Friday, 29 August 2014

Tiger Joe


TIGER JOE (1982)

Directed by: Antonio Margheriti
Written by: Tito Carpi, Gianfranco Couyoumdjian (story)
Starring: David Warbeck, Annie Belle, Tony King, Luciano Pigozzi

While not quite reaching the giddy heights of Margheriti and Warbeck’s previous jungle action film, The Last Hunter, Tiger Joe is nevertheless a fun and action soaked jungle caper. Warbeck is at his charismatic best playing a pilot holed up in Southeast Asia running guns for groups of rebels. On his latest gun run, Warbeck is shot down over enemy territory and seemingly left for dead. However, handy with an M16 and happening upon and joining forces with a foxy female freedom fighter, Belle, he begins his mission back to safety mowing down as many evil jungle soldiers as possible. Meanwhile, his buddies back at the airfield mount their own rescue mission, bugger it up royally and join Warbeck and Belle for an all out guns blazing dash to safety. 


Nicely shot in Philippine locations, Tiger Joe is some cool jungle action based fun featuring many scenes of machine gun blistering action, a few explosions, some nifty jungle traps and even an exploding train at one point! Fast and furious in the action department, Tiger Joe rarely slows down, features some witty banter between Warbeck and his buddies (not to mention a fair bit of un-PC banter: the poor larger man of the group being reminded how fat he is during every conversation he has with someone!) and has a tough as nails female character who holds her own in the M16 bullet spraying department. Belle is a refreshing character in the jungle warfare genre, getting to kick ass as much as the guys and shares good chemistry with Warbeck, the duo proving to be a ferocious fighting force.

While it’s not as crazy awesome as The Last Hunter and  the likes of Margheriti’s other jungle based action films featuring Lewis Collins, Commando Leopard and Codename: Wildgeese, Tiger Joe is still an entertaining entry in the 80s Italian jungle action stakes and is buoyed by the gun-toting, wisecracking and always watchable David Warbeck.

Also, check out the review over at Comeuppance Reviews

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Cy-Warrior


CY-WARRIOR (1989)

Directed by: Gianetto Di Rossi
Written by: Gianetto Di Rossi & Dardano Sacchetti
Starring: Frank Zagarino, Henry Silva & Sherrie Rose

This late 80s Italian Terminator rip-off stars the great Frank Zagarino as a newly produced cyborg, known as Cy-W, who happens to escape the ship he’s being transported on and ends up in a sunny Florida town. This displeases the company that have produced him and they send whack-job Henry Silva and his endless supply of goons after him. Silva, who is most definitely severely unhinged, wants nothing more than to track down and annihilate Cy-W. In fact, his sole reason for existing appears to be in order to hunt and kill runaway cyborgs! So, what we get then is 80s minutes or so of insanely fun Italian cyborg hunting, gun blazing action. Err, no, not really. There is a bit of gun blazing action and a few explosions but Cy-Warrior instead focuses on that well known destroyer of all things awesome, cool and action packed: the annoying kid character. Zagarino’s cyborg spends much of his time bonding with an  annoying moppet who finds him in the forest, takes him home, introduces him to his foxy older sister and the pair then spend most of the rest of the runtime teaching Cy-W how to be more human and adjust to late 80s life and ridiculous fashions! Yay. 


Which is unfortunate considering this is a 80s Italian sci-fi action flick starring B-movies heavyweights Zagarino and Silva and has a mind blowing cover as seen above. Instead we get a lot of lame, though slightly amusing, scenes of Zagarino’s bot-guy learning to eat cheeseburgers, trying out the new fashions and even learning, in one cringe inducing moment, to dance as he discovers what it is to be, you know, human. Between all that and the irritating know-it-all kid, one begins to wonder if Cy-W will ever get down to kicking some ass. Thankfully he does, as Silva’s persistent bad guy just won’t leave him alone and thankfully comes a calling armed with his goon squad and a giant bazooka, where he lays waste to the local Harvest Festival where good ole Cy-W was learning to dance!

It’s a showstopper of a scene, and wakes one out of the robot-makes-friends-with-local-boy fugue they’ve been trapped in for the last hour or so. Silva also ratchets up the crazy by barking out the phrases “God Damn” and “Son of a Bitch” like they are going out of fashion (seriously, have a drink every time he utters one of them and you’ll be blind drunk within 3 and a half minutes!). There is also a bit of a giggle factor to be had at the over-the-top mechanical noise made every time (and I mean, EVERY TIME!) Zagarino moves his head which then bizarrely disappears part way through the film (probably because the foley artist couldn’t take it anymore!) and there is at least a bit of decent action come the final third to make all the silly cyborg assimilates to society shenanigans worth sitting through.


Not the best from the golden era of Italian trash cinema (and Zagarino would go on to better cyborg action fun in the Shadowchaser franchise) but worth a look for trash film and cyborg enthusiasts and for anyone who wants to get drunk quickly by playing the he said Son of a Bitch game!

Friday, 22 August 2014

Warrior King 2 (aka Tom Yum Goong 2)


Check out my new review of Warrior King 2 over at Blueprint Review.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Special ID


Check out my new review of Special ID over at Far East Films.

Dog


Check out my new review of Dog over at Far East Films.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

24 Hours to Midnight


24 HOURS TO MIDNIGHT (1985)

Written & Directed by: Leo Fong
Starring: Bernie Pock, Myra, Stack Pierce & Cynthia Rothrock (sort of!)

24 Hours to Midnight is just as mad, bad and rad as its title. Ok, maybe not so rad but definitely mad and also, unfortunately, quite bad. Often credited as action starlet Cynthia Rothrock’s first movie appearance (I don’t know for definite that it is but certainly could be considering when it was made and she is in it for all of 4 minutes!), 24 Hours to Midnight is also an early offering from onetime martial arts movie machine Leo Fong (Low Blow, Killpoint). Rothrock appears briefly as the wife of a slain informant who was going to testify against local mob boss ‘White Powder’ Chan (yes, that is his actual name!) and then vows revenge, using her martial arts and ninja skills to take out Chan and his clan. When the bodies start piling up cops, and all-round walking wardrobe disasters, McQueen (Price) and Jackson (Myra) are soon hot on the trail. Will Rothrock complete her mission of vengeance? Will the cops figure out what is going on first? Who really is that in the ninja outfit? Will anything at any point in this movie make sense?

The answer to that last question would be no. As while Rothrock is the main attraction here and the thrust of the story seems to be about her seeking revenge dressed as a ninja, she only appears in a few brief scenes early on and the person dressed as the vengeance gunning ninja, is, well, not Rothrock. Hell, her voice ain’t even her own: it belonging to B-movie queen Brinke Stevens. Apparently leaving the film early on due to some disagreement or another, Rothrock only shot a couple of scenes and the rest was used filming a double. Which would be fine, if the double looked anything liked her. This leads to a lot of unintentional hilarity, a lot of confusion and one gratuitous breast shot (again, not Rothrocks!). Fortunately she does get a couple of quick fights scenes and despite the often nonsensical and very low budget nature of the film, Fong at least packs in a lot of fights and shoot-outs.

B-movie and TV actor (and one time professional baseball player!) Stack Pierce and once prolific stunt man Bernie Pock (Die Hard, Freejack, Class of 1999 Part 2) are also on hand to elevate the B-movie awesomeness but 24 Hours to Midnight is perhaps for Rothrock completists only, proof (once again) that you really could make anything in the 80s and testimony that a film like this should only be watched with a group of likewise B-movie aficionados (and alcohol) and not by ones-self: like I did, which was a big mistake! I should have learnt by now.  



Tuesday, 12 August 2014

on Twitter


Cool Target
is now, finally, on Twitter:

@cool2target

Hoping to do regular updates on all the amazingly awesome and awful action movies out there as life and other commitments keep getting in the way of new review posts (though there will still be some of those as well). Follow me...if you want to!


Thursday, 7 August 2014

A Certain Justice


Check out my new review of A Certain Justice over at Blueprint Review.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Weekend of Trash


I met up again with a couple of the guys from Blueprint Review for another weekend of non-stop B-movie madness. We managed to get through an abundance of low budget insanity including LA Crackdown 2, Mind Killer, Foxy Brown, the classic In The Mouth of Madness and the awesome, awesome Nam Angels

Check out the write up.

Monday, 4 August 2014

Painted Skin 2: The Resurrection


Check out my new review of Painted Skin 2: The Resurrection over at Far East Films.