOME CONTENT, BITCH~?












Well, there’s piss all in the way of big name releases mostly indie stuff, re-releases, a lot of music, and a lot of crap.




The only thing that really comes close to a big name is the release of Free Willy 10th Anniversary Edition, as well as re-releases of the other two Willy flicks (which go untouched). The new release of the original Willy looks half decent, with a new digital anamorphic transfer, a conversation with a wildlife cinematographer, Michael Jackson music video, an “Escape from the nets” game which seems to be pretty un-PC, some DVD-ROM crap, a “Whale Ballet” montage, and some trailers. I’m not an earth freak or anything, but I personally refuse to give these fuckers any of my money because I recently learned that, despite making a movie that preached the freeing of whales from captivity, they actually kept the Willy whale IN captivity in order to produce two sequels. Hypocritical cunts.




George Carlin Playing With Your Head is the legendary funnyman’s HBO special from 1986. Modern film fans will probably know Carlin from his involvement with Kevin Smith’s movies (notably Dogma, where he played Cardinal Glick, but also J&SBSB and Jersey Girl), but he's been doing his routines for over 20 years. Carlin’s thing is irreverent observational humour interspersed with a healthy dose of political incorrectness before there really was such a thing (it was more just anti-good taste back then). A good example would be his discussion of what does or doesn’t qualify as sport, and his opinion that lacrosse doesn’t count because it’s a "faggot college activity". Hey, I’ve seen Foley’s wife, it can’t be THAT gay.




Both mind-scarring instalments of Dennis The Menace are re-released if you feel like tormenting yourself or your family. Another anti-family movie, although on the other end of the good-taste scale, is Fighting Mad: 100% Raw Fighting Caught on Video sounds like a more upmarket version of Bumfights, although I’m assured that there’s some catfighting on here that merits at least one viewing. Of practical value is D.I.Y. or Die: How to Survive as an Independent Artist which should be invaluable to wannabe Da Vincis or Gigers, as I’m told it’s basically a one hour art school.




A bunch of serial ‘documentaries’ are out this week, in the form of The Journeys In Black series featuring everyone from Master P to Patte La Belle, as well as three Jazz Casual discs on BB King, John Coltrane and Dave Brubeck. Some awesomely-titled Hong Kong flicks in the form of Iron Neck Li and Iron Virgin Jun, as well as Shaolin Drunken Fight, which all sound like cuts off a Wu-Tang album. And while we’re on a rap tip, there’s the ominously titled Yellow Tape Magazine “starring Suge Night”, which promises to be nothing like we’re all imagining it.




The awful, awful, AWFUL The Real World Movie The Lost Season is something that you should steer well clear of in no uncertain terms. It is NOT a lost season; it’s an MTV movie (which should tell you all you need to know) about a bunch of kids who are set to star in the next series of The Real World, but get kidnapped or some shit. It’s just bloody awful, so leave it at that. If you want your fix of the show that started the reality TV gig before it got played out and out of hand, The Real World You Never Saw Las Vegas has lots of poopy talk and blurred-out tits. It’s a shame really that the show overstayed its welcome, because it used to be so awesome. Man, I fancied Jacinda.




Daddy of The Week Digital Versatile Dick:


Well, it could be Blood of the Zombie, Blue Gender 8, Collin’s Sleazy Friends… but they’re all too easy to call. How about Bounty Dog, which one Amazon reader described as a “cheesy sci-fi adventure [that] began as a radio play, and it still feels like one”. However, the rating lists it as containing “profanity, nudity, grotesque imagery, graphic violence, violence against women”, which means it’s got to have some merit somewhere.




No, there was only one choice: Jesus Christ: Vampire Hunter. NO FUCKING JOKE.




In fact, here’s an Amazon reviewer to explain for you (just about everything here is a sic, BTW): “I first saw this film at a special screening during the 2002 annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion (one of our members had written a paper on the film). I attended out of curiosity over the title & was not disapointed. Its an odd combination of JC Superstar, Rocky Horror Picture Show, WWF Wrestling and Kung Fu. Its a very low budget movie with an ultra lame plot, but it is also gut bustingly hysterical. I mean, how can you go wrong with Jesus vs Lesbian Vampires?! The room at the AAR showing was packed & we were all rolling on the floor. And keep an eye out for the sequel, Jesus Christ Vampire Hunter II: A Romn Holiday, in which the lesbian vampires travel bck to the firstcentury, take over the Roman Empire an cremate JC after the crucifixion so he can't be ressurected. The present day JC must goback in time and save himself! I know I can't wait!” Nor can I, buddy. Nor can I.












Well, this ties handily into the Matrix discussion.




According to The Digital Bits, the AniMatrix DVDs from Warner are FINALLY going to see the light of day… on June 3rd. Which is, um, AFTER the sequel’s theatrical release.








I thought the point of releasing these animations en masse (as opposed to, say, only on or through their website) was as a marketing piece to promote the movie. I mean, yeah they’re cool, but come on is the average fan REALLY likely to pick up some weird anime that seems very loosely tied in to the Matrix mythos? That’s like expecting WWF fans to pick up a Best of Super Juniors tape or something. They need people to buy this on blind anticipation of the movie, or I don’t think it’ll sell too good. Once they’ve seen the flick, and the impulse reaction to snap up any piece of merchandise has worn off, punters are likely to look a little more closely at what they’re buying, and anime ain’t a big turnon for consumers.




That said, I’ll be there, as I’m sure most people here will be, to check out the nine short animated flicks that, according to the Bits, “are being described as ‘a visionary fusion of CG-animation and Japanese anime.’ “ Um, yeah. Apparently, the set will include what is a prelude of sorts to Reloaded, The Final Flight of the Osiris, making the disc’s release after the flick even less logical.




Oh, and Keanu Reeves can’t act. WHOA.












I know nothing about this series, but it seems to be a pretty big deal to some people, so hey presto, here it is.




According to TV Guide, the first season of Alias is due to hit DVD on September 2nd. Hardly any details are known, other than the set will obviously be multi-disc, and will contain a behind-the-scenes documentary piece on the making of the pilot, that will apparently be cut together from about nine hours of footage. Which could be great or awful, depending on whether they wittle this nine hours down to six minutes or 60.




And, um, that's about it. Sorry.












Hey, something else I know nothing about. I’ve never been one of the folks who check out every Disney that’s’ released, but even I am appalled at my lack of familiarity with the Mouse House’s modern properties. Oh well, that’s what DVDs are for, I guess.




Treasure Planet, due to street on April 29th with anamorphic transfer and 5.1EX audio, both audio and visual (text?) commentaries, deleted scenes, animation tests, featurettes, a virtual tour of the ship, and no doubt some DVD-ROM crap.




Also due from Disney, this time on May 13th, is 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and by God, this is just embarrassing because I haven’t seen this either, and I can’t even put it down to it being modern. I’ve heard about this Nemo cat, and I’ve been on the ride, but that’s it.




Oh well.




You can expect a spanking new, fully restored anamorphic transfer and a 5.1 track, along with a commentary from the director and a film historian, original radio spots from 1954, ADR tracks from Peter Lorre, “Captain Nemo’s organ music” (I guess you need to have seen the flick), storyboard comparisons, “Nemo’s Death” script extract, the “Grand Canyonscape” short, and unused animation in the form of “The Humboltsquid: Real Sea Monster!”.




There will also be six featurettes: ‘The Making Of 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea’, ‘Jules Verne & Walt Disney Explorers Of The Imagination’, ‘Monsters Of The Deep’, ‘The Musical Legacy Of Paul Smith’, ‘Lost Treasure: The Sunset Squid Sequence’, and ‘Touring The Nautilus’. Heh, nautilus. I remember doing a scene for a casting director in LA, and it was a scene from Good Will Hunting, which I’d never seen. First he gave me a bollocking for “pantomiming the cigarette it looks stupid”, and then another one for not knowing what nautilus was. “If you don’t know material that’s on the sides, you’ve GOT to ask.” Fucker.




Thanks to IGN.












Hurrah! The Region 2 release of Angel Season 3 has been announced for a March 3rd release for £79.99. Of course, most companies like Play will have the set for a lot less, but if you’re importing to the US, the current exchange rate is pretty shitty for you guys so you’ll still end up paying over a hundred bucks.




Nonetheless, the six-discer will come in anamorphic with Dolby 2.0, a commentary for 'Quickening', and a commentary and a deleted scene from 'Waiting in the Wings', trailers for the DVD boxsets of Buffy seasons 2-4 and the first two Angel DVD sets, a trailer for the Buffy flick, screen tests for Amy Acker and Vincent Kartheiser, a 50 image gallery, and the featurettes ‘Season Three Overview’ and ‘Page to Screen’.




Pretty good, as usual. For a look at the box art, check out the DVD Times article.












Here’s a chance for UK readers to see Bruce Lee and Jet Li on the big screen. Hong Kong Legends are hosting another Fight Night, this time in Bradford, on February 6th. They’ll be showing Fist of Fury (The Chinese Connection) and Once Upon a Time in China 2, so if that’s your bag, head on over to their website for some free tickets.




While you’re there, you might want to check out a promotion they’ve got running where you can pick up some HKL DVDs for £9.99. In fairness, you can pick them all up at Play for £8.99 anyway, but it’s still worth checking out. I would recommend, however, that you DO NOT buy Purple Storm. It’s an awesome flick, and Josie Ho is red hot (despite having an unfortunate name for westeren audiences), but I’ve sent back two copies recently that have a major glitch at about 1:20:00 onwards where disc starts to misread and ultimately just spins out. Shame really, cause the commentary is REALLY good.












Sorry, channelling Teddy Long there. Actually, I wish I hadn’t used that headline, because I can easily see the WWF braintrust further crippling Booker by having him go back to a race gimmick like that and adding him to Long and D-Lo’s stable. The minute they sign New Jack for this angle, I AM DONE WITH THE COMPANY. Oh man, I just had a BAD thought they’re turning The Rock heel when he comes back. PLEASE don’t let him join this group and start Nation 2K3




Anyway, back to the point. I found out through our SUPER DUPER FORUMS that, unbeknownst to me, some G.I. Joe cartoons were on their way to DVD. I asked the poster (was it you, Karnage?) for some specs, but I didn’t get a reply in time for this update, so I headed over to Amazon and found what I think is the right info.




On February 11th, 'A Real American Hero' and 'Revenge of the Cobra' will both feature on what appears to be a barebones disc that is no doubt a “tester” by the studio to see what the interest is in Joe product.




Now, seeing as we never got the Joe (or Action Force, as it was redubbed here) cartoons on TV in the UK, so my only consumption of the show was through the obscenely overpriced home videos. Thus, I have no idea whether these two episodes are feature-length or not, despite the fact that they are being billed as such (they’re probably ‘feature’ double-episodes’ that run about an hour each). Nor do I know if they are from the DiC- or Marvel/Sunbow- produced series, but I’m sure someone will be kind enough to educate me.




I fucking love the show anyway, although the likelihood of it being widely imported here is virtually nil. Oh well.




Go check out the forums for the latest.








Wellsir, that’s your lot.




The poetry things been going pretty well lately, so I might get round to banging out a couple of reviews before next week. No promises, though.




Take care, and remember:













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