This Rush Hour DVD Combo Pack is only $9.99?!? That’s incredible.
I came to Walmart to buy dog food and dish detergent, but little did I know that I’d run across the find of the century, nestled in that Walmart DVD display crammed between those two other Walmart DVD displays. Holy shit! Just check it out.
The madcap, yet emotionally touching, adventures of Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker are mine to own for $9.99? Let me break that down. $9.99 divided by 3 is $3.33. That’s $3.33 per Rush Hour movie. That’s MORE than doable. That’s probably the best deal I’ve ever seen.
This might be the greatest thing that anyone could ever buy, really. What else can you unearth that has a price as evenly distributed across a product as all three (the Rush Hour trilogy I should say,) for $9.99. That’s about 5 ½ hours of entertainment, for just $9.99. I’m almost rendered speechless.
As I said, I came in here to buy dog food and dish detergent and nothing else, but it’s just a testament to the fucking steal that is $9.99 for all three Rush Hour films (the Rush Hour saga), that I walked away with the Rush Hour DVD Combo Pack. One might say “Do you really need that right now?” but one could answer that hypothetical question with a question of their own: “When would one find something better?” I married my wife knowing that I’d never find a partner as dedicated and wonderful as her, and even that wasn’t planning for the future as well as I’d be doing when the cashier scans the Rush Hour DVD Combo Pack and hands it to me for me to enjoy over and over again. You may never find something this worthy of the American dollar.
At certain points in your life, you’ll be forced to make choices. And you might not want to make these choices because you question them. You question that way that they’ll affect your life, and this is really the great turmoil of human existence. But when you come across something like the Rush Hour DVD Combo Pack, it’s like everything becomes simple. For the first time in your complicated, busy life, things become black and white. The choice is made before you even walked into the store. There’s something comforting with that kind of destiny.
As I said, guys. I was there to buy dog food and dish detergent. I didn’t plan on spending the extra $9.99, but some higher power, whether it be God or some other deity entirely, certainly did. And so I picked it up, looked at the picture of Jackie Chan folding his arms and Chris Tucker doing a hilarious martial arts kick, and I went with it. There’s something beautiful about the things that fate hands you sometimes, and the Rush Hour DVD Combo Pack is certainly one of those things.
This is the first Jackie Chan movie I watched at the cinema and I did like it a lot more back then. As I stated in an earlier review, I’m sorta over the martial arts genre but I still enjoy watching Jackie kick ass still. Not to impressed by the characters in this movie tho but it still has its moments (my favorite scene is the thug in the appartment that refuse to go down then ends up crying when he stands there with a wrench).
This is also one of the last movies I saw Anita Mui (may she rest in peace). Some familiar faces if you watch a lot of JC movies actually. The uncle (Bill Tung) I’ve seen in quite a few… feels weird to see them speak as it’s dubbed but that’s just in the start. I’m not all that impressed by the editing in at the end of the movie tho it does have that signature behind the scenes in the end credits which is cool at least. Some cool fight sequences in this one too. Been about 2 decades since I watched this last.
Doubt I’ll see it again but since it was on Netflix I found it hard to ignore this time. Jackie will always be one of my lifetime heroes. Rumble is directed by Stanley Tong who also did Police Story 3 (Supercop) and 4 (First Strike). I like both those better than this tho…
..I rate this movie 6/10 stars..
- City of Heavenly Fire – Cassandra Clare
- Every Word – Ellie Marney
- Skinjob – Bruce McCabe
i. Bloodlines – Richelle Mead
ii. The Golden Lily – Richelle Mead
iii. The Indigo Spell – Richelle Mead
iv. The Fiery Heart – Richelle Mead
- Silver Shadows – Richelle Mead
- Looking For Alibrandi – Melina Marchetta
- Goose – Dawn O’Porter
- Run – Gregg Olsen
- Love Letters to the Dead – Ava Dellaira
- Stoner – John Williams
- The Wrong Girl – Zoë Foster
- A Fatal Tide – Steve Sailah
- Murder in Mississippi – John Safran
- Elianne – Judy Nunn
- Being Jade – Kate Belle
- Martha in the Mirror – Justin Richards
- Shining Darkness – Mark Michalowski
- The Hound of the Baskervilles – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- Divergent – Veronica Roth
- Insurgent – Veronica Roth
- Allegiant – Veronica Roth
- The Messenger – Markus Zusak
- Fragile Things – Neil Gaiman
- The Mammoth Book of Angels and Demons
- Eleanor & Park – Rainbow Rowell
- NOS4R2 – Joe Hill
- The Gospel of Loki – Joanne M. Harris
- Hades – Candice Fox
- Last Night at Chateau Marmont – Lauren Weisberger
- Thirteen Reasons Why – Jay Asher
- Are You Seeing Me? – Darren Groth
- Masquerade – Kylie Fornasier
I’m currently sitting in the refectory at uni, surrounded by people who aren’t currently crippled by stomach cramps, nausea, and the need to run for the bathroom every forty-five minutes or so. So I feel like I’m justified in being a bit of a social pariah today. Well, that, plus I really needed to get this written. Every time I’ve tried over the past two days my body has just flat out rejected the idea. I figured now is probably my best option, given that I’ve spent the past three and a half hours doing lecture catch-up and I have three and a half hours until my next tute. Plus, I’ve managed to eat a sausage on bread (that I paid $1 for) and a teeny, delicious soy mocha without getting cramps that cause me to break out in hot and cold chills so I think I’m set.
Now, onto business.
Are You Seeing Me? was a beautiful way to restore my faith in the written word after the train wreck that was A Fatal Tide. Not only was it brilliant, but the two main characters were based in Brisbane, my home town. So whenever Groth talked about suburbs and landmarks, I actually could envision the places he were talking about.
Our two protagonists are Perry and Justine Richter. Twins who have had to deal with the premature death of their father at the hands of cancer and the abrupt abandonment of their mother when they were young. All of this, plus Perry was born with a “brain condition” that means he struggles with a lot of the things that you and I may take for granted: social interactions, crowds, anxiety.
Groth tells this story from both Perry and Justine’s perspectives, which I found lovely. I don’t know if any of you have read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon, but that book was told entirely from Christopher’s POV. Christopher, while I don’t believe it is stated outright, lived with severe Asperger’s for his entire life. In actual fact, his story is very similar to the Richter twins': absentee mother, devoted father. While Curious Incident was an incredible novel, it was hard to read too much all at once because Christopher’s character was just so overwhelming. There was no respite from the daily struggles Christopher went through and so the novel was heart-wrenching most of the way through.
With Are You Seeing Me? we got Justine’s POV as well as Perry’s and it was a beautiful counterbalance. Not only this but we got insight into the father’s mind as well, through a journal he kept right up until his dying day for Justine’s 18th birthday. (He did try and keep one for Perry too, but writing about Perry’s struggles growing up got too painful for him. The Richter father is a beautiful human being and we never actually get to meet him).
Groth created two extraordinary characters who could not be more different, not only for the for obvious reasons, but also through the way he wrote the characters. We could tell the voices apart with no trouble and that takes some serious skill. We also could see a little into the backstory of the characters without Groth having to explicitly tell us. With Justine, she made constant references to “capital L” Literature and so we get the sense that she is incredibly well-educated despite not being at school (it comes out later that Justine dropped out of uni in order to look after Perry and her dad). We also get glimpses of the struggles Perry has in social situations. Much like Christopher in Curious Incident, he describes a person’s actions and makes inferences about their emotions, if he can. If he can’t, we do the rest. It’s beautifully done.
I just want to talk about Groth’s writing style for a second. He is the Australian John Green, only slightly more sedate. I can’t remember who said it, but someone once described Green’s writing style as “it just seems as though he’s aiming for a bumper sticker with every sentence”. Which is, unfortunately, accurate. Groth, however, just has this subtle way of subverting the readers’ expectations of how a sentence will end. If I flick to a random page, I’ll find you a quote:
Two minutes later, we are suspended high above the PNE, the two of us together in a cage, defying gravity, looking out over a city that doesn’t know it is being watched.
pg 215, Perry
Beautiful. right? Just gorgeous.
There are so many things I want to talk about with this novel, things that are so intrinsic to its genius, but I don’t know if I’ll have time. I’ve already rambled a bit, haven’t I? So I’ll try and keep this brief.
The title of the book, Are You Seeing Me? is the question Justine and Perry ask each other; more so Justine than Perry. When Perry is in trouble, suffering from his acute anxiety in a situation he doesn’t understand, Justine tries to avert it by getting in his face, putting her hands on his shoulders or his face, forcing him to look at her and ask him “are you seeing me?”. It calms him down because he has something to focus on. Perry asks Justine while they are at the fish market and Justine immediately asks him why her catching a fish is so important to him.
Oh! Sidebar, OK, so Perry and Justine are from Brisbane but they venture to Canada for a two week holiday to Canada before Perry goes into an assisted living centre back in Brisbane. It’s a chance for the two of them to spend as much time together as they can before Perry moves away. There’s also an ulterior motive to Justine taking Perry overseas but if I tell you that, it’ll give the game away. So the “fish market” I just talked about is one of the pit stops on the Richer’s Canadian holiday.
The bond between the twins is simply wonderful. We never see Justine become frustrated or angry with Perry (well, once, but she was strung out with worry so we let that slide) and we only ever see Perry respond with love to Justine. He hates her tears and they create a tidal wave of anxiety in him that triggers an episode. It is such an honest, simple love that it warms your heart, it really does. And then, when Perry explains to us why he wants to go to Fair Go (the assisted living centre) it damn well brings you to tears. Most of the books I read are all about the love of, well, a lover or friends, but this one is about family first and foremost. And I love it.
Something that really drives home how acute Perry’s anxiety can be are these scenes Groth writes in the middle of a relatively normal scene, where the world turns topsy turvy. When Perry’s at the PNE (The Canadian – can’t remember which town now – version of the Ekka in Brisbane), he starts feeling anxious and before he breaks down, he is seeing all of the roller coasters fall apart, collapse, spin out of control, and kill people. It was an inspired move on Groth’s part because instead of describing Perry’s physiological symptoms, we get his mental state as anxiety takes hold. It helps us to understand him more as a character, what he fears, what he sees as a hero, etc. It was just such a lovely touch.
“What is it about sea monsters, Pez? Why are you into them so much?”
It’s not something I’ve ever been asked before – not by Justine or Dad or the teachers I had at school. Thinking about the answer takes a few minutes. Justine doesn’t stare, doesn’t repeat the question. She knows I need a moment to think and organise a response. By the time I am ready to reply, she’s cleaned up our table and the rubbish is in the bin.
“There are two reasons,” I say. “The first is because they are excellent at hiding. They’ve survived for thousands of years and no one has caught them. And the second reason is they’ve learned to survive even though the world is confusing and difficult for them.”
Doesn’t that just melt your heart? It did mine. See, Perry is fixated on a few things: earthquakes, Jackie Chan, sea monsters. But this explanation just broke me. Because he is being totally honest and that is exactly how he feels. He’s not trying to garner support or sympathy, he’s stating a fact. Just like he does when he talks about how much he loves his sister. Perry’s character is just amazing. The world needs more people like Perry Richter.
OK, so I’ve gone on for far too long now. I know it, you know it, and you’ve probably abandoned me by this point, but I just want to make one last point.
Perry has a brain condition that can cause him to feel anxious or upset in different places and circumstances. He has trouble with people – mixing with them and communicating with them – and it sometimes results in inappropriate behaviours. I appreciate your understanding and patience.
Justine repeats this speech quite a few times throughout the course of the novel. It’s her way of paving the road for Perry in a world that is too narrow-minded to accept him for who he is. I found myself skim-reading this speech quite a few times in the early pages but then I forced myself to read each and every word, each and every time. Because Groth repeated those words for a reason. Justine would have absolutely have had to say this at least a few times every day that she and Perry went out into society. It became a knee-jerk reaction for her, but she meant it every time. So, in order to better understand Justine’s plight, I made sure I was right there with her whenever she made her speech. As Perry’s carer, it was a necessity. One she didn’t particularly enjoy, but did anyway. And so, I thought it only fair that I should listen (or read) her speech every time she made it. It makes Justine’s character all the more real.
This book explores so much more than just Perry’s mental state and the twins’ relationship. It explores society, all the different shades of relationships, our perceptions, Australia, Canada, dreams, heroism, anxiety, disease, survival, and love. But I can’t talk about all of those points here. I’ll bore you all to death. So here’s my last plea: read this book. If you love John Green, you will love this novel. And the Aussie bits? References to places you’ve never heard of? Just think of them as a tiny vacation for your imagination.
Oh, alright, just one more quote:
Love is reliable. You can depend on it.
The Taiwanese actor arrested on drug charges along with the son of Hong Kong film star Jackie Chan was released Friday after two weeks in detention, amid a broad anti-drug crackdown in China‘s capital that has ensnared several celebrities.
Kai Ko emerged from a Beijing detention center before dawn and into a scrum of reporters from mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Followed to his hotel by the press pack, a visibly agitated Ko challenged one reporter to a fight before retreating inside an elevator.
Kai was considerably more composed at an afternoon news conference in which he appeared with his parents and agent and apologized for smoking marijuana.
“I was wrong on this issue. I made a mistake. There is no excuse for it. I was wrong,” Kai said.
“I never realized that Kai Ko is more than just a name for myself. It also means a lot to those who support and love me. It was out of my expectations that anything concerning ‘Kai Ko’ could have such a big impact on others,” he said, before bowing with his parents and agent in a sign of contrition.
The 23-year-old was arrested on Aug. 14 along with Jaycee Chan, son of the Hong Kong martial arts superstar. The arrests drew enormous media attention in the Chinese-speaking world and Kai’s news conference came amid speculation about how his career as an entertainer and brand spokesman might be affected.
Police said both actors tested positive for marijuana and admitted using the drug, and that 100 grams (3.53 ounces) of it were taken from Chan’s home.
While Ko was given a sentence of 14 days in administrative detention — standard for those caught doing drugs — 31-year-old Jaycee Chan remains in detention and faces a potentially much heftier penalty for having shared drugs with others.
Chan, whose mother is former Taiwanese actress Lin Feng-jiao, was raised in Los Angeles and has appeared in about 20 films, most of them low-budget Hong Kong and mainland Chinese productions.
Jackie Chan has publicly apologized for his son’s drug use and pledged to work with him on his recovery.
Ko, whose real name is Ko Chen-tung, rode to fame after his 2011 coming-of-age film “You Are the Apple of My Eye.” The role won him a Best New Performer award at the Golden Horse film awards in Taiwan, considered the most prestigious in Chinese-language cinema.
Ko also played the boyfriend of one of the protagonists in China-produced “Tiny Times 3.0,” a huge hit with young female audiences that knocked “Transformers 4” from the No. 1 spot in the mainland’s box office last month.
The arrests of Ko and Chan came amid a major offensive against drug-related crime in Beijing that has seen a 53.2 percent rise in investigations in the city to more than 1,800 since January, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.
More than 8,400 suspects have been detained during that time, an increase of 78.7-percent over the same period last year, Xinhua said.
I am always thoroughly delighted to find new pieces of ‘writing’ music. The first, Eliza’s Aria from the Wild Swans ballet, I knew previously from a Lloyds Bank ad on T.V. But oh, it does make my fingers skip across the keyboard.
It is possible to grow tired of this piece … but only if you have played it as many times as myself (I won’t tell you just how many times that is).
Have you ever found a track which fits a character just so? I heard this one and thought … why, this is Kyssa!*
This one … ah, yes. Cheerful and upbeat. This one is from a Jackie Chan film – Chinese Zodiac. And don’t for a moment form a bias as to what the movie is about because it isn’t quite like anything that the title suggests. There are randonmly appearing pirates with Afros, frightened French men in fluorescent flowered shirts and a woman beating up her attacker with her ‘gweat, gweat gwanfather’s’ bones and that is only one part of the movie.
Have a great weekend!*character has yet to be fully introduced on this blog.
Read more at Movie Buzzer Daily!
Remember when it was worth getting up early on a Saturday morning to watch kid’s TV? Kids today don’t know about that because we now have access to 24-hour a day children’s TV channels and the internet, but trust me, it was a thing. I’m also pretty sure kid’s TV was smarter, more dramatic and just generally better when I was a kid but that could be the nostalgia talking.
Feeling pretty nostalgic tonight I have decided to compile a list of the 10 best TV shows of my childhood. This was a hard list to make as there were so many great shows on when I was a kid; Dexter’s Laboratory, Codename Kid’s Next Door, Ed, Edd and Eddy, The Powerpuff Girls the list is endless but I’ve tried my best to come up with a top 10.
#10: The Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers
Much like today’s method of making kid’s TV seems to be to snort as much cocaine as possible and see what happens (see SpongeBob Squarepants and Adventure Time) the 90s solution was; import something from Japan, cut out the inappropriate stuff and dub it into English. And so we get the first of many Japanese imports on this list; The Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. The story of a group of high school students blessed with the ability to become the Power Rangers who are all kick-ass fighter AND get to control giant robotic dinosaurs. For a kid who loved awesome fight scenes and dinosaurs there was no way I wouldn’t be a fan of this show. Although looking back now I wonder how appropriate characters like Lord Zedd (a skinless dude) were for children’s TV.
There’s no way I could grow up in the 90s and NOT have Pokémon on this list, it was THE children’s craze of the 90s. Much like The Spice Girls Pokémon (although it still continues today, unlike the Spice Girls) was a defining feature of 90s pop culture. Everywhere you went there were Pokémon toys, videogames, the cartoon show and of course those darn trading cards that pretty much EVERY kid had. This show must have been responsible for 90% of playground fights during the 90s due to kids arguing over the cards and whether or not Mewtwo should have beaten Mew. (Yes he should have). Also, this still has one of the GREATEST opening themes of any television show EVER. Period.
#8 Jackie Chan Adventures
Jackie Chan Adventures was another show that allowed for mad collecting. Not to the extent of Pokémon but I remember me my brother and sister all collected the magazine along with the trading cards and the cool Talisman necklaces that came with it. The show features the fictionalised adventures of Jackie Chan (yes, THAT Jackie Chan, though you will note the character looks nothing like him) as he fights off the evil Black Hand criminal syndicate as they try to collect all 12 powerful Talismans (based off the Chinese Zodiac) in order to resurrect the great dragon-demon Shendu. This show featured plenty of comedy, kick-ass fight scenes, cool ass dragon-demons and plenty of quotable catchphrases (particularly from Uncle and Jackie).
#7 Spider-Man: The Animated Series
Back before everyone when Superhero mad in Hollywood, kids TV had already jumped on the bandwagon with animated versions of almost all of Marvel’s most famous heroes. Spider-Man was one of the best. With great voice acting (for a kids show), some great animation for its time and relatively complex plots for a kids show this action-packed small screen version of everyone’s favourite wall crawler introduced many to the famous storylines including the Symbiote’s, Green Goblin and Sinister Six. I remember loving Venom and Carnage who were very well done in this show and quite scary for a kids show.
#6 Batman: The Animated Series
Another superhero cartoon appears on out list with Batman: The Animated Series. If you watch this show’s opening credits on YouTube you will notice that it is very noir-ish and very dark and very much like the comics. Yes that’s why Batman: The Animated Series was so critically respected and is still held in high esteem by comic book fans. Wonderful voice acting, including Mark Hamill as The Joker, this dark show walked a tightrope between being dark enough to satisfy hardcore Batman fans and lighthearted enough that it wouldn’t get pulled by censors. Although I do remember my sister being absolutely terrified of Clayface in this…
So that’s part one of my list, part two will follow shortly. How many of these shows do you remember? What were your favourite kids shows in the 90s?
Previously I posted My Favorite Female Martial Artists so now I want to give you my favorite male martial artists. These men are very popular so I won’t take up space by repeating the usual facts. Instead, I tried to find some fascinating and lesser known facts about each. Enjoy!
World Wushu Tournament medalist
Raised in Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Best known for the Ip Man movies, along with Wing Chun, Hero and Shanghai Knights
“When you watch my films, you’re feeling my heart.”
For more on Donnie Yen, check out his website: www.donnieyen.asia
2. Bruce Lee - (Lee Jun Fan) credited with making the martial arts film genre popular in the Western cinemas.
Born in the year of the dragon (1940) at the hour of the dragon (between 6 & 8 am).
Won a major dance championship in Hong Kong.
Studied philosophy at Seattle, Washington, USA.
Made animal sounds when he fought to unnerve his opponents.
Received his formal training in Wing Chun from the legendary Ip Man (Check out my post Could Bruce Lee Owe His Fame to 2 Females? )
When he died, almost 30,000 fans filed past his casket in Hong Kong. A smaller ceremony was held in his hometown of Seattle and among his pallbearers were Steve McQueen, James Coburn and Dan Inosanto.
Bizarre circumstances surround his death, then his son, Brandon Lee died somewhat mysteriously while filming, The Crow (1993).
“Empty your mind. Become formless and shapeless like water. When water is poured into a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Be water, my friend.”
For more on Bruce Lee, check out his website: www.brucelee.com
3. Jackie Chan – (Chan Kong-sang) created his own style of film making combining his love for slapstick humor with his high-energy martial arts action.
Holds two Guinness World Records – one for record of most credits in one movie and one for most stunts by a living actor.
Had an animated series, Jackie Chan Adventures, and numerous video games.
Very involved with charity and human suffering.
“If everyone does some good, think of what a good world this will be.”
Check out his website: www.jackiechan.com
Won his first Chinese national championship in Wushu when he was 11.
Turned down the role of Chow Yun-Fat in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000) because his wife was pregnant and he promised he would not make films until she had the baby. (Let’s hear it – Ahhh, how romantic)
Was in the Maldives when the tsunami hit after the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. He injured his foot while guiding his family to safety.
“Love is more powerful than kicking ass.”
So those are my favs. Tell me who are your favorite male martial artists?
Hong Kong Treasure – A deadly Philippines typhoon stole Annie’s memory. Now, can a handsome Chinese stranger save her from the danger she has forgotten?
To read an excerpt: Hong Kong Treasure
Coming soon from Assent Publishing!
Celebrities who endorse ads for products they don’t try may need to start being a guinea pig in China.
On Monday, an updated draft of the Central Party’s advertisement law submitted to lawmakers said that celebrities who are paid to be spokespeople for products, should try the product before they represent it, according to state media. The goods and services celebrities endorse need to be “based on facts,” the draft says.
False endorsements have been a big problem in China and across Asia. In 2006, Hong Kong actress Carina Lau was sued after she endorsed a luxury Japanese skincare cream, which she said could reduce wrinkles by 50% after a month of use. Later, it was discovered that the cream contained harmful chemicals, including toxic metals chromium and neodymium, and that some consumers had adverse reactions to the cream. (The Japanese skincare brand, SK-II, was fined 200,000 yuan, or about $32,500, for false advertising.)
More recently, Jackie Chan endorsed one of Bawang International’s anti-hair loss herbal shampoos. After a Hong Kong-based magazine revealed that the shampoo contained a substance that may cause cancer, Mr. Chan responded. “I have always been very careful with what products I endorse. But there are some media who are specifically gunning for me and a few other artistes, I am not sure why, as though it is better that we all just died.” .(For its part, Bawang said its products had passed quality tests and that many shampoos and cleaning products contain small traces of carcinogens.)
The revision comes on the heels of last year’s revised Law on Protection of the Rights and Interests of Consumers, which states that celebrities who appear in misleading commercials, and the media that broadcast the ads, are legally liable.
Monday’s updated law reinforces celebs’ legal liability and says their “illegal income” can be confiscated if they stump for false advertising. They could also face hefty fines.
But it isn’t exactly clear how the law will be enforced or whether the government can actually monitor whether celebrities actually try out the products they promote.