Big Trouble In Little China

Big Trouble

Continuing through our month-long series of sci-fi comedies, Cargill and I decide to take a few cues from good ol’ Jack Burton. So this week, we’re broadcasting from our own Porkchop Express and talking to anyone who’s listening about the triumphant weirdness of John Carpenter’s Big Trouble in Little China. Now we aren’t saying we’ve been everywhere and seen every film, but we do know Big Trouble is a pretty amazing flick and a man would have to be some kind of fool to believe we’re all alone in that opinion. If you’ve paid your dues, and if you were born ready, join us for an in-depth chat about one of the greatest genre-bending cinematic rides of all time. It may not shake the pillars of heaven, but you can bet your mullet it’ll be a whole lot of fun.   You should follow Brian (@Briguysalisbury), Cargill (@Massawyrm), and the show (@Junkfoodcinema). Download Episode #20 Directly



Circles are surprisingly menacing – it’s just hard to trust something that doesn’t have corners. The film industry seems to know this, because it’s given us some of the most ominous villains out there in spherical form. I know it’s weird; I don’t care. And sure, triangles are pretty shifty too – and let’s not forget the kind of shit rectangles have pulled in the past as well. But for today, here are some movie spheres that you just wouldn’t want to cross.



A sequel hook is that very ambitious moment at the end of a movie where it boldly hint at a second film. While some can give the audience chills (think the ending of Batman Begins) there are a whole lot of them that end up becoming an embarrassment – usually when the film ends up bombing and ensuring that a second helping won’t be needed. Then again, when has a movie being bad stopped sequels from happening? I propose the following eight – ridiculous hooks to sequels that they really ought to have done, if only for the morbid curiosity.


Photo by Ferret111 via Flickr.

“Movie House of Worship” is a regular feature spotlighting our favorite movie theaters around the world, those that are like temples of cinema catering to the most religious-like film geeks. This week, I’m celebrating a new local favorite of mine, which could probably be substituted with many other lasting drive-ins around the U.S. If you’d like to suggest or submit a place you regularly worship at the altar of cinema, please email our weekend editor.   Name: Starlight Six Drive-In Location: 2000 Moreland Avenue SE, Atlanta, GA Opened: 1947, as a single screen; became the Starlight Twin with the addition of a second screen in 1956; final four screens were added in 1983. No. of screens: 6 Current first run titles: Each screen has two titles, and these can be watched as a two-for-one double feature. This week’s most perfect pairings are Frankenweenie and Paranorman, Argo and The Bourne Legacy, and Hotel Transylvania and Here Comes the Boom. The other three are Looper and Resident Evil: Retribution, Sinister and Dredd, and Taken 2 and End of Watch.


Big Trouble in Little China

It was about this time last year that I began looking over the shelves of the book cases holding my wide assortment of DVDs, most of whose special features had barely been cracked open to say nothing of the commentaries they held. For that first endeavor into this new column now known as Commentary Commentary, we listened to John Carpenter and Kurt Russell wax poetic about the isolation and creepy slimies that went into making The Thing. Now, for our 1-year anniversary, we’re going back to that same charismatic duo to listen to them talk about another of their many collaborations, Big Trouble in Little China. Unfortunately, Carpenter and Russell didn’t contribute commentaries for all of the films on which they worked together. We are lucky, though, that one of the films which they do speak about together is this masterpiece of ancient magic and sly, cynical wit from its main “hero.” To listen to Carpenter and Russell speak about Big Trouble in Little China is enough to shake the pillars of heaven. So, as Burton might say, what the hell. Let’s climb aboard the Porkchop Express and find out all the great things we learned from this commentary track. Everyone else can go down to the Hell of Boiling Oil. Chinese have a lot of Hells, you know.



I like these twitter Q and A’s. The best one so far to speak of is the video Q and A with Werner Herzog, a man that could probably still give existential and out there answers to the dumbest of questions. He’s a guy I could listen to all day. Another guy I could listen to all day? The very friendly John Carpenter. From 2:00-3:30 p.m. (PST), the director behind too many to count classics will be participating in a twitter Q and A. Sadly, this not a video one like the Herzog’s. But considering it’s been quite some time since the horror icon’s Ghost of Mars(…) and the fact that it may be a few more years until we get a followup to The Ward, it’s still a rare treat. Here’s all you have to do to throw a question to Carpenter: Send your questions to @ARC_Entertain and make sure to include #theward in your tweet. And for those of you who didn’t know, Carpenter is already an active participant on twitter: @TheHorrorMaster The Ward is now in limited release and on VOD.


Josh Radde

You’ve stumbled upon Circle of Jerks, our sporadically published, weekly feature in which we ask the questions that really matter to our writers and readers. It’s a time to take a break from our busy lives and revel in the one thing that we all share: a deep, passionate love of movies. If you have a question you’d like answered by the FSR readers and staff, send us an email at What’s something you wish had been included in a movie that wasn’t? This is broad, and falls under a large ‘missed-opportunities’ umbrella, but I’m studying Citizen Kane in my film class, and my professor pondered aloud at one point, “Why doesn’t Thompson visit Kane’s first wife? Well,” he continued, answering himself, “it would tell us nothing different from Leland’s flashback.” It’s a big class, and I lacked the courage to speak up, “Um, respected doctor of film? His first wife died in a car accident with his son.” This made me wonder. That little fact is barely noticeable; it’s slipped in in the “News on the March” section and never spoken of again. We never see Kane’s reaction to the disaster. – Reed A



Rob Hunter loves movies. He also loves working as Jack Burton’s favorite mechanic helping to keep the Pork Chop Express tuned to a 6.9 on the Richter scale. These two joys come together in the form of cash money payments that he receives every week and immediately uses to buy more DVDs.


Time Bandits

Too often we bicker and argue about what sequels should never have been made – and there are a lot of them. Now, we’d like to take a look at a few sequels that actually should be made but, for some reason, haven’t been.

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published: 01.30.2015
published: 01.30.2015
published: 01.29.2015
published: 01.28.2015

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