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Category:    Home > Reviews > Drama > Historical > Latin > Crime > Gangster > Martial Arts > Korean > Horror > Monster > Italy.China > Comed > First King: Birth Of An Empire (2019 w/DVD*)/The Gangster The Cop The Devil (2019*)/Killer Crocodile (1989/Severin Blu-ray)/Kung Fu League (2018 w/DVD/*all Well Go Blu-rays)/Wills and Burke (1985/Umbr

First King: Birth Of An Empire (2019 w/DVD*)/The Gangster The Cop The Devil (2019*)/Killer Crocodile (1989/Severin Blu-ray)/Kung Fu League (2018 w/DVD/*all Well Go Blu-rays)/Wills and Burke (1985/Umbrella Region 4 PAL Import DVD)

Picture: B+ & C+/A-/B/B+ & C+/C- Sound: B+ & C+/B/B-/B+ & C+/C Extras: C/B/C+/D/D Films: B+/A-/C+/A-/C

PLEASE NOTE: The Wills and Burke Import DVD is now only available from our friends at Umbrella Entertainment in Australia, can only play on 4K, Blu-ray and DVD players that can handle Region 4-locked PAL DVD and can be ordered from the link below.

The following films take place overseas and offer action, thrills and even comedy...

Romulus and Remus are the fabled story of two brothers, inseparable and together the help build one of histories greatest empire, Rome. But before the greatest city in the world, they were two shepherd boys and the road to building Rome was full or blood ...and sacrifice in Matteo Rovere's The First King: Birth Of An Empire (2019).

Romulus and Remus were brothers but before their rise to building one of history's greatest (or worst, depending on your views) Empire. They were slaves, forced to fight one another they instead killed their captors and set the slaves free. Together the united the other slave to start a revolution. However, they received a prophecy that they will become kings, but one brother will have to kill the other. Remus believed leaders means power and to have power means fear and he decides to challenge the prophecy and the will of the 'gods' and he won't kill his brother. Romulus on the other hand believes in order to lead people and be a king, you must win the heart's of people to must preserve their culture, customs, and beliefs. If you keep destroying other peoples culture, take away people's rights, you might rule by fear but sooner or later someone else will kill you.

This is about one of the most famous stories of two brothers, symbolic of how together they were able to survive incredible odds, together they were unstoppable, they were 'blessed' by the gods to build the one of the greatest empires in the world. They, however, are only matched by their greatest tragedy to kill one another. Extras include a Making of the Movie featurette and trailers.

When a serial killer stalks the streets in the night, mob boss Jang Dong-su barely escapes with his life, but afterwards his reputation as a ruthless leader is shattered. He is forced to team up with Detective Jung Tae-seok, together they must hunt and stop the killer. They share information, resources and man power but their 'deal' is who ever finds him first gets to keep him in Lee Won-tae's The Gangster The Cop The Devil (2019).

Mob Boss Jang Dong-su runs the criminal underworld, no purse, no throat is cut without his say so, he even owns the police (which pisses off Detective Jung to no end). But when a serial killer nearly kills him, his reputation as a leader is called into question and the city begins to fall into fear and chaos. With a serial killer on the loose, no one is safe, guilty or innocent. Jang teams up with hard headed Detective Jung (who's been a pain in his side trying to bust his operations) and Jung's only reason to work with Jang is he wants the killer more badly than he wants to see Jang behind bars. However, the killer is far more clever than the mob and police give him credit for, even when both mob and police are after him and instead of running or hiding he continues killing and taunting them in to a dangerous cat and mouse game, are they hunting him ...or is he hunting them?

This was an action filled drama movie, a movie about bad cops working with bad guys to bring down someone even worst than them. Both the cops and the mob become vigilantes and they work together taking justice into their own hands when the normal methods don't work. Extras include making of the film, the characters and trailers.

Larry Ludman's Killer Crocodile (1989) is a very belated take-off of Spielberg's Jaws (1975), but is one of the more amusing of now dozens of take-offs and not as seen. However, Severin has restored it with a 2K scan from the original 35mm camera negative and it is amusing and looks better than you might expect.

The title monster starts eating tourists on a sunny island and news is slow to travel at first about the killings, but a group of young people (including one played by Richard Crenna's son) and some older persons in the know (including Van Johnson, in full blast MGM studio-days mode stealing his scenes without trying) as they slowly figure out what is doing the killing and how can they stop it. Needless to say it needs to be ASAP or the vacation is going to end for everyone on the island.

Shameless in its ripping off of some of the plot points of Jaws, its still not as blatant as the it could have been and the monster is a hoot. Especially deep in the CGI digital animation era, this looks fake, but it is still fun. It is shot better than you might expect and is worth a look for what does work. Nice it was so ambitious for a B-movie.

A special limited edition of this film includes its sequel, so get that while supplies last, but this version includes separate interview featurettes with Richard Anthony Crenna (Of Crocodiles and Men), Makeup FX Artist Giannetto De Rossi (In The Jaws Of The Crocodile), Actor Pietro Genuardi (The Fearless Crocodile Hunter), Cinematographer Federico Del Zoppo (It Crawls) and an Original Theatrical Trailer.

What happens when you take the greatest martial arts masters in history and put them together? Wong Fei-hung, Chen Zhen, Bruce Lee and IP Man find themselves brought to the future and now must somehow find a way home. But things aren't going to be easy and they find themselves in a modern day world wide Wushu contest in Jeffrey Lau's Kung Fu League (2018).

When comic artist Ying Xiong (Hero) finds himself unable to chase after the girl of his dreams, he makes a wish for the 4 greatest martial arts master in history to help him Wong Fei-hung, Chen Zhen, Bruce Lee and IP Man. It turns out Ying Xiong want them to train him to win the world wide Wushu tournament and help him win the girl. But secretly, Ying Xiong's rival has gathered the world's top martial artists to create the ultimate Kung Fu armor, a futuristic armor that can learn and defeat any martial art master.

This was a action filled comedy with the whole idea who is/was the greatest martial art master in history. While they might be the greatest martial arts masters in history, they one thing they can't stop is being the hero and the future. But in the end, can the old beat the new? Extras include trailers.

Finally we have Bob Weis' Wills and Burke (1985) which is the c0moedy spoof version of the historical 1860 trip by the title characters (Garry McDonald, Kim Gyngell) taking a then-dangerous trip across the continent with disastrous results, but wants to play it like a Western spoof. Thus, I can see why it is considered Oz-Ploitation, though it is only so amusing. A young Nicole Kidman, character actors like Peter Collingwood and Men At Work lead singer Colin Hay all show up, but this never really goes anywhere.

Maybe I'm missing some jokes since I do not know the whole story or how people from down under think of this event today, if at all, but I found it choppy and not adding up to much except as some kind of curio. It was a home video hit, but I had not heard of it before and in this case, I can see why. Only catch it if you are very, very interested.

There are no extras.

The 1080p 2.35 X 1 digital High Definition image transfers on all three HD-shot Well Go releases look good and clean, even if they can have motion blur here and there, but the anamorphically enhanced image on the DVD versions on King and Kung are on the soft and weak side.

With that said, the 1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition image transfer on Killer can show the age of the materials used, but it was shot better than you might expect on Kodak 35mm color negative films (including 5247) and processed by the Italian lab Telecolor, making this one of the few solid examples of the nice color they offered. It makes this different from other Jaws wanna-bees and looks impressive on even Ultra HDTVs in this respect. Sometimes the film looks a little definition, detail or color weak with moire grain, but that is rare. Overall, a pleasant surprise and more great work by Severin.

Unfortunately, the Wills DVD is from a really, really old PAL videomaster with plenty of analog videotape flaws including video noise, video banding, telecine flicker, tape scratching, PAL cross color, faded color, tape damage, aliasing errors and staircasing. This has a quality disclaimer, but the film starts out letterboxed in a 1.33 X 1 frame, then goes full 1.33 X 1, but its hard to tell if it is tunnel vision loosing the original frame or not. Oh well. Down several generations, it looks bad and the lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo barely has any surrounds and plenty of background noise. Hope they can save this film at some point, because it is bad here.

The three Well Go Blu-rays have nice DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 5.1 lossless mixes as you would expect with solid soundfields, but the King and Kung DVD's lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes are weak and loose more of the soundmaster than expected.

The DTS-HD MA (Master Audio) 2.0 lossless mix on Killer is more effective in its English track version than the Italian one, but they are both here for fans and completists.

To order the Umbrella import Wills and Burke DVD, go to this link for it and other hard to find releases:


- Nicholas Sheffo (Killer, Wills) and Ricky Chiang


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