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DVD Trio of Animated (In All Senses of the Word) Beatdowns

City of Violence DVD Dragon Heat DVD cover art TMNT DVD cover art

First up, we’ve got a pair of releases from Dragon Dynasty, which is basically The Weinstein Company and Genius putting out action flicks from Asia on DVD. In other words, they are Our Friends. We’ve got City of Violence, which follows a pretty common idea: old friend gets killed, surviving friends must track down those responsible and beat them viciously. And, since the plot is old hat (but a well loved, broken-in kinda hat), what you really show up for are said beatings. And they do not disappoint, because you’ve got our two heroes taking on ridiculous amounts of foes in all-out brawls. Well, the title did warn you, after all. Anyway all of this mayhem makes this worth a serious rental for fu and action fans. It comes with a director’s commentary, blooper reel, deleted scenes with commentary, and a slew of featurettes with interviews and design work with tons more, spread across two discs. (Buy it from Amazon.)

More Dragon Dynasty? Okay. Switch from fu violence to gun violence and we’ve got Dragon Heat, which immediately drew my attention because of Sammo Hung, Michael Biehn (who we honestly don’t see enough of these days) and Maggie Q. We’re seeing a theme here, because if you’re wanting an intricate plot to hang you hat on, well, your sombrero will be lonely. (I don’t know where that last sentence came from, honestly.) Okay, well, what there is of it: a guy is poised to go on trial and bring down a huge section of the Triad. However, the bad guys have other plans, spring the guy, and the good guys go to blow holes in the bad guys. Simple, yes? Yes, quite. But it’s okay: remember, there’s shiny guns. This comes with commentary, a deleted fight scene, interviews and a making-of. If you dig gun fu, then this is definitely worth a rental. (Buy it from Amazon.)

Finally, we have TMNT. Now it’s a little terrifying that I find myself pleased to have a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie around, frankly, considering that their cinematic history is, shall we say, a bit spotty. (I was amazed to look it up and see there were only the three feature films…funny, it felt like many more.) I was there when these characters first hit comics (even had one of the early issues strictly by dumb luck, that was worth a bit) so it’s nice to see a film that’s more in line with the comics and, frankly, doesn’t give you a headache from being too geared towards the kiddies. This does come with commentary from the writer/director, cut animation sequences, storyboard-to-film comparisons, and more. This is out from Warner Brothers. (Buy it from Amazon.)

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