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Watch Now: First Teaser Trailer for ‘The Expendables 2’
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BAADASSSSS!   |  
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Expendables 2

The first teaser trailer for Lionsgate’s summer 2012 testosterone-fiesta The Expendables 2 has been released. You can watch the trailer and read the official plot synopsis here below.

The trailer is little more than Bruce Willis‘ menacing Mr. Church (the character he played in the single scene he shared with Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger in the original) confronting Stallone’s Barney Ross about a deal they made and how it’s time to pay up, followed by a roll call of the movie’s cast. Eleven actors, and not one neck between them.

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Liam Hemsworth, Scott Adkins Joins ‘The Expendables 2’
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Cinemumra   |  
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The Expendables

Like brother, like brother.

As his elder sibling, Chris, is becoming something of an action star, up-and-comer Liam Hemsworth has found himself quite a project. Variety is reporting that the star of The Hunger Games has joined the cast of the upcoming sequel, The Expendables 2.

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Movie Review: The Expendables
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the expendablesThe Expendables
Directed by Sylvester Stallone
Starring Sylvester Stallone, Dolph Lundgren, Mickey Rourke, Jet Li, Jason Statham, Terry Crews, Randy Couture, Steve Austin
Rated R
Release date: August 13, 2010

Since The Expendables was first announced in 2008 the idea of bringing together some of the finest cinematic tough guys and badass motherfuckers of the past three decades for one big blood, bullets, and bombs brouhaha sounded like the wet dream of millions of action movie geeks brought to life in booze-and-steroid-infused flesh. I was raised on a steady diet of badass from the moment I was born. When I was a child my celluloid heroes were Han Solo and Superman. My mother didn’t think I was ready for R-rated movies, the threshold you had to cross to truly be a man. When I turned ten the time had come. During my summer vacation I caught the HBO premiere of the immortal Die Hard and my mind was promptly blown by the glorious on-screen action and the awesome presence of the one and only Bruce Willis in his signature role as badass New York cop John McClane. My exposure to such large scale chaos until then came chiefly in the form of cartoons like Transformers and G.I. Joe (which one day would ironically become big screen cartoons only with flesh-and-blood folks playing one-dimensional characters), but watching Willis bury bullets in the heads and asses of a bunch of heavily armed German thieves was a serious cultural awakening nothing could’ve prepared me for. By the time I was eleven and my parents allowed me to watch Lethal Weapon for the first time, the doors on a brave new world were forever opened for me. I may have still inhabited the body of a shy, snot-nosed kid who grew up dirt poor and never had many friends, but from that moment on I was a man, in my heart at any rate.

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Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger & Sylvester Stallone To Appear On Screen Together In ‘The Expendables’
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The Movie God   |  @   |  
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Expendables

The Expendables could quite possibly be one of the really special movie projects that we see in the near future. Written, directed, and starring Sylvester Stallone, the movie has attempted to gather pretty much every massive action star and put them all in one film. We still don’t know exactly what kind of movie it will be, but it sounds like it’s going to be pure, full-speed action with no rules — at least that’s how it feels like it should be done. While he wasn’t able to get all of them (Jean Claude Van Damme), he has put together one of the best action casts ever seen, and it has folks very excited to see what comes of it all.

Now comes word that two of the biggest action stars ever to live will be filming a small cameo for the movie with Stallone: Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Willis spoke to MTV News recently about if he’s filmed the “very special” cameo and what it might involve.

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DVD Review: Jet Li’s Fearless (Blu-Ray)
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WordSlinger   |  
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Jet Li’s Fearless
Blu-ray Edition
Directed by Ronny Yu
Starring Jet Li, Nakamura Shidou, Sun Li, Dong Yong, Nathan Jones
Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Release Date: December 9, 2008

Jet Li was planning to stop making martial art movies after the filming of Fearless. He didn’t stick to that plan, but had he done so he would have gone out on an extremely high note.

Fearless tells the story of the life of Huo Yuanjia (played by Li), though it takes some major liberties for dramatic effect. In real life, Huo had many children and grandchildren, not a single daughter, and he was not the only person responsible for the forming of the Chin Woo Athletic Association. Also, humorously, the film greatly embellishes the facts around the fight between Huo and a boxer named O’Brien (Nathan Jones). In reality, there was never any fight, O’Brien simply left town after a dispute over the rules of the match. I don’t imagine that would make a great sequence in a martial art film though, so it’s safe to say the film was “inspired by” Huo’s life rather than a factual account of it.

The Blu-Ray edition holds three versions of the film: theatrical, unrated, and director’s cut. I can count on one hand the number of director’s cuts that are significantly different from the original film. Fearless is one of those films and the director’s cut is a significant improvement over the theatrical version. Running 40 minutes (yes, you read that correctly, 40 minutes) longer that original version, director Ronny Yu found a lot more story to tell, with none of it seeming gratuitous.

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DVD Review: The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
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Meegatron   |  
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The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
Two Disc Deluxe Edition
Directed by Rob Cohen
Starring Brendan Frasier, Jet Li, Maria Bello, John Hannah, Luke Ford, Michelle Yeoh, Isabella Leong
Universal Home Entertainment
Release Date: December 16, 2008

The third installment of The Mummy series is sure not to disappoint. Well, one thing is disappointing and I have to say it right from the beginning. What happened to the real Evelyn O’Connell? I really hate to start a review like this. I like to tell a bit about the movie and then give my feelings, but I couldn’t, and I am sure you won’t be able to. It’s not that Maria Bello (Thank You for Smoking, A History of Violence) is bad in her depiction of Evelyn, it’s just that, Rachel Weisz is our Evelyn. Maybe Weisz’s decision to do Definitely, Maybe or My Blueberry Nights blocked her from The Mummy project. If it did, I have one thing to say: she should have stuck with The Mummy series. No judgments on the other two movies, but, you get my drift.

In The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, a new kind of mummy is released, Emperor Han (Jet Li), by mistake of course, and it is up to Rick (Brendan Fraser) and Evelyn, along with their now-adult son Alex (Luke Ford) and Evelyn’s brother John (John Hannah) to save the world from complete enslavement.

The Mummy franchise has yet to disappoint me and Rob Cohen does not do so now. In the interest of not giving away everything in the movie, I am keeping my review short, but I will go in detail about this DVD edition’s many bonus features.

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DVD Review: ‘The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor’ (Blu-ray)
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Missing Linc   |  
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The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
Blu-ray
Directed by Rob Cohen
Starring Brendan Fraser, Jet Li, Maria Bello, Luke Ford, Michelle Yeoh
Universal Home Entertainment
Release date: December 16, 2008

I admit it – I’m a Brendan Fraser apologist. What can I say? I like the guy. He’s just so damn… likable! I can watch him in pretty much anything and enjoy it. School Ties – Check. Monkeybone – Check. Blast from the Past – Check. George of the Jungle – Check. Encino Man – Guilty. So I look back on the release of The Mummy with fond memories. It was a funny, adventurous rollicking old-school action flick that remembered what made such films work — it was fun. And Fraser captured that sense of “gee whiz” fun playing Rick O’Connell. When The Mummy Returns came out it was disappointing, but not awful. It felt more like an excuse to try to set up a franchise for Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson than it legitimate continuation of the series.

So it was with a healthy dose of skepticism that I popped in the Blu-ray of the newest entry into this series — The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. And all I can say is – Brendan Fraser tried. He really, really tried… and I’m sure he’s sorry.

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Sylvester Stallone To Write, Direct & Star In ‘The Expendables’
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The Movie God   |  @   |  
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SlyAfter Sylvester Stallone‘s little phase of Rocky and Rambo sequels (which is likely to continue eventually), he’s going to write, direct, and star in an original movie called The Expendables.

Not much is known about the movie yet except the fact that it will also star Jet Li and Jason Statham with Stallone as a group of mercenaries out to take down a South American dictator.

This doesn’t really sound unique, but who knows, it could be fun if done right. Or it will just end up being another Rambo, or maybe something more modern like Tears of the Sun!

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DVD Review: Black Mask (Blu-ray)
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Jack Bauerstein83   |  
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Black MaskBlack Mask
Blu-ray (1997)
Starring Jet Li, Karen Mok, Chin Wan Lau
Lionsgate
Release Date: September 2, 2008

In an effort to cash in Jet Li’s crossover from Hong Kong to America, several of Li’s movies were re-dubbed and re-packaged for the American population. One of these films was the high-flying Black Mask.

Based on a comic book, Black Mask tells the story of Michael, played by Jet Li. Michael is part of a secret group of super soldiers commissioned by an unknown government entity. Known as “The 701,” these men and women are virtually impervious to pain, thanks in part to an experiment, which destroyed the nerve endings in their bodies. When the project is shut down and the soldiers are decommissioned, Michael seizes his opportunity and escapes. Fast-forward to the present where Michael is living a quiet and content life as a librarian. All is well until the 701 reappear, leaving mayhem and destruction in their path. Michael has no choice but face his “friends” head on in an effort to preserve his normal life as the superhero Black Mask.

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Conversations with GoD: ‘The Forbidden Kingdom’ Screenwriter John Fusco
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Ryan Midnight   |  
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John Fusco‘s latest screenplay to hit the big screen and about to be released on DVD this Tuesday is The Forbidden Kingdom, which will be remembered for the first on-screen appearance of both Jet Li and Jackie Chan. Fusco was the pen behind the Young Guns films, as well as the Viggo Mortensen flick Hidalgo, and he also scripted the Weinstein Company’s upcoming re-imagining of Akira Kurosawa’s The Seven Samurai.

Geeks Of Doom: Were you aware of the Chan and Li team-up when you began writing the script?

John Fusco: It actually began as a bedtime story for my young son who was beginning martial arts. Because I have a background in kung fu, I wanted to introduce him to what I felt was the right foundation: the philosophy and literature and mythology that informs the practice. If I had tried reading Lao Tzu or the Four Classics to him I would have lost him. So I made up a fun time travel journey that would be something of a primer.

While I was out in the desert with Casey Silver making Hidalgo I told him about this story I was making up for my kid and why. He felt that I was onto a movie and he encouraged me — and hired me — to start the screenplay.

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