OK, you know the drill: this is where I recommend stuff for you to watch. So you're not as locked down as you were before; so you can go to the pub if you want. Will you? Methinks not. I suspect you're still in the market for entertainment, so have a shot at these.
Assume this is on Netflix, unless I say otherwise.
Time To Hunt
2020, Korea, crime, action, thriller
Small-time criminal Jun-seok leaves prison only to find that the loot he spent three year incarcerated over is effectively gone, as South Korea is economically devastated and it's now illegal to exchange the all-but-worthless Won for any other currency. He and his pals Jang-ho and Ki-hoon resolve to escape South Korea by knocking over a gambling house, since the house has stacks of US$ in its safe which they can use to relocate somewhere sunny and economically viable. So far so good, but they make a huge mistake; they steal the hard drives that contain the house's security footage, as a safety precaution Unfortunately for them the house could care less about the cash, but it cares a great deal about that footage as it contains evidence of their illicit doings. So psychopathic and extremely well-connected hitman Han is sent to kill them all.
The Hunt Is On.
Why see this? If you're a Night's Black Agents Director looking for inspiration, this is it. The Heist, followed by the extended Thrilling Chase. Plus some excellent gunfight and stuntwork moments, especially in the final crimsoned scenes on a deserted stretch of wasteland near the sea.
2020, India, action, horror, zombies, TV show
An Indian army detachment nominally sent to disperse terrorists, but actually there to wipe out some inconvenient protestors on behalf of a corrupt land developer, finds more than they bargain for when zombies start chasing them down. The risen dead are all members of an East India Company regiment whose commanding officer led them to damnation in search of loot. Now the living soldiers have to hide out in the old fort the dead soldiers used to occupy, hoping to hold out till dawn. Zombies with guns? It's not going to go well for our heroes ...
A little cheesy but there are some great action scenes, and it's fun to see zombies used in a more imaginative way. Suchitra Pillai as Commander Tyagi is a standout.
The 9th Precinct
2019, Taiwan, film, action, cop drama, undead
Street cop Chen Chia-Hao finds himself inducted into the 9th Precinct when his partner is shot dead in front of him, only to discover that dead isn't as dead as he thought. The 9th Precinct exists to police ghosts, and to resolve their situation as best as possible so they can move on or at least stop bothering the living. It's a nice mix between Beetlejuice's dark humor and a conventional cop drama, as the Precinct cops realize that the increased undead activity they're dealing with is actually linked to a vampiric entity that's manipulating them all to its own ends.
Great action scenes, unexpectedly funny in places, and the lead actors are very charismatic and fun to watch.
2011, Thai, film, ghosts, horror
Businessman Thee gets a promotion and decides it's time to move the family out to the suburbs. He has his eye on a magnificent detached house in Ladda Land, where everything is as perfect as can be. Except he soon discovers the neighbors are less than friendly, and his economic situation takes an unexpected downturn when his boss runs off with the company's funds. Economically trapped in a house he can't afford, Thee soon finds that his neighbors had good reason to be unfriendly - and that there was a lot about Ladda Land he didn't know before he bought a house there.
Remarkably chilling, and it has an elegant answer to the two classic questions: why don't you move away? and, given all the evidence, why do you think this place isn't haunted? Keepers need to watch this; some really brilliant scares, jump and otherwise.
2021, Spanish, film, crime, thriller
Cop and family man Martin has been transferred, and his first job at his new posting is to assist in a prisoner transport. Some of the cons in his truck are high-ranking mafia types, so the idea is to keep the whole process below the radar as much as possible. The truck and its escort will be moving through desolate, snowbound terrain at the crack of dawn, to avoid attention as well as traffic. Except someone knows, and that someone *really* wants to get his hands on one of the prisoners. Trouble begins when the escort is knocked out and the truck ambushed in the middle of nowhere, but things get much, much worse ...
Tense, but not a chase movie. Most of the action takes place inside the stalled transport truck, and if you'd told me ahead of time that this would be the perfect setting for what amounts to a locked room mystery I don't think I would have believed you. It almost makes me want to set a one-shot in one of those vans myself.
1994, animated, film, Studio Ghibli
1960s Tokyo is expanding rapidly to meet the demand for suburban housing. This spells disaster for the tanuki, intelligent and supernaturally gifted raccoons who, up till now, have led peaceful lives in what was the countryside. Now their homes are under threat, either because those hills and fields are slated for development or because construction companies are illegally dumping construction waste onto whatever green spaces are left. It's time for all good tanuki to band together to fend off the humans, scaring the dickens out of those pesky construction workers with their shapeshifting powers.
OK, it's a Studio Ghibli, which means many of you will have heard of this one already. But have you watched it? Or is this something in your to-watch list, while more eye-catching fare like Porco Rosso and Spirited Away grab all the attention? If the latter, time to move this up in the queue. Brilliant ghost action; my favorite's the nupperibo scene, but there's plenty of options to pick from.
That's it for this week. Enjoy!