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Posts Tagged ‘Stirling Silliphant’

Catch the Heat

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2020

Have you ever noticed what a hell of year 1987 was for action movies? Not only did it give us several stone cold unimpeachable classics, but most of them have a distinct, super-charged, roided out, larger-than-life 1987ness to them that could only really happen at that moment on the verge of ’80s excess sugar crash, between everybody wanting to be RAMBO: FIRST BLOOD PART II and everybody wanting to be DIE HARD. We had PREDATOR, ROBOCOP, LETHAL WEAPON and EASTERN CONDORS. And also we had THE RUNNING MAN, STEEL DAWN, WANTED: DEAD OR ALIVE, AMERICAN NINJA 2, STEELE JUSTICE and MIAMI CONNECTION. Some day, after finishing some other passion projects, I’d love to write a book just reviewing all the action movies of 1987. Get the Pulitzer ready.

So whenever I come across something that seems like maybe I should see it and then I realize it was released in 1987, that moves it up the list. And I found this one that, while I’m not sure it’s on par with most of the movies on that list, it wouldn’t be too out of place either. It’s a special movie because it’s the only action vehicle for a unique talent named Tiana Alexandra, who was reportedly the first female student of Bruce Lee as well as the first Vietnamese-American to join SAG. She was in THE KILLER ELITE and then the mini-series PEARL and a couple other movies, but this is a full-on showcase for her talents written by her husband Stirling Silliphant, Academy Award winning writer of IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT, as well as student and friend of Bruce Lee who wrote him into the show Longstreet and the movie  MARLOWE and concocted what became CIRCLE OF IRON with him. (He’s also the writer of VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED, SHAFT IN AFRICA, THE ENFORCER, and yes, 1987’s OVER THE TOP). (read the rest of this shit…)

Over the Top

Friday, August 13th, 2010

tn_overthetopcountdownlogoWrestling – and I’m talking about real deal wrestling, like Greco-Roman and freestyle wrestling, not WWE – is a sport of skill and stamina as well as strength. It’s a series of offenses and defenses, attacks and responses, takedowns, holds and escapes. Strength and size are a huge advantage, but they’re not everything. A great wrestler always has to know how to find an opening to control his opponent and also how to slip away when he’s made a mistake. It can look like two brutes rolling around on the ground, but at times it can be as much of a battle of wits as a chess game. The winning wrestler has to perform the correct sequence of moves, and perform them well, to get the other guy where he wants him for the win.

Also there is arm wrestling. (read the rest of this shit…)

Marlowe

Thursday, April 15th, 2010

tn_marloweMARLOWE is a 1969 adaptation of the Raymond Chandler story “The Little Sister” that is still not available on the DVD now available as a Warner Archive DVD. James Garner plays Philip Marlowe, as much of a wiseass as ever, but it’s a little weird because he’s a character so associated with the ’40s, and here he is in a Summer of Love era Los Angeles where the gangsters and movie stars mingle with hippies. Marlowe still wears a fedora sometimes, but he doesn’t act too retro. He fits in. And I mean he enjoys the ladies, so that’s compatible with the times. Free love and all that. (read the rest of this shit…)

Circle of Iron

Tuesday, August 31st, 2004

What if I were to tell you that there was a movie based on a story by Bruce Lee (sort of based on his zen philosophy), starring David Carradine (in multiple roles) but also featuring Christopher Lee, Roddy McDowall and Eli Wallach? And maybe I would also say it takes place in a fantasy world and Carradine plays a flute that he also uses for a weapon, and let’s say that my man James Coburn – well, he’s not in it as an actor, but being a student of Bruce Lee maybe he helped write the story. And then the screenplay was written by Sterling Silophant who wrote THE TOWERING INFERNO and crap like that. But then the director was some guy named Richard Moore who only directed that one movie. But he was cinematographer for THE STONE KILLER with Charles Bronson. But also ANNIE.

Well let’s take the gloves off, you can forget about “what if” and come down to the world of reality because I’m about to tell you that I just saw EXACTLY THAT movie described above. (see above.) CIRCLE OF IRON starts out with a corny statement about Bruce Lee before going into a MORTAL KOMBAT type competition where half naked white dudes with mustaches do karate against each other as some type of a test. (read the rest of this shit…)