This Month In . . . 1991 (May)

The month of May was packed full of high-grossing box office hits, but the opening week was most notable for a stylish low-key comedy with a big heart. Based on a crime novel by Chester Himes, Bill Duke’s Rage In Harlem is a touching tale about an ingenuous churchgoer named Jackson (Forest Whitaker), who wins the heart of a salacious female grifter (Robin Givens) after becoming a key component in her latest con […]

Read Article →

The Good, the Bad and the So Bad it’s Good 2

If the grind-house laid their claim back in the 70s, Cannon Films had theirs in the mid-80s with the VHS era.

Not so much a film company at that point, but rather a genre unto themselves. Aerobic-instructor ninjas, Vietnamese prison camps, inner-city gangs, vigilantes, breakdance battles, arm wrestling, excessive rape, Chuck Norris, 357 Magnums,and Superman questing for peace, these are just a few of the things that come to mind when the name Cannon Films pops up. They spit out classics faster than the bullets from a Charles Bronson hand cannon […]

Read Article →

Double Team (1997)

By 1997 the Buddy Action Movie had become so diluted it had begun to resemble a thin, tasteless gruel.

Gone were the aromatic days of Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy, of Riggs and Murtaugh, of John McClane and the black cop from Die Hard whose name I can never remember. Unconcerned with onscreen chemistry, relatable characterisation, and the kind of wry, acerbic wit that made the genre so successful […]

Read Article →

No Retreat No Surrender (1986)

For a brief period during the mid-1980’s, the US fell in love with Karate.

Karate is an Eastern philosophy which teaches students how to defend themselves rather than how to attack. Principle 12 of Funakoshi’s ’20 Principles of Karate’ instructs pupils thus: ‘Do not think you have to win. Think, rather, that you do not have to lose.’ This is a credo which would likely baffle the vast majority of American patriots […]

Read Article →