Director: Partick Alan
Starring: William Aabka, Michael Bernardo, Maryam d’Abo, Martin Kove, Bolo Yeung, Edward Albert. USA. 1h 40m
Slightly lesser known but wildly loved, Shootfighters plays on a few fight to the death tournament tropes but there’s a lot of genuine talent, not much love interest based distraction and tongues of sweaty muscles and heart, just like it should be!
Starting out with a disgraced fighter being kicked out of a legal fighting ring, Mr Lee (Kove) then travels from the Far East to Tiuana and starts up a similar righting ring but the winner of each match is only crowned when one man is unconscious or dead. Mr C (Albert) is a sly fox sidekick to Mr Lee and his job is to entice down and out fighters with bills to pay into the tournament with the promise of winning big, he manages to rope Ruben (Zabka) into the next tournament and his best friend Nick (Bernardo) tags along to keep an eye on his friend during this dangerous fight game. Somewhere back home there’s a couple of love interests but they really don’t add anything to the guy action packed adventure.
Continue reading Shootfighter Fight to the Death (1993)
Director: Sam Firstenberg
Starring:Mark Dacascos, David Bradley, Valerie TRapp, Rex Ryon, John Fujioka. USA. 1h 34m
This movie arrived during the height of the American cinematic takeover of the eastern martial arts. For many years Hong Kong cinema had released a number of powerful Kung Fu movies, winning over the hearts of millions if not billions of die-hard fans, with such prestigious names as the Shaw Brothers, Wu-Tang, and the Iconic labels such as Golden Harvest, a non-stop line of some of the best and most questionable martial arts movies have been released reaching cult classic limits.
Somehow during the late 80s early 90s the American market started the whole new basket of shenanigans, attempting to suggest that some of the the top of the range martial artists were in fact American born, initially this kicked off with a number of American ninja movies, and this delightful side step into the world of the Samurai features a number of faces that were normally seen as ninjas.
Continue reading American Samurai (1992)
I found this epic in CEX for 50p but I do like these bargains as they do yield some amazing B movies, movies that are so bad they are good. and this one is actually ok.
Starting out strangely with a few guys getting violently abducted, one is even clothed lined and stolen as he tries to get help for his pregnant wife, despite her square cushioned shaped baby, he and a few others are chucked into a gold mine and expected to work (without training), the story unfolds quickly after this and it goes something like this.. some dude needs to pay up some cash but his only source of cash is his gold mine (woe be unto him), he’s worked out that if he steals some people to work in his mine he’ll be able to smelt enough gold in time but his prisoners keep trying to escape.. damned peasants. The overseers are total bastards and are constantly rounding people up and beating them. There is one respite as one of the team leaders and his daugher (with long pigtails and a wispy fringe.. no cliches here) do their best to make life a little easier, and secretly teaches a few of them kung fu as they are determined to escape. Continue reading Chong po gong fu cheng – Dragon Fighter (1981)