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Monster Roll Needs to be a Feature Film!

Monster Roll from Dan Blank on Vimeo.

Sushi chefs versus giant monsters!

That’s the premise behind Monster Roll. The team put together this short as a sort of proof of concept of the kind of film they’d like to see on the big screen, which just so happens to be the kind of film I’d like to see on the big screen. I love that there’s an underlying social message just like the old Godzilla flicks. At some level, Godzilla was a warning about the dangers of nuclear war. Monster Roll warns against the unbalance between what we kill and what we eat. Classic!

Although it doesn’t seem like there are solid plans to make this into an actual feature film, the more people see it and support, the more likely the team will be able to find a studio willing to fund it. I say let’s make this happen. We need more giant monster flick and this would make an excellent entry into the genre!

From: Monster Roll

David Lo Pan Style

Apparently, John Carpenter gets asked a lot of questions about doing a Big Trouble in Little China sequel (YES PLEASE). This year’s Screamfest in LA was no different. But instead of doing a Big Trouble Q&A, John Carpenter presented this amazing “Gangnam Style” parody, David Lo Pan Style.

If you haven’t seen Big Trouble in Little China, this probably won’t do anything for you. But for the rest of us, Just remember what ol’ Jack Burton does when the earth quakes, and the poison arrows fall from the sky, and the pillars of Heaven shake. Yeah, Jack Burton just looks that big ol’ storm right square in the eye and he says, “David Lo Pan style!”

Remix Week, The Last Dragon

I’m on vacation this week, so I’m sharing five movies or properties that I would actually support seeing rebooted/prequeled/sequeled/remixed. Next up, The Last Dragon.

This is one of my all time favorite martial arts flicks. What makes it so epic is Julius Carry’s performance as the main villain of the film, Sho’nuff, The Shogun of Harlem. Unfortunately, Julius Carry has passed on so a sequel starring him would be out of the question. But I would absolutely love to see the prequel story of Sho’nuff.

In the original film, he makes alludes to the fact that he’s returned to Harlem to reclaim his position as the baddest mofo around this town. Where has he been all this time? Did he go on a journal similar to the hero of the first film, Bruce Leroy, to attain the dreaded Red Glow? I would fucking love to see that. The Last Dragon tells us the typical kung fu story of a young, idealistic kid in search of the ultimate technique to save his family and community. But what about a not-so idealistic kid in search of something more sinister? I think Sho’nuff’s early journey is almost more interesting than the movie we got to see. We don’t have too many anti-hero kinds of kung fu movies. Sho’nuff would be perfect to fill that void.


I gotta ask, why has it taken this long for the RZA to come out with his own kung fu movie?

What’s really impressive is the multi-ethnic cast he’s assembled. This film is supposed to take place in ancient China, yet we’ve got a whole mess of non-Chinese running around and kicking the shit out of things. You don’t really see that in a lot of kung fu flicks. It looks like it’s going to be hysterically fun. I’ll be interested to see if we get cameos from the rest of the Clan as their alter egos. You know the GZA is just born to play a wise old monk who teaches someone to use the Liquid Swords. The Man With Iron Fists drops in December.


Entertainment Weekly has an exclusive trailer for Nickelodeon’s reboot of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

It’s pretty cute. I really like the turtle designs. I like Shredder with pop out claws. No April or Splinter which doesn’t mean that they won’t be there. I think April is kind of necessary as a viewpoint character to help the audience relate to the show. Overall, I think it’s going to be a fun little series.

However, the Turtles are far from teenagers. They first hit the scene in 1984, twenty-eight years ago in a time when ninjas were the shit. Ninjas these days aren’t so badass. Part of me is a little disappointed that it’s such a familiar reboot. I get it, it’s a show for kids just like the first show, but the comic book was anything but. It would be nice to see a more dark take on the Turtles in animated form or at least an older set of Turtles. Or hell, some new anthropomorphic thing because honestly, the Turtles are kinda played out.

I suppose it’s possible that this new show will indeed have a darker tone. Shredder definitely looks more lethal than any previous version. And Legend of Korra is a pretty dark show. I’m cautiously optimistic.

From: EW

ILLUMINATE Martial Arts Returns for a Limited Engagement

Wow, I can’t believe it’s been a year since we did this show.

A number of people missed our run during last year’s Fringe Festival and have asked if we’d ever perform again. So we’re bringing ILLUMINATE: A Martial Art Experience back for an extremely limited engagement. This Friday, we’ll be performing at National Geographic’s Samurai Exhibit after party. We’re actually headlining the event and will hit the stage at 11:30pm. The event is hosted by Brightest Young Things. There’s going to be some bands, other acts, food trucks, cupcakes, and us walking around doing martial arts things before we take the main stage. Tickets are available at the door or through the BYT website.

Saturday, June 30, we’ll be performing at Bishop McNamara High School. Whereas we only get twenty minutes with the National Geographic show, we’ll be doing our full set so if you want to see the karate rave at its full awesomeness level, this is the one to see. Doors open at 5:30 for a pre-show party where you can hang out with us, eat some snacks, drink some beer, and talk about your favorite martial arts flicks. We take the stage at 7:00. And when we’re all done, we’ll be heading out for food somewhere. It’s going to be an awesome night of martial arts goodness. Tickets are on sale now, $15 for adults, $10 for the kiddies.

Hope to see you there!

Everything is a Remix: The Matrix

I remember when The Matrix came out it praised for its unique vision and revolutionary filming techniques. Turns out it might not have been so unique after all. Some of the references were pretty obvious like the whole “white rabbit” bit. But I had no idea that the fight choreography was so heavily remixed. I guess in some ways, remixing the fights could make sense if you suppose that the resistance referenced old movies to learn different fighting styles. But it’s a truly fascinating look at just how recycled something that was once thought to be completely unique can be.

To further examine the remix culture, Everything is a Remix has a four part video series. Mind blown!

From: Everything is a Remix

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