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Big Trouble in Little China VHS
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Once you settle into the realization that this 1986 John Carpenter (Halloween) film is not going to be one of the director's more masterful works, Big Trouble in Little China just becomes a full-tilt comic blast. Kurt Russell is hilarious as a drawling, would-be John Wayne hero who steps into the middle of a supernatural war in the heart of Chinatown. While kung fu warriors and otherworldly spirits battle over the fate of two women (Kim Cattrall and Suzee Pai), Russell's swaggering idiot manages to knock himself out or underestimate the forces he's dealing with. The whole thing is dopey, but it's supposed to be dopey and Russell's game performance brings an ironic edge. Carpenter directs some nifty spook effects (the sudden arrival of three martial arts demigods from out of nowhere is worth applause), and he also wrote the music. --Tom Keogh
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THOUGHTS: Crazy mish-mash of several genres is all kinds of whacked out fun if you're in a silly frame of mind. Carpenter throws in everything but the kitchen sink and both he and his talented cast play it fast & loose and have a great time. So will you. Visual F/X are snazzy old school opticals (courtesy F/X maestro Richard Edlund), combined with practical make-ups and ultra-energetic stunt work. The result is a truly one-of-a-kind flick that rather defies description. Suffice it to say that it is wildly uneven, over-the-top, hyper-kinetic, senses-staggering and unashamedly silly. But most of all it's just a highly entertaining 100 minute roller coaster ride.
THE BLU-RAY: This hi-def release of BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA arrives in super sweet shape. Picture is in its proper 2.35:1 'scope format and looks extremely clean & sharp. This is a nice improvement over the old DVD. Speaking of which, the excellent audio commentary with director Carpenter & star Russell is ported over from the DVD edition. It's a very entertaining listen. These guys have done several movies together and have a lot of fun reminiscing. Blu-ray includes additional bonus material, including an extended ending, 9 deleted scenes, an interview with visual effects supervisor Richard Edlund and lots more. Well worth the purchase (or upgrade) if you're a fan of Carpenter or this particular film. Climb aboard The Porkchop Express and buckle yourself in for one wild ride! 5 STARS
It's in quite a few movie categories: Action, Fantasy, Horror, Comedy. The director even said
that the studio did not know how to promote the movie. Oh, well. At least now I have had the
ability to upgrade to a Blu-ray version. (Have the DVD version from a few years ago.)
Kurt Russell was perfect for the role he played. Thank you Kurt. The other actors also were
quite well selected. Even the real hero character's actor, Dennis Dun, worked out well. His
character, while appearing to be secondary, is the real hero. Kurt Russell plays the in your
face side kick, (but very entertaining).
Some of the special effects and stunts are dated, (the movie was released in 1986). Never
the less, still reasonable unlike other 1980s movies and T.V. shows. The Blu-ray version's
special features are all standard def, (and some of poor video quality). But that's likely due
to the source video, not the Blu-ray transfer. It's just the best we can get without serious
video processing, (which is not warranted for this movie's special features).
All in all, great entertainment.
Most recent customer reviews
Movie is 5 stars.
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