Posts Tagged ‘Bloodsport’

 

 

Movie starts with an illegal Kickboxing Tournament, a classic trope from the 90s. So far- so good. Now, what you would reasonably expect is that the star of this movie is this young, buff Karate student played by Ian Jacklin. Makes sense. Yeah, his acting is maybe not perfect but at least he looks the part of an action hero.

 

But things are never that simple are they? Our young hero gets the living daylight beaten out of him and he ends up freakin’ brain dead and now we’re left following his teacher trying to avenge him. Sensei George (skinny, older man from Macedonia) wakes up in the middle of the night drenched in sweat. His nude, blonde (and out of his league) girlfriend Sara tries to comfort him. He relents and has sex with her but still suspects somethings wrong with his missing student.

First thing in the morning he goes to see Tony’s mother who suspects things considering she found an envelope of 10 000 dollars and the mysterious card. Scarily at the same time her boy was harvested for organs (probably to be sold on the black market). Man, these people are even more evil than the usual tournament organizers (like Dana White or Shang Tsung).

George calls his girlfriend who turns out to be a Police detective (didn’t see that one coming). Unfortunately she wasn’t helpful in tracing the mysterious number from the card So, next he tries to find the company with a Spade logo (like the envelope). He ends up in a seedy warehouse and you guessed it- get jumped by some bad guys! They try to “teach him some American maners” but he answers with some well placed kicks. Mustached villain tries to run away but George hunts him down and in the end he talks. Man behind the disappearance is called Verdugo (Jorge Rivera). That name seems to ring a bell with George.

He visits his master- fantastically long- haired George Lynch who explains that Verdugo can’t possibly be alive because he was killed running drugs in the Golden Triangle. Turns out he actually survived and just got a cool- looking eye patch.

An being a true villain that he is he sends some goons to the George’s dojo, he doesn’t want anyone messing with his operation. Now, this is the fun part, his main henchmen is none other than Frank W. Dux (controversial Ninja/ Spy/ Creator of Bloodsport).

His blue belt tries to get involved and kid gets shit kicked out of him! I’m starting to think that George isn’t such a great Sensei after all, I mean his students constantly act like dumb asses- he must be partly responsible.

“Nothing important- just your life”

Unfortunately Dux just threatens him with a gun and we don’t get to see the fight between  the two. Too bad ’cause Dux was usually behind the cameras (Bloodsport, , Lionheart, Only The Strong) as a choreographer– it would have been interesting to finally see him in action for a change.

Police lady gets some info from her fat “hacker” friend and it turns out that George was the one one testified against Verdugo. Lynch spouts some more ancient wisdom to George as he gets prepared to end things between him and Verdugo once and for all.

Turns out his other student Garry also got invited some time ago so he uses that connection to finally track him down. Before the revenge he start training like crazy, full 80s style! His girlfriend doesn’t seem entertained by that but he pays her no mind. She finally confronts him in late hours in his Dojo with words like “…what are you doing here, I never see you anymore” Remember kids Karate will wreck your personal life. Jorge solves things by sleeping with her right there on the dirty floor. I mean this dude’s got only two ways of solving any problem: fighting and fucking and I don’t know which is scarier.

We finally get down to business. Garry let’s himself be captured by Verdugo goons.  George follows them and then makes a sneak attack on Verdugo’s compound with a freaking crossbow! Man’s got style.

After saving his student from what seems like certain death George challenges Verdugo and he gets shamed by his ritch friends to take the fight. Of course it turns out Sara followed George who followed Garry (everyone is tailing everyone here) and she shows up with the police to break things up. She kinda forgives George for going behind her back and they team up to fight Verdugo (and his evil Doctor Kramer).

Verdugo yelling “you ruined my career, you ruined my life” and George’s answering “it was a shitty career” strike with a bit more truth than originally intended. But don’t worry they don’t get to meta- they get into a sword fight. Round 2: Begin!

 

My favorite thing is that no one takes George into custody despite of obviously murdering a man with a sword just minutes ago.

And all that with a journalists showing up before the arrests were even done with a TV Anchor spouting the names of every rich and powerful person watching the tournament. This lady’s got more info than any other character in the whole movie, I’m impressed! She could have solved everything by herself- and without any bloodshed.

Verdict: Now, having an illegal Karate tournament revenge is not a bad plot by itself, we all love a good (and brutal) revenge story but when the said teacher is a skinny man from Macedonia with his English (let’s not talk about his acting) leaving a lot to be desired for.

But if you look closely at the credits Jorgo Ognenovski actually wrote the story so that’s not really shocking. Maybe the safer bet was for him to just write/ produce and maybe play a foreign villain. In that case this movie might have had a bit wider release, something in line with an average 90’s Gary Daniels kickboxing movie.

For me the biggest treat of the movie was the legendary B-movie bad guy Richard Lynch here being all hilarious and awesome as a wise Martial Art Master. Having practically nothing to do with Martial Arts he more than makes up for it with his style (long hair and black kimono) and attitude.

Trivia: Of all things we expect to get in the movie like this, the biggest shock was a cameo from Frank Dux as a main henchmen of Rivero’s character. I’m only disappointed that he didn’t have any fight scenes. I mean you have the inspiration behind Bloodsport and you don’t have him Dim Mak anybody? That’s a shame!

Also, dojo scenes seem to be filmed in Dux’s Dojo, you can clearly see his framed photo. Either that or Jorgo really loves promoting his enemies.

On the side note- in a classic Ninja fashion Dux’s role isn’t advertised and his name does not appear in his official IMDB page.So, it’s like he was never there. Man, he truly is The Secret Man.

Trivia 2:

According to our research Jorgo Ognenoviski is in politics now and is actually an independent political candidate for the mayor of Bitola, Macedonia. Man, maybe he can give Arnold run for his money if he keeps it up!

 

We watched some crazy flicks here at WM but there is one that truly stands out head and shoulders above the rest. It’s a  Martial Arts flick,  but a Martial Arts flick from the most unique place… and that place is Ireland! Yes, they are Martial Artist in Ireland and (at least one) Martial Arts filmmaker, and his name is (in this movie as in his real life) James “Jimmy” Bennet. Now let’s get down to business!

After 10 long years of absence, seasoned and successful  Martial Artist  decides to return to his home town to reconnect with his roots and more importantly discover the truth about the passing of his father Bennet Sr. While narrating his thoughts to the audience Bennet grabs a photograph of his father all samurai looking from the wall (decorated with numerous photographs of Bennet himself and also mulleted Van Damme from Hard Target for some reason), throws in into a bag and starts his long road home.

After a sad song he is finally home just to find it abandoned. He finds a little Buddah statuete on the floor and gets flashback of his training with his father right away. Next he goes to get some groceries just to find local morons stealing and harassing big blond chick who works there. He demonstrates his Van Damme- like kicking ability and stops them. We get some more flashback scenes of his childhood and then the same blond chick manages to get in trouble AGAIN. This time it’s long haired ginger dude (and his friend) speaking with such heavy Irish accent that it’s almost completely impossible to decipher what is he threatening her with. Anyway Bennet shows up and after verbally kicking their ass with “Why don’t you boy scouts go and play in the woods” he asks them and then  demonstrates some more kicking arsenal.

Now we learn who the mysterious Mickey is (the man who sent ginger dude and his friend), he is the grandson of the Drug Baron … the same man who MURDERED HIS FATHER (que in some dramatic music). And while good ol’ Jimmy Bennet practices his deadly Martial Arts Blondie rides a bike to his place. She came all this way to thank him, the only way a girl can thank a man… by giving him a pie she backed for him. Then she rides away.This girl obviously has to much free time on her hand. Anyway some of the Baron’s goons show up (even uglier than the last too) and Jimmy visits the Drug Baron who then offers him a job.

Before deciding anything Bennet takes Blondie on a proper date- a Carnival. There we can see all four women living in this village and then it’s painfully clear why did the trailer say “a hot chick” for Blondie despite her somewhat robust, sturdy built. She truly is the hottest chick in her village, but only because the other 3 don’t really resemble human females.After an obviously fun night by Irish standards Bennet falls asleep and in his dream he remember the horrible truth, he was present as the old crime boss (man barely capable of walking) sliced his father with a Katana blade. He sets his mind at ease with some running and doing some Kempo Karate forms as the sun rises.

Then the plot thickens! A mysterious Celtic Monk (seen earlier stalking Bennet) posts a notification for The Tournament (it seems Ireland also has a long tradition of secret underground fighting). Drug Baron ensures everyone their man, who should be back from Hong Kong any minute now ,Seagul ( obviously an Irish answer to Steven Seagal), will be a sure winner. They see the Tournament as a way to demonstrate that they hold the whole village in the palm of their hands (even thou that doesn’t seem so impressive when you think about it). Monk then appears in front of the Bennet’s house and invites him to the Tournament. Blondie seems trilled about it, it seems she’s also a martial arts aficionado. Anyway Bennet starts getting into (more) shape with some stick fighting and hitting a heavy bag but Monk appears again out of nowhere and invites him to come tomorrow and “walk with him”. So they meet in the woods the next day and the mysterious Monk informs him that he will train him for the tournament, just like he trained his father. And then sends him home and explains that his training will begin tomorrow. Man, he is trolling Bennet big time! The training mostly consists of doing exercises while the old man plays bagpipes but we also get a scene of Monk with Kali sticks which is absolutely precious!

Trening

Now this is what I call training!

Bennet takes a break from the hard training by going  on a picnic with Blondie but just when they’re about to kiss for the first time (yes, it took him THAT long) they are interrupted by Drug Baron’s goons on motorcycles. A ridiculous chase and shootout ensue and Blondie ends up kidnapped.  It turns out that Mickey, the Baron’s grandson is to blame.  “You make me look bad… and that’s not good!” Mickey utters to Blondie and she promises that Bennet will come after her.

Now enraged and desperate Bennet prepares to break Drug Baron’s hold of the city and get his girl back. He is flooded by memories of times they shared together including some previous scenes like riding horses and stuff… and some scenes that ABSOLUTELY didn’t happen like a sex scene . They didn’t even kiss for Christ’s sake! A this point you have to ask yourself is Bennet completely delusional?

Fatal DeviationSeriously, her shoulders are broader than his!

Now the Tournament starts and we can see that people here really enjoy fighting, lots of older people (man and especially the women) and there in the ruins of an old castle to see people fight. Bennet does his best Van Damme impersonations while demolishing one opponent after another. In the end there’s only two man standing and that’s him and Seugul. Soon to be just one of course. Irish Seagal unfortunately proves that he is not the Martial Artist as an American version. He compensates that with his sheer size and strength and even menages to make problems for Bennet (in big part by using a large chunk of wood to hit him in the head) but in the most critical moment the Celtic Monk calls for the most powerful technique and soon the whole crown chants “FATAL DEVIATION, FATAL DEVIATION…” So Bennet digs deep and manages to perform it perfectly (with some help from the editing room ) thus destroying his opponent.

Now this is simply brilliant!

He doesn’t have time to celebrate ’cause he has to race to get his girl back. This leads straight into a fantastic (apparently non- scripted) carcrash and a post production CGI explosion that lasts about two seconds and doesn’t mask the fact that the car is not burning at all.

Fantastic carcrash that was absolutely NOT a part of the script! Afterwords we get a lame-ass CGI explosion that last half a second and doesn’t mask the fact that the car is not burning at all. Epic shootout scenes fallow and are stooped just so we can see a bare assed man running across the field for absolutely no reason! After a “tense” stand- off Bennet confronts Mickey and breaks his neck. Then we cut in to the quiet picnic and Bennet and Blondie are obviously trying to continue what they started earlier. But they are out of luck again. The incredibly old man, Drug Baron appears out of thin air with a shotgun and proclaims “You killed my son, now I’m going to kill you- just as killed your father”. Jimmy B seems ready for this and he answers “ You killed my father, now I’m going to kill you- just like I killed your son”. Of course he fallows that up by disarming the frail old man and shooting him into oblivion. Then he and Blondie embrace knowing that the nightmare is finally over.

For now this is the best Kung Fu film Ireland has ever produced. But we’re still waiting on the fabled Celtic Samurai flick (trailer unfortunately removed from youtube as of now) to see how it will stack up.

Bennet as a guest on Nationwide (during the shooting of Fatal Deviation)

Trivia: Jimmy Bennet actually DID make it in life, even thou it took  years for his “masterpiece” to see light of the day. He doesn’t work on the farm no more, he is a bona fide Hollywood stuntman working on such films as  Beverly Hills Chihuahua and Lone Ranger. Soon he will also perform in the Swelter with his long time idol and inspiration Van Damme. But I sincerely hope he doesn’t forget where he came from and soon decides to surprise as all with another Irish Martial Arts Action- fest.  Now, that would be a treat!

Tutorial: If you were impressed by Jimmy Bennet’s “secret technique” and want to learn to do it- no problem. Fatal Deviation is in fact regular part of the curriculum of Ed Parker’s American Kempo Karate and here you have his black belt Jeff Speakman (Mr. Perfect Weapon himself) demonstrating this combination.