The Direct to Video Connoisseur

I'm a huge fan of action, horror, sci-fi, and comedy, especially of the Direct to Video variety. In this blog I review some of my favorites and not so favorites, and encourage people to comment and add to the discussion. If you click on an image, it will take you to that post's image page, which includes many more pics from the film and other goodies I couldn't fit in the actual review. For announcements and updates, don't forget to Follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page. If you're the director, producer, distributor, etc. of a low-budget feature length film and you'd like to send me a copy to review, you can contact me at dtvconnoisseur[at]yahoo.com. I'd love to check out what you got.

Announcement

Announcement

Hi everyone, it's been a while since I checked the page, and I wanted to make a few announcements.

First and foremost, it appears a dubious site has claimed the old url, meaning any link in any review that goes to the old mattmovieguy url is corrupt. I'm in the process of trying to remove them all, but it's a lot! It's best not to click on any link without hovering over it first to make sure it doesn't have mattmovieguy in the url.

Second, it appears since my last trip to the blog, Photobucket has decided to charge for third party hosting, meaning none of my images are appearing anymore. That's simply an aesthetic issue, but still annoying.

Thank you all for your patience, and again, hopefully this will all be fixed soon.

--Matt

Monday, November 9, 2009

Guaranteed Overnight Delivery aka GOD (2001)

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This is one I've been wanting to do for a long time. In part because it's a Gruner flick, and in part because it's got Jalal Mehri in an actual action role. Sure, he was in the two Circuit films, but he just sat behind a desk. Now we got him on his feet and kicking ass.

Guaranteed Overnight Delivery is about a bank security guard, Jalal Mehri, who is unhappy about his job because he used to be a police sergeant in his native India. Anyway, there's a bank heist, and he loses his job for it-- not for the shootout he set off by trying to be the hero, but because he didn't guard the bank (how can you not love the twisted logic of action movies?) Anyway, his wife died in the shootout while bringing him his lunch, so now Mehri is down and out and living out of his franchised delivery truck. Things change, though, when some white slavers decide it would be a great idea to have him deliver a woman in a trunk to a buyer. Sure, I can't imagine she'd make any noise and Mehri would find out. He did, but he can't go to the cops because he needs the money, so they have to confront her kidnappers.

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This could've been a little better. Gruner could've fought more. I would've liked more Darren Shahlavi, considering how great he was in Bloodmoon. They would've elevated the level of the fight scenes. The plot was beyond ridiculous, but that may have been to its benefit. Why wouldn't a trained police officer initiate a shootout with crooks on a crowded street? Though if Mehri's character was supposed to be from India, that would make more sense. The cops are probably trained to "accidentally" shoot the untouchables. Then the premise of sending a kidnapped woman to her white slaver in a trunk via a delivery service just seems like a perfect idea. I mean, I'm not in the business of kidnapping, but I have to figure as few people involved the better, right?

Olivier Gruner has about 12 movies between when this came out and now, and only about half of them are available to Americans right now. One of them, Blizhiny Boy: The Ultimate Fighter, has Busey, Bolo Yeung, Eric Roberts, David Carradine, and Cary Tagawa. How do we not get a film like that? Who is in charge of releasing films in the US? According to someone posting on imdb, the production ran out of money and couldn't afford to pay the extras, and that's that. Awesome. As far as GOD goes, Gruner doesn't fight much at all, which is a waste of him. Even his final fight with Mehri was kind of lackluster. He should've been paired up with Darren Shahlavi-- that would've been a sweet fight scene. Perhaps this wasn't the best film to cover for Gruner's induction week. My bad.

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I haven't done much with Jalal Mehri, which I know is an oversight on my part. Unfortunately, a lot of what he's done isn't on DVD. He's more of a director and producer than actor, with a lot of his credits coming in small roles, so a film like this where he's the hero is a rarity. I really want to get into his collaborations with Billy Blanks, someone else I should be including on here more, huh?

Anyone who's seen Bloodmoon knows how good Darren Shahlavi is, and for the one scene he had here with Mehri he was good too. Why then does he have all these bit parts, like he did in GOD, instead of more starring roles, like Bloodmoon. I have a film he did with Mark Dacascos in it called Alien Agent in my queue. Might be a good next place to go to see if there's more Shahlavi out there.

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While on the run from Gruner's men, Mehri goes to a B&B owned by an old friend, and that old friend is the awesomest guy ever. I've never seen anything like it. This fat, obnoxious bad guy shoots him in the stomach, obviously because he couldn't handle the guy's amazing awesomeness. I just wish there were more guys like this in movies. I mean, look at that picture above. Is that not awesome personified. By the way, I don't know how many of my readers saw the Patriots/Dolphins game last Sunday, but Dan Dierdorf called every player [insert character trait here] personified. "He is [toughness] personified." "When you see [resilience] in the dictionary, his picture's there." "The quintessential [football] player." I know you got three hours (an hour and a half minus commercials) to fill, but there's a point when the hyperbole becomes stale. Sorry Dan, but you're bad announcer personified... Oh Snap!

Check this one out, it's pretty funny. The action could've been better, especially with the talent involved, but it was good enough. Throw in a ludicrous plot concept, and you're well on your way to a laugh fest. Oh yeah, and there's also the awesomest man of all time.

For more info: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0225828/

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