Archive for the Laurent Buson Category

Next Tuesday one of the best martial arts films of 2014 comes to DVD/Blu Ray! Die Fighting!

Posted in Didier Buson, Fabien Garcia, Laurent Buson with tags , on April 15, 2016 by Michael S. Moore

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All,

Between El Gato Negro: Prey and a not so good back injury, I’ve been out of pocket for the last several weeks, and forgot to let you good folks know that my favorite martial arts film of 2014 is coming to Blu-Ray and DVD next Tuesday, April 19th! Die Fighting, starring Fabien Garcia and Laurent “Lohan” Buson (Merantau). You can read my review of this terrific movie here!

Here is the trailer, and the home video announcement!

The martial arts, found footage action thriller Die Fighting is coming to DVD and Blu-ray on April 19th. The film, from martial arts experts Fabien Garcia and Laurent Buson, takes place on the city streets of Los Angeles as one crazed director forces several fighters to compete for the ones they love. Shot in real time, Die Fighting co-stars Didier Buson, Jess Allen, Dave Vescio, former American Gladiator Xin Wuku, and others.

 

In the film’s story, four Shaolin fighters are targeted and tested by a mysterious director. Their loved ones have been kidnapped and these trained martial artists must complete a series of more and more complex challenges to release their friends and family. But, this story is not without its tragedy as these four friends face unthinkable horrors. No one fights alone in Garcia’s true tale of terror and action.

 

Die Fighting is already available on several video-on-demand formats. Fans of martial arts films are encouraged to take a look at the film, which has been described as “pulse-pounding” and “amazing,” by Kung Fu Cinema‘s Albert Valentin. 

SYNOPSIS:

“When a team of Shaolin-trained kung fu actors is about to get their break in Hollywood, a mysterious and sadistic director forces them to run a gauntlet through Los Angeles. The Director films their every move as they prove their prowess by provoking a rogues’ gallery of underworld thugs and martial artists”

Some of the best martial arts action that can easily stand right up there with films like The Raid or Ip Man.” – Bobby Blakey, Examiner.com

“5 OUT OF 5 STARS!” – Albert Valentin, Kung Fu Cinema

“An Energetic, Meta Martial Arts Flick” – Ernesto Zelaya Miñano, Twitch

“Jackie Chan and Tony Jaa would absolutely love ‘Die Fighting’ – what more of an endorsement could anyone possibly need eh?” – Brad Curran, Kung-fu Kingdom

“Jaw-dropping fight scenes, fast paced and a genuine adrenaline rush.” – Eoin Friel, The Action Elite

“This film contains more badassery than you can watch in one sitting…” – Michael S Moore, Kiai-Kick

“It would be a crime for any martial arts action fan to miss this one.” – David Vo, Martial Arts Action Cinema

“Die Fighting is a movie that you cannot afford to miss.” – Brad Curran, Kung-fu Kingdom

“A Case For Better Action Movies.” – Lee Golden, Film Combat Syndicate

“An excellent martial arts flick showcasing the Z Team to be major players on the action movie block.” – Andrew Skeates, Far East Films

In other words, you want to buy this next week. 

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Z Team comes roaring back with the webseries Drained World!

Posted in Fabien Garcia, Laurent Buson with tags , on July 18, 2015 by Michael S. Moore

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Z Team, the group behind what was my favorite martial arts film of 2014 in Die Fighting, return here with the pilot episode for their web series Drained World, a dystopian story following Frank, a lone wanderer after the world is nearly annihilated due to the Nuclear War of World War Three. The tone of the story, from the opening and the song that plays, is somber and lonely, just as it should be. The web series has some tremendous fight scenes (that dude who gets 360’d and then punched in the air is my favorite moment) which are shot in some very original ways, and dammit those guys are gonna start accusing me of stalking them with the praise I keep heaping on them, but it’s as deserved here as it was for Die Fighting, and I’m excited to see what they have in store for the rest of the series. Fabien Garcia rocks the fight choreography as well as pulling off some really impressive moves, and is joined by Christy St. John and Antoine Piquet.

I can’t help but wonder if this may make a better feature film than a web series, but I’d have to see more, but there is a tremendous amount of ambition here.  Watch the film below, and follow them on Facebook here, and even donate money to fund this really, really interesting effort.

Looking good, guys! Looking really good!

Review: Die Fighting (2014)

Posted in Didier Buson, Fabien Garcia, Laurent Buson with tags , on November 11, 2014 by Michael S. Moore

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Starring Fabien Garcia, Laurent Buson, Didier Buson, Jess Allen, Dave Vescio, Xin Sarith Wuku, Gray Michael Sallies, Davis Chong, Jose Rosete

Fight Choreography by Fabien Garcia, Laurent and Didier Buson

Directed by Fabien Garcia

I’ve long been a fan of Laurent “Lohan’ Buson ever since I saw him take on Iko Uwais in Merantau, and hoped he would get into more films. Now, after a few years, he and his group Zteam took it upon themselves to put out their own small budget feature film…

…and it is absolutely badass.

The film combines martial arts with the found footage genre to tell the story of ZTeam, made up of Fabien, Lohan, Didier, and Jess (everyone basically playing themselves to an extent) who have come to Hollywood to make it big as action stars, and find themselves at the whim of a mysterious psychopath named The Filmmaker, who sends them by cell phone on increasingly more dangerous jobs, using security cameras everywhere they go to record the fights they get into, all so The Filmmaker can direct his martial arts masterpiece. He holds the wives of two Zteam members hostage in exchange for cooperation. Can the four future stars survive long enough to find out who The Filmmaker is and stop him?

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The story here is actually really good, and is meant to appeal to…well, folks like me and if you are a fan of this website, you. As demented as The Filmmaker is, in many ways he’s actually us. He tags on so many staples of martial arts films and gets it right. Fight a room full of black belts? Sure. Take on a group of thugs…only using drunken boxing? Why not? Shootouts with gangsters like something out of a John Woo or Ringo Lam film? Yep. Each time I found myself going “Yes!” every time The Filmmaker would announce his next challenge to the crew, even though I knew he was a rat bastard of a bad guy who needed to get his just desserts. Much of the story of the film rests on whether or not you buy who The Filmmaker actually is, so tastes may vary on how much you like the plot twist. I thought it was well done. There is even some humor, and there is one moment that had me laughing hard involving the takedown of a gentleman named Neutron, Bloodsport style.

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The Zteam do a pretty good acting job, but there were moments where the accents were a bit tough to decipher, and so I’d have to rewind and see it again to catch what was being said. Nothing that took away any enjoyment of the film. Between this and John Wick its refreshing to see action scenes that are not a chaotic mess, and show that Fabien Garcia, who also plays Fabien, knows exactly how to properly shoot a fight scene. No quick-cut edits, lots of wide shots for the kicks, and you always know the space everyone is existing in. If you think that’s not important, watch any Michael Bay film and tell me where everyone is in relation to everything else in an action scene. I was curious how the found footage look would work, but it turned out looking fine, and didn’t hinder the action one bit.

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As for that action, this film hearkens back to the Hong Kong action films of the 80’s. Sammo Hung and Freddie Chan would shed a tear if they could see how well done it is. The action is fast and furious, and I wound up rewatching each fight several times, marveling at the execution of the movements. The fight Fabien vs the black belts is awesome, and the final fight featuring Laurent Buson is worth every penny, and he is badass awesome, as is a super kicker that could give Ken Lo and Ron Smoorenborg a run for their money, but my favorite fight has to be between Didier and Chan (Xin Sarith Wuku), Didier being the smallest of the group, but never the weakest, and their fight contains one of the best uses of slow motion during a fight scene that I’ve ever seen. Even though I mention these fights, don’t get me wrong, EVERY fight in this film is great, and there are so many…

Kiai-Kick’s Grade: 10

Folks, this film contains more badassery than you can watch in one sitting, and I can’t recommend it highly enough! If you are able to watch this film, you’re watching a future cult classic! I’ll be eagerly awaiting the next film from ZTeam Films!

This movie can be found On Demand right now!

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The Trailer for Die Fighting with Merantau’s Laurent “Lohan” Buson!

Posted in Laurent Buson with tags , on November 10, 2014 by Michael S. Moore

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Ahoy! This film is already out On Demand now, but my review will be up on Tuesday! I’ve been waiting to see this film, and I had initially reported on this last year when it was formerly called The Price of Success, and is produced and starred by Merantau’s Luarent “Lohan” Buson, a guy I had heaped praise on as someone who damn well needed to be in more movies, and here he is! Below is the trailer, and it looks even better than some of the footage I had initally seen!  No one has really tried a “found footage” martial arts film, and the premise:

When a team of Shaolin-trained kung fu actors are on the verge of breaking into Hollywood, a shady Director forces them through a gauntlet in Los Angeles, filming their every move as they are pitted against a gallery of thugs.

Check out the trailer, and look out for my review Tuesday!

Indie-Kick Trailer: The Price Of Success (2013)

Posted in Laurent Buson with tags , , on May 14, 2013 by Michael S. Moore

Thanks to Ain’t It Cool News for this, a martial arts film that’s part Bloodsport and part Saw. I don’t know much about this film, but one name you will recognize is Laurent Buson, the superkicker (of the the two brothers) who took on Iko Iwais in Merantau. I was always wanting to see Laurent in something else, and now I’ve got it! His brother Didier also stars in the film. The action here looks pretty darn good. I can’t wait to see the rest of it! Check out the trailer below!

Review: Merantau (2009)

Posted in Iko Uwais, Laurent Buson, Yayan Ruhian with tags , on June 11, 2011 by Michael S. Moore

Starring Iko Uwais, Yayan Ruhian, Laurent Buson, Mads Koudal, Alex Abbad, Sisca Jessica

Fight Choreography by Iko Uwais, Team Silat Harimou

Directed by Gareth Evans

The last few years has seen a rush of successful martial arts films from countries not named China or Japan, and names like Tony Jaa, Jeeja Yanin, and Johnny Nguyen have jump to the top of martial arts films. Now a new name from a country not known for martial arts films is here to take his place among them. So how does newcomer Iko Uwais do for for his first time out?

The merantau is a journey that young men in Indonesia take that is a rite of adulthood. It is a a journey of self-realization and finding out their place in the world. The film is about a young man named Yuda (Uwais) whose time has come to go on merantau. The film spends some time with Yuda’s mother and older brother, who has already had his merantau. Yuda has dreams of going to Jakarta and teach his form of Silat harimou in a school of his own. After he leaves home he meets Eric (Ruhian), a fellow traveller who warns Yuda to let go of his dreams, as the world is a much darker and dangerous place. Eric’s words become true as Yuda tries to intervene when a dancer named Astrid (Jessica) is about to be beaten by her boss Johni (Abbad). Yuda’s heroic act is met with hostility by Astrid and her little brother, and Yuda begins to understand that the world is far more complicated than it ever was in his village. Johni needs Astrid to be one of his “girls” for Ratger and Luc, two wealthy but dysfunctional European brothers who are there on business and want a good time.

Johni forces Astrid to go to them, but damn his shitty luck that Yuda sees this, and gives him and his men a grand beatdown, taking Astrid from them and injuring Ratger’s face. These men may not have been aware that Yuda was a Country Bumpkin (you’ve heard this in many of my reviews. These dudes are all badasses.)This affront Ratger cannot take, and has Johni hire men to hunt down Yuda and Astrid, leading to a ton of fights before a fantastic finale on a warehouse pier as Yuda faces off with both Ratger (Koudal) and Luc (Busson) for a final showdown.

Merantau is a confident film to feature such a newcomer, much like Ong Bak was for Tony Jaa. Iko Uwais turns out to be a decent actor, not having a lot of emotion to convey, but what is there he does well. His style of Silat Harimou, which features many low tiger stances and movements, are well done here, but at first the fight choreography isn’t that different from films like Ong Bak, at least not at first. As the film progresses you really begin to see the style of Silat come to the fore. Toward the end there are three standout fights. The first is Yuda against his friend Eric in an elevator, which is a fantastic showcase of silat from two fighters who are well versed in the style. The cramped elevator makes the fight even more intense as you know one mistake and Yuda is dead.  The second is a great fight where half of Indonesia attacks Yuda, and he battles them on the top of a series of shipping containers, and really jacks them up Police Story style,  and the final fight is against both Ratger and Luc. I was greatly impressed by this, as the film doesn’t hint that either brother knows martial arts, and the quiet Luc was especially excellent as the super-kicker of the two. Laurent and Mads did an excellent job here. Can we get more Laurent Buson in a film, please? This guy has done a bunch of short films, and this is his biggest film yet. He reminds me of all the super-kickers who used to take on Jackie Chan back in his 80s’ films. More of him, please!

Merantau is a great first entry for a new talent like Iko Uwais, and just like Tony Jaa the sky’s the limit for him. A good film with great fights and a good story that shows that hope can come from the most unlikely of places. And that Country boys are not to be jacked with!

(On a scale of 1-10, 10 being the best)

CHOREOGRAPHY: (9) The early parts of the film are nothing that hasn’t been seen in a Tony Jaa film, but toward the end they pull out the stops. The elevator fight is a stunning fight scene that really brings home the style of Silat, and the final fight between Uwais and Buson and Koudal is a showstopping fight that is beautiful and brutal all at once.

STUNTWORK: (9) These guys are as insane as Tony Jaa and Jackie Chan’s guys. The scene where the stuntman jump from one building to another only to meet a pole halfway deserves and award, and the fight on the shipping containers will make you wince. Well done.

STAR POWER: (8) Iko Uwais has the talent to go far, but his movie choices will ultimately decide how big he becomes. Buson is a great talent that needs to be a featured baddie more often. You listening Tony Jaa?

FINAL GRADE: (9) Not a perfect film, but a very, very good martial arts film that showcases a style new to film and a new star as well. We should all be looking forward to what Uwais comes up with next.