John Milius

Apocalypse Now

Looking for any excuse, Landon Palmer and Scott Beggs are using the 2012 Sight & Sound poll results as a reason to take different angles on the best movies of all time. Every week, they’ll discuss another entry in the list, dissecting old favorites from odd angles, discovering movies they haven’t seen before and asking you to join in on the conversation. Of course it helps if you’ve seen the movie because there will be plenty of spoilers. This week, they imagine a world where all of the massive disasters that took place during the filming and post-production of Francis Ford Coppola‘s Apocalypse Now never happened. Would smooth sailing had delivered a bland war film? A forgettable trip into the jungle with a by-the-book villain at the end of a mad road? And why is it the highest-ranked war movie in the first place? In the #14 movie on the list, Captain Benjamin Willard (Martin Sheen) hunts down a rogue Colonel Kurtz (Marlon Brando) during the Vietnam War and learns all about napalm and surfing. But why is it one of the best movies ever?


Drinking Games

Forget the North Koreans. It was the Soviets with their Cuban and Nicaraguan allies that once posed a real threat to this nation. After all, it doesn’t take much to establish a beachhead in Washington State, as depicted in the Red Dawn remake due out in theaters this week. Real hardcore Communist armies invade from the center of the country, as seen with the occupation of Calumet, Colorado in John “Madman” Milius’s original 1984 film. The new film’s explosions may be bigger, and the actors may be more recognizable to today’s audience (though possibly not, considering the original starred Patrick Swayze, Charlie Sheen, Jennifer Gray, Harry Dean Stanton, and Powers Booth), but Milius’s Red Dawn is perfectly primed for a stiff line of drinks. Re-live the action of this right-wing 80s war film, recently released on Blu-ray.


Rza Directing

Anyone who spent their teen years driving around in their mother’s hand-me-down car with the windows rolled down and the Wu Tang Clan blaring on the stereo knows that the RZA, the GZA, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Inspectah Deck, the Method Man, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, U-God, and the Masta Killa have a deep, abiding love of kung-fu movies. And, in the years since their musical heyday, RZA has taken this love further by composing the score for modern martial arts movies like Ghost Dog and Kill Bill, by trying his hand at being an actor, and even by becoming a director with his upcoming martial arts epic The Man with the Iron Fists. RZA doesn’t plan on stopping there either, apparently his experience directing a movie was so positive that he’s already lined up two more projects.


commentary-conan the barbarian

Let me tell you of the days of high adventure! Those days surely include Arnold Schwarzenegger providing another grand achievement in film commentary, and though we’ve already covered Total Recall, we weren’t going to let that little fact stand in our way of checking in with Arnie once again this week. The commentary the Governator recorded with director John Milius for Conan the Barbarian has gone down in history as one of the greats, a true wonder to behold. It’s the movie that made Arnold a star, and he thankfully provides a commentary as awesome as the movie itself. But, in case you aren’t ready to behold it just yet, we’ve got you covered. So here, by the will of Crom, are all 33 things we learned while listening to the Conan the Barbarian commentary – that is, besides crushing your enemies, seeing them driven before you, and hearing the lamentation of their women. That comes later.


Vintage Trailer Logo

What daring! What arrogance! We salute these trailers! In 1982, John Milius brought Conan the Barbarian to life with questionable authenticity and a gallon or three of body oil. Arnold Schwarzenegger was the only man at the time for the job, and James Earl Jones the only man willing to turn into a snake and fight him. Now there’s a new adaptation coming soon featuring Jason Momoa. He’s got a huge loincloth to fill, but, unlike Schwarzenegger, it’s almost certain he didn’t have to tone down his workout routine in order to wield a sword properly. Arnold was a monster.



When you’re looking to cast one of the most successful Asian military minds, your first thought is Mickey Rourke, too, isn’t it?

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published: 01.28.2015
published: 01.28.2015
published: 01.28.2015
published: 01.27.2015

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