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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Zoë Kravitz-Interview (C) 2011 Danny Shamon





Apove Photo: Zoë Kravitz as Angel Salvadore in X-Men First Class (Fox Pictures)


I am a huge X-Men fan and a fan of movie and music industry people who like to carve their own path, not bending to the will of the masses. For my 100th post on Dan's Movie Report, I present an trailblazer, a young woman grounded in her morals, and steadfast in her principals. Welcome X-Men First Class star and Elevator Flight vocalist, the multi-talented Zoë Kravitz . Her parents and upbringing are so widely publicized that I decided to focus this interview on X-Men, life, and her music career.


How was the audition process for the X-Men First class? Time involved,
scene read etc..

It was very last minute, definitely. It honestly only took around half an hour. The script wasn't finished by then, so I just read through different lines and then I got called back and was in total shock because it was a huge, "proper" movie. Then I had to wear a slightly more revealing outfit, obviously, and I got the role. :) - Still very much in awe!

Were you a fan of the comics before the production?

Not really, I suppose I didn't know much about it at all, but I have a lot of friends who were really into the comics and I learned most of what I know about X- Men from them.

How did you research your character?

I read through a few comics during filming and spoke to some of my actor friends who had been in other x men films about the experience. i also got a lot from searching through fan sites and reading about their expectations for first class and what they made of the characters. it was a real learning curve for me. 

How about the sultry aspect, the dancing scene, were you nervous,
because it looked so natural on screen?

We did so many takes because I kept falling over! I was so nervous, but I like to think I got it eventually haha. I suppose what looks like nerves to me may look natural to others, but I was very very nervous, and I kept sucking in because I felt I looked so large on screen. I even hired a personal trainer to get my abs up to scratch!! 

What was the make-up process like? how many hours? The wings were
added later as computer graphics?

The wings were actually temporary tattoos, but when they came out, they were CGI, yeah. It took about 6 hours, and when they missed a spot or a bit came off, they had to go over it with eye liner and I wasn't allowed to move until it was dry, so it was pretty boring, but my co-stars kept me amused. especially Lucas, he's so funny and sweet! 

Were there any stunts you had to do yourself that were hard?

The hardest thing I had to do was probably being in the harness for so long, in that scene over the beach. I got really achy and it really does hurt after a while. controlling the flips and flying without looking like a bird short of a wing was the most difficult thing, I think. 

Share a story from the set?

Oh goodness! I suppose you'd probably enjoy hearing about all of the pranks. The most horrid prank ever was pulled by Lucas on Jennifer and I, and I'll regret telling you this, but one morning, I walked on set and was going to have my makeup done and I'm about half way through getting my wings put on and Jen (Lawrence) just had her blue finished and Rose (Byrne) and Nick (Hoult) walk in and they're talking for a while, then Michael (Fassbender) and Lucas (Till) walk in and then James (McAvoy) walks in from the other side of the room with my dad, and Jen is like "why's everybody here?" and then Lucas is counting down, and me and Jen can just feel that shit's going down, and Lucas gets to zero and everyone pulls out water pistols, even the makeup artists, and we get soaked and our makeup got ruined and we had to sit there for another 5 hours, at least! That is partly why Lucas got all of his soda shaken up, but that's another story. ;) 

I read that they made the cast sign a three picture deal, any
rumblings of a new X-Men film in the works?

If I told you, I'd have to kill you with my acid vomit, sorry. :)
(Editorial note to self, this would probably be painful, might be fun though.)


Above Pic: Zoë Kravitz in Elevator Flight (Photo Credit on pic)

Turning to the musical side: Creativity runs in your family, do you like blazing your own trail musically or do you sometimes ask your dad for advice even though the
music style is different?

I don't think you can ever really ask another artist for advice. The best advice any musician could ever give you would already be in their work. and my dad's is in his work. It's mainly to just go with your own flow and follow your own vibes and what your heart tells you to do. If your heart's feeling a sax riff, go for it.

Do you like singing or acting more, or like to have a variety of both?

I could never choose! I'm definitely a cake-having and eating kind of person. especially when it comes to the two things I love most! 
What bothers you about the music industry today?

That it's so fake. I think artists should at least try to write their own stuff and not churn it out. I'll listen to anything that has some emotional substance. for example, I love Rihanna, but sometimes, I get the feeling that she doesn't mean everything she sings, but her latest single, We Found Love, just blows my mind. 

How would you change it if you could?

I'd give every artist the ability to write music and transform their feelings into words. 

Do you like American Idol and the music talent shows? Does it let
musicians take short cuts?

It does, but it's not a good idea. at all. I don't like it. I think it's making people lazy. people don't make music because they love it, anymore. they're making music to get famous and get money. I respect music too much to take short cuts. I find my inspiration from little known artists such as Frankmusik, a British electropop musician or SALEM, a Michigan based band. It's musicians that work to achieve their ethos that I can identify with, not people who are given an image to work with. find your own. Like Kanye. I. Love. Kanye.

Are you writing or recording any new releases currently with Elevator Flight?

I most certainly am, we're working on Post Empire!

Some final questions: What pisses Zoe off?

A lot. But generally, people who don't appreciate art. Like I loved the A Series of Unfortunate events books, but the movie that came out did it no justice at all! I was really upset the director didn't take the books seriously because they are a work of art. Then recently, I went to go see We Need to Talk about Kevin which has been a favorite book of mine for years, so I was really glad that Ezra Miller got the part of Kevin because I knew that he would play it better than anyone else, ever, and I was really pleased with the outcome, I seriously recommend that everyone in the UK goes to see it. I'm not sure if it's out in the US, but just watch it. It is a must see for the well cultured! 

What makes Zoe the happiest?

Not much, really. Art, friends, family, food. 

In 10 years, a huge movie star, rock star, or still blazing your own trail?

Doing my own thing, definitely. Nothing I'd rather be doing. 

Thanks for your support of Dan's Movie Report!

You're welcome!!!!

Follow Elevator Flight on facebook @ https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Elevator-Fight/85182010347

They have some songs for their forthcoming album Post Empire @ http://elevatorfight.bandcamp.com/

Check out Elevator Flight live on November 1st (Full info on their facebook page @

The Studio at Webster Hall
125 East 11th Street
New York, New York

Zoë Kravitz interview will post tomorrow!

Interview has posted! -- http://dansmoviereport.blogspot.com/2011/10/zoe-kravitz-interview-c-2011-danny.html

Actress and singer Zoë Kravitz has completed the interview for Dan's Movie Report! Her interview will mark the 100th post on Dan's Movie Report! Zoë will speak about X-Men First Class, music, and various other topics.

The Blood Bond-Movie Review



I watched The Blood Bond awhile back and meant to review it. Michael Biehn as John Tremayne and the lovely Phoenix Chou as Deva are excellent in the film that follows the plight of a leader of a peaceful country who after his assassination attempt needs a special blood type and the only matching donors are killed leaving only a reluctant John Tremayne left to provide his blood.

The Blood Bond is full of action, copious amounts of fighting, and some clever dialogue like: "The brighter the sun, the darker the shadows." Phoenix is very easy to look at and fluid in her fighting skill onscreen. Here acting skills are not bad, although a bit one dimensional. She dispatches the thugs with ease, and her speed is impressive.



The rest of the acting with the exception of Simon Yam as commander Chow is pedestrian at best, and downright horrid at worst. The film as a whole is not too bad because the story moves along at a decent clip and never seems to bog down.

I rate this film a 6 out of 10. Look for Phoenix in other films, she has a lot of potential. For further information point your browsers to http://www.ram-ent.com.my/movieTheBloodBond.html

Friday, October 28, 2011

Wasteland director Kantz directs K Bain music video...

Check out this fresh new music video for the tune Back Door by K Bain from indie film director Kantz on Youtube @

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pWWQnYxiW_4&feature=youtu.be

Get Ready For Iron Monk!


Above pic from The JNC Productions website. http://jncproductions.co.uk/ That is the official website for Iron Monk.

Epic Martial arts madness, with calm serenity! Iron Monk - Starring Yanzi Shi (34th Generation Shaolin Master) NO WIRE, NO CGI, 100% KUNG FU. Yanzi is just as amazing as they come. He has hundreds of years of family history and supreme skill in his essence and he is ready to unleash it onto the world. The classic slogan for the film is "The deeper he meditates the harder he hits!" Who will stand up and argue?

There is a full trailer on youtube, meditate your browser over to: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKe5Ad2rSOI

Also if that is not amazing enough, it looks like there are at least two who will stand up to the challenge:


(PhotoCredit: Helen Jones)

Above: The large gentleman to the left of The Iron Monk is Silvio Simac. He is a talented martial artist and actor. To the right is Lovely and lethal Zara Phythian, she plays an assassin. The violence will be legendary. I will cower in fear hahaha!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Cast of The Hike to appear at London Comic Con MCM Expo This weekend!



Above are the cast members scheduled to appear click on picture to enlarge!

Zara Phythian and the cast of the new horror master piece from the UK The Hike will appear for a special Question and answer session. For full details slip your browsers over to the official site @ http://www.londonexpo.com/

Hoping that more conventions in the US will follow in 2012! The Hike needs to be seen by everyone in the US as well!

Zoë Kravitz interview upcoming!


An X-Men character who is beguiling! Zoe makes Angel Salvadore come alive!

As a huge fan of The X-Men First Class, I am honored to have contacted Zoë Kravitz and she has agreed to do an interview for Dan's Movie Report! Zoe is a dynamic actress and performer. She also has a band called Elevator Flight. The band website is http://www.myspace.com/elevatorfight

Later in November comes my interview with writer/director/producer and resident tibia cracker Kantz as he talks Wasteland, Project Purgatory Beijing and various other projects he has in the works. Kantz is a veteran director of more than 1/2 dozen feature indie films such as Love and a Bullet, Random Acts of Violence, Urgency, Project Purgatory and Anna's Eve. His current film Wasteland was relased on October 11 of this year. Kantz is also the CEO of Modus Operandi Pictures, and is working on Project Purgatory Beijing for 2012 with that company.


Kantz at the Wasteland DVD signing October 2011.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Hike- Movie Review



After months of anticipation I finally get to take a Hike, and it is a bloody, brutal, creep inducing, nasty one! Writers Ben Loyd-Holmes and Rupert Bryan have come up with a sordid tale of deceit in the woods where things are not ever what they seem.

After a crazy pre-title opening sequence, which we witness murders, but have no clue as to what happened, we then meet our lovely cast of ladies prior to them taking The Hike. The ladies are all cute, like in the Descent, but that is where the similarities end. This film blazes it's own trail, unique and maniacal.

Barbara Nedeljakova (Hostel 2) as Torri, Stephanie Siadatan as
Leanne, Lisa-Marie Long as Ellie, Jemma Bolt as Charlie, and Zara Phythian as Kate are the unsuspecting hikers. The girls chat a bit while in the car driving to the area to begin The Hike. Usually I hate small talk in movies, but I liked it in this film especially with a cast of five characters like this, made me actually care about their fate. All of the ladies do a pretty good job with their characters. The acting is light-hearted and enjoyable in the beginning and turns to terror as the film progresses.

Zara Phythian stands out playing Kate, a soldier returning from Afghanistan. She takes the lead of the group and plots the course for The Hike. Zara has a commanding screen presence, deep expressive eyes, a clear speaking voice, and has natural body movement in front of the camera. Kate's survival skills are put to the test early in the Hike when the group meets up with a seemingly nice bunch of guys lead by Ben loyd-Holmes as Ethan.


Kate (Zara Phythian) searches for her friends, Zara breathes life into the Kate character.

Ethan is also a particularly well planned character, complex and subversive. Ben Loyd-Holmes does a solid acting job. His character changes as the story progresses, keep watching till the end, you will learn to fear him. Ben has to go through a wide variety of emotions and pulls them all effortlessly. His antagonistic character build is forceful and brings new meaning to the words "watch out what you wish for", you might get it!


Ethan (Ben Loyd-Holmes) Crazy, twisted, and rather charming!

I could go on and on waxing poetic about how twisted this film is, there is a disturbing rape scene, there is I repeat is, nudity and not the type I expected, now that was rude! Nothing is what it seems with The Hike, but that is the beauty of it! This film keeps the viewer guessing as to what will happen next.

The Red camera was used in the woods, and throughout the production, and looks like 35mm film, especially at night. All of the scenery is lush and beautiful, save for the random killings and strung up animals hahahaha! This is one film that obviously took a lot of time to film, and set up shot selection. This is a high quality low budget production all the way around. Almost made me want to take a Hike, won't do it though unless I have Zara's character Kate to show me the Way!

The last half of the film is a foot-chase for survival with pounding suspenseful music and some epic false conclusive moments.

Stop reading this review and run, I say run, out and buy the Hike NOW! I rate this psychotic fight for life a 8 out of 10 axes on my survival scale!

The Hike is available on Amazon UK for under 10 US Dollars! and all over the UK! Look for US Release Shortly.

Learn more about actress Zara Phythian from her exclusive interview on Dan's Movie Report @ http://dansmoviereport.blogspot.com/2011/10/zara-phythian-exclusive-interview-c.html

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

11/11/11 (The Asylum) Movie Review




This is one of those films that sneaks up on you. Admittedly I had rather low expectations for this but was pleasantly surprised by the film. I found 11/11/11 to be a tight, crescendo building thriller only laden down with some rather wooden acting.

The story opens rather bloody (minor-spoiler) a family is massacred in the house at a party. A new family moves in and consists of a Professor father and a stay at home mom and a very creepy son. The neighbors seem all to friendly to help out, but obviously have sinister motives when those who don't go along with their plan are silenced.

One by one we meet the crazy town folk, an old neighbor who lost her cat, a guy on a bike who warns the family, a couple across the street who are just plain odd. The creepiness really begins when The child tells his mother she is pregnant and even she doesn't know! Soon she is forced to bed-rest and the nanny interview process begins.

I won't spoil how the nanny is chosen but "whoa Nelly" she is hot and she is evil. Aurelia Scheppers as Denise is truly the nanny from hell. In one scene she is with the boy and he is looking at a butterfly through a coke bottle, and she turns it and shows him how to burn the butterfly! She is by far the best character and actor in this film and breathes life into the plot, I am sure she will get a myriad of roles after this.


Denise (Aurelia Scheppers) Butterflies are not all she hurts!

The Parents of the boy Jon Briddell as Jack Vales, and Erin Coker as
Melissa Vales are rather wooden in their character formation, but I can see they are trying their best.

Hayden Byerly plays Nat Vales , the son,and the potential child of evil. I found his character to be well thought out. Even though he had few lines, he had to go through emotional changes, and made the story entertaining to watch.


Nat Vales (Hayden Byerly) Child of Evil

The story builds and you all would kill me if I spoiled the ending so go see it! I will tell you all to watch-out for the satanic undertones!

I rate 11/11/11 (The Asylum) a 6.5 out of 10 a must rent for Halloween season and a purchase if you like films like the original Omen.

Get it on Amazon @

New behind the scenes footage from The Hike

Fresh up this morning is a 5 minute blast of behind the scenes action from the British horror film The Hike. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r7HgEDGo7wg&feature=youtu.be

The Hike was written and produced by Rupert Bryan and Ben Loyd-Holmes, and Directed by Rupert Bryan.


Above Screen Cap: Rupert Bryan (L) Ben Loyd-Holmes (R) (HollywoodVisionFilms)


Above Screen Cap: The Hike Star Zara Phythian as Kate ready to take a swim in the lake (HollywoodVisionFilms)



Above Screen Cap: The Hike Cast (HollywoodVisionFilms)

For further information blast your browsers to http://thehikemovie.com/

Check out detailed exclusive interview with star Zara Phythian on Dan's Movie Report @ http://dansmoviereport.blogspot.com/2011/10/zara-phythian-exclusive-interview-c.html

Monday, October 24, 2011

Stuntactular this weekend...



If you live in the Southern California area check out the Stuntacular live Stunt Show this weekend October 29-31. The festivities take place in Sherman Oaks at The Westfield Fashion Square (Riverside and Woodman, behind Sports Authority) The proceeds benefit The Make-A-Wish Foundation. For further information point your browsers to http://stuntacular.com/index.html

This is a fantastic event to give back to the community spearheaded by the stunt-men and stunt-women.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

More october news...

A short video of The Hike Premiere has surfaced online on youtube @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6EP1DKwqRbQ&feature=youtu.be

Currently am working out the details of an interview with actress/singer Zoë Kravitz for Dan's Movie Report. She was last seen on the big screen in X-Men First Class as Angel Salvadore. Zoë is a dynamic performer and actress, should be interesting!


Angel joins the Brotherhood

3 Musketeers (The Asylum)-Movie review



The Asylum is really stepping their game up in the action dept! 3 Musketeers is a balls out, balls up action flick and how the heck can you go wrong with David Chokachi as the evil villain, spikey hair and all, and a tag-line "All for one and guns for all!" HAHA!

In this film the evil General wants to start a war with north Korea by killing the President and making it look like it was the Koreans, by timing it the day he was supposed to meet with the Korean leader.


David Chokachi as The evil General is a long way from the Baywatch beach!

Our film opens with an action sequence to die for, as in some of the villains died by the hands of our our crack three musketeer agents. There is even an odd fight scene as a sword is used by the female agent Aramis (Michele Boyd) and she is wearing a bra and panties, she used her guile to get to the compound, cause it sure was not her acting prowess. She does look pretty nice, her fighting skills are passable, but not good. I am sure she will get better. Martial artist Xin on the other hand brings the pain especially when he takes down one of the huge guys, with his machine gun belly punches.

There are several cool stunts in the film including a full fire burn. All of the stunt people on this film should be commended. Hate to get on my high horse cause I will fall off, but stunt people in all films deserve respect and an Oscar at the awards for their hard work. Check out stunt woman Mam Smith stepping in front of the camera with dialogue in 3 musketeers, playing evil agent Winters. She was a good villain, part maniacal and part cute! Now I carefully dismount my horse and resume the review.

Besides Xin's fighting, which was tight, fluid, and at times microcosm of maniacal energy. He even jumped a railing shot his gun and a barrel roll, epic! He has decent acting chops not so wooden. he is charismatic onscreen as well.


The team assembled

The performance of the film goes to Heather Hemmens (Agent
D'Artangan) she comes in the movie about 15 minutes in because she is transferred from her desk job. Heather is an excellent actress, has a crystal clear speaking voice, expression laden face, and obviously trained hard to get her fighting skills somewhat decent. Her and Xin would make a good team on a film together! she eventually has a sparring fight with Michele Boyd with a sword when they first meet and on of the other agents says the smart thing "never get in the way of a chick fight!"


Cat fight, note to self steer clear, cause someone could lose and eye or break a nail!

Suspend belief at the door with a helicopter vs radio drone jet firefight, but hell it is original, and very amusing. Overall this was a great film with satisfying ending and with quotes like when the team gets in the low budget helicopter "For a knockoff this one's got some sweet toys." (a dig on The Asylum") and a fight scene ends with one of the characters drawing their weapon and saying "gun beets axe" in paper beats rock style.

The story is well paced and moves along no down time. Listen for some witty dialogue, and a plethora of action as this film has repeat watch-ability. I rate it a 7 out of 10. This is a definite purchase!

All of you put one of your browsers to Amazon to buy it! Direct link!