Jet Li, The One, 2001

The Film:

The One Jet LiNo suprises here, a martial arts film by the masterous Jet Li. From the director of Final Destination comes an action packed trip to the future where there are parallel universes. Jet Li plays a deadly universe hopping assassin who through killing each of him in different parallel universes gets stronger – becoming “The One”. Amazing fight scenes and shows of martial arts skill combined with Matrix type slow motion and fast running scenes as his strength improves through assasinating each of himself in a parallel universe ensures a good viewing experience.

It starts with one Jet Li being removed from prison, wehre he is rapidly assassinated by “The One” with a fast paced getaway scene where he’s running at 50mph+ and does inhuman jumps with the cops chasing. After losing the police the inter-universe police then get on his tail, and hop with him to inter-universe police headquarters where we learn he’s killed 123 of himself in parallel universes giving him almost super power strength and reaction times. He ios about to be banished, when a mouse released by an accomplice provides a opportunity for escape, and he hops to another universe, our universe.

As each Jet Li is killed in each parallel universe he gains more strength, with only the assasin JEt Li understanding why he is getting stronger. This leads the Jet Li in our universe, who’s a cop, to question why he is getting stronger / more powerful / faster.

To keep it clear, Jet Li will be the Jet Li in our universe, and we’ll call the assassin guy “The One”. So Jet Li gets shot by The One, goes to hospital and checks himself out as it hit his bullet proof jacket. Goes home, the back to hospital to check in with the other coppers, he doesn’t want to say what he saw because he saw himself. The One makes it into the hospital, a fantastic fight scene happens and they both get away alive.

Gabe – is the name for the one in our world, so lets call him that, and Yu-Law? is the name for the assassin dude so we’ll stick to their proper names from now on. Yu-Law escapes by hiding in a body bag, and Gabe gets out by hopping into the back of an ambulance. The agents hunting them catch up with them, the one with Gabe tries to explain why he’s getting stronger and what’s happening. The agent with Yu-Law explains that if Gabeis killed it might put the whole multiverse out of balance – maybe even becoming a God. Yu-Law kills the agent after an amazing fight, then the police arrive and mass carnage is unleashed Jet Li / Yu-Law styla!

Gabe’s wife is the only one that believes he is him, and is not a crazed assassin after the hospital escapades. She goes home and is confronted by Yu-Law in the attic, cops all over the place, a clever question and she realizes it’s not Gabe, however the cops are too slow and Yu-Law gets away.

Gabe has now teamed up with the multiverse cop, and together they go after Yu-Law. This leads to probably the best fight scene of the movies between Yu-Law and Gabe, truely show’s Jet Li’s skills as a martial arts performer and the great production involved in this film.

Overall an action packed martial arts film with plenty of special effects, if you’re more for the old school then this won’t be your thing, but either way I’d say it’s worth a watch, maybe not a buy.

The Background:

Jet Li, or Li Lian Jie, was born April 26, 1963, in Heibei, Beijing, China. Left to the care of his mother after the early passing of his father, Li grew up with a type of protective and strict parenting which made him very shy and fearful. By the time he was eight, his mother sent him to Beijing’s Amateur Sports School for formal training in Wushu, the Chinese national sport. This helped him gain confidence as he became the most talented kid in This is where he got the name “Jet”, attributed to the speed with which he performed his moves.

Jet eventually became a national champion and won several titles in varoius competitions throughout the ’70s. He became the country’s representative to martial arts events across the globe. After his stint in the sports arena, Li made his feature film debut in Shaolin Temple which, along with its sequels, became a box-office hit. This led to several more films in China and Hong Kong and made him the most in-demand star in China.

Here’s the final fight scene:

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Rain Dogs, 2005

The Film:

Rain DogsThe cover of Rain Dogs looks a bit like reservoir dogs, though the description looks plenty interesting enough starting with “In the high-octane fueled crime caper…”, always a good start. Two of the thieves go on a tour of a Scottish castle and nick the most valuable piece of artwork there through overpowering the guides. The idea being an insurance scam to net the owners a tidy sum and the thieves a pretty penny too. Their meticulous plan steadily falls apart as the film progresses, hell it wouldn’t be interesting if it all went smoothly would it? The 3mill they were meant to get drops to a measly 300k, so new plans have to be made…

The team split into two’s and try to find their hide out joint whilst their waiting for the deal to go through, one bunch arranging some fun for when they get their whilst the true masterminds get lost on their way. A load of booze and a couple of hookers later and the remaining two arrive to a party in full swing. One hooker spots the painting, though is rapidly drugged into a hedonistic high and the 4 ho’s leave in the morning. The next day they get the amount increased, but not to what they want.

Yet again there hideout plans don’t go too well, after a brawl in a boozer, they have to move and so go to a hunting lodge, rather unsurprisingly their hunting does not go without event…With one of the gang accidentally getting shot. A copper doing the rounds inquiring about the fight turns up at the lode and is nicely palmed off. Clearly they’ve got to move on, whilst driving the next day the they learn one of the guys from the brawl died, and the girl’s hedonistic high resulted in her O.D.ing.

So far the robbery went well, the amount they were going to get has been slashed, a dead hooker, a bar brawl, one dead from that, a copper has said hello, one has been accidentally shot, and now one of the cars has picked up 2 Swedish girls on the way to the next hideout. The cars get separated, as the plans going so well, the 2 with the swede’s in the car decide to shag ’em on route… on then drop ’em off further down the road.

When the first 2 arrive at the hideout, the gun accidentally goes but eventually they get settled. Go on a fishing trip the next day, and 2 of the girls that they met up with previously come round – one’s a nurse and so patches up the guy that got shot. The 2 lads and 2 girls seem to be getting on quite well, go back to the house and discover that the painting’s actually a fake!

They contact the buyers to see pitch a new deal, saying they’ve got a buyer lined up who wants to see the painting first, and go out for the day to a whiskey distillery. They agree to meet having persuaded more cash from the buyers. On route, the copper turns up – turns out she’s only a special cunstable and is thinking of packing it in… hey presto, William the lady’s man rapidly beds her and runs out after she try’s to cuff him in the sack – furry cuffs mind, never know if she’s onto them properly or not.

The meet goes well, they’ve been wired the money they wanted and are now trying to scam a few more pennies from the buyers. In order to swap the fake for the original they go back to the castle to meet with “The Duke”, they take the fake, he turns up with a machine gun… the cops are called and you’ll have to watch it to see what happens…

In the end it probably couldn’t have turned out much better… other than they only net 150k each rather than the 750k, with a bit of a twist at the end!

All in all a good film, with plenty of twists and turns to keep you wandering where it’ll go, I’ve left out a couple of bits, so even after reading this it’s no doubt still very much worth watching.

The Background:

The story for the film was originally inspired by a piece of graffiti director Robbie Moffat saw on a toilet wall in Glasgow. Securing a grant from the Scottish Arts Council in late 2003, he developed a unique ‘interactive community collaboration program’ where the initial synopsis was plastered on the walls of public toilets in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and John O’Groats and further plot developments were added by members of the public, chain-story style.

The various plot developments were then posted on the now defunct ‘RainingintheToilet.com’ website created for the film, and the public were invited to vote on which ones should be included in the screenplay for the finished film. Although only 37 people responded – the majority either members of the cast and crew or their immediate family – this formed the finished screenplay. To add a further element of ‘serendipitous chaos,’ the cast were only given a broad outline of the story and only told of the content of scenes before they were filmed.

In three cases, most notably the key robbery scene, the cast were not told the content of the scene until after it had been filmed because Moffat hoped the actors would inhabit their roles so completely that they would intuitively do what was in the script. Although this did not prove to be the case, Moffat left the cast’s version of the robbery in the film on the grounds that “it was raw honesty, and truth is always better than fiction.”

And so it begins…

This page is essentially about me going through my DVD collection that has amassed over time, watching ’em, reviewing ’em, and blogging it on here. There’s a mixture of gangster / martial arts / horror / comedy / rom-com and generally what tends to be adopted into DVD collections when you shop at Tesco’s / Sainsbury’s and think “ohhh, I might watch that one day, 4 quid? why not?” and hey presto the DVD stack grows.

General DVD reviews by a general 23y/o lad – why not subscribe, could act as good memory prompt for that film you saw years back or that one you heard down the pub but never got round to buying…?

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