Never Give Up, Never Give In – Mark Strange interview for Martial Arts Illustrated

This is an interview I wrote for Martial Arts Illustrated. Mark Strange is a household name to the UK Martial Arts crowd. He is an action actor who previously competed internationally and even earned titles as the Euro-British Full Contact Champion and MAI National Chinese Forms Champion before starting a new career in the movies. Having appeared in films like The Medallion, Twins Effect and Batman Begins, he would go on to star in Displaced, 12 and Bodyguard: A New …

Recoil – Blu-ray Review

Director: Terry Miles Cast: Steve Austin, Serinda Swan, Danny Trejo, Keith Jardine, Lochlyn Munro Run Time: 90 mins Distributor: eOne Discs: 1 Cert: 15 Synopsis A cop turns vigilante after his family is murdered, exacting vengeance on the killers – and then on all criminals who have slipped through the system. When honorable police officer Ryan Varrett’s (Austin) entire family is brutally murdered, the one-time good guy cop is forced to go rogue – breaking the laws he once swore …

Action Overture: Interview with Alan Mak

Born in 1968 in Hong Kong, Alan Mak is a writer, director and producer best known as one of the team who penned and directed the popular Infernal Affairs trilogy. Gaining huge credibility all over the world, he went on to write and direct crime-drama, Overheard, and Martial Arts epic, The Lost Bladesman. Yet despite these recent successes, his career in the business dates back much further and can be traced through his humble beginnings watching afternoon film screenings at …

Gallants: Interview with Clement Cheng

Clement Cheng is fast-becoming one of the most recognised new names on the Hong Kong filmmaker’s circuit. Born and raised in Hong Kong, the young Clement became enamoured by the world of Kung Fu movies and after moving to Canada, enrolled in a filmmaking class with the Hong Kong Director’s Guild. Learning from some of the biggest names in the business, Clement kickstarted an exciting career in movies which led to a hugely successful partnership with fellow filmmaker, Derek Kwok, …

Karate Girl: Interview with Rina Takeda

Born on June 15, 1991 in Kanagawa, Japan, Rina Takeda is one of the youngest new action stars in the movie business. Redefining perceptions of the on-screen heroine, she obliterates men twice her size and leaves nothing but a trail of semi-conscious bodies in her wake. As a teen, she earned her black belt in Ryukyu Shorin-ryu Karate and was subsequently invited to audition for the action-packed cult Martial Arts flick, High Kick Girl. This led to a successful new …

Guest Host on Filmsploitation: The Film Podcast (Episode 16)

Tonight I appeared as the guest host (joining presenters Phil Hobden and Richard Blanchett) on episode 16 of Filmsploitation: The Film Podcast! In their own words, the podcast is: “A journey through all the good, the bad and the ugly that film has to offer. A fortnightly mix of reviews, news and opinion interspersed with the occasional special ‘Alternate Commentary’ or ‘Interview’ here and there. Hosted by Richard Blanchett & Phil Hobden, with a team of movie experts, we aim to offer an alternative view …

Rediscover Jet Li’s Golden Era

Since the demise of Hong Kong Legends, quality releases showcasing our favourite Hong Kong action classics have been less easy to come by. For those of us who treasured the HKL titles and high quality DVDs, it puts into perspective how other releases (from many other distributors) often pale in comparison. Courtesy of Cine-Asia, many of these previously deleted, out-of-print titles have been given a new lease of life and the latest batch comes in the form of the Jet …

Hit Girls: (Hit) Girls Just Wanna Have Fun – Impact

With the popularity of online movies and web series on the rise, a dynamic new action short recently hit YouTube and is already causing quite a stir. Hit Girls, the new short film from Rosebud Pictures, was recently released online following a successful set of screenings at BAFTA, Working Title and Electric Cinema in London. Differentiating itself from video game franchises like Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat (the subject of other recent web films and series), Hit Girls remains action-packed …

Guest Host on Filmsploitation: The Film Podcast (Episode 10)

Tonight I appeared as the guest host (joining presenters Phil Hobden and Richard Blanchett) on episode 10 of Filmsploitation: The Film Podcast! In their own words, the podcast is: “A journey through all the good, the bad and the ugly that film has to offer. A fortnightly mix of reviews, news and opinion interspersed with the occasional special ‘Alternate Commentary’ or ‘Interview’ here and there. Hosted by Richard Blanchett & Phil Hobden, with a team of movie experts, we aim to offer an alternative …

Best Laid Plans – DVD Review

Director: David Blair Cast: Stephen Graham, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, David O’Hara, Maxine Peake Run Time: 104 mins Distributor: Sony Pictures Discs: 1 Cert: 15 Synopsis Set against a grim, urban backdrop, Danny (Stephen Graham: This is England, Boardwalk Empire) and his gentle friend Joseph (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje: Oz, Lost), whom he looks after and who has the mental age of a child are faced with a terrible ultimatum. To pay off Danny’s mounting debts to local crime boss Curtis (David O’Hara: The …

Happy New Year!

Just a quick note to wish everyone a Happy New Year and best wishes for 2012! There’s a lot of great stuff coming up in 2012, including some great films, new moves from some exciting, fresh talent, plus some big announcements on my own work including my directorial debut which is currently in post-production. Thanks again for your support, visiting my site, reading my work and supporting action genre cinema! Best wishes, Mike

Interviews Referenced in Undefeatable Commentary

I was very pleased and honoured that my interviews with actors, Don Niam and John Miller, were heavily referenced for the latest film commentary from the well-established Podcast on Fire team. Their new commentary for B-movie Martial Arts favourite, Undefeatable, starring Cynthia Rothrock, is well worth checking out and offers some interesting comments and discussion points! Thanks for including me guys! “Joined by Tom Kent-Williams and David Harris, Kenneth Brorsson tackles Godfrey Ho’s B-movie actioner that survived: Undefeatable. Cynthia Rothrock kicking …