Action Comedy

Back in May, Vulture made the bold claim that Jackie Chan was done with action movies after 5 decades of making them. It was a bit premature, but it was based on a comment from Chan about how difficult and dangerous stunts had gotten at his age (and after treating his body like a ragdoll for years). It was a natural conclusion to come to – especially on the heels of his latest movie, Chinese Zodiac, where he pulled quintuple duty as actor, stunt performer, producer, writer and director. Apparently he’s not done yet. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Chan is looking to star in a new action-comedy written by Jay Longino (who has a strange resume, including Bachelor Party 2: The Last Temptation). The goal is to find a co-star for Chan and shoot in Hong Kong, Macau, Eastern Europe and mainland China. The plot focuses on Chan’s character hunting an American gambler who owes enough money to a gang syndicate for them to hire Chan to hunt him down. To celebrate, let’s all watch Snake in Eagle’s Shadow and hope Chan makes action movies until he’s 193.

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Catherine Zeta-Jones took a hiatus from acting late last decade, but she’s been back in the game with The Rebound and Sundance Weinstein pick-up Lay the Favorite. Now, she’s continuing that working streak with RED 2. At 42, it might be a little early for her to retire. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Oscar-winner has signed on alongside Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Mary-Louise Parker and Dame Helen Mirren who will be reprising their roles. The screenwriters, Erich and Jon Hoeber, are also back, but director Robert Schwentke is not. He’s currently working on R.I.P.D., which may or may not be the reason, but Dean Parisot will be taking his spot. Parisot is also an Oscar winner, having won for Best Live-Action Short Film back in 1989 and going on to direct Galaxy Quest and Fun With Dick and Jane. It’s an interesting background he brings, but the comedy angle is easy to see. So the director has an Oscar, Dame Mirren has one, Malkovich is a two-time nominee, and their newest recruit is packing a statue. Not even counting the Golden Globes, this action comedy sequel has a lot of Oscar street cred.

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Bad Boys

We didn’t get enough of Michael Bay‘s ego blowing the world up a few weeks ago. We’re interested in more. That’s why in this week’s Commentary Commentary, we’re covering Bay’s first movie, the calling card, if you will, that would eventually launch this man to such great heights, he could make hundreds of millions of dollars playing with toy robots. We’re talking about Bad Boys. No, I’m not gonna sing the song. Thought about it. Decided to pass. Bad Boys started a lot of things. It began Will Smith‘s rise to divine power. It started something with Martin Lawrence that would eventually sputter out some time around Bad Boys II. Poor guy. Black Knight just wasn’t a good idea. Mr. Bay is sure to spew all kinds of love for both of these guys, as well as the massive number of explosions we’ll be seeing throughout the film. His Armageddon commentary was so much fun and surprisingly insightful, so there’s no telling what we’ll be in store for with Bad Boys. Whatcha gonna do? I couldn’t help it.

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A movie based on the show 21 Jump Street? Dumb, right? Well, directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller acknowledge that right out of the gate. In doing so, they’ve crafted a hilarious and whip-smart comedy with a big heart and mind. The duo didn’t make a series of a action movie references, but an actual action movie. The Jump Street program, which remains the same concept as the original television series, has been resurrected due to a “lack of imagination.” Two of the young-looking cops chosen are Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum), two wannabe badasses. Schmidt and Jenko were on opposite sides in high school: Schmidt was a juggling club loser who went through an Eminem phase, while Jenko was the popular jock. A few years later, the dynamic has changed. Schmidt and Jenko become buddies to even out each other’s respective athletic or academic weaknesses. When they’re thrown back into high school to crackdown on a drug aptly called “Holy Fucking Shit,” their friendship gets tested.  Schmidt is no longer the outcast, and Jenko quickly realizes acting like an asshole isn’t exactly cool anymore.

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I may not have been completely on the Bridesmaids bandwagon like a lot of other people, but I love Kristen Wiig as a performer and might go as far as to say she’s the most talented female to ever work on Saturday Night Live; so I’m very interested in where her film career is going to go now that she has some clout in Hollywood. And, according to a report from Variety, her next movie is one that is going to be well worth my attention. Wiig has reportedly attached herself to star in a new action comedy written by Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, or as they’re otherwise known, Nat Faxon and Dean Pelton from Community, or as they’re otherwise known, the two guys who just won an Effin Oscar for writing The Descendants. Add Wiig’s unparalleled skill as a comedic performer with these guy’s obvious skill in crafting big screen stories, and it sounds like we might be in for something special. Factor in that all three of these talents know each other from back in the day when they performed in The Groundlings together, and we may just be looking at one of those perfect pieces of synergy that becomes an all time great. I mean, this new movie is being described as an action comedy, for the love of Mike. That’s a genre I generally can’t get enough of, and when’s the last time you’ve seen a good action comedy made in Hollywood? If this movie’s […]

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Depending on how you interpret it, This Means War is either another insipid, aggressively convoluted candy-colored flick from that auteur of nothingness McG, or one of the great unrequited male love stories of all time. The portrait of two men who really only have eyes for each other, it’s an aggressively formulaic, borderline nonsensical fantasy about Los Angeles-based CIA studs FDR and Tuck (Chris Pine and Tom Hardy) who fall for a woman named Lauren (Reese Witherspoon) and set out to woo her in an elaborate pissing contest.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, 30 Minutes or Less star Nick Swardson stops by to talk action comedy, and John Gholson from Movies.com makes the case for more female Avengers. Plus, Fat Guy Kevin Carr battles Stan Lee Sound-a-Like Jim Napier from Geek Tyrant in the Movie News Pop Quiz, and the results would make children weep. Listen Here: Download This Episode

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The entire setup for the Tower Heist trailer is solid and pretty damned timely. A staff at an incredibly schmancy apartment building are fleeced out of their pensions by the building’s wealthiest schmuck so they decide to rob him. But they’ll need help. Enter the moment the trailer stops dead in its tracks. You know you’re poison when a perfectly harmless action comedy (even one where Ben Stiller and Matthew Broderick try to keep straight faces while Alan Alda tries to be unlikable), becomes a laughingstock just by inserting your image into the trailer. Guess who, movie fans. It’s your favorite comedian turned least favorite comedian and he ruins everything here:

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It was just reported yesterday that director Wayne Kramer was exiting Sylvester Stallone’s upcoming starring vehicle Headshot, and already there is word of who might step in to take his place. As far as his falling out with the film’s original director Wayne Kramer, Stallone says, “Initially, Mr. Kramer was hired to direct a dark comedy. However, his vision was much darker and exceptionally more violent than how the project was originally conceived. It was decided that it would be better for everyone to move on and consequently Mr. Kramer was dismissed by producers earlier this week. There were no volatile clashes, it was simply a professional parting of the ways.” So, who does Stallone think has what it takes to fulfill his more comedic vision for the project? One of the top names being considered, and the one Stallone seems to want, is veteran director Walter Hill. Stallone says, “I completely respect Walter’s incredible body of work and hopefully this legendary director will become attached to the project.” I can’t fault that sort of logic. If you want to make a funny film, what better way than going out and getting the guy who made Brewster’s Millions? I have to say that I am a little disappointed to hear the reason for Kramer’s dismissal, however. While Hill has made one of the most beloved action comedies of all time with 48. Hours, I think Stallone is forgetting what his own track record with the comedy genre is. Has Stallone […]

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It’s being reported by Variety that Mark Wahlberg is soon going to be starring in another comedy. Universal has attached him to a spec script written by a guy with no previous credits named Matthew J. O’Neill that is titled Bait and Switch, and is described as being an “action-comedy.” We already know that after this year’s Contraband Wahlberg is set to star in the teddy bear come to life movie Ted by Family Guy creator Seth McFarlane, and that he is looking to get together a sequel for The Fighter, so presumably this film would either be sandwiched in between those projects or come right after them. I guess my biggest question is how I feel about Wahlberg doing another comedy. For the longest time he was doing pretty straight dramatic stuff, but now he seems to be looking to reinvent himself a bit. We’ve already seen him in another “action-comedy” alongside Will Ferrell with The Other Guys, and I was pretty lukewarm about that. I guess whether or not Ted is able to produce the laughs will be my deciding point on whether or not Wahlberg has what it takes to become a comedic actor. I’ve laughed at him a little bit when he plays the clueless doofus in otherwise dramatic movies like Boogie Nights or I Heart Huckabees, but I’m just not sure if I’m ready to accept him in a strictly comedic role. The dude modeled in his underwear. Leave comedy for the weird looking, gangly […]

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The title is silly, the tagline of “CATch Her If You Can” is borderline moronic, but everything about this trailer for Cat Run is action comedy gold. All the cliches are there (a high class prostitute on the run, some videotapes that can’t get leaked out, a government cover up, an assassin chasing her down…), but it still manages to feel fun and fresh. Paz Vega seems to be choosing some completely different roles from her Spanglish turn, and you can’t go wrong with Christopher McDonald (the guy you’ll be waiting for in the parking lot in Happy Gilmore) playing a pompous asshole, but there are really no big names here, and that could be a good thing. Then there’s triple amputee D.L. Hughley, a poor man’s Helen Mirren, and a baby to carry around for some reason. Seriously. Where did this thing come from. Crazy/Beautiful director John Stockwell seems to have created an action comedy that recalls the 90s while tossing in a generic version of the detectives from Psych right down to the racial quota. Check it out for yourself:

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We announced a year ago that Universal was pushing to get R.I.P.D. off the ground in a major way. If they can close Zach Galifianakis for a co-starring role, that ground is going to be a memory. According to the LA Times, Galifianakis is discussing playing the sidekick role to Ryan Reynolds’s Nick Cruz character – a man murdered who makes a deal to give a century of service to the Rest In Peace Department in exchange for the shot at revenge. Based on the Dark Horse comic by Peter Lenkov, the movie should have an action comedy and feature a lot of souls who don’t want to cross over just yet. This all re-raises some questions about Reynolds’s schedule. He’s said before that he would either do R.I.P.D. or Deadpool, but not both. If this ends up shooting this summer, does it kill Deadpool for Reynolds? Plus, even though David Dobkin (Wedding Crashers) isn’t directing R.I.P.D. anymore (Red director Robert Schwentke is), Reynolds is set to work with Dobkin this fall on The Change-Up which features him switching bodies with Jason Batemen so Batemen’s character can score with Olivia Wilde. Regardless of the other projects, R.I.P.D. is a flick I’ve been looking forward to for a long time. It’s a different brand of comic book movie, and it could be darkly comedic like a version of Lethal Weapon done by way of Constantine. Galifianakis makes a great addition.

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Here’s the pitch: a young girl who is also a “tough, street-smart” private eye is hired by the FBI to assist in a major case. The first two words that should come to mind are “Veronica Mars.” It’s something that fans of the canceled series starring Kristen Bell have been clamoring for since the first episode. Unfortunately, the two words that really do come alongside this gold-plated pitch are either “So Undercover,” “Miley Cyrus,” or “Blergh Heuuuuerrggh.” Since Cyrus is a massive cash cow, this generic action comedy with a tween-friendly title (specifically designed for easy texting) has been developed for her, and it’s just been picked up by Exclusive Media Group. No word yet on whether it’ll be direct to DVD or how Larry the Cable Guy will be involved. [Deadline Santa Monica]

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acoupleofdicksnortontrachtenberg

Comedian Jim Norton and “Pete and Pete” star Michelle Trachtenberg join forces with Kevin Smith to bring his Dicks to life.

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From the goofy warehouse guy in The 40-Year Old Virgin to banging Izzy Stephens in Knocked Up to playing The Green Hornet. Behold the rise of Seth Rogen.

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