Culture » Film



Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li (NR)

20th Century Fox / Release date: June 30

I have never been a fan of Street Fighter the video game, but 1994's Street Fighter: The Movie, starring Jean-Claude Van Damme, well, that's a whole different story! It is without a doubt one of the stupidest movies ever made, but it's also one of the most fun movies ever made. Fifteen years later, another adaptation, Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li, has arrived from director Andrzej Bartkowiak. And while it does not live up to the original's lunacy, it's still a highly entertaining outing, this time focusing on the game's famous female fighter, Chun-Li (Kristin Kreuk), who is determined to avenge the death of her father (Edmund Chen) at the hands of crooked "investor" Bison (Neal McDonough). It has its fair share of problems, mostly horribly misdirected casting, but for cheese-film enthusiasts, that only makes it funnier. It's a high-kicking good time. — Louis Fowler


John Lennon & the Plastic Ono Band: Live in Toronto '69 (NR)

Shout! Factory

The appearance of John Lennon and his Plastic Ono Band at the Toronto Rock & Roll Revival is one of the more notable moments in live rock history. Not only was it Lennon's first show without the Beatles, but the group included Eric Clapton and future Yes drummer Alan White. Live in Toronto '69, by D.A. Pennebaker, captures some great festival moments beginning with songs by Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis and Bo Diddley. Lennon's set is quite good considering the new group was under-rehearsed: Clapton delivers on guitar, and the band hits positive notes on "Dizzy Miss Lizzy" and "Money" (though Yoko Ono's cat-shriek vocals detract). Pennebaker's film does hit a few sour notes; he spends half of Diddley's performance showing traffic presumably heading to the festival. Still, history is history, and this is a film Lennon fans will want to own. — Alan Sculley


12 Rounds (NR)

20th Century Fox / Release date: June 30

I love World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) films. Go ahead, sue me. I know they're big and dumb, and that most people feel they're above them, but the wrestlers and their cohorts deliver everything I would ever want in an action film. The latest from the stable is 12 Rounds, stars "Doctor of Thuganomics" John Cena and is directed by 1990s action-movie regular Renny Harlin. New Orleans police officer Danny Fisher (Cena) accidentally kills the girlfriend of an Irish arms dealer, and then the terrorist (Aidan Gillen) shows up for revenge a year later to put the cop through 12 different tests to get his kidnapped fiancée back. Think of it as Saw, filtered through the eyes of WWE mogul Vince McMahon. This is a tense, fun flick that not only had me cheering the hero on, but perfectly cemented just how much I dig these movies. — Louis Fowler

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