Thursday, 5 October 2017

Shootfighter II (1996)


Wait. This got a sequel?

Shootfighter II

Synopsis

Shingo & the boys (Nick & Ruben) are blackmailed into helping Rawlins infiltrate an underground shootfighting ring in an attempt

Review

So after realizing that it needs to be a Bolo Yeung film, Shootfighter II gets greenlit. So as the synopsis vaguely suggests, Shingo, Nick, and Ruben, are blackmailed by cop, Rawlins (Chase Randolph) - with the threat of jail for making the first Shootfighter (I mean, engaging in illegal shootfights) - to find and fight in Miami's newest - and illegal - shootfight. (How many times can I get shootfight into one paragraph!). The new shootfight is run by eeevillll Lance. Yes. Lance. This is Lance.


Lance. Really.

And then, much like the first movie, it falls into Kickboxer, Bloodsport territory, and there is much fighting, blackmailing, etc. etc.

Again, the fight scenes are solid. There is less gore in this one, but it's well enough choreographed to sate a martial arts expectant. But again the problems come from elsewhere in the film.

Making Bolo Yeung the star is a great idea. While Michael Bernardo (as Nick again) is an accomplished fighter in the real world, only Yeung has the chops to carry the movie. The problem comes with levering a Shingo centric plot in. You see, Lance is Shingo's brother. Obviously. Estranged from some point in the past for stealing money from their Father, they now battle it out for honor. Or something.

So, Lance is Shingo's brother. Lance Stuart. Now it's never mentioned but can we assume that these two are not blood brothers, but adoption is in there somewhere (Lest we have Shingo Stuart)? Ah, the Shootfighter cutting floor. A plethora of plot points discarded.

Brothers, Bolo Yeung and Joe Son. 

So apart from the, um, ethnicity issues of casting these two as brothers, Joe Son was also in Shootfighter. As Chang. Another fun fact is that he was an MMA fighter who fought four times. Lost all of them. Another fun fact is that he's serving life at the moment in CA for a string of really nasty stuff.

So back to the film. Shootfighter II largely ignores large chunks of the first film. The plot of the first saw Ruben fighting to raise money to save the Dojo that he owned, and hiding that from love of his life Cheryl, Nick's sister. She's not mentioned in this movie at all.  Nick and Ruben run the Dojo now. I like culling major plot threads from one movie to force in another. This allows Ruben to get down and dirty with plot point Sheri (Kristy Eisenberg), his love interest and general muguffin.

So, yeah. That happened. It has a better plot than the first. Downs the gore big time. Again. Generic. Very generic.

Oh, and Carol? Yep, Carol's back.

Didn't make Head of Department this time, did you Carol?





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