Tagged: Byron Mann

The Big Short

Summary: When America’s banks collapsed a few years ago the world was told a lie. The world was told that nobody, not even the top financial experts, saw it coming. That was only partially true, yes the top financial experts didn’t see it coming, but some men did.

The Big Short tells the story of those men, men the world didn’t listen to. Michael Burry (Christian Bale) ran a small, but successful, financial firm and he saw the crash happening but due to the fact that he didn’t dress the way they did and liked to drum to Metallica in his office nobody really listened. The one person who did listen was Wall Street trader Jared Vennett (Ryan Gosling) who then went against the bank who he worked for and decided that this was a way to make money… betting against the bank. A misplaced phone call by him then tipped off Hedge Fund Manager Mark Baum (Steve Carrell) who then convinced Vennett to join him on his crusade against Wall Street.

The chain then kept going as eager young investors Charlie Geller (John Magaro) and Jamie Shipley (Finn Wittrock) found a copy of Baum’s flyer and also decide that can make money off what is happening. Not experienced in making the trades they need to do to do so they rope in retired banker Ben Rickert (Brad Pitt) to help them out.

Year: 2015

Australian Cinema Release Date: 14th January 2016

Australian DVD Release Date: TBA

Country: USA

Director: Adam McKay

Screenwriter: Charles Randolph, Adam McKay, Michael Lewis (book)

Cast: Christian Bale (Michael Burry), Tony Bentley (Bruce Miller), Anthony Bourdain (himself), Lyle Brocato (Casey), Steve Carrell (Mark Baum), Vanessa Cloke (Lucy), Rudy Eisenzopf (Lewis Ranieri), Peter Epstein (Paul Baum), Aidan Flowers (Young Michael Burry), Karen Gillan (Evie), Selena Gomez (herself), Ryan Gosling (Jared Vennett), Jeffry Griffin (Chris), Nick Hwang (Josh Medak), Jay Jablonski (Matt), Rajeev Jacob (Deeb), Tyler Kunkle (Doug), Colin Lawless (Nicolas Burry), Melissa Leo (Georgia Hale), Tracy Letts (Lawrence Fields), Hamish Linklater (Porter Collins), John Magaro (Charlie Geller), Byron Mann (Mr. Chau), Adepero Oduye (Kathy Tao), Wayne Pere (Martin Blaine), Brad Pitt (Ben Rickert), Margot Robbie (herself), Rafe Spall (Danny Moses), Ilan Srulovicz (Noah), Jeremy Strong (Vinnie Diesel), Richard Thaler (himself), Marisa Tomei (Cynthia Baum), Finn Wittrock (Jamie Shipley), Stanley Wong (Ted Jiang)

Runtime: 130 mins

Classification: M

 

OUR THE BIG SHORT REVIEWS & RATINGS:

 

David Griffiths:

When director Adam McKay set about making The Big Short he must have wondered whether or not he could pull off this project. McKay had established himself as a comedy director, a great comedy director to be precise… the man who brought us movies such as Anchorman and Step Brothers etc, but still it was ambitious to decide to make a comedy-drama about the collapse of America’s biggest banks. After all the minuet details of how and why the banks collapsed is so technical and boring it would not only go right over the head of the average cinema goer, but also have a strong chance of making them lapse into some kind of a coma if you bothered to explain it properly. Yes The Big Short was an uphill battle all the way but somehow McKay has made this into one of the films of the year.

So how does McKay make this film work so well? The answer is simple. He does what so many filmmakers are scared of doing these days… and that is be creative. To put it into ‘banker speak’ he thought outside the box. Instead of having a series of long explanations of what exactly is happening with all the financial stuff McKay will allow the film’s story to pause for a moment while Margot Robbie (sitting in a bubble bath as herself) explains what is happening or he will cross to a celebrity chef comparing the market to bad fish. It sounds as strange as all hell… but it works and gets the point across in a way that the audience can understand without putting them asleep.

That being said it isn’t creative ‘gimmicks’ like that which make The Big Short work so well. No McKay is aided by a screenplay that is simply one of the best screenplays to surface out of Hollywood for a long, long time. While it expertly reveals a lot of the greed and shame of Wall Street it is also about strong characters and consists of some of the wittiest one-liners you are ever likely to hear. To the credit of the screenplay you actually come to know and love these characters. You feel sorry for Mark Baum and the personal tragedy that he has suffered in his life while you find yourself barracking for the likes of Michael Burry who are putting everything on the line and copping abuse for doing so. Even though so of the characters are quite unlikable, such as Jared Vennett, the screenwriters have been smart enough to get them to deliver the quips that make people laugh in a bid to make them at least a little likable. Yes the unthinkable happens in this film, you actually like bankers.

Of course that brilliant script also allows the actors involved to deliver some of the finest acting performances of the year. Steve Carrell showed us his serious side in Foxcatcher and here he once again revels in what is a demanding but emotional performance. If he takes an Oscar home for this performance he truly deserves it. Likewise Christian Bale who loses all of his Bruce Wayne good looks as he morphs into the hard rocking recluse Michael Burry so well that you forget who you are watching. The other true chameleon here is Brad Pitt who is completely unrecognisable as the bearded off-the-grid former banker Ben Rickert. These three lead an ensemble that makes this film truly memorable.

Sure a film about the banking world might not exactly make you feel like you want to rush out and purchase tickets at the box office, but like Wall Street and The Wolf Of Wall Street before it The Big Short is a ground-breaking film that shows a completely different side to the filmmaking skills of Adam McKay. Creative, original and hard-hitting The Big Short is a film that I’m sure I’ll be revisiting when I put together my Top 10 Movies of 2016 list.

 

Stars(5)

 

Adam Ross:

You can listen to Adam’s The Big Short review on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #161

 

Stars(4)

 

Average Subculture Rating (out of 5):  Stars(4.5)

 

IMDB Rating: The Big Short (2015) on IMDb

 

Other Subculture Entertainment The Big Short reviews: You can listen to our full Big Short Review  review on a The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #161. You can also read our The Big Short review on The Book The Film The T-Shirt.

Trailer:

Summary: Quentin Tarantino presents The Man With the Iron Fists, an action-adventure inspired by kung-fu classics as interpreted by his longtime collaborators RZA and Eli Roth. Making his debut as a big-screen director, co-writer and leading man, RZA – alongside an exciting international cast led by Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu – tells the epic story of warriors, assassins and a lone outsider hero who all descend on one fabled village in China for a winner-takes-all battle for a fortune in gold. Blending astonishing martial-arts sequences from some of the masters of this world with the signature vision he brings as the leader of the Wu-Tang Clan and as one of hip-hop’s most dominant figures of the past two decades, RZA embarks upon his most ambitious, stylized and thrilling project to date.

Year: 2012

Australian Cinema Release Date: 6th December, 2012

Australian DVD Release Date: N/A

Country: United States/Hong Kong

Director: RZA

Screenwriter: Eli Roth, RZA

Cast: Jin Ayeung (Chan), David Bautista (Brass Body), John T. Benn (Master John),Mary Christina Brown (Jasmine),  Liu ChangJiang (Grey Hyena), Kuan Tai Chen (Gold Lion), Jamie Chung (Lady Silk), Russell Crowe (Jack Knife), Wen-Jun Dong (White Lion), Jake Garber (Jake), Pam Grier (Jane), Yoyoa Hsueh (Copper Lion), Cung Le (Bronze Lion), Chia Hui Liu (Abbott), Gordon Liu (Abbott), Lucy Liu (Madam Blossom), Telly Liu (Iron Lion), Byron Mann (Silver Lion), MC Jin (Chan), Hu Minnow (Yellow Hyena), Andrew Ng (Senior Monk), Masanobu Otsuka (Red Hyena), Didi Qian (Lady Tagmata), RZA (Blacksmith), Beau van Erven Dorens (Bo), Daniel Wu (Poison Dagger), Brian Yang (Blue Hyena), Xue Jing Yao (Copper Lion), Rick Yune (Zen Yi – The X Blade), Gang Zhou (Crazy Hippo), Zhu Zhu (Chi Chi)

Runtime: 95 mins

Classification:MA15+

Dave Griffiths’s ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’ Review:

Sometimes it is said that when you’re going to see a film you should simply ‘leave your brain at the door’. Basically it is a warning meaning that if you think too much about the film you’ll ruin any opportunity you have of enjoying one single thing about the film. That is certainly the case with ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’ a film that sees Wu Tang Clan rapper RZA decide it is time to become a filmmaker.

Also from the pen of the legendary Eli Roth (Aftershock, Hostel Part III) ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’ sees a young Blacksmith (RZA – A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas, TV’S Californication) find himself in between two feuding parties when all he really wants to do is ‘pay’ brothel owner Madame Blossom (Lucy Liu – Tinker Bell & The Secret Of The Wings, TV’S Elementary) for his girlfriend, Lady Silk (Jamie Chung – Premium Rush, TV’S Once Upon A Time) and leave then town with her, but fate has another idea.

Soon the Blacksmith finds himself involved when Silver Lion (Byron Mann – Cold War, TV’S Arrow) and Bronze Lion (Cung Le – Dragon Eyes, True Legend) kill Gold Lion (Kuan Tai Chen – White Vengeance, Gallants) and then plan on killing his son, Zen Yi (Rick Yune – China Town, Remiagration) to prevent him from becoming the leader of the Clan. However when Silver and Bronze Lion also end up stealing a large sum of cash Blacksmith finds himself teaming up with Zen Yi and the mysterious Jack Knife (Russell Crowe – Les Miserables, The Next Three Days) in a bid to put a stop to their evil plan. However that means they are going to have to find a way to stop the seemingly unbeatable, Brass Body (Dave Bautista – The Scorpion King 3: Battle For Redemption, House Of The Rising Sun).

It’s hard to imagine that when RZA was creating ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’ that he was expecting for it to be an Oscar winner but then at the same time you can’t help but wonder why people such as Russell Crowe wanted to be involved in a film that will be considered B Grade – at best.

As a film itself ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’ surprisingly works a lot better than you would expect. It is a flimsy storyline and the special effects look like they may have been done in the Channel 31 studio but still for some the reason the film sucks you in. Despite how much you may actually try to fight it you will find yourself barracking for Blacksmith as the film goes on.

Of course acting isn’t a major priority in ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’. It is good to see Lucy Liu back on the big screen and Crowe seems to enjoy the opportunity of being able to overact for once but perhaps the biggest surprise is that RZA does seem to be able to hold it together as an actor.

Yes there are some things with ‘The Man With The Iron Fists’ (such as a soundtrack that is strangely mostly made up of rap music) but if you want an entertaining martial arts film that isn’t going to make you think then it’s well worth a look.

Other ‘The Man With The Iron Mask’ Reviews By Dave Griffiths:http://www.helium.com/items/2396008-the-man-with-the-iron-fists-movie-review

Rating: 2/5 Stars

IMDB Rating: The Man with the Iron Fists (2012) on IMDb