B-Movies of our Youth: Bloodfist (1989)
Movie Name: Bloodfist
Director: Terence H. Winkless
Producers: Roger Corman, Sally Mattison, Cirio H. Santiago
Actors: Don "The Dragon" Wilson, Rob Kaman, Billy Blanks, Kris Aguilar, Michael Shaner, Riley Bowman
Release Date: Release dateSeptember 22, 1989
Budget: 1$ Million
Box Office: 6$ Million
I was cleaning out one of my closets and I came across this movie that I had completely forgotten about. This was a martial arts movie starring Don "The Dragon" Wilson.
Don "The Dragon" was a well established martial artist in the 80's and 90's. In fact he had a pretty impressive record. He had won 11 World Titles and had 72 wins in his kickboxing career.
He is one of the lesser known of the martial artists stars of the 1980's and 90's. People do not remember him much even though he starred in Bloodfist 1-8, Ring of Fire 1-3 and Out for Blood.
Let us see how this movie stacks up to the competition.
The story is pretty basic. In fact, it is similar to Kickboxer starring Jean-Claude Van Damme. The idea that someone dies and then you need to enter an illegal underground fight to avenge their death.
The movie begins with Jake Raye (played by Don "The Dragon") getting a call from the Philippines Police Department advising him that his half brother Michael is dead. He is asked to go to Manilla and get the body.
Once he reaches Manila, Jake decides to stay and find who the killer is. He comes across a man named Kwong who advises Jake of this gladiator type tournament named the Red Fist Tournament. Kwong says that if the killer would be anywhere, he would probably be there. He also tells him that Chin Woo is the killer.
So Jake gets training from Kwong and enters the tournament. As you would expect, Jake gets through the tournament. After the final tournament fight, Jake learns that his brothers true killer is Kwong. It is a hot fought battle but in the end Jake impales Kwong and justice was served.
Is this movie any good? The answer is that at the time, I remember thinking that it was not that bad. However, looking at this movie again, it is showing its age.
The plot as expected is very simple and usually the stories are pretty thin in these types of movies. Also, it is a story that has been done numerous times in both China and the United States.
The martial art in this movie has not aged well. It feels very choreographed and slow. Then again nowadays, we are spoiled with the likes of Donnie Yen, Jet Li and Sammo Hung. At the time this was ok but now people would criticize it for its predictability.
This is probably not Don's best movie in his repertoire. That could be explained cause it was his second ever. So he was still learning the craft of acting while showing his talent.
It also demonstrated someone else doing martial artists other than Chuck Norris, Steven Seagal and Jean-Claude Van Damme which were the martial arts heavyweights back then.
I do not think that there will be a remake of this movie anytime soon and this is a very forgettable movie. However, if you want to see some other martial artists from the era this is your bed.
Also starring in this movie is none other than Billy Blanks who is known for his Tae Bo workouts. As of the writing of this review, he is 63 years old. I did not realize how old he was.
Is this a classic? No it is not. But if you are a fan of B martial arts movies, this one should be on your list.
Did you watch this movie? Do you remember it? Let me know your thoughts at the coordinates below.