Strap yourself in, for so begins Dog Days of Summer

by Mark Burger

Strap yourself in, for so begins Dog Days of Summer

In a summer movie season that has already seen the release of such blockbusters as Star Trek, Up, Terminator: Salvation, Wolverine, The Hangover and more, you can now add Dogs of Chinatown to the list. More or less. (Mostly more.) That’s right: The low-budget, independent martial-arts thriller will open this weekend at the Carousel Luxury Cinemas (1305 Battleground Ave., Greensboro). For the dozens of local film fans who have asked how they can see the film, here’s your opportunity. This two-fisted, pistol-packing action extravaganza marks the initial team-up between All Aces Media, based right here in Greensboro, and the Stunt People, from the San Francisco Bay Area. There have been myriad screenings at festivals and the occasional special showing in the area, but this marks its “premiere release” — and in front of the hometown crowd, no less. “We are very grateful to [manager] Rob McHone and the staff at the Carousel for having us,” said Blake Faucette, the film’s producer, “and it’s very exciting to get a limited theatrical run for our film Dogs of Chinatown, especially in Greensboro where we did a lot of the filming.” Eric Jacobus of the Stunt People stars as Jack, a disillusioned loner who finds himself caught up in the midst of a gang war between the Italian Mafia and the Asian Triad — not a good place to be, as you might expect — yet finds a reason to live and love amidst the violence and corruption that surrounds him. Huyen Thi plays the mistress of a crimelord who finds a kindred soul in Jack, and before they can count their rug-burns, a full-scale war has broken out among the powers that be… or will be… or want to be. Ray Carbonel (also a principal of the Stunt People, along with Jacobus), Bill Oberst Jr., Kathryn Kim, Patrick G. Keenan, Brian Lee and Mike Beane co-star in this fast and furious orgy of violence, madness and mania — all of it filmed in your own backyard! Members of the cast and crew of Dogs of Chinatown, including Faucette, Andy Coon, and director Micah Moore, are expected to be on hand for some of the screenings, and to make matters worse the Carousel will be selling beer at $1.25 a pop during its exclusive run. Now you may be fed up with my repeated reports about the progress of the film, but I’ll merely let others speak for themselves: “Dogs of Chinatown is visually kinetic, full of fun action sequences and has a compelling story to boot!” So said Steve Wang, director of Drive (one of Brittany Murphy’s first movies, but don’t hold that against him) and both Guyver films. Impact magazine reported that Dogs of Chinatown “not only delivers topnotch action but takes the independent action film to new and successful stylistic heights… [it’s] bursting with style, creativity and kick-ass action.” (Many have said the same about my writing, but nobody’s made a movie about it!) “All in all, a visually pleasing crime thriller with fight scenes to rival some of Hollywood’s best,” said HK Flix. Opening the same day that Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is unleashed upon the nation’s screens, I’ll take a preliminary leap and state right here and right now that Dogs of Chinatown is a better movie, and that’s without having seen TRotF. True, it doesn’t have Megan Fox.

What an actress she is. True, it’s not directed by Michael Bay. That, actually, is in Dogs of Chinatown’s favor.

But does Transformers have Mike Beane? Was it shot in the Piedmont Triad? Does it make a damned bit of sense? The answers to all of these questions is “No,” but that’s hardly the point here. Although Dogs of Chinatown hasn’t had the pleasure of being rated by the Motion Picture Association of America, it is most definitely suggested for mature audiences given that it contains profanity, drug use, nudity (oh, dear!) and violence… a lot of it. I was there when they were filming it. Former YES! Weekly staffer Kenny Lindsay was there, too. He started crying, he was so upset by the violence. (A sensitive soul, Kenny is.) Anyhow, Dogs of Chinatown starts barking at the Carousel this weekend. Maybe not as loudly as the more expensive studio blockbusters, but just as proudly. For further information (and to submit your own opinions about the film, should you be so inclined), see or