Tag Archive: jason statham


Earlier this year Jackie Chan decided to announce that he would be quitting action movies; this appears to be nothing more than a lie. At a press conference in Kuala Lumpur for his latest release Chinese Zodiac he confirmed his involvement in The Expendables 3.

“Sly had invited me to be in ‘Expendables 2‘ but I was too busy filming ‘CZ12‘ and couldn’t make a commitment to the film. But he did extend his invitation to the third movie, which I agreed on the condition that I will be appearing as more than just a minor role with a few scenes,” which is brilliant news! Chan also said that he asked Stallone if the third installment of the action packed franchise could be more of a buddy-buddy movie which means that Sylvester Stallone and Jackie Chan could be a sort of hero and sidekick team in the next film with Jason Statham and the rest taking a bit of a backseat.

I can’t wait to see Jackie Chan join the rest of the action heavyweights on the big screen. I would love to see a big fight scene between Jackie Chan and Jason Statham, or Chan taking on Jet Li. The fans of these films would love to see fight scenes like these!

And another brilliant series that Jackie Chan has involvement with is, of course, Rush Hour and Chan also updated everyone on the film that the world wants: Rush Hour 4. Apparently a script has been written and Chris Tucker is looking over it as we speak. However, Chan has stated it wasn’t written with any intention to be a Rush Hour 4, it is just a buddy cop movie but Chan thought that if Tucker would get on board then it would make a perfect next chapter for one of the most fun trilogies out there!

But Chan has said that if Chris Tucker turns it down then he will look for another actor to star alongside him and it could just be the start of another buddy cop trilogy.

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UK Release Date: 25th January 2013

Stars: Taylor Hackford (director), Jason Statham, Jennifer Lopez, Michael Chiklis, Nick Nolte, Wendell Pierce

Plot: A thief with a unique code of professional ethics is double-crossed by his crew and left for dead. Assuming a new disguise and forming an unlikely alliance with a woman on the inside, he looks to hijack the score of the crew’s latest heist.

Jason Statham’s career over the past few years has been a little bit hit and miss; The Expendables and Safe went down pretty well whereas Crank 2 and Blitz just haven’t particularly impressed a lot of people. Couple this with the fact that Jennifer Lopez is in this film (and she is an atrocious actress) then you may not want to see Parker. But watching the trailer you can tell that this is Jason Statham at his finest; wise-cracking, ass kicking and he is even a good actor!

There are things throughout this trailer that would interest the real Statham fans and fans of the action genre in general. I love watching Jason Statham films and I love seeing his fight scenes as they are some of the best around in modern films in my opinion. In a time where films are full of CGI and actors just fighting made up creations of animators it is refreshing to see Statham going hand to hand with foes.

Whilst obviously Parker will be nothing special in the broad spectrum of films it will be an hour and a half of fun and that is guaranteed. There are some humorous lines through the trailer although “I always follow through” sounds more like a bad case of diarrhoea than something that would strike fear into the heart of enemies.

 

With The Expendables 2 being released in a couple of weeks I decided that I would watch the first film in preparation. Here’s what I thought of it:

The Expendables is about a team of mercenaries who are given the assignment to take out a corrupt military leader and a rogue CIA operative on a Latin American island. Sylvester Stallone writes and directs the piece which brings together the greatest action heroes of the 80s and 90s (Stallone, Dolph Lundgren, Mickey Rourke, Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger), action stars of recent years (Jason Statham, Jet Li, Randy Couture, Steve Austin), Julia Roberts’ cousin (Eric Roberts) and the hilarious former NFL player Terry Crews. There’s something in the cast to please everyone and just from looking at it you know that it’s a film that is going to pride itself on its action scenes rather than the terrific acting abilities of the cast.

The film, for a return to the old school action movies, takes off on a rather slow start and those hoping for a really memorable entrance from the super team of mercenaries are in for a disappointment. While it is a good way to introduce the abilities and comradery among The Expendables it could have been a lot bigger and better and I thought that’s what Stallone would be going for. It seems as though in trying to get us to like the characters and understand the friendships there the dialogue has been crammed full with what are attempts at wise-cracks and friendly banter which fall a little loose and don’t really have any effect. However, if you can wait half an hour for the story to take off then you are in for a great treat.

There is something incredibly satisfying when you have waited to see Jason Statham fighting to see him finally let loose and take down several bad guys at one time; whether they are a match for him or not. Statham is fantastic and his fight scenes are so well choreographed they look like a work of art, he fights with so much style and finesse it’s incredible. Saying that though, each of the actors in the film have their own moment of fame as Stallone looks to share out the glory among the cast, whether its as simple as Rourke throwing an incredibly accurate knife, Stallone winning the girl or Terry Crews shooting through like twenty people at once and loving every second of it.

The Expendables, it may surprise you to hear, is not exactly a mind bender. It doesn’t challenge the audience or push the boundaries of the action genre; what The Expendables is is a celebration of the action genre and a very stereotypical one at that… right from the hero getting the girl, the girl serving little to no purpose and even the stereotypical name of Jet Li’s character, Yin Yang. But the action is second to none, there are great fight scenes, big explosions and a lot of fun to be had watching.

My Rating: 6/10.

The three biggest action stars in the world… ever.

During the eighties and nineties the action genre was the place to be and many action stars were born. Bruce Willis, Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Steven Seagal and Dolph Lundgren all made careers out of being action heroes. Their films were, most of the time, nothing more than a simple storyline where a hero just got to kick ass and the audience would have fun cheering the hero on while he did so, eg. Die Hard, Rambo. Nowadays you won’t really find that among the big Hollywood films, the genre has evolved over time and action films seemed to get more serious, genres started to merge and the days of the real action genre and action heroes are behind us, I think.

While people like the actors mentioned above are still making films I do believe that the only real action hero we have left is the English born Jason Statham. He is most famous for the Transporter trilogy and his films continue to get a cinema release whereas the likes of Lundgren, Seagal and Jean Claude Van Damme do not, so why is this? I think it is because Statham does have a real talent for acting whereas a lot of action heroes are just there because of their size and physique; Statham has shown before he can manage the acting as well as the action, he seems like a really nice guy which audiences always like and he is still relatively new in his career, having only started out in 1998. It’s been 14 years sure, but actors these days go for a lot longer than that!

The Expendables 2 is coming out later this year and back in 2010 we saw a return to the sole action genre with the original film directed and written by Sylvester Stallone himself. The idea was to bring together a great ensemble cast of action heroes to bring the genre back to the forefront of blockbuster cinema. The cast included Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren as well as a scene that features three stars synonymous with the action genre: Stallone, Schwarzenegger and Willis. The sequel retains this cast and expands with Van Damme and Chuck Norris. The idea to revive the big action block buster was a good one in theory and went down well with fans as the film opened to huge commercial success across the globe but critics were less favourable as the film received mixed to negative reviews. Despite this, a third film is rumoured to happen and Steven Seagal says he has been offered a part. But it does seem as though the only way to get a big action film back on the big screen is to bring together an ensemble, otherwise audiences are not going to be grabbed.

Asian cinema still features a lot of action films and the very successful The Raid (originally titled Serbuan Maut) was even released in British cinemas earlier this year and went down very well with critics so maybe it is just Hollywood that can’t get it right? I suppose that the nearest thing we have to a pure action film these days is the Fast & Furious franchise but you could hardly say that Paul Walker is an action hero or that even Vin Diesel is (come on, he was in The Pacifier) no matter how much he really likes to think he is himself. The Bourne films are marketed as action films and I guess they could be described as such but this is still an evolution from real action films as it features more in crime and even political genres, however the action does feature a lot. And Matt Damon would not consider himself an action hero I don’t think. Liam Neeson isn’t particularly an action hero yet his film Taken is probably the most successful action movie of recent times and is the only really really good one that I can think of right now.

I would argue that the nearest thing we have to real action films now are the superhero movies. The action heroes have been replaced with those of the comic book world as they appear on the big screen and clearly define the theme of good versus evil and the hero goes on to kick some ass very much like Rambo, John McClane or Frank Martin would do. All the time, trying to keep it fun for audiences.

Over time all genres do evolve as audiences crave something new, something that will break boundaries or challenge them to put the pieces together themselves but I, for one, would like to see more old school action films being made. But none of these rubbish straight to DVD films, I want real action blockbusters with real action heroes in them. All it will take is for one new action hero to step out of the shadows and then a flurry of them will follow as it did for he superhero movies and for the fairy tale films too. So whoever he is, he better step up quick.

He's so happy!

There are some actors who work incredibly hard but never reap the rewards that Brad Pitt or George Clooney do; there are some actors who appear in a lot of films but not many people would know who they were. If you enjoy films, especially those directed by Guy Ritchie or Matthew Vaughn, then you will know the face of Jason Flemyng.

Flemyng boasts a wide variety of films in his back catalogue: gangster flicks, comic book movies, big budget blockbusters, small budget indies but interestingly, Flemyng continues to return to his television roots despite, by many people’s opinion, making it as a film star.

Lock, Stock: Flemyng's big break.

In 1994, Flemyng made his first film appearance after dropping in on a number of television series. This film was a version of The Jungle Book, but it was four years later that he got his big break in Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, directed by Guy Ritchie and produced by Matthew Vaughn. Ritchie then went on to direct Flemyng again in Snatch.

In the early 2000s Flemyng made a transition to big budget Hollywood films. The two notable films of this time are From Hell, alongside Johnny Depp, and unfortunately the heavily criticised League of Extraordinary Gentlemen where he starred with Sean Connery.

The fun that Jason Flemyng had with Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels‘ co-star Jason Statham led to Flemyng being cast in action sequel Transporter 2. The relationships that Flemyng has forged in the movie industry are clearly important to him as he continued to work with Ritchie, Statham and Vaughn on more than one occasion.

Helping to reboot the X-men franchise

Matthew Vaughn has described Flemyng as his ‘lucky charm’ and this is why Flemyng features in most of Vaughn’s films, whether Vaughn is producing or directing. The partnership formed on Lock Stock has seen Flemyng given roles, however big or small, in Snatch, Mean Machine, Layer Cake, Stardust, Kick-Ass and a brilliant role in X-men: First Class as teleporting mutant Azazel. This is a role Flemyng will more than likely return for, especially as Vaughn is once again signed on to direct.

Jason Flemyng’s work has not gone ignored by others in the industry and he has appeared in several other films such as Soloman Kane, Clash of the Titans, Ironclad, the critically acclaimed The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and even an uncredited appearance in The Social Network.

With such a wide range of films to his name it is almost impossible to avoid Flemyng’s work. He is a really really good British star who doesn’t get half the recognition that he deserves. No matter what role he plays, big or small, Jason Flemyng gives it his all.

 

Chris Evans is probably one of my favourite actors at the minute, not necessarily because he is a brilliant actor because he is far from the best, but he brings with him to every role a huge amount of enthusiasm and fun which helps the audience no end. I have never seen him put in a bad performance in a film and he is fast becoming one of the go to guys for an action film in Hollywood.

Evans made his action debut in 2000 and has since gone on to appear in over twenty films to date. After making his film debut in The Newcomers, Chris Evans was given a starring role on television series Opposite Sex, alongside Milo Ventimiglia. The show ran for just one series.

After the series ended Evans appeared in comedy Not Another Teen Movie. Once he was finished filming that he began to work on a couple more films: The Perfect Score and Cellular, both of which were released in 2004. Cellular, in my opinion, was a great action film, it was fast paced, it had a great cast pitching Chris Evans against action heavyweight Jason Statham. This is one of my favourite performances from Evans as he manages to combine humour and action greatly!

Evans 'flames on' for Fantastic Four.

In 2005, Evans starred in two independent films. The first being Fierce People and the second being London, which saw Evans reunite with Statham. It was also in 2005 when Chris Evans received mainstream attention. It could have come in a better film but anyway, Evans starred as the Human Torch in the Fantastic Four film. Yes, the film was awful, yes, the characters were ruined, all except for Evans’ Johnny Storm who was the highlight of the film for fans of the comic book and the movies alike. Evans showed once again that he is charming, witty and a great pick for an action film with his performance.

The Human Torch was a role he took up again in the sequel Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (a movie that managed to be even worse than the train wreck of the original film). 2007 was also the year that Evans made his debut in voice acting providing the voice of Casey Jones in the CGI film TMNT. The Nanny Diaries and Battle for Terra, Evans providing the voice once more in the latter, also came out this year, but it was his other film of 2007 that really caught my attention.

Evans plays level-headed engineer Mace in Sunshine.

Sunshine. Danny Boyle’s sci-fi film about a group of astronauts sent to re-ignite the dying sun taking place fifty years in the future. Chris Evans starred alongside Danny Boyle favourite Cillian Murphy, Rose Byrne and Mark Strong. Sunshine was not a commercial success but it was critically and rightly so; this is one of the best sci-fi films I have probably ever seen, I really enjoyed it and Chris Evans’ character, Mace, was in fact really good.

The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond followed before Evans returned to the action genre once more for Street Kings; a film that had a lot of noteworthy names in its cast (Forest Whitaker, Hugh Laurie for example) but really failed to deliver on all fronts. Then Evans went on to Push, another sci-fi/action film where he had superpowers.

Chris Evans took up comic book movie roles twice more when he appeared in The Losers and Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. With the latter, despite only having a small part Evans put in a humorous performance and served the film well. Recently he starred in rom-com What’s Your Number? alongside Anna Faris before taking on his biggest project to date.

Chris Evans as the iconic hero Captain America.

Chris Evans became Captain America for Marvel’s The First Avenger. He played the part of Steve Rogers and at first people had their doubts because he had been in a Marvel film before or he wasn’t big enough to play the super soldier. But Evans soon put those doubts to rest as he showed off his new bulked up figure in the war/superhero film and proved to be a success.

The role of Captain America is one that Evans will of course be reprising in this summer’s sure fire hit, The Avengers and the release date for Captain America 2 has been confirmed. Evans really became Steve Rogers, he played the character superbly and brought to the role the same commitment and enthusiasm that he has brought to every role in his career.

Chris Evans is a fine actor and in interviews he always comes across as the nice guy. He definitely deserves more attention in movies as he has shown his versatility, starring in action, sci-fi, dramas, comedies and rom-coms. Sure, he has some bad films in his past but there are some real gems in there too. What a guy.