My Movie Journal

As I get older I find myself forgetting if I'd seen a movie or read a book. Since 2005 I have been keeping track of everything I watch, read and sometimes listen too or play.

2016
Movie Rating Review
A Chinese Odyssey (Parts 1 & 2) :  6/10 Long before he directed Journey to the West, Stephen Chow starred in this version of the Monkey King's story. The... more
8 Diagram Pole Fighter :  9/10 This is a gorgeous martial arts film which features an all-star cast of Hong Kong action heroes (most of which are killed off... more
The New One-Armed Swordsman :  8/10 The One-Armed Swordsman was a good, arty swordplay epic with a lot of character focus. The sequel ditched the... more
The Five Deadly Venoms :  7/10 Master is worried that his five former students are too powerful and may do evil so he sends his goofy-haired final student off... more
Five Fingers of Death :  8/10 A rather brutal kung-fu flick centered around competing schools in the lead up to a fighting competition. Lot of spraying gore... more
Return of the One-Armed Swordsman :  7/10 The sequel to the memorable One-Armed Swordsman is less about character development and more about action (Duh... you... more
Shaolin Intruders :  9/10 Finally, a Shaw Bros. martial arts film that hits all the right buttons: interesting characters, plot twists, colorful design... more
Legendary Weapons of China :  8/10 This is a weird one. It starts off with a display of magical cloaked fighters in which two are made to kill themselves. One... more
The Deadly Breaking Sword :  7/10 I wasn't sure if he was supposed to be a good guy, but the title character is a swordsman whose calling card is that he breaks... more
The Shadow Whip :  7/10 This was a decent martial arts film notable for four things: a snowy, wintertime setting; exciting fights with many, many... more
A LEGO Brickumentary :  7/10 I've written before on this Web site how there is a standard documentary being produced these days that shows the "community"... more
Dragon Gate Inn :  8/10 Looking back over the string of martial arts films that I have viewed over the past few months, I'd have to say my favorite has... more
The One-Armed Swordsman :  8/10 When I started my immersion into Shaw Brothers kung-fu, I knew I would eventually see this film. It apparently was a mega hit... more
Painted Faces :  7/10 I recognized most of the story here from having read Jackie Chan's memoir, I Am Jackie Chan. It's the story of Jackie... more
Return to the 36th Chamber :  7/10 The first follow-up to The 36th Chamber still features Gordon Liu in the lead role, but it's mostly a parody of the... more
Patema Inverted :  7/10 I decided to watch this anime on a whim after revisiting The Girl Who Leapt Through Time the other night. The concept... more
Tiger and Crane Fists :  7/10 I assume most of the people who seek this movie out come to it the same way I did. This is the film that Steve Oedekerk used as... more
Time Traveller: The Girl Who Leapt Through Time :  8/10 This live action adaptation of The Girl Who Leapt Through Time bears little resemblance to the original anime version... more
Disciples of the 36th Chamber :  7/10 The third film in the 36th Chambers series changes the tone to comedy (apparently the second sequel is also a parody, but I... more
House of Flying Daggers :  8/10 This movie made it to America in the wake of Crouching Tiger and has much of the same stylishness. Doesn't quite pack... more
2015
Movie Rating Review
The 36th Chamber of Shaolin :  8/10 This is a classic Kung-Fu film from the Shaw Brothers that doesn't quite have the artistic flair that I look for in these films... more
The Force Awakens :  9/10 An excellent and worthy sequel to the original series of films. It's probably better than Return of the Jedi or at... more
The Omega Man :  5/10 This classic sets itself up as a last man on Earth drama, but within five minutes kills that premise. The baddies are a set of... more
The Scar :  8/10 A year ago a watched the other half of this double feature film noir DVD. This second movie is much better but is based on a... more
The Sound of Music :  9/10 Ok, my wife wanted the entire family to watch this and I fully expected to be bored by it, but, you know what, it's a really... more
Winning: The Racing Life of Paul Newman :  8/10 My Adam Carolla film fest continues with this documentary about Paul Newman's racing career. There are no amazing revelations... more
Road Hard :  7/10 I used to listen to Adam Carolla's podcast pretty regularly but stopped around the time Alison Rosen was unceremoniously let go... more
Star Trek into Darkness :  8/10 The second Star Track reboot film was mindless fun. I was never bored despite the lame retread story, excessive... more
Spasmo :  6/10 This giallo has been on my must see list for a very long time. Scored by Ennio Morricone, the excellent soundtrack is probably... more
The Giant of Marathon :  7/10 The Amazon prime version of this movie looks like crap. I watched it anyways as part of my Mario Bava homework. I actually... more
Caltiki, the Immortal Monster :  6/10 I have been slowly working my way through Tim Lucas's All the Colors of the Dark mega-book about Mario Bava. Whenever... more
One Million Years B.C. :  6/10 This movie is precisely as cheesy as one would expect for a low budget, mid-sixties film about bikini clad cave dwellers. My... more
Martial Arts of Shaolin :  8/10 The final movie in the Dragon Dynasty Volume 1 DVD pack is probably the best of this set. The film banks heavily on... more
The Plainsman :  2/10 Gary Cooper stars in this black and white western about Buffalo Bill and Wild Bill Hickok. It's a very boring movie and much of... more
Mad Monkey Kung Fu :  7/10 Mad Monkey Kung Fu is all about the acrobatic fight choreography and feel a lot like a Nineties Jackie Chan film minus... more
Executioners from Shaolin :  7/10 A Shaolin monk on the run vows to avenge the death of a friend and, over the course of many years, he gets married, has a... more
Five Shaolin Masters :  4/10 I just bought another Shaw Brothers box set and am watching the films in chronological order. This one has a few familiar faces... more
Come Drink with Me :  9/10 Come Drink with Me is heralded as the film that defined the kung-fu genre in the early sixties. I am unfamiliar with... more
Golden Swallow :  8/10 Of all the films in this DVD set, this one features the best fight choreography. I guess it's a sort of love story as Golden... more
Killer Clans :  8/10 Another Shaw Brothers kung-fu extravaganza. This one was quite good with lots of blood, a complicated (in a good way) plot and... more
Blood Brothers :  6/10 Disc two in this Shaw Brothers set is the weakest of the lot. A pair of bandits join with an ambitious warrior to form a group... more
The Avenging Eagle :  7/10 The first film in the Shaw Brothers four-pack DVD I just bought. I loved USA Network's Kung Fu Theater when I was a... more
Rock Around the Clock :  6/10 This film is really just a showcase for Bill Haley and his Comets. The plot and characters are tacked on just to get us from... more
World War Z :  3/10 Well, the book wasn't great, but at least it was a new twist on the zombie genre. The movie is just terrible. The book was a... more
Mad Max: Fury Road :  10/10 This movie was essentially one continuous car chase, but, as terrible as that sounds, it works perfectly. Back when I was 13, I... more
A Bullet for the General :  5/10 The story of a finely attired gringo mercenary who falls in with a group of banditos in a scheme to steal weapons and support... more
Edge of Tomorrow :  8/10 This Tom Cruise action film is basically Groundhog's Day meets Starship Troopers. Since Groundhog's Day... more
Guardians of the Galaxy :  8/10 Probably my favorite of the recent Marvel to film movie productions. It helps that it wasn't an idiotic superhero movie.... more
Jodorowsky's Dune :  6/10 Although the subject matter is interesting, I didn't get much out of the documentary that I didn't already know from the... more
Hell's Ground :  7/10 Mondo Macabro has been pretty consistent in their DVD releases. Lots of trashy and weird genre films from outside of Europe and... more

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