Tag Archives: Keanu Reeves

All You Need Is Kill

5 Jan

I’ve written a post before about some of the numerous Hollywood that were either inspired by Japan or were actual remakes of Japanese movies.

(Click here to read it.)

Well, recently Hollywood has made more Japan-inspired films.

For example…

– Japanese title: ウルヴァリン SAMURAI (Wolverine Samurai) / U.S. title: “The Wolverine

「ウルヴァリン SAMURAI」 (“The Wolverine”)

–  “47 Ronin

47 Ronin

– Japanese title: ゴジラ (Gojira) / U.S. title: “Godzilla

ゴジラ

And now, I’ve heard that Tom Cruise is in a new movie called Edge Of Tomorrow which is an adaptation of the Japanese novelオール ユー ニード イズ キル」 (All You Need Is Kill).

Edge Of Tomorrow

「オール ユー ニード イズ キル」(“All You Need Is Kill”)….the Japanese novel that Edge Of Tomorrow is a remake of.

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The best movie soundtracks

10 Apr

I have written a post about my favorite movies and another about classic movies quotes, but until now I hadn’t written one about the best movie soundtracks.

I have a number of movie soundtracks in my CD collection. Some are outstanding collections of songs from terrible movies and some others have only a few songs that are worth listening to…but I enjoy listening to all of the soundtracks on this list and I recommend picking them up if you don’t already own them.

So, here they are in no particular order (other than the order in which I remembered them as I mentally cataloged my CD collection)…the songs that I like are written in red:

 

Who Made Who (the official soundtrack for the movie Maximum Overdrive)

AC/DC "Who Made Who"

Track listing (all songs by AC/DC):

1. Who Made Who
2. You Shook Me All Night Long
3. D.T.
4. Sink The Pink
5. Ride On
6. Hells Bells
7. Shake Your Foundations
8. Chase The Ace
9. For Those About To Rock (We Salute You)

The movie is called “Maximum Overdrive” and was written and directed by Stephen King, so you’d think the movie would be good…but it’s unbearably bad.
The soundtrack though (titled “Who Made Who“) is an AC/DC album and, as you’d expect, is excellent. That said, though, it’s mostly a “greatest hits” type collection…only three songs were new songs written for the movie: “Who Made Who“, “D.T.“, and “Chase The Ace“. Of those three, the title track is a good song but the other two are instrumentals, which I personally don’t care for. And the other six tracks are AC/DC classics.

 

Last Action Hero


This is an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie (one of his three films that Danny DeVito co-stars in) and, similarly to Maximum Overdrive, it’s a bad movie with a great soundtrack.
Personally though, I don’t like five of the songs on the album but the other seven songs are on my i-pod.

Track listing:

1. Big Gun (by AC/DC)…great song.
2. What The Hell Have I (by Alice In Chains)…I don’t like this one much.
3. Angry Again (by Megadeth)…great song.
4. Real World (by Queensryche)…I like Queensryche but not this song.
5. Two Steps Behind (by Def Leppard)…I’m not a fan of this one either.
6. Poison My Eyes (by Anthrax)…great song.
7. Dream On (by Aerosmith)…classic great song.
8. A Little Bitter (by Alice In Chains)…much better than their other track on this album.
9. Cock The Hammer (by Cypress Hill)…this song’s not bad.
10. Swim (by Fishbone)…I don’t like this one at all.
11. Last Action Hero (by Tesla)…great song.
12. Jack And The Ripper (by Michael Kamen and Buckethead)…I don’t like it.

 

Detroit Rock City

This is the second “KISS movie” (the first was the ridiculous “KISS Meets The Phantom Of The Park“) and stars Edward Furlong as a teenager trying to get to a sold-out KISS concert in Detroit. It’s not as boring as it sounds…it’s actually kinda entertaining.

As I’m a fan of the band KISS, naturally I have this movie on DVD and the soundtrack on CD.

Track listing:

1. The Boys Are Back In Town (Thin Lizzy cover by Everclear)…not bad.
2. Shout It Out Loud (by KISS)…classic great song.
3. Runnin’ With The Devil (by Van Halen)…great song.
4. Cat Scratch Fever (Ted Nugent cover by Pantera)…great remake of a great song.
5. Iron Man (by Black Sabbath)…great song.
6. Highway To Hell (AC/DC cover by Marilyn Manson)…Marilyn should’ve stayed truer to this excellent song!
7. 20th Century Boy (by T.Rex)…this song is alright.
8. Detroit Rock City (by KISS)…classic great song.
9. Jailbreak (by Thin Lizzy)…great song.
10. Surrender (by Cheap Trick)…it’s alright.
11. Rebel Rebel (by David Bowie)…I don’t like David Bowie’s music.
12. Strutter (KISS cover by The Donnas)…pretty good remake of a great song.
13. School Days (by The Runaways)…I don’t enjoy this song much.
14. Little Willy (by Sweet)…I don’t this too much either.
15. Nothing Can Keep Me From You (by KISS)…it might be blasphemous for a KISS fan to say—but I hate this song!

 

Shocker


Another terrible movie with a good soundtrack. Shocker is a horror movie by director Wes Craven (who wrote and directed “A Nightmare On Elm Street“) about a serial killer who is given the death penalty for his crimes but “becomes” electricity after death with the power to possess other people…or something stupid like that.

I remember watching this as a teenager and recognized the voice of Paul Stanley (of KISS) singing the closing-credits song…so I bought the soundtrack to get the new “KISS song” which, it turned out, is a song by “The Dudes Of Wrath“, which was a special one-time collaboration of Paul Stanley with members of Def Leppard, Whitesnake and Motley Crue.

Track listing:

1. Sword And Stone (by Bonfire)…I don’t like this song much.
2. No More Mr. Nice Guy (Alice Cooper cover by Megadeth)…great remake of a great song.
3. Shocker (by “The Dudes Of The Wrath“)…it’s alright.
4. Timeless Love (by Saraya)…I don’t like this song either.
5. Demon Bell (by Dangerous Toys)…great song.
6. Love Transfusion (by Iggy Pop)…not so good.
7. Different Breed (by Dead On)…great song.

 

Bill And Ted’s Bogus Journey


Another stupid movie with a good soundtrack. If this even had a plot I can’t remember what it was.

Track listing:

1. Shout It Out (by Slaughter)…not a great song, but not horrible.
2. Battle Stations (by Winger)…not a favorite but alright.
3. God Gave Rock ‘N Roll To You II (by KISS)…good but certainly not one KISS‘s best.
4. Drinking Again (by Neverland)…it’s alright, I guess but not really my style.
5. Dream Of A New Day (by Richie Kotzen)…it’s alright.
6. The Reaper (by Steve Vai)…Steve Vai is a guitar wizard but I don’t care for instrumentals much.
7. The Perfect Crime (by Faith No More)…pretty good.
8. Go To Hell (by Megadeth)…great song.
9. Tommy The Cat (by Primus)…this band was too weird for me.
10. Junior’s Gone Wild (by King’s X)…I don’t like King’s X.
11. Showdown (by Love On Ice)…not so good.
12. The Reaper Rap (by Steve Vai)…this “song” is stupid!

 

Mission: Impossible II


The movie was alright and the soundtrack has some gems hidden amongst some tripe.

Rather than listing this album’s entire track listing, I’ll list the few good songs on it (with it’s track number):

1. Take A Look Around (by Limp Bizket)…this band has a couple of good songs and this is one of them.
2. I Disappear (by Metallica)…great song.
3. Scum Of The Earth (by Rob Zombie)…great song.
6. Have A Cigar (Pink Floyd cover by the Foo Fighters and Brian May)…excellent remake.
8. Goin’ Down (by Godsmack)…pretty good.
12. Alone (by Buckcherry)…pretty good.

 

Iron Man 2


The sequel to the movie about the American superhero character. I can’t elaborate because I haven’t watch the film…but, like the Maximum Overdrive soundtrack, this one is entirely by AC/DC (and all the song’s are great, of course).

Track listing:

1. Shoot To Thrill
2. Rock ‘N Roll Damnation
3. Guns For Hire
4. Cold Hearted Man
5. Back In Black
6. Thunderstruck
7. If You Want Blood (You’ve Got It)
8. Evil Walks
9. T.N.T.
10. Hell Ain’t A Bad Place To Be
11. Have A Drink On Me
12. The Razor’s Edge
13. Let There Be Rock
14. War Machine
15. Highway To Hell


What are your favorite movie soundtracks?

Gene Simmons is a werewolf

19 Jan

A new remake of the movie “The Wolf Man” is set to be released in America soon (the Japan release date hasn’t been announced yet).

I never cared much for the 1941 version.

Movie poster for 1941's "The Wolf Man"

But I thought the 1994 movie “Wolf” starring Jack Nicholson was pretty good. (But I almost always like Jack Nicholson movies).

Movie poster for 1994's "Wolf"

But this 2010 remake of “The Wolf Man” looks like it’ll be quite good.

Movie poster for this year's "The Wolf Man"

It stars Anthony Hopkins and Benicio Del Toro as the “Wolf man”.
Lon Chaney Jr.’s 1941 “Wolf man” has become a pop culture icon…but with modern special effects and make-up, Benicio Del Toro’s 2010 “Wolf man” looks so much better.

Lon Chaney Jr as the "Wolf Man" in 1941

Benicio Del Toro as the "Wolf Man" in 2010

Anyways, it was reported that when making this 2010 remake of “The Wolfman”, the director wanted the best werewolf howl possible, so he auditioned many people to record them howl…and he finally decided to use the wolf howls of David Lee Roth (of the American rock band “Van Halen“) and Gene Simmons (bassist of the American rock band “KISS“).

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Another excellent remake of a classic horror film is the 1994 version of “Frankenstein” starring Robert DeNiro.
Have you seen it?

Movie poster for 1994's "Frankenstein"

Boris Karloff as "Frankenstein's monster" and Robert DeNiro's version.

But I was disappointed with the 1992 remake of “Dracula” starring Keanu Reeves.

Movie poster for 1992's "Dracula"

Japanese movies

13 Dec

Hollywood has made remakes of many Japanese movies (and French, Korean, German etc ones as well. Did you know “Three Men And A Baby” was a French movie first? “We’re No Angels” was too. “The Lake House” and “The Departed” were originally Korean movies.).

Recently, I’ve heard that Hollywood will be making live-action movies based on the Japanese アニメ (cartoons) 「ルパン三世」 (“Lupin The 3rd“) and 「ドラゴンボール」 (“Dragon-ball“).

dragonball

The fairly recent American movie “Speed Racer” is another live-action movie based on the Japanese アニメ (cartoon) 「マッハゴゴゴ」 (“Mach Go-Go-Go“).

And Keanu Reeves will star in a remake of 元禄忠臣蔵 (“47 Ronin“).
The original is a classic Japanese movie from the early 1940’s. It’s based on the true story of the forty-seven 浪人 (ronin*), (*浪人 (ronin) are samurai with no master), who seek the revenge of their master’s death.
The graves of the real 47 ronin are at 泉岳寺 (Sengakuji Temple) in 東京都港区 (Minato Ward, Tokyo).

Robert DeNiro has also starred in a movie titled “Ronin“.

Do you know the famous Japanese movie 「用心棒」 (“Yojinbo“)?
用心棒」 (“Yojinbo“) means “bodyguard”. It’s another movie about a 浪人 (ronin).
It’s about a 浪人 (ronin) who goes to a town where competing crime gangs are trying to take over the town. He “joins” each gang to help them eliminate the other…with the intention of having them kill off each other and thus saving the town.
He remains wild and mysterious to everyone in the town and never gives his real name.

用心棒」 (“Yojinbo“) was originally remade as the cowboy movie “A Fistful Of Dollars” starring Clint Eastwood as the “man with no name”, and again as the American gangster movie “Last Man Standing” starring Bruce Willis.
It was also given a nod in the movie “The Bodyguard” when Kevin Costner’s character takes Whitney Houston’s character to the movies on a date and they watched 「用心棒」 (“Yojinbo“).

Similarly to “A Fistful Of Dollars” cowboy version of the Japanese Samurai movie 「用心棒」 (“Yojinbo“), the American movie “The Magnificent Seven” is a remake of the Japanese movie 「七人の侍」 (“The Seven Samurai“) with cowboy gunfighters instead of samurai.

The Japanese horror movies 「リング」, 「呪怨」, and 「仄暗い水の底から」 have been remade as “The Ring“, “Grudge“, and “Dark Water“, respectively.

Of course, when Hollywood made “Godzilla” everyone knew that was based on the iconic Japanese 「ゴジラ」…but did you know that the American movie “Shall We Dance?” (starring Richard Gere and Jennifer Lopez) is a remake of the Japanese movie 「Shall We ダンス?」?

And then there are the American movies that aren’t remakes of Japanese movies, but Japan-inspired…such as: “Mr. Baseball“, “Gung-Ho“, “Lost In Translation“, “The Last Samurai“, “Memoirs Of A Geisha“, “Black Rain“, and “Blade Runner“.

I’m sure there are more that I’ve forgotten about…

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On a different note…
An English charity called “Save The Children” voted Japan the world’s leader for children’s health, safety, nutrition and education!
I’ve always known that Japan is a good place to raise kids!