Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The China Syndrome

I caught this movie on cable last night, just by chance.
It's a funny co-incidence because at the moment I'm conducting an interview with Richard Herd, who appeared in this very movie.
I decided to watch it based purely on the fact Richard was in it. I was very surprised to see who else was in it.
I was amazed with everyone's performance. This movie shows these actors at the top of their game.
Here's the trailer.

Here's the poster.

I know Jack Lemmon could act but up until now I've only ever seen him in comedic roles.
After watching The China Syndrome those comedic roles didn't do him justice.

I can't describe it to you but if you want to see Jack at his best, you don't have to look much further than this movie.

Here he is as Jack Godell.

And here's Jane Fonda as Kimberly Wells.
At first I didn't recognise Jane but I can safely say she should be very pleased with her performance in this movie.
Jane brought a human-edge to a very human story, and she did it very, very well.

Michael Douglas, well, just look at him here.
I was surprised to see him with a beard, but it works. Michael plays the fly-by-night cameraman Richard Adams, who isn't afraid to stand for his issues.

I'm probably sounding like a broken record here with all the praise, but Michael's performance was amazing.

Here's an image of Jack Lemmon in the control room of the nuclear power plant. This is where it all happens, and you don't have to be a nuclear scientist to appreciate it.

Jane and Michael spend a good part of the movie playing off one another and it works. There's some real chemistry between these two and they're a delight to watch.
Kimberly Wells is very serious about her job whereas Richard isn't. What makes them interesting together is their beliefs and desire to see those beliefs upheld.

As I wrote above I watched this movie purely to see Richard Herd, and I waited for him to come on screen.
And I was shocked. He had hair!

I'm used to seeing Richard as Mr Wilhelm from the Seinfeld TV series, as shown below.
Richard's performance in The China Syndrome? Well, let's just say my patience for Richard to appear on screen was well paid off.
He's brilliant as Richard McCormick.

Another surprise was the appearance of James Hampton, as Bill Gibson.

You probably know James Hampton more for his role as Harold Howard in Teen Wolf.

Then there's this guy. Wilford Brimley played the role of Ted Spindler, an engineer at the power plant.
Wilford Brimley looks and acts so much like my father in law it's scary.

I have the movie novelisation for The China Syndrome stored away somewhere, and after seeing this movie I'm very eager to unearth it and give it a read.
I really hope you give this movie a watch also, because (for probably the twentieth time now) I'm telling you; it's really, really good.

And being a late 70's movie it's always very cool to see all the dials, buttons, and buzzes used back in that time.
And the phones! My god, I'd love a phone like those used in this film.

9 out of 10.

Until next time!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Terminator Salvation

Having seen all Terminator movies, bar the first film, in the cinema I felt obligated to see Terminator Salvation on the big screen when it was released in 2009.
I'd had a passing interest in the movie. After the road trip movie which was Rise Of The Machines I didn't think there was much that Hollywood could do to further crap on the franchise.

I was wrong.
But in it's defence, even though this movie is a dump, at least there's some parts which are cleaned up and look alright.
Here's the movie poster.

Here's the trailer
Now judging from this teaser trailer I was pretty impressed. The director, McG, looked like he knew what he was doing and he certainly gave us what we've been wanting to see since the first film; the world at war with the Terminators.

My only problem with this film though is John Connor (Christian Bale). Now into his third film in the franchise John's been turned into a wanna-be hard ass momma's boy.

I know Christian Bale was playing John Connor as a war-weary soldier, leading his men because of his destiny, but I felt he played it way to seriously.
Because he couldn't relax, I couldn't relax. I couldn't enjoy the movie, especially whenever Christian was on screen.

There's a point in the movie where something happens which is meant to reinforce the fact that we're following John in this story, and that if he gives a suggestion you should probably follow it. I felt though that John came off as a know-it-all. And still, one big momma's boy.

Critics and movie reviewers were all in praise for the role of Marcus Wright (Sam Worthington).

I can see where they came from as Marcus brought something new and exciting to this movie. When compared to John Connor's very serious mood, Marcus was a breathe of fresh air.

He also gave the ladies something to look at too.

One point I was looking forward to was seeing Kyle Reese back in the franchise. Terminator fans know who Kyle Reese is, and to see someone new in the role was interesting.
Anton Yelchin did a bang-up job in the role and if there happens to be a Terminator 5, again with Anton playing the role of Kyle, I'll look forward to seeing it.

One role I felt was very much downplayed was the role of Kate Connor (Bryce Dallas Howard), John Connor's wife.
Bryce Dallas Howard was pregnant during filming, and they've even worked her baby bump into the scribe, but only in passing. I thought this was strange considering family is an underlying theme in the Terminator movies.
I thought the fact that John had a baby on the way could've been played up some more.
But then again, maybe Kate Connor was expecting 8 kids, so we could have had a Terminator version of John & Kate plus 8. I think we all know how that would've ended.....

Added into the movie for those of us who were getting bored with seeing machines blowing stuff up was Blair Williams (Moon Goodblood).
Blair was a hard-ass soldier, and fun to watch.

Just look at this image and tell me I'm wrong.

Arnold also makes a return to the franchise (sort of). You have to "love" computer animation, don't you?

Hopefully by the time Terminator 5 comes out Arnold Schwarzenegger won't be Governor of California anymore and can return to this franchise.
If Arnie's back, you know I am too.

All up I give this movie 7 and a half out of 10.

Please let me know what you thought of this review, by commenting below.
Until next time!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Interview with... Jerome Pradon

Jerome Pradon loves musical theatre, having worked in both France and the US.
Jerome is so good at what he does he's even been nominated for the Laurence Olivier Award 2004 for 'Best supporting role in a musical' for his portrayal of the Shogun's Mother and the French Admiral in 'Pacific Overtures'.

Film wise Jerome has appeared in many France films. His US work consists of Simon Sez, starring alongside Dennis Rodman.
Have a read below to see what Jerome has to say about this movie.

Jerome has produced some incredible work with the theatre production of Jesus Christ Superstar.

This all makes for one very interesting interview.

1. What was it like to work on Jesus Christ Superstar?

That was a tremendous and unique experience. It's very rare to be able to work on a filmed version of a musical. It's a totally different technique altogether, since you have to record the vocals first in a studio and then lip sink the whole piece the best you can while intensely acting at the same time and filming. So yes it was intense and demanding and great. I keep it as a fantastic memory.

2. What do you love about the theatre?

The fact that every day you have to give a new, fresh performance and have to challenge yourself in many ways to achieve that.

3. What do you feel are your strengths as an actor?

That's a tough question, I don't think I'm the best one to answer it.

4. What has been your favourite theatre role, to date?

I have been lucky enough to play a lot of great roles; I don't have one favourite, but I have some great memories: Marius, Napoleon, Rasputin, Judas, Road Movie, Pacific Overtures, L'Opera de Sarah.

5. Can you please tell us a bit about working on the Dennis Rodman film, Simon Sez?

It was great, and my character gave me the opportunity to have a lot of fun. It was awesome to play the bad guy in this wacky movie.
I only really worked with Dennis Rodman on the last scene in the film, and he was very thorough and efficient, although not particularly friendly nor sociable. He stayed very much on his own or
with his own crew and didn't seem to like to meet the other actors.
But it was fun to work with him. That last fight in the film left me with some very sore muscles for a few days since we both did our own stunts.

6. What's coming up next for you?

I'm on a few projects in France, both in musicals and straight acting plays, as well as England.

Thank you very much Jerome.
I hope you enjoy continued success in all your endeavours.
Until next time!

Interview with... Simon Rhee

It's always fun to interview someone who's had a broad range of work.
Simon Rhee is known for both his stunt work as well as his acting prowess. Starring in 42 TV and film productions, Simon has performed stunts for some 100 films and TV shows.
Needless to say, Simon's a busy man.
So when the chance came to interview he, I didn't let it slip by.

I hope you enjoy my interview with Simon Rhee.

1. What is the appeal of stunt work?

I like the adrenaline and camaraderie of stunt work. The fact that it helps feed my family is also a good thing!

2. How has stunt work changed over the years, from such movies as Double Impact, to films like Inception?

There has been significant change in stunt work over the 3 decades I have been involved with it - mainly the use of CGi and green screen technologies. Lots of new talent in the martial arts and in all aspects of stunt work also.

3. Do you find much difference between stunt work on TV, and film?

Stunt work is pretty much the same in TV and in feature films, but there is usually more prep and rehearsal time in films because of the larger budget. Also, the bigger budget can allow for more spectacular stunts.

4. What do you think has been your greatest stunt so far?

Probably my Full body burns in "Letters from Iwo Jima" and high fall from a helicopter in "Universal Soldier".

5. Is there a stunt you don’t think you can master?

I have my preferences, and I probably would prefer not to master car hits at this point in my life.

6. What’s coming up next for you?

Currently, I am in Philadelphia working on Jason Statham's movie, "Safe", and after that I will be doing fight choreography for the new "Muppets" movie.

I want to thank Simon and Cindy Rhee for their time and patience with this interview. I really do appreciate it.
I'd love to know what my readers' think of this interview, so please feel free to comment below.
You can also check out Simon's website at
Until next time!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Interview with... Ludovic Canot

Yes, I've been known to interview a porn star here and there, but today I bring to you something a little different.
Something which some still consider to be a little taboo.
I know when I told my Dad I was interviewing Ludovic Canot he didn't like the idea all that much.
See, Ludovic Canot is a gay male porn star.

Keep that in mind, because I hope you read through this interview and realise, like I have, that Ludovic is a nice guy.
And for my female readers I'm hoping you get through to the end, see his photos, and think "too bad his gay."


1. How did you get involved in this industry?

just wanted to try and figure out how is it to shoot a porn scene. always watch porn in my life so would like to know how it feels to shoot one.

2. What prep work do you do before each production

eat healthy, go to bed early, go to to the gym etc etc

3. Have you done any modelling work?

yes i did , and it s really fun to do =)

4. Who is your favourite actor to work with?

matt hughes , he is from UK, and he is cute, and kind, and easy to work with and i would like to marry him =)

5. Have you done any convention work for promotion of your films?

not really but i did twice in europe "the porn film festival"in paris and anthens , and it was really interesting to do and talk about porn and show some movies sometimes people cannot see

6. Do you have any advice for people wanting to get into the industry?

can u handle this? =)there is a difference between doing a one shot , it means just doing a one scene like that just to try, and would like to become a huge porn star and would like to have a name in this industry. both are fun , but the second one could be sometimes disturbing =), so you should be ready for that. and its not just because you like sex that you can shoot a porn scene its a different level, its something else.

7. What’s coming up next for you?

get ready, the new era is coming =)

8. Is there an event or charity you would like to bring to my readers’ attention?

nothing special in mind, just enjoy the life , have fun and in the same time be careful, life is cool and you could have fun for so many years so have safe sex, and use a condom; go to the gym and work your body in a healthy way : don't do steroid etc etc

As the last image shows you can check out more of Ludovic at his website, but be warned, there are explicit adult images on his site.

I close up by thanking Ludovic for his time, and also for the super-cool autograph he sent me.
You're a top bloke Ludovic!