• Tag Archives Bruce Lee
  • Canister X Movie Review #126: Ninja Assassin (2009)

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    Ninja Assassin (2009)
    Written by Matthew Sand and J. Michael Straczynski
    Directed by James McTeigue
    Runtime 99 min.
    5 out of 5

    Raizo (played by Rain), an orphan, was taken to a secret ninja training camp run by the Ozunu Clan when he was just a boy. After years of harsh, even deadly, training, Raizo was brought up to be the greatest ninja of the clan, even one who would one day take it over as leader.

    While a child and through his growing-up years, he befriends Kiriko (Anna Sawai) and she is just as strong-willed as he is except where he lacks feeling, she has a heart and doesn’t agree with all the clan teaches. When Kiriko tries to escape, Raizo sees what it truly means to be a member of the Ozunu Clan and from then on follows his own path to take the clan down.

    Enlisting the help of a Europol agent, Mika Coretti (Naomie Harris), together they try and bring the clan to justice. However, not is all what it seems and the Ozunu Clan has plans of their own. Led by Raizo’s brother, Takeshi (Rick Yune), the two are hunted, and only after the swords stop slicing and the blood cools will a victor be decided.

    This movie is hardcore, man. There’s really no other word for it. Total and utter blood-soaked craziness that reminded me of Mortal Kombat (the game). I was just waiting for a low, ominous voice to say “Fatality.” Awesome.

    The kung fu in this flick is intense, especially the swordplay. Those bladed fights were among some of the best I’ve seen, right up there with the stuff in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Rain looked brilliant, his body and demeanor as hard as steel. More than once was I reminded of Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon with the way he moved. The flashback sequences also worked well and really added to Raizo’s back story and firmly cemented us in his psyche so we know why he fights the way he does, why he’s on the path he’s on, and what motivates him as a ninja. Well done.

    What I especially liked in this movie was the ninjas’ mystique and their power, namely the part about them being one with the shadows and the paranoia those being hunted had with the dark. The idea of always keeping the lights on and bright was a great way to play this up. The ninja-morphing with the shadows was also cool, giving the impression that these guys, after all that training, have become something more than human.

    This is just one crazy bloodbath of a movie. Non-stop action. Amazing sword battles. Cool enough story to string one fight scene to the next.

    Ninja Assassin is the definition of a martial arts flick.

    Yeah, go check it out. Definitely.

  • Canister X Movie Review #33: The Green Hornet (2011)

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    The Green Hornet (2011)
    Written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg
    Directed by Michel Gondry
    Runtime 119 min.
    2.5 out of 5

    Irresponsible and party-it-up guy Britt Reid (Seth Rogen) is living the life as the son of the well-to-do publisher of The Daily Sentinel, but when his father is found dead after a fatal bee sting, Britt’s life is changed. Since he never liked his father, he goes to the cemetery and, meaning to sabotage his dad’s memorial, he and his dad’s mechanic, Kato (Jay Chou), end up saving a couple people from being mugged. Later, Britt convinces Kato that the two of them should pose as criminals so they could get close to real criminals and bust them.

    Kato agrees and Britt adopts the identity of the Green Hornet. His target is Benjamin Chudnofsky, a Russian mob boss who is trying to unite the crime families in Los Angeles. Soon the Green Hornet and Kato find themselves neck-deep in the city’s underworld.

    Sometimes it takes a criminal—or one posing as one—to catch a criminal.


    I don’t know, man. I was super jazzed when I found out they were making this movie because I’m a big fan of the 1960s TV show starring Van Williams and Bruce Lee as the Green Hornet and Kato. I thought, hey, imagine doing an updated version where it could be a mob story with all sorts of intense drama, action and be a kind of Sin City, you know, with Green Hornet being an antihero and all?

    Instead, I got a goofball comedy out of what was supposed to be a serious idea. I blame Seth Rogen, who I usually don’t mind. He was one of the writers on this movie so obviously wrote to his strengths versus what the character was really about.

    The costumes were cool, the action was fantastic, Chou’s martial arts was aces—but they got the Green Hornet wrong and took the gist of him and then did their own thing. Too bad. This really could have been a hit had they done the original series justice and then tweaked it for a modern audience.

    Maybe sometime down the line they’ll do another one and do it right. In the meantime, if a straight-up, not bad superhero movie is your thing, check it out, otherwise there are other lesser-known-superhero movies I enjoyed more like The Phantom and The Rocketeer.

  • Zombie Fight Night: Battles of the Dead

    In 2027 A.D., the Zombie Apocalypse took the world by storm and no one was prepared. Countless lives were lost as humanity battled to regain control of their planet. Eventually, they did, and out of the ashes of fallen civilization rose a new world, one bent on revenge against the hordes of the undead that took everything from them.

    Enter Tony Sterpanko, entrepreneur extraordinaire who found a way to capitalize on humanity’s thirst for vengeance against the zombie. He created Zombie Fight Night, a worldwide craze where the undead men and women who remained from the apocalypse faced off against people and beings that once existed on Earth or were existing for the first time.

    It is ten years later and at Blood Bay Arena, fortunes are won and lost. Men are made millionaires over night. Others are not so lucky and find themselves broken and destitute.

    Mick Chelsey is one such man: gambling addict, lousy husband and Zombie Fight Night fanatic.

    Except now, in order to still watch the fights and try to win back all he’s lost, he needs to bet fast and big otherwise death will come for him.

    Let the battles begin.

    Zombies fight Bigfoot, werewolves, vampires, Axiom-man, Bruce Lee, samurai, kickboxers, robots and more in this ode to blood-and-guts action from Blood of the Dead author, A.P. Fuchs.

    You ready to get it on?

    Available as a paperback at:

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    Amazon Kindle
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