Stan today released the body slamming trailer for its upcoming pro wrestling drama series Heels, with the eight-part hour-long series set to pile drive its way onto screens from Sunday, 15 August – same day as the U.S. and only on Stan.
Written and created by Executive Producer Michael Waldron (Loki, the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness) with Executive Producer Mike O’Malley (Shameless, Survivor’s Remorse) as showrunner, Heels stars Stephen Amell (Arrow) as Jack Spade, with Alexander Ludwig (The Hunger Games, Vikings) playing his younger brother, Ace. Peter Segal (Get Smart, 50 First Dates, Tommy Boy, Shameless), who directs several episodes, also serves as executive producer.
Heels is a story about the men and women who chase their dreams in the world of small town pro wrestling. Set in a close-knit Georgia community, it follows a family-owned wrestling promotion as two brothers and rivals war over their late father’s legacy. In the ring, somebody must play the good guy and somebody must play their nemesis, the heel. But in the real world, those characters can be hard to live up to — or hard to leave behind.
The drama series also stars Alison Luff as Staci Spade, Jack’s wife who learns that she has to contend with the emotional stakes her in-laws have invested in their wrestling goals and the demands it puts on her family; Mary McCormack as Willie Day, Jack’s business partner and the logistical brains behind the local wrestling organisation; Kelli Berglund as Crystal Tyler, Ace’s valet and love interest; Allen Maldonado as Rooster Robbins, one of the best wrestlers in the circuit who always has something to prove and always backs it up; two-time Super Bowl champion James Harrison as Apocalypse, a been-around-the-block journeyman wrestler who’s been at it for decades and has no illusions of fame or glory; and Chris Bauer as Wild Bill Hancock, a larger-than-life former wrestling star who is now a high-level pro wrestling scout.
Along with Waldron, O’Malley and Segal, LBI Entertainment’s Julie Yorn (Hell or High Water, White Boy Rick, The Dirt), Christopher Donnelly and Patrick Walmsley will also serve as executive producers. Heels is produced by Lionsgate TV for STARZ in association with Paramount Television Studios and is distributed internationally by Lionsgate.
The brand new series Heels premieres Sunday, 15 August only on Stan.
Summary: The story of the Battle of Midway, told by the leaders and the sailors who fought it.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 30th January 2020
Thailand Cinema Release Date: TBA
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Country: United States, Hong Kong, Canada, China
Director: Roland Emmerich
Screenwriter: Wes Tooke
Cast: Ellis Arch (Lofton Henderson), Tadanobu Asano (Tamon Yamaguchi), Tim Beckmann (Captain Rawlings), Jacob Blair (Hank Potter), Geoffrey Blake (John Ford), Cameron Brodeur (Sully Brown), Christie Brooke (Millicent McClusky), Brennan Brown (Joseph Rochefort), James Carpinello (William Brockman), Agostino Michael Cimino (Buzz Davis), Mikael Conde (Bill Miller), Darren Criss (Eugene Lindsey), Eric Davis (Miles Browning), Aaron Eckhart (Jimmy Doolittle), Luke Evans (Wade McClusky), Rachael Perrell Fosket (Dagne Layton), Dustin Geiger (Paul Crosley), Sarah Halford (Marie Pearce), Tyler Hall (William ‘Slim’ Townsend), Woody Harrelson (Chester M. Nimitz), David Hewlett (Husband Kimmel), James Hicks (Edwin Kroeger), Jason Lee Hoy (Pat Rooney), Hiromoto Ida (Prime Minister Tojo), Keenan Johnson (James Murray), Nick Jonas (Bruno Gaido), Luke Kleintank (Clarence Dickinson), Jun Kunimura (Chuichi Nagumo), Kenny Leu (Zhu Xuesan), Russell Lewis (Frank O’Flaherty), Alexander Ludwig (Roy Pearce), Jake Manley (Willie West), Mandy Moore (Ann Best), Dennis Quaid (William ‘Bull’ Halsey), Mark Rolston (Ernest King), Madison Roukema (Barbara Best), Dean Schaller (Jack Mackeniz Jnr.), Nobuya Shimamoto (Kaku Tomeo), Peter Shinkoda (Genda Minoru), Hiroaki Shintani (Emperor Hirohito), Brandon Sklenar (George ‘Tex’ Gay), Ed Skrein (Dick Best), Etsushi Toyokawa (Isoroku Yamamoto), Jake Weber (Raymond Spruance), Patrick Wilson (Edwin Layton)
Running Time: 138 mins
Classification: M (Australia) TBC (Thailand)
OUR MIDWAY REVIEWS & RATINGS:
Dave Griffiths Review:
If you aren’t aware of the various battles of World War II your first reaction to the trailer of Roland Emmerich’s (Godzilla) Midway is probably didn’t they already do a movie about Pearl Harbour? They did indeed, Michael Bay (Transformers) directed the very under-rated Pearl Harbour back in 2001, but while the attack on Pearl Harbour is shown in Midway it really is only a small part of the story that Emmerich is trying to tell here. Let’s just say that the Pearl Harbour attack is pretty much done and dusted in the first twenty minutes of the film.
Emmerich’s film almost feels like a ‘companion piece’ to Bay’s film. Here he focuses on the events that followed. We see Edwin T. Layton (Patrick Wilson – Insidious) an intelligence officer who actually predicated the attack on Pearl Harbour told to try and decipher what the Japanese are going to next, while Admiral Chester W Nimitz (Woody Harrelson – Natural Born Killers) is called in to orchestrate the counter-attack despite him calling it an ‘impossible situation.’
The film largely concentrates on the events after Pearl Harbour and follows pilots like Dick Best (Ed Skrein – Deadpool) and Wade McClusky (Luke Evans – Dracula Untold) as they prepare with the retaliation attacks that include The Battle Of Midway as a finale.
The biggest difference between Midway and Pearl Harbour is that while Bay went for a huge epic spectacular Emmerlich’s film feels more like a history lesson with a dramatised re-telling. The Japanese influence on the film is very easy to see. Not only do we get to see more of the story told from the Japanese side of the battles through the eyes of Commanders like Tamon Yamaguchi (Tadanobu Asano – Thor) and Isoroku Yamamoto (Etsushi Toyokawa – Love Letter) but a lot of the CGI and action sequences look a lot like you would expect to see in some of the Japanese action films that receive cinematic releases.
That style maybe a little off-putting for some audience members. You may find yourself wondering why a director who has movies like Independence Day and The Day After Tomorrow under his belt is serving up a film with fake CGI fire, but in the end that is a stylistic choice but it does further the feeling that the film is a historically correct re-telling rather than just there for entertainment.
Perhaps the biggest fault with the film though is that it tries to cram too much in. With some many characters introduced you really only get a chance to connect with a couple with the whole storyline involving the raid led by Jimmy Doolittle (Aaron Eckhart – The Dark Knight) feels rushed and brushed over when realistically it is interesting enough to have a movie of its own. Likewise Emmerlich quickly shows us John Ford (Geoffrey Blake – Forrest Gump) shooting his film at Midway but then it just seems to disappear into thin air.
With that all aside though Midway is still very much a watchable movie. Screenwriter Wes Tooke’s (Colony) screenplay does allow the audience to get close to characters like Dick Best and Wade McClusky while Emmerlich’s knack for suspense really goes to the fore during the actual battle sequences. Here Emmerlich recreates that same feeling that we got from watching films like Flyboys and Top Gun as the focuses on the amazing dog-fights and death-defying dive bombing that many of the pilots found themselves involved in. This is very much a film where it is the action sequences in the finale that really saves it from becoming an average film.
What is also good to see during Midway is the fact that some under-rated stars really do get a chance to shine here. Ed Skrein and Luke Evans are amazing here, there is real chemistry to their love-hate relationship on the screen and as you watch the film you find yourself wishing that both men got more roles where they are the leading men. Woody Harrelson and Dennis Quaid (The Day After Tomorrow) are both at their brilliant bests while Patrick Wilson often steals the scenes that he is at he portrays a man shattered by the events of Pearl Harbour but then given a chance of redemption. Again his character is another that deserves a film of its own.
Midway seems to be a movie that is better suited for the serious movie lover who will enjoy a movie that is more about historically correct then it is being there for entertainment. The film does explore all the ins and out of the Battle Of Midway but may leave you feeling like you do want to know more about some of the characters involved. Certainly worth seeing though for its dog-fight scenes alone.
Average Subculture Rating:
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Summary: The Bad Boys Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett are back together for one last ride in the highly anticipated Bad Boys for Life.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 16th January 2020
Thailand Cinema Release Date: 23rd January 2020
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Country: United States, Mexico
Director: Adil El Arbi, Bilall Fallah
Screenwriter: Chris Bremner, Peter Craig, Joe Carnahan,
Cast: Jay Amor (Rodrigo Vargas), Happy Anderson (Jenkins), Jeff JJ Authors (Felix the Forensics Guy), Jennifer Badger (Julie Weber), Sidnei Barboza (Tommy Bahama), Chick Bernhard (Judge Sorenson), Bianca Bethune (Megan), Thomas Brag (Jeffrey – Cake Boy), Tom Bui (Detective Austin), Damian Butler (Lt. Butler), Kate del Castillo (Isabel Aretas), DJ Khaled (Manny), Bilall Fallah (Fael), Massi Furlan (Terry Taglin), Dennis Greene (Reggie), Carlos Guerrero (javier), Vanessa Hudgens (Kelly), Nicky Jam (Zway-Lo), Melissa Kennemore (Major Patel Miami PD), Martin Lawrence (Marcus), Alexander Ludwig (Dorn), Dennis McDonald (Reggie), Charles Melton (Rafe), Ivo Nandi (Carver Remy), Paolo Nunez (Rita), Joe Pantoliano (Captain Howard), Nick Puya (Sargaent Normand Harris), Theresa Randle (Theresa), Leah Renee-K (Officer Hemminger), Eduardo Rosario (the Butcher), Jacob Scipio (Armando Aretas), Will Smith (Mike), Lindsay Thaxton (Detective Rodriguez), Buddy Watkins (Officer Kittes),
Running Time: 124 mins
Classification: MA15+ (Australia) 15 (Thailand)
OUR BAD BOYS FOR LIFE REVIEWS & RATINGS:
Dave Griffiths Review:
Is there a more terrifying word in Hollywood than reboot? Well if you are serious movie fan who adores the movies and television shows of the 1980s and 1990s I would certainly say no. It didn’t take Hollywood long to realise that there was still money in recreating the fan favourites of the past but as the recent animated version of The Addams Family showed these reboots rarely capture the magic of the originals.
It’s for that reason so many people have been nervous about the release of Bad Boys For Life. For an entire generation of film fans Bad Boys and Bad Boys II are the epitomes of what a good action films should be. A semi-believable storyline, great action sequences, lead actors who ooze charisma and a witty script that knows when it is okay to allow a laugh or two.
Whenever the mention was made that Bad Boys III was in the works people almost treated it as blasphemy and then as more than a decade passed it seemed less and less likely that it would ever happen. But now fifteen years after the last film in the franchise Bad Boys For Life hits cinemas and I am happy to say that it bucks all trends and gives us what well could be the best installment in the franchise to date.
In fact I may have just accidentally nailed why this movie works so well. While it is technically a re-boot such is the feel of the movie it just seems like it is simply the third film. Nothing is re-set here the action just starts up fifteen years after Bad Boys II. Detectives Mike Lowery (Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence) still patrol Miami with wit and charm bringing the bad guys down with their own way of Policing. However, things change forever when Marcus starts to think about retirement after becoming a grandfather and a cold-blooded assassin shows up in town with Mike in his sights.
The first thing that hits you about this film is the ability that directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah have with incorporating the new with the old. The opening sequence from the film is a homage to the first film and while Mike and Marcus have not changed at all they fit in extremely well with the new characters including Kelly (Vanessa Hudgens) and Rita (Paola Nunez). From there the film remains aimed at the original fans of the franchise – it is adult orientated and never once does it feel like the film is even slightly slanted at trying to attract a younger audience.
You also begin to realise that these filmmakers also know a thing or two about how to make good action films. The duo have cred from their award-winning film Black and with Bad Boys For Life they take the bigger budget and run with it without over-awing their audience. They seem to mirror what the young Michael Bay did with the first two films and infuse a believable cop story with elements of action without over-doing it to the point with belief has to be suspended. There is also a great plot twist here that suits the story and like other major plot points in the film contains true heart.
Perhaps the most important thing for the film though is that the amazing chemistry between Smith and Lawrence returns. Sure Smith has delivered some terrible films over the years (and Gemini Man is still fresh in everyone’s minds) but here he is back at his stunning best. He mixes comedy, action and drama at will and better still gets to bounce off the amazing timing of his good buddy Martin Lawrence. And yes, despite the naysayers before this film was released… Lawrence still has it.
The two stars are also well-supported by the rest of the cast. Kate del Castillo often steals the show playing the very Bond-villain like Isabel Aretas while Nunez, Hudgens, Happy Jackson and Charles Melton play the kind of new-breed cops that you can easily see continue to move this franchise along for the next few years.
Bad Boys For Life is a film that is going to be adored by the original fans of this franchise. The magic, the style and the charisma all returns with a storyline that goes above and beyond what any of us could have hoped for. Cast all the doubts aside because this is action cinema at its very finest.
Kyle McGrath’s Review:
Average Subculture Rating:
Other Subculture Entertainment Bad Boys For Life Reviews: N/A
Summary: Marcus Luttrell and his team set out on a mission to capture/kill al Qaeda leader Ahmad Shahd in late June 2005. The team are left to fight for their lives in one of the most valiant efforts of modern warfare.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 20th February, 2014
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Director: Peter Berg
Screenwriter: Peter Berg, Marcus Luttrell (book), Patrick Robinson (book)
Cast: Yousuf Azami (Shah), Eric Bana (Erik Kristensen), Johnny Bautista (Lt. Edwards), Dan Bilzerian (Healy), Kurt Carlson (Captain Lovas), Paul Craig (‘EOD’ Paul), Jerry Ferrara (Hasselert), Ben Foster (Matt ‘Axe’ Axelson), Daniel Fulcoly (Lt. Andrews), Michael P. Herrman (Wallace), Emile Hirsch (Danny Dietz), Joh Hocker (Hocker), Taylor Kitsch (Michael Murphy), Robert Loerke (Captain Jacoby), Alexander Ludwig (Shane Patton), Zabiullah Mirzai (Zabi), Henry Penzi (Penzi), Sammy Sheik (Taraq), Ali Suliman (Gulab), Rich Ting (James Suh), Mark Wahlberg (Marcus Luttrell)
War films are a dime-a-dozen… bad war films are even more common. It’s for that reason that is okay to be a little nervous when approaching Lone Survivor. Even the fact that it has a known actor like Mark Wahlberg in it doesn’t make necessarily a good film either… after all the man formerly known as Marky Mark has delivered some pretty bad turds over the years. Then there is the Peter Berg factor, yes Berg has shown over the years that he can create some masterpieces, just as he did with Friday Night Lights, but then he was also the man responsible for Battleship.
Luckily for movie fans out there Lone Survivor falls into the realm of good war films. So good in fact that it deserves to be mentioned alongside films such as The Hurt Locker and Black Hawk Down. Yes Peter Berg served his time with the studio and worked on Battleship and has now once again been allowed to show the world what a fine filmmaker he really is.
The film itself is based on actual events that happened to Marcus Luttrell (Mark Wahlberg) during a daring raid in Afghanistan to capture notorious Taliban leader Ahmed Shah (Yousuf Azami). Soon Luttrell’s group, which also contains Michael Murphy (Taylor Kitsch) and Matt Axelson (Ben Foster) find themselves deep under enemy fire after having to make a huge moral call. Worse still is the fact that they are cut off by their leader, Erik Kristensen (Eric Bana) as their communications have all gone down.
There is little doubt that this is film is made ten times better under the direction of Peter Berg. Just like he did with Friday Night Lights Berg makes Lone Survivor feel like you are watching a documentary. The dialogue was his script his natural and just because he has a big name like Eric Bana in a role doesn’t mean that Berg decides to give his A-lister any extra on screen.
Likewise Berg doesn’t hold back on the violence in this film. The film is set on the battlefield and it is obvious that Berg not only wants his audience to see that the men involved in this mission were not only heroes but he also wants people to realise just how tough it is for men and women on the front line. Not only does he show this with some very confronting war violence but also by some extremely intense scenes that show the moral decisions that soldiers have to make while going about their jobs.
In fact the highlight of Lone Survivor is the scene where Luttrell and co are faced with a very big ethical dilemma. Do they shoot dead some unarmed young Afghanis or do what the law says and let them go, knowing full well that the latter option is likely to bring even more repercussions for the soldiers. As the soldiers discuss what is best to do Berg heightens the tension to a level that most filmmakers can only dream about achieving.
Lone Survivor really isn’t a film about the actors in it, which is made obvious by the fact that an actor of the calibre of Eric Bana is in a pretty much ‘blink and you’ll miss him’ role while the likes of Ben Foster and Emile Hirsch are also in restricted roles. To his credit Mark Wahlberg delivers even when some of the scenes seem to be above his usual acting talent, while Taylor Kitsch again silences his critics with a worthy performance as well.
This is one film that is certainly a gripping, yet also very tough watch. The violence is unrelenting but Peter Berg does what he sets out to do and that is show the audience just how brave the men involved in this raid were. Lone Survivor is one of the finest war movies you will ever see.