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In 1989 I had the pleasure of working on a motion picture with a friend that was shot entirely on location in Malaysia. The working title was “Man on the Edge”, but it eventually was called ‘The DaDah Connection”. My friend, Toby Russell, was the director. His father is English film director Ken Russell (Altered States, Crimes of Passion, Lady Chatterley, and a bunch of other flicks).

The film was a blend of cops/guns meeting martial arts. Funny, back then that was a new thing. The martial arts film companies in Hong Kong and across Asia were moving away from the traditional martial arts films. Today on any given day there are action films playing in US theatres blending Hong Kong martial arts choreography with gunplay. Dare I say it… they are almost a dime a dozen just like the days of the Saturday afternoon Kung-Fu films of the early eighties. Today special effects and new filming techniques can make anyone “hover”. I’m starting to feel real old.

I’m happy the US has finally embraced films using martial arts and firearms as a backdrop to the main story. Not too long ago a bunch of us were wondering if it would ever catch on.
 

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I used to watch Kung Fu Theater on USA every Saturday when I was growing up. I love cheesy Kung Fu flix. I wish they would bring that back. I still rent most of the crap that rolls through the video store, but so much of it is missing that classic wire work. Some noted exceptions were Iron Monkey and Black Mask, both of which were pretty good.

If you haven't seen Jet Li in Fist of Legend, you should ckeck it out. He opens up a big can o' whupass in it. One of my all-time faves. I also liked Kiss of the Dragon. Jet Li kicks ass and Tcheky Kayro (sp?) plays a great bad guy.

As far as gun play, I really haven't found anything better than John Woo's Hard Boiled and the Killer. Chow Yun Fat is in both and they are hands down two of the greatest action movies out there.
 
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