The Chinese film Detective Dee :The Four Heavenly Kings is the third in a series which blends martial arts, action, and fantasy. It was released in the United States on July 27, 2018. I will admit that I fell in love with this series from the very first film.
Detective Dee (Mark Chao) is commissioned by the Emperor to protect the Dragon-Taming Mace which is a symbol of the Emperor’s power. Unfortunately, the Empress Wu (Carina Lau) plots against Detective Dee. She convinces Dee’s best friend to help her and he hires a troupe of wizards in this mission. To top it off, there is a cult seeking revenge against the Imperial dynasty. This is where the fantasy elements are brought in.
The actors were all excellent as were the martial arts scenes. I also enjoyed the CGI effects. The only disappointment in the movie were the subtitles which sometimes flashed for a second on the screen. I give this 5 stars out of 5.
Occupation is an Australian movie which was released on July 20, 2018. When an alien force invades a small town in Australia, a group of survivors hide out while deciding how to fight back. The group consists of an ex-con, his daughter, rival rugby captains, their girlfriends, and others.
The filming was decent enough. The story, at times, was a bit slow considering that some of the characters weren’t developed enough for me to either sympathize or despise them. There were enough battle scenes to keep one’s interest. There were some slight technicalities that I noticed which weren’t logical and didn’t make sense. The alien makeup was fairly decent as was their body armor. I am not familiar with any of the actors but they did a good job.
There was some foul language, but there was more illogical points in the story line. The battle scenes, as I said, were good, but guns against beam rifles and almost indestructible body armor was a bit unbelievable. This was also 2 hours long where, with better editing, the story could have been a bit shorter. I give it 4 stars out of 5 but I would not buy it.
Gehenna: Where death lives, (2018 TV MA) It is a pretty good scary movie and it has all the features of a grade A movie, including some good stars that have walk-on roles at the beginning of the film. I am guessing it is so people think it will be better than it is. The special effects were great for this film, the dialog was believable and the story line was different. I thought the acting was pretty good as well as the photography, although most of it is filmed in a bunker, which gives its own lighting problems for the light men and photographers.
This has several essentials, Karma for one, people from your past that haunt you, a time shift feeling (not time travel) Overall this was a great film.
I gave it 3 out of 5 stars, and you probably want to know why. I see things with logic, and several scenes although good were not very logical nor were they explained. For horror lovers, this is a movie to see
Illang: The Wolf Brigade is a South Korean film based on a Japanese animation show. It was released on July 25, 2018. It is a science fiction action film which takes place in 2029 when North and South Korea plan to unite but, due to economic factors, are dissuaded by a group called The Sect. A special police force is set up to dismember the group and as a backup to the National Police Force.
Dong-won Gang (Im Joong-kyung) is a member of the Wolf Brigade, as the special unit is called, but when he is involved in a massacre of some school girls, he develops PTSD. After freezing on an assignment, a rival department uses him as a scapegoat. He falls in love with the sister of a Sect member (Lee Yoon-hee) who, unknown to him, is also a member of The Sect and an informer to the rival department. There is plenty of action and blood, but the film is 2 hours and 19 minutes long. Gang and Hyo-Joon’s relationship is the one thing that slows the film down. This could have been better developed which might have cut some time from the movie.
The fight scenes were good, but the armor for the members of The Wolf Brigade gave the movie its anime feel. I admit the acting was decent, but the story line needed work. There were slow parts that dragged the film down. I will give this 3 stars for the action scenes alone.