Saturday, October 11, 2014

Best Served Cold

In this seasons must see futuristic crime action thriller, Steven Seagal delights in his portrayal of a brutalistic future where the punks are armed, maniacal and numerous.

Background and Context

Seagal wrote, leads and directs in this complex thriller, resurrecting the character Jonathan Cold from the revered and critically acclaimed films The Foreigner (2003) and The Foreigner: Black Dawn (2003).

In an interview with the Independent, Seagal revealed that the choice to bring back Cold was tough because of the danger of tainting his past work.  "Cold is an established character and people really connected with his depth and complexity - Not wanting to disrupt those energies and memories in people's mindboxes leant me towards ditching the idea entirely but then Zen Master Xi Ju Kendo suggested I ressurect Cold, 120 years in the future and I thought, yeah.... yeah"

For those not familiar with The Foreigner and The Foreigner: Black Dawn, an excerpt of some of the finer moments in the film...

Merideth Van Aitken: Do you have a family?
Jonathon Cold: Yeah, I have a brother.
Merideth Van Aitken: Older or younger?
Jonathon Cold: ...Wiser.

Jonathan Cold: You see, in this business... the keys to the kingdom is weapons-grade plutonium. If you ain't got that, you ain't got shit.

Best Served Cold

Th Year is 2122 and New York City has been reduced to a cess pool of low down dirty punks who peddle crack to kids, set fire to grannies and get up to no good from Broadway to the Bronx.

Terrified and at the edge of his wits, the Mayor, Brian McHonor (Brian Blessed) becomes desperate for a hero to restore some municipal order and put down the Wild Rhino gang that are the dominant force on the streets.  McHonor is approached by a young brilliant but controversial scientist, Professor Honey Brains (Alicia Silverstone) who has used reverse polametric energy fields to create a machine able to replicate humans from single cells.

McHonor and Brains make a complex moral decision that changes the future of the planet.  In the face of overwhelming evil and criminality, they bring back the one man, they think can save the city from hell, Jonathan Cold.

The only issue is that the process or replication is not quite perfect and so Brains fine-tunes the rebuilt Cold with some robotic limbs and computer hardware, wired directly into his brain, giving Cold a heads up display of the world.  When Cold awakes, he is furious.... Angry at being resurrected and even more furious when he finds out that the leader of the Wild Rhinos is the great grandson of the man who killed him in treachery back in the Bolivian rainforests in 2021.

The Major immediately makes Cold his Head of Justice and Judge Jonathan Cold is released onto the hard streets to deliver his justice one punch at a time.  Working his way through the various layers of the Wild Rhinos with their colourful clothes and inexplicable domains, Judge Cold eventually has to face down their lethal leader, Black Dyper (Val Kilmer) in a fight to the death for the sake of Town Hall.

Thankfully, as well as Brains on his team, he has more support in the form of Detective Trippy (Andre 3000 from Outkast in an acting debut) a wise cracking cop with fast wits and faster reactions.

If you have no respect for the law, if you have a mohican in the colours of the rainbow but sport an uzi, if you threaten Colds great great granddaughter; then you better be ready, because this judge believes justice and revenge is Best Served Cold.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Mirror, Signal, Outmanouvered

This Autumn, Steven Seagal writes, directs and stars in the action drama, Mirror, Signal, Outmanouvered.

When the team of CIA Black Ops operative, Captain Jack Dagger (Seagal), are compromised on a mission in deepest Glasgow, Dagger is forced to retire in disgrace.  Taking the news badly, he hits the bottle and falls back into a sullen existence as a driving instructor in Maine.

However, the circumstances of the mission failure and the stain it left on his impeccable service record remain troubling to Dagger.  One day, his peaceful, if not settled, life is turned upside down as a face from his dark past turns up and asks for lessons in three point turns.

Sergeant X-Signal, an old CIA buddy who led the team supporting Dagger's team in Glasgow from Langley, has some alarming news.  He suspects that Dagger was set up by an undercover Al Qaeda cell seeking revenge on Dagger for several punks that he had previously put in the ground.  If the CIA has a mole, Sergeant X-Signal cannot flush it out because he is simply too close to the organisation.  

Working together, X-Signal and Dagger decide to seek and destroy the infiltrators relying on their special ops skills and some pretty flimsy evidence.  Thankfully, they are joined by Candi Mirror (Kim Kardashian) the only other agent they can trust inside the agency.

Friday, October 03, 2014

Check Out Time

In this Autumn 2014 release, Steven Seagal stars, directs and provides life guidance to all crew on the set of Check Out Time.

Seagal leads in the role of Chet McCody, a hotel manager in Chicago, leading a peaceful retirement after years serving as a captain in a covert US Navy SEAL team.

His hotel is honoured to be hosting the Republican Conference and with the president and other dignitaries in attendance, it is a high profile affair.  Leading the security detail is McCodys old comrade from his Black Ops days, Colonel Gus Screech (Sir Alex Ferguson) and their relationship is strained.  McCody knows that Screecher abandoned him and his crack team in the mountain passes of Chile in '94 and left them for dead.

The conference is going well until the third evening, when at the honorary dinner, a lavish affair; a huge cake, meant to be a gift to the president from the Republican party, suddenly bursts open to reveal IS fighters intent on taking the entire conference hostage.  Incredibly, every single member of the waiting staff is also an IS fighter and it quickly becomes clear that the security breach was not due to Screech's incompetence but his complicity.

The security services are disarmed quickly and the hostages all gathered in the main hall.  The building secured, the terrorists supply their demands to a weary Chicago hostage negotiator, Charles Slippers (played by Idris Elba).  They want a golden helicopter, the release of 600 IS freedom fighters and a nuclear warhead to fly back to the Iraqi-Syrian badlands with, oh and some KFC.

The presidents life is in danger, is American justice and freedom going to give in to evil?  Not if McCody can help it.  When he saw the cake split, he immediately went to ground, using his expert knowledge of the hotel layout and abnormally large air ducts to move without trace about the hotel. He manages to team up with bellboy FastX, who loves to rap (Jamie Foxx) and hotel guest and Senators daughter Foxy (Taylor Swift) He also makes contact with Slippers and they begin to take the terrorists down, one punch at a time.

In climatic scenes, McCody must face down his adversary Screech.  On the hotel roof, the two settle some old scores in a good old fashioned knife fight.

If you are an Islamic State fighter, if you plan on terrorising McCodys hotel then you better make sure you are ready for... Check Out Time.