Posts Tagged ‘Olivier Gruner’
Monday, March 21st, 2022
Would you believe I’d never seen NEMESIS (1992) before? I’d heard claims it was one of the better movies for director Albert Pyun and/or star Olivier Gruner, but I didn’t get around to it until now. From the cover I always thought it was gonna be kind of a TERMINATOR knock off, so I was very surprised and impressed when it opened seeming more like BLADE RUNNER in the style of THE KILLER.
It starts in Los Angeles, 2027 A.D., which does not look overly futuristic, but is covered in an eerie orangy brown haze. Alex Rain (Gruner, who had only been in ANGEL TOWN) is in a hotel for a liaison with a woman, but then he shoots her in the head, revealing a bunch of wires and electrodes. “God damn cop,” she says. “God damn terrorist” he replies. Though he very poorly delivers a one-liner to her exploded head, he looks very cool when he walks out of the hotel with a Chow Yun Fat style tie-overcoat-and-sunglasses look, passing a bunch of people in the hallway who take a minute to figure out he’s the cop who shot their friend. But then they follow him. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Albert Pyun, Branscombe Richmond, Brion James, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, cyberpunk, Deborah Shelton, Jackie Earle Haley, Jennifer Gatti, Marjean Holden, Marjorie Monaghan, Olivier Gruner, Sneaky Pete Kleinow, Sven-Ole Thorsen, Thomas Jane, Tim Thomerson, Yuji Okumoto
Posted in Reviews | 22 Comments »
Thursday, January 25th, 2018
SHOWDOWN IN MANILA is the latest from Alexander Nevsky, the Russian bodybuilder turned b-movie actor who starred in and directed BLACK ROSE. This one is the directing debut of Mark Dacascos and it’s much more fun and ambitious than that last one, largely due to an EXPENDABLES-worthy cast of action icons.
Nevsky plays Nick Peyton, the leader of some sort of elite police strikeforce thing in Manila. In the prologue he leads a police raid and his whole team are wearing those giant helmets like in THE RAID – except for him, even though he’s 1-3 heads taller than all of them. Standing there ready to take it like a lightning rod. He doesn’t get shot in the head, but does get shot and fails to apprehend two ultimate b-action bad guys: Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (L.A. TAKEDOWN, KICKBOXER 2, SHOWDOWN IN LITTLE TOKYO, MORTAL KOMBAT, BRIDGE OF DRAGONS) and Matthias Hues (NO RETREAT NO SURRENDER 2, I COME IN PEACE, BLACKBELT, MISSION OF JUSTICE, TALONS OF THE EAGLE, TC 2000). C-HT in particular looks like he’s enjoying the hell out of just strutting around in tropical gangster clothes being arrogant.
(read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Alexander Nevsky, Andrzej Bartkowiak, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Casper Van Dien, Craig Hamman, Cynthia Rothrock, Dmitriy Dyuzhev, Don "The Dragon" Wilson, Mark Dacascos, Matthias Hues, Olivier Gruner, Tia Carrere
Posted in Action, Reviews | 11 Comments »
Monday, November 2nd, 2015
“Jacques, as long as I’ve known you you’ve been in deep shit. I expect this.”
Even though I have this weird feeling that French kickboxing champion turned VHS-era action icon Olivier Gruner doesn’t like me, I’m open to watching his movies. I actually didn’t realize while watching it that ANGEL TOWN was his debut, but it makes sense. This is his L.A. gang movie, which came out after COLORS but before BOYZ N THE HOOD or MENACE II SOCIETY (or New York movies like NEW JACK CITY and JUICE). And I’m not saying it’s as good as any of those, but it’s a fun b-action take on the subject, and it makes a decent argument for why Gruner should be in movies.
He plays Jacques, a Frenchman renting a room in a gang neighborhood while attending graduate school in East L.A. He ends up there because he gets into town late and all the student housing is filled up, but also we learn he was born in a French ghetto and lived in one in Hong Kong too. It’s not relevant, but I want to mention why he’s late to school: when he was about to leave he went to visit his father’s grave and then his girlfriend showed up distraught that he was leaving and she took off her fur coat and she was naked so he fucked her right there on his father’s grave. And that must’ve taken a couple days, I don’t know. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: East L.A., Frank Aragon, gangs, graduate school, Mark Dacascos, Mike Moroff, Olivier Gruner, Peter Kwong, Theresa Saldana
Posted in Action, Martial Arts, Reviews | 2 Comments »
Thursday, August 7th, 2014
“A mercenary that gives a fuck. Great.”
Sometimes I watch a movie that’s hard to even squeeze a review out of. I could do a consumer reports type deal telling you the plot and that it’s boring and mediocre, but I wouldn’t have much of the ol’ insight to offer. Usually if I feel that way I just don’t bother writing anything. This one is borderline, but I’m gonna try to tough it out because I consider it historically important: it’s the directorial debut of Olivier Gruner.
Ah shit, now I looked it up and this is his third movie as a director. So it’s not even a milestone or anything. Why did I watch the whole thing?
(read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: DTV, Eric Roberts, Olivier Gruner
Posted in Action, Reviews | 29 Comments »
Wednesday, April 18th, 2012
Isaac Florentine’s third movie (after FAREWELL TERMINATOR and DESERT KICKBOXER) is a western starring Olivier Gruner as Joseph Charlegrand, a Frenchman trailing somebody through the American west. The box claims it’s a true story, but the internet disagrees.
In the grand spaghetti tradition, Charlegrand is a mysterious stranger wandering through the desert on his horse. Some cowboy assholes knock him off his horse and he drops his gun, so he busts out the kickboxing. They know all about punching, of course, but this shit blows their minds. It’s like he came down from space. (read the rest of this shit…)
Tags: Donald Gibb, Isaac Florentine, James Brolin, Marc Singer, martial arts western, Olivier Gruner, R. Lee Ermey, savate
Posted in Action, Martial Arts, Reviews, Western | 24 Comments »