Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War – Trailer 2

Oh man so much is going down in MCU Phase 3, I cannot wait until May!
This trailer is phenomenal and I love the design of the web slinger’s suit.
Sure Tony calls Spidey in but I’m still #TeamCap all the way!

Civil War happens May 6, 2016!

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How far we’ve come.

This mural is displaying the work we’ve created thus far, we’re thankful for everyone who had been a part and are working on helping us to succeed in our goals as filmmaking team and a production company.  We’ve especially enjoyed the various friends, fans and partnerships we’ve made over the years especially through our social media.

It feels good to take some time to look back at your progress of where you came from so that you can feel your journey opening up as you move forward.

The comic book pages were a blast to do back in 2014-2015, and who knows I may just revisit the style again as we plow through 2016.

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Video Game Movie Double Feature#3 Part 2: Tekken 2: Kazuya’s Revenge

Revenge wasn’t sweet at all for this movie.

Movie Title:  Tekken 2: Kazuya’s Revenge
 
Year Produced: 2014

 

Budget: (Lower than Tekken (2010) )

Director: Wych Kaosayananda (Wych Kaos)

(Courtesy of IMDB)

Don’t you just love sequels? How about sequels that are prequels, and craft an original story that leaves you dumbfounded on where it fits in the canon?

Well that’s where Tekken 2 fits in and while there is nothing wrong with a stand-alone sequel, this one just like Godzilla 98 would serve better as a non-Tekken movie.
For little to nothing about this film had anything to do with the other, except the appearance of Tekken City, and the wall to the slums.

An original title and name would’ve made this one do fine…possibly…

 

Like the box art describes the film deals with Kazuya’s backstory in the slums, and attempts to show him as a tragic figure who becomes an assassin. It opens with our hero laid out across a bed, awakening with no recollection of who he is an or why he is there.

Get used to seeing this expression cause he carries it throughout the whole movie.

They brought the whole “I’m an amnesiac/who am I?” story into this film, and it starts off with a bang, our hero is battling his way out of the hotel room similar to other action movie classics.  He has a memory flash which causes him to pause in his momentum as a car comes and hits him with a beautiful woman stepping out to retrieve him, and take him to where a man called the Minister who attempts to recruit him in his cult of killers.

It’s the Minister!

 

 

K and his Handler (Whose name I really forgot about during my viewing)

I won’t sugercoat it for you but this movie is filled with forgettable, one-dimensional characters and our main hero is dubbed K has to go on fetch quests throughout the movie in stopping other criminals within the slums by the Minister’s command.

Why doesn’t he refuse the Minister? You might be thinking well… The minister put an
explosive into his chest…(yeah this movie feels pretty forced but don’t worry it gets worse).

While we follow K’s exploits along with his handler the female from before whom is responsible for sending him his assignments, we begin to see a familiar face eventually in
Bryan Fury once again portrayed by Gary Daniels.

He isn’t a cyborg yet, and honestly if you’re excited by Bryan Fury…don’t be, he doesn’t do much but just show up and go away.  Everyone who is Tekken based in this“prequel” are just portraying them in name only anyways because Kazuya never needed to be in a memory-blank state to become the jackass he will be in the first Tekken movie (let alone the games).  I guess it’s a way to show you that he wasn’t always a bad person but meh back to the review.

 

Eventually there is a love interest and she isn’t Jun, and she isn’t even all that important except to give Kazuya some compassion and is a McGuffin character for K to find and uncover along with his hidden past about the world around him.  I will say she does manage to pull the bomb explosive out of K’s chest and so there’s another function.  For the remainder of the movie both K and his handler (I can’t remember if she had a name) have a fallen out with theMinister and both are marked for death. They form an unlikely truce with Fury to destroy the Minister’s criminal empire and the Handler discovers she must make her own choices instead of letting a false prophet tell her with to do.
Meanwhile K finds his love interest missing and begins to battle his way to her location with the help of his handler (Notice a pattern).  The rest of the movies shows
some epic battles from here but it displays K showing the same expression
throughout the entire movie so there’s no depth to his character which leaves
the whole arc as bland as the rest of the film.

At the end of the asskicking spree, we find that the whole thing is a ploy created by his father Heihachi Mishima whom is played once again by Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa from the first Tekken film but looking very different from before.

I guess he didn’t want to wear a darker version of the wig.
What he will become in the “future.”
Heihachi reveals the foregone conclusion that K is Kazuya and the whole thing was to make him into a more cold-blooded person.   We also see that the love interest is another person willing to be used by Mishima for his experiment and he kills her with a kiss of death (Seriously).
Kazuya attempts to engage his old man in battle but true to movie form, Heihachi escapes so it becomes another drawn out battle with Heihachi’s elite mooks at the end once again displaying a fabulous fight scene but going against the fight that audiences are probably hoping for to make this film’s climax.  I get it, Kazuya’s a martial arts master but hell I want to see Heihachi get his comeuppance sometime.
Now that Kazuya fully remembers himself he speaks with his Handler that it isn’t over and if his father wants to play games, let’s play games.

We leave the movie now with Heihachi giving us a go-nowhere speech about Tekken City with the sign of Tekken in the background and how Kazuya will come for him.

Damn if this one wasn’t a dud, if it wasn’t for the brilliant fight choreography I don’t think I could’ve made it through Act 1.  It was slow uneven storytelling, and the acting/character arcs could’ve used more depth.  I’ve found some background information that
explains some production history that states that this film was originally just a standalone
movie that had nothing to do with Tekken until the production company acquired
the rights to the live action Tekken franchise and did some minor tweaks
(-groan-).

On that, let’s make this a guideline:

 

“No matter what, just make a full-filling movie because making minor tweaks and
presenting a hack-job like this with a gaming franchise label is disgraceful to
the fans, and degrading to movie lovers.”

I would recommend this to be watched only if you like weak story but love excellent yet repetitive combat but you’ll be bored by the circumstances within the movie that were already addressed up top.  I had a great experience with the first film in this “franchise” but this one, nah it’s not good at all.  I did take the time to study the action and
combat scenes but the best way I could watch this movie was to keep the
connection from the source material as minimal as possible but this one just
isn’t watchable unless you want to talk about how bad it is.

 

I can only imagine what will happen next after I look into the
live action versions of King of Fighters (KOF) and Dead or Alive (DOA).

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Video Game Movie Double Feature #3 Part 1: Tekken

Movie Title: Tekken

Year Produced: 2009/2010 (released)

Budget: 30,000,000 (estimated)

Director: Dwight Little

Synopsis: Jin Kazama witnesses the death of his mother, Jun by Tekken in the slums known as Anvil. After finding a Tekken ID he decides to seek out vengeance for his mother’s death.

(Information above is courtesy of IMDB).

Well we have another video game movie to discuss and this
one is not a tired lackluster effort.  It
is actually a decent action flick but does it hold a candle to the franchise
itself?
No I’m afraid not, while it is better than the dismal Tekken
OVA/Animated Movie from 1993, it has its share of problems and what happens to
certain character appeals. It is well put together in terms of the music, and
fight choreography which is some of the best I’ve seen in movies in a long time
let alone a video game flick.

The movie starts with our hero Jin going to the ring than
flashbacks to him fleeing Jackhammers (The Jack Robots) from Tekken City into
the slums, and narrating that it has been 5 years and the world has become
divided by corporations and is called collectively the Iron fist.  The largest of these corporations is called
Tekken founded by Heihachi Mishima (Portrayed by Cary Tagawa from Mortal
Kombat.)  However to keep things orderly
amongst the corporations they hold a tournament called the King of Iron Fist
every year (A Deathmatch/Rollerball plot).
Jin lives in a the slums on the outskirts of Tekken City
called the Anvil which looks very much like it was pulled from Final Fantasy
VII.  He goes on scavaging runs in order
to acquire currency ranging from Red Tekken Dollars to Rare Blue Global
Dollars.  He conducts his trade with an
anti-Tekken radical named Bonner who speaks that Jin would be a good asset to
the revolution taking place.   Jin
declines the offer, collects his money and goes about his way.
After leaving Bonner’s place he ventures about the slums
showing viewers how horrid the conditions have become for commoners.  Meanwhile Bonner plans to hack Tekken using
the device Jin traded with him in order to announce/broadcast the truth.  Jin comes home seeing his mother Jun Kazama,
and speaks with her about his latest scores from his outings.  Jun isn’t happy about the dangers her son
places himself into and tells him there is another way to make ends meet.  Jin interjects by mentioning fighting for
Tekken, and the two start arguing with the traditional angst/tragic
backstory  plot but Jin leaves the house
to go spend time with a girl named Carie.
Moments later, Tekken corp traces the device back to
Bonner’s place, where jackhammers led by Kazuya Mishima raided and taken the
device back and in hunting for Jin finds his mother’s home and executes her.
Jin comes back to find her dead and decides to enter the Iron Fist Tournament
and take revenge against Heihaichi Mishima. 
Jin is participating as a People’s choice against one of the low tier
fighters (In the movie anyway) Marshall Law. 

This is where the movie gets good, Jin goes into the fray
gtting into a blood free for all against Law, and it is glorious the way the
direction and fighting mixes.   Everything
about the battle just keeps me focused and wondering what’s going to happen
next.

Jin becomes an overnight celebrity after defeating law, and the
man who allowed Jin to participate is named Steve Fox, who decides to become
his manager and yes, if you played the games…that’s totally not Steve Fox but hey
this is the adaptation not the great games themselves.


Meet Steve Fox





Once these traits are established we leave
the slums and venture into the vast Tekken City where we meet the leaders of
Tekken, Heihachi and his son, Kazuya.

Unlike the source material, Kazuya is working alongside of
his father apparently as a composite of him and Lee’s characters.  It works for this movie because there’s
already one revenge story and we don’t need another right now.  We do see that Kazuya wants to take over the
Tekken reigns from his father but Heihachi doesn’t think he’s ready yet so the
father/son conflict theme is where it needs to be.
As Jin is welcomed into the fighter landscape, we get a good
look at the other fighters from the game series who made the cut.

1) Raven
2) Nina Williams
3) Sergei Dragunov (Unless you played Tekken 6, you won’t know him)
4) Eddy Gordo
5) Jin Kazama (You should all know him by now)
6) Bryan Fury
7) Anna Williams (She doesn’t do anything in the Tournament at all!)
8) Christie Monterio
9) Miguel Rojas (Unless you played Tekken 6, you don’t know him)
10) Yoshimitsu

      So the King of Iron Fist Tournament is well locked in place
from this point and it ha some accurate adept fighting styles and
performances.
  First up is a phenomenal
match between Raven and Eddy in a ring pulled straight out of Tekken 4.
  Subtle references like this make live action
video game movies enjoyable to me, and soon Jin is to battle in the ring
against Royas.












The second match has Jin fighting to prove his worth and
this time around earns the interest of Heihachi and the obsession of
Kazuya.  Much later Jin begins to fall
into a mutual attraction with Christie, and ventures on a lovely evening with
her.  Kazuya still bothered by the move
set and abilities of Jin begins to go on a private investigation about him and
begins to harbor intense hatred once he finds out the connection between them.

(Those who have played the games know full well what it is.)
The revelation of events drive Kazuya insane and once Jin
and Christie return from the flirtatious evening.  The Williams sisters wielding ninja swords
ambush Jin in his room and they practically make cole slaw out of him until
Christie breaks the door down and sends them off into the night.  The two reunite with Steve Fox whom deduces
that the Tekken Corp targeted Jin due to his popularity and that Jin should leave but once Fox learns
of Jin’s mother Jun.  It becomes a scene
about how Tekken is a corrupted and how Jun was a great fighter with Fox from
the past.  Unfortunately the scene goes
nowhere as they still decide to have Jin forfeit but Jin objects and
states he is there to kill Mishima. We’re back at the ringside again where
Heihachi and Kazuya have another dispute about Jin, and Christie gets into a
match with the infamous assassin of the series, Nina Williams.

The Christie vs Nina match is a brutal follow up to the
assassination scene and I commend the direction with this battle.  Christie wins and Steve gives the wounded Jin
a present for his damaged hands, and they are the iconic Iron Fist Tournament
gloves basically a symbol for the Tekken Franchise as a whole.  

This must be a Soul Calibur reference in disguise. 

Jin takes to using the gloves for the next
match against Yoshimitsu. Who is nowhere near his representation in the games
as a benevolent swordsman, he is another warrior who is promised money by
Kazuya if he kills Jin.    In true
villainous fashion Kazuya’s desperation takes its toll and he begins to take it
upon his own hands to overthrow Heihachi. Heihachi was going to cancel the
Jin/Yoshimitsu fight and save it for the semi-finals but Kazuya plays his hand
at this point and the match resumes.

In the ring, Jin is put against the ropes while he battles
the swordsman but as per usual in his fights, memories of his mother’s training
causes him to rise up and fight with all of his might.  Jin defeats Yoshimitsu finally causing Kazuya
to overreact and Heihachi puts his hatred of Jin into a forgone conclusion.
“You have a son?”
Indeed Kazuya admits to his violation of Jin’s Mother from
the past and it is his intention that this company is his and he has no
intention of letting it fall into another’s hands.  Seeing that his son’s mentality is long since
gone, Heihachi hits an emergency alarm and causes a small commotion but Kazuya
advises the Tekken Fighters to be detained for the rest of the tournament.  Some of the fighters from Steve, Jin, Raven,
and Christie attempted to get away in the commotion only to be swarmed by
Jackhammers. Unfortunately Raven is captured, and the remaining few scurried
away into the slums along with a retreating Heihachi to a safe house that Jin
knows of (Really?).
The movie wasn’t about fighting or the plot because of the
getaway scenes, I guess it was just a way for producers to fill in the time by
opening up the landscape around the fighters even if you saw in the picture is
pretty narrow and dull. The movie turns into a bang bang shootout sequence that
could make both Steven Seagal and Michael Bay proud.   It was very out of place even if it is a
stumbling attempt to give the audience something different to see.  In the safehouse, Jin confronts Heihachi and
finds out the connection to the Mishima Bloodline, and not too long after the
group is ambushed by Jackhammers who destroyed a sizeable portion of the
slums.  So there was really nowhere else
they could hide at and Steve is killed this time around, Heihachi is taken away
by a Jack to be executed, and Jin and Christie are taken back to Tekken City.
This whole sequence occurs abruptly and feels forced, so as
a viewer I’m wondering why did they even leave Tekken City in the first place?

Once we’re back at the Jail cell where we were two scenes ago, Jin has a bitter
heart to heart with Kazuya.  We find out
that the next Tekken battles will not be for honor but for death, and to make
sure Jin fights out his last matches. 
Kazuya takes Christie Hostage which is interesting because I thought she
was a competitor but anyways  Jin is a wreck at this point. In case anyone is concerned about Dragunov, he’s unfortunately used in the movie to show off Fury’s superior strength in a forced Worf Effect so he gets brutally killed by Bryan Fury to show that tournament is going in a darker direction. Fortunately for the movie’s plot and Jin’s direction, his next opponent is Bryan Fury.  



Bryan Fury, the wildly mad cyborg in the franchise whom is
pretty much Yoshimitsu’s arch nemesis by Tekken 5 is the champion character in
this movie, and Jin having lost a few people close to him is broken, tired, and
having Christie’s life in his hands is in an understandable state of mind.   It actually plays out pretty well because
you can feel for him that despite his initial journey to kill Mishima, he is
technically a Mishima and fell into a Heroic BSOD.   Meanwhile Raven decides to step into the
temporary mentor role and pull Jin out of his slump by saying that Jin has the
potential for greatness and can inspire hope as long as he doesn’t give into
revenge.

This rekindle Jin’s spirit a bit and inspires him to put on
the gloves, and by the way it’s filmed it makes you think that it’s going to be
for one last time and probably could be because a lot is at stake right
now.  Kazuya sets up the match and we’re
back in the first scene of the film where Jin is walking to the ring to face
his challenge.  He’s on his way to battle
Bryan Fury not just for the championship or his life but for the world’s
salvation.   Soon as our hero is in the
ring with Byran, we notice that Mr.Fury is unlike any of the combatants that
Jin has faced before.  Fury has a secret
within his body that only Kazuya knows and it is that he’s a cyborg modified
with plenty of Tekken tech (least in the movie).

This fight as like the other fights is brilliantly
choreographed and it is good to see Martial Arts champ, Gary Daniels still
showing that he is a master of his craft.  How Jin manages to fight Bryan was awesome and even though I could feel the
producers were quickly trying to end this film by due to production costs and the match’s
length.  It’s fine with me because the
most important fight that happens in all of the Tekken Games is about to begin, the battle between father and son.

(Courtesy of Movie Fight Scenes on YouTube)

That was it? Unfortunately it was the most underwealming fight in the entire film.  Kazuya walks into the ring sporting two mini
axes to battle his son (Which never happens). He taunts and entices Jin to kill
him as he does in the games but Jin manages to use Kazuya’s arrogance against
him, and wounds him using one of the axes. 
I was annoyed by how short this fight was and thought if they didn’t
waste time making the damn shootout scenes the movie could had enough runtime
for a better final battle.  After all the
stuff, Kazuya did to torment Jin, He deserved a better beat down than what was
presented.

Jin reunites with Christie and decides its best that he
returns home since he’s now the champ. 
So he starts leaving from Tekken City as she watches and narrows how Jin
became a symbol for hope and freedom.  Jin
walks back to the slums as a noble warrior would do in terms of finding another
pathway in life aka like Ryu does at the end of Street Fighter II.   It’s a good ending if used right and well
just like certain transition scenes in this movie, it wasn’t.   His home was destroyed in the beginning of
the movie, his romance with Christie was just a fling, and everyone chants for
him like he just ended poverty, and it was nothing but a mundane/shallow
victory.
That’s not all however, in the post credits we see
Kazuya rising up from his wounds and running somewhere else, and Heihachi was
able to prevent his assassination from the Jack.   Perhaps in hopes of making a sequel or
keeping some of the source material spirit intact for the feature’s sake. 
Well we did get a sequel of sorts but it was so bad that it
made this one look incredible. I’m not going to say this movie is a bad video
game adaptation but it raises more questions than answers.  It left a lot out from the source material while
understandable in making a based on property it could’ve had a little more
direction with it was using.  Now the
direction in general outside of the fights is very “Huh?” or –annoyed
sigh-.  Plus outside of Yoshimitsu, some of
the weapon usage in this film belongs in an entirely different Namco property
altogether (see Soul Series).  Just little things like that
lead you on a road to nowhere and honestly when watching entertainment you want
to see the conflict get resolved with purposeful scenes.
Now is it watchable or not? 
Yes, it is watchable and it is a decent fighting flick. Would it win
awards? No certainly not and if it did, it wouldn’t be those big prestigious
awards you’re thinking of but I was entertained for the most part. It
lacks the charm of Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat while remaining miles ahead of
Double Dragon and Mortal Kombat Annihilation. You do have to think this though “What can you
do?” Sometimes it is hard to bing certain elements into live action form but if
you can get pass some of the wooden characters and head-scratching moments, you
can enjoy this film but for video game fans it’s best to just stick with the
games instead.

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Video Game Double Feature: Tekken, an introduction.

Hello J360 Fans, I know this has been long overdue but I’ve managed to track down multiple copies of different live action video game adaptations to keep this feature going so this will be well worth the wait.

Today we’re going to take a look at the Tekken Series from Namco Bandai.

The year is 1995, the move from traditional 2D fighters to 3D was underway following a trend led by Virtua Fighter over at Sega. Namco decided to enter the fray with their Tekken series and it was revolutionary for its time for the movements were smooth for the characters and each button the player used could control each of the four limbs.  As each installment landed at the arcades and home console, this series became a big money maker for Namco just like the Soul Series.

Another bonus for this series was if the mechanics and smooth gameplay didn’t interest gamers, the core story of the characters did.

Tekken follows the exploits of a corporation called the Mishima Zaibatsu and its leader, Heihachi Mishima.  Heihachi hosts a tournament called The King of the Iron Fist which rewards a $1 Billion cash prize along with (depending on the game) ownership of the Zaibatsu itself.

Now while this sounds nice, Heihachi like most fighting bosses at the time is a smug snake who has a literal demon coming for him in the form of his estranged son, Kazuya.   When Kazuya was a young boy, Heihachi believed him to be weak and unfit to inherit the company.

Heihachi Mishima

So like the spartans in 300, Heihachi threw young Kazuya into a ravine to see if he would be strong enough to climb back up.

The process worked in a bizarre sort of way for Kazuya was near death, full of rage, and sold his soul to the devil so that he would gain the strength to destroy his father.  This tragedy gave an inverted look for the series because it trumps the cliched “flawed warrior vs his evil father” storyline.  Kazuya became a monster and the tragedy expands far from the Mishima bloodline into the Kazama bloodline where it affects his young son Jin Kazama as the true tragic protagonist.

Jin Kazama and Kazuya Mishima

At least when Tekken 3 rolls around in the games storyline then it becomes more about Jin trying to cure himself of the devil gene, only to slowly repeat the sins of the father as Kazuya and Heihachi continue their own private war against one another.

While sad, this core story ties in other characters’ storylines and presents a grey morality that is (arguably) rivaled by the Soul Series and the Mortal Kombat Series.

Or no wait, I’m wrong because the Street Fighter series does a similar scenerio with Ryu and the Satsu No Hadu, Cammy’s “history” with Bison, and Akuma.  We’ll touch on comparisons between the series at another time and we might use Street Fighter X Tekken in such a feature during a PowerPlay Episode.

Back to Tekken, once Jin is involved in the series you began to understand that he’s a man caught into pure turmoil because of his bloodline, and you’re immersed into his story to see if he’ll break the curse, if there is a cure because it is about how much of his innocence is retained through each installment while his father has long since went to a path he can never recover from.   Heihachi never had the Devil Gene but he was always working behind the scenes in some way and it turns out that the Devil Gene from Tekken 5 was always there as his own Father, Jinpachi had it within him.

The Dysfunction doesn’t stop there either because things really start to shift with the introduction of Lars in Tekken 6, and it just keeps adding layers to a great storyline which I hope to see comes together in Tekken 7.

Coming Eventually (:P)

Now this is only an introduction/summary to the games storyline and to cover everything would take too many pages before I get to the movie review so let’s get to that starting with Tekken: The Movie (2010).

I will return with the movie review.

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