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I didn’t know this: J.J. Perry choreographed HAYWIRE

undisputediiOtto S. kindly sent me this link to an interview with J.J. Perry, a veteran stuntman and the fight choreographer of UNDISPUTED II, BLOOD AND BONE and THE TOURNAMENT. The interview, on the blog of somebody named Doba Nevinosti, is pretty good and talks about Perry’s approach and his place in the new age of DTV action.

But I was most excited about it because Doba immediately asks about something I didn’t know about – Perry’s work with Steven Soderbergh on his upcoming action movie, HAYWIRE (it used to be called KNOCKOUT, but they changed it to HAYWIRE. Also they changed the entire premise from when they first announced it).Man, somebody better verify that this isn’t gonna be post-action style, because I’m getting more and more excited. It’s written by Lem Dobbs (THE LIMEY) and stars Gina Carano, “the face of women’s MMA.” I found this clip of Soderbergh talking about it before he filmed it. He talks about wanting the action to be realistic, but when asked about the BOURNE movies says that his would “have a very different aesthetic.” So hopefully that means what we think it might mean.

Carano must’ve already worked with Perry, because she has a little fight in BLOOD AND BONE. That’s on Youtube, but I’d rather point you to the DVD on that one because if you haven’t seen it yet you need to. Instead let me leave you with a Carano fight from EliteXC to give you an idea of how she fights:

http://youtu.be/66jUPjrtnMo

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.
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27 Responses to “I didn’t know this: J.J. Perry choreographed HAYWIRE”

  1. Ace Mac Ashbrook

    August 20th, 2010 at 3:32 am

    Can she act? I don’t remember her saying anything in Blood and bone. Still, should be good to see a girl who can actually fight in a film, instead of y’know, Angelina Jolie pretending to fight. I always get the impression that I could knock most “action actresses” out in one punch (if I was an asshole who hit women, which I am not). However, Gina Carano looks like she could beat the piss out of most of The Expendables.

  2. Ace Mac Ashbrook

    August 20th, 2010 at 3:39 am

    I also hope she never gets that Couture/cauliflower ear thing. She would struggle to pull that look off.

  3. Very Cool. In the wake of the Expendables this may be the perfect time for a film like this. I had no idea about it until I read it here, and I’m glad JJ “Loco” Perry is doing the fight choreography. He helped start the resurgence of Martial arts, at least for DTV, and it seems to be starting to spill over into mainstream film. Hope this continues. Gina Carano is also a pretty hot woman, so this can work. Don’t know about her acting chops, but her fight skills are undeniable.

    And yes. Blood and Bone was the shit.

  4. J.J. Perry is also responsible for the fight scenes in an upcoming film called “Warrior”, starring Nic Nolte and the guy
    from Bronson. It’s what stopped him from working on Undisputed III and he hand-picked Larnel Stoval to be his replacement.

    I don’t know if any of you guys have seen this, but there’s a web series called Angel of Death, starring
    Zoe Bell as a brain-damaged assassin. It some cracking good fights, choreographed by Ron Yuan, which
    make you really believe she can take on guys nearly twice her size. You can find some of the episodes on Youtube.

  5. @MikeOutWest – They put ’em all on dvd as well, you can get it through Netflix. They ran it as a full movie on Spike sometime back too.

  6. Jareth Cutestory

    August 20th, 2010 at 8:36 am

    Soderbergh has a gift for getting good performances from unexpected people: Sasha Grey, Julia Roberts, Frazier’s brother, Mulder, himself. Even his failures are pretty interesting.

  7. I was gonna say the same thing, Jareth. I would also like to add to the list Jennifer Lopez (OUT OF SIGHT) and a lady he found managing a KFC (BUBBLE).

  8. Before Blood and Bone, I saw her helping to assist girls in training for Muay Thai bouts on a show called Fight Girls. She comes off very well on camera naturally so I’m sure she has a good starting point for acting.

  9. Carano had two words in “Blood and Bone”. But they were very, very well-used words. One of my favorite moments in that film actually (I have a LOT of favorite moments in that film. Totally echo what Vern’s said, if you haven’t seen it then do so, it’s ridiculous that that film is as good as it is.)

    As for “Haywire”, I think this could work very well, if Carano has the acting chops that Zoe Bell had in “Death Proof”. (A film that I had a weird reaction to. The first group of girls in it just bored me – I didn’t believe their characters, I didn’t think they were particularly well-written, I thought their dialogue seemed overly stylised. But then when Zoe Bell and her cadre came on, I thought the film came to life and worked brilliantly. The “weird” thing about the reaction is that if you put the acting chops and experience of the first group of girls – which includes Rosario Dawson and Rose McGowan – alongside the second group, whose only real “name” is Mary Elizabeth Winstead [who plays a fairly minor role in it], you’d think that the first group would easily overshadow the second one. Not the case IMO.)

  10. Rosario Dawson was in the second group of girls.

  11. Fuck, I thought she played Jungle Julia. Whoooops.

  12. Anyway, point stands. Zoe Bell, the stuntwoman, played probably the most memorable character in the film (apart from Stuntman Mike of course). Hopefully Carano can replicate this feat.

  13. Vern, go see Piranha 3D.

  14. @ Paul: As a fellow Kiwi I just couldn’t stand Zoe Bell in Death Proof. I just couldn’t get past her accent … it just somehow didn’t mesh with the rest of the film (or actresses – but maybe that was the point?). Maybe that cringe factor is only there for other Kiwis, I dunno. I do know none of my mates can handle Zoe in it either.

    I so wanted to love Death Proof because Kurt Russell is an icon for me, Big Trouble in Little China being one of my all time favourite films, and his turn as a creepy-as-fuck-John-Wayne-bad-Motherfucker in Death Proof was awesome, but undermined by all the stupid bitch talk, and compounded by Zoe Bell’s accent and lack of experience acting…

    Anyways … There’s my rant for the morning.

    Oh and has anyone seen ‘The Tournament’? It’s linked to in the interview. Looks stupid as fuck, but the action looks great.

  15. Larry – Zoe Bell is great in Angel of Death, even though she makes no attempt at changing her accent. As for The Tournament, you’ll find Vern’s review here somewhere. Yes, it’s a bit silly and Robert Carlisle looks completely lost in it, but the action is first class, especially the shootout on the bus at the end.
    And Ving Rhames has never looked as dangerous since playing Marcelus Wallace.

  16. boy, it sure has been slow on Vern’s site these past few days

  17. Ace Mac Ashbrook

    August 23rd, 2010 at 6:37 am

    After the intense work he put in during the build up to The Expendables, he probably needs to let his finger prints grow back from the relentless typing. Guess vern does not heal as fast as Wolverine.

  18. Jareth Cutestory

    August 23rd, 2010 at 8:06 am

    Griff: Maybe, after SCOTT PILGRIM, Vern decided to further explore “clique” movies and watched that Insane Clown Posse flick that just came out. A year from now footage will be found of Vern’s attempt to come to terms with the film in the form of a video diary.

    Or maybe he just has to earn a living. Actually, that begs a question: if I buy anything from Amazon.com using Vern’s widget, does he get a percentage, or is he only rewarded if I buy the specific items on his list? I’ve been buying all sorts of shit using his portal into Amazon. I hope he sees some cash from that.

  19. Jareth – are you buying from the American site? If there’s a way to get into amazon.ca through the portal I can’t figure out how. Of course there’s nothing stopping me from shopping on the American site (better selection) other than customs…

  20. Gwai Lo: I’ve been shopping through the American site; they’re often cheaper and faster than the Canadian site, though, like you say, the shipping can be expensive.

    Did you take a look at page nine in Vern’s Recommendations for Badass Scholars Amazon page? If I ever become a pimp, I’m totally going to buy that fur coat for my bottom bitch. And maybe a Segway, if only to see how much commission Vern gets.

  21. I’m pretty sure that Vern gets a slice of anything you buy after you go through the magic portal whether it’s on his list or not.

  22. Thanks, heimp. That’s what I was hoping.

    Buy yourself something pretty, Vern. Like nunchucks. Amazon sells nunchucks.

  23. Larry – all I can say is that I lived with a couple of Kiwis for two years and didn’t notice Bell’s accent being bad. But I guess it’s different when you live there. Sorry it kinda spoilt the movie for you.

    Jareth – I don’t want to be the guy who says “Santa doesn’t exist” to five-year-olds, but nunchuks are severely overrated. Matter of fact, they’re the kiss of death for pretty much any martial arts movie that features them. I gave up on nunchuks when the producers of the “special edition” of “Enter the Dragon” pulled that shit with the famous “deleted Nunchuk scene”, AKA thirty seconds of Bruce Lee posturing that was right to be edited out of the movie in the first place.

    Vern, get yourself some tong fa.** You can’t go wrong with those.

    Come to think of it… you know what the difference between tong fa and nunchuks are? Nunchuks are put in movies to look cool, and because every martial arts movie has to have a nunchuk scene, right? Tong fa are put in movies because they make fucking awesome action scenes.

    Plus, tong fa fight scenes are pretty damn rare. Nunchuks? Just look on youtube. Hundreds of videos of men severely damaging their chance of ever reproducing. How many videos do you see of men hitting themselves in the golden baldies with tong fa? Maybe two. That’s called scarcity value. If your clothes were made entirely out of fine diamonds and your jewellery was nothing but black leather and men’s chest fur, rather than the other way around (as they actually are), which do YOU think would be “worth” more?

    You know, in “Last Ninja 2”, a very very very old videogame that I used to play, you could make nunchuks out of two toilet handles on chains. If that doesn’t illustrate my point, I don’t know what will.

    You know what? FUCK nunchuks. They’re common as shit but everyone thinks they’re “cool”. They’re like the Vanilla Ice of the ninja world. (Tong fa are Ice Fucking Cube, okay?)

    Goddamned nunchuks.

    Ok, glad I got that out. It’s been cathartic.

    (**This rant was sponsored by Tokyo Tong Fa – Tong Fa for every situation. From fighting off muggers to battling the unleashed hordes of the underworld, we have a Tong Fa to suit your needs.)

  24. Come to think of it:

    http://taijitongfa.com/

    You know you want to.

  25. Thanks Jareth. I figure with the dollar at (close to) parity that there are probably a few things that would still be cheaper to order through .com than .ca, the prices are usually that much lower that even with duty at the border you may end up saving. A lot of the time figuring this out involves math though, so…

  26. Jareth Cutestory

    August 23rd, 2010 at 3:06 pm

    Gwai Lo: Figures the guy with the HAL avatar would be down on math. It was a math-related breakdown that got Dave tossed into space, wasn’t it?

    Paul: Tong fa are awesome. But I won’t consider nunchuks over-used in movies until I see an actual nun use them. Are you also tired of those triple nunchuk staffs?

    My favorite weapon in kung fu movies is the Sliding Chair That Doesn’t Fall Over.

  27. I liked the first nunchucks scene in BLACK DYNAMITE. You know, the one in the pool hall. BD looks like he’s scared of hitting himself in the eye through much of the scene.

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