Sunday, May 4, 2014

(Almost) Ask Me a Question: Van Damme Double Feature

You feel that?  Feels like it's almost time to rock n' roll!  Tonight is a night of firsts: my first time seeing Double Impact on the big screen, hosting a Q&A and of course, Dammaged Goods' first live event!  A big thanks to everyone who has helped make this idea into a reality starting with writer/director Sheldon Lettich for agreeing to appear both nights as he prepares to work on a new movie, to Michael Torgan and the staff at the New Beverly for hosting, to VanDammeFan for being the best community of JCVD supporters known to man, to The Action Elite and Manly Movie for supporting the event with ticket giveways and all of my awesome friends who have joined the FB page, tweeted it out and helped get the word out.

Tonight is going to be fun, the first 10 people in the door will receive a free popcorn, pre-movie trivia will see fans walking away with custom JCVD swag and some items from Mr. Lettich's private collection then Sheldon will be on hand between films for Q&A and questions from the audience.

First up is Double Impact, Van Damme's first big budget foray into martial arts action filmmaking from 1991.  Originally a take on Alexandre Dumas' novella The Corsican Brothers, which sees conjoined twins separated at birth who can feel each others pain, Double Impact would see Van Damme as both a city slick, hot shot federal agent and his long lost twin, a European country bumpkin armed with a shotgun and fur vest.  Things change and the released film co-written and directed by Sheldon Lettich sees VD as Hollywood karate and aerobics instructor Chad and Hong Kong street tough smuggler Alex as reunited twins fighting an evil mobster who killed their parents to take control of a lucrative construction project.  Early twinning effects, black silk underwear, spinning karate kicking, Asian mullets, exploding Cognac and early 90's non-PC name calling antics ensues.

Post chatting with Sheldon it's Bloodsport, Jean-Claude's star making role from 1988.  The now debunked story of martial artist Frank Dux, Bloodsport follows a karate kicking Army Captain who travels to Hong Kong to compete in the Kumite, a secret, underground tournament to find the world's finest warrior.  Bromance, coin tricking, underwear pulling up, gold tooth finding, brick breaking, mustard suit wearing, Forest Whitaker, Bolo Yeung pec popping, monkey VS sumo VS karate VS boxing hijinks set to awesome 80's synth pop soundtrack classicness follows.

It's going to be a good night.  See you there!

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