American Ninja

1985

Action / Adventure / Romance

32
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 47%
IMDb Rating 5.4 10 11893

Synopsis


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April 30, 2015 at 11:40 PM

Cast

Michael Dudikoff as Pvt. Joe T. Armstrong
Judie Aronson as Patricia Hickock
Steve James as Cpl. Curtis Jackson
720p.BLU
757.36 MB
1280*720
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 35 min
P/S 2 / 25

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Spoffdarko 10 / 10

Firmly in the "so bad it's good" category

The title of my review aside, I adore this film.

When American Ninja was released on VHS back in 1986 Ninja fever was rampant. Even in the sleepy little village where I lived in England, every single boy of my age dreamed of being a ninja. The school playground was rampant with us wannabe assassins in duffel coats!

In the aforementioned little village we only had one video shop, I spent weeks and weeks in a state of despair on Saturday afternoons, as we would go there only to see the dreaded "Film on loan" tab attached to the box.

Eventually we finally turned up one afternoon and it was there...With no "Film on loan" tab on it! my life was finally complete and we took it home. My parents were never really into the whole "film ratings exist for a reason" thing. Incidentally, neither were the parents of pretty much all my friends, ahhh...The 80's, these young un's today don't know what they missed.

Saturday evening finally came and American Ninja was inserted into the top-loader...As I sat eating my Vesta curry, My life literally changed in the following 90 minutes, I learned more than any teacher could ever show me at school, Joe was literally a god! This guy could do anything...Beat anyone! Most of my friends had already seen it and we were all finally on the same Ninja wavelength! We practiced Joe's moves, disappeared in a "cloud of smoke" (England gets a lot of fog in Autumn/ Winter) behind the school canteen, jumped over the tyres in the playground as part of our "ninja training school".

Watching it back a couple of weeks ago (now I am 38) It is total crap, but total crap of the highest order. I thought ninja's were actually, you know, supposed to be elite assassins. Here they seem to get away with being pretty mediocre to be fair, they miss the easiest targets, and are usually knocked out by a punch or kick that does not seem to really connect (or even come close in some cases). Joe comes across like he has something stuck up his backside most of the film (maybe constipation?)and the whole thing is just laughable.

But laughable in the best possible way.

Thank you Golan Globus and Cannon films, thank you Michael Dudikoff and Steve James, thank you the guy who did the music.

I am indebted to you all for this slice of my childhood that I can also enjoy now I am a grown-up, albeit in a different but still entirely satisfying way!

Reviewed by a_chinn 5 / 10

Ridiculous, but ridiculously enjoyable Ninja/Rambo hybrid

Cannon Group Golan-Globus Productions were having great success with their previous ninja films, "Enter the Ninja," "Revenge of the Ninja," and "Ninja III: The Domination," so why not start a new franchise? Michael Dudikoff plays the titular American Ninja, a G.I. on a U.S. Army base in the Philippines. He keeps his ninja skills a secret, even when fellow soldier Steve James challenges him to a fight (don't worry, the two become fast friends after Dudikoff repeatedly flips James and chokes him out), but when Dudikoff uncovers arms dealers colluding with military officials, he is one ninja who's had all he can stands and can't stands n'more. To be clear, this is a terrible film, but if you enjoy campy 1980s ninja films, which I most certainly do, you will enjoy this ridiculous ninja/Rambo hybrid. FUN FACT: Director Sam Firstenberg has said this is one of his two favorite films he's directed, the other being "Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo." Personally speaking, I think "Ninja III: The Domination" is his career high point.

Reviewed by Mr-Fusion 6 / 10

It's what lazy Sunday afternoons were made for

This being a Cannon production, I think my problem is I was expecting something like "Revenge of the Ninja". And that's just not being fair. What it does have is Steve James, ably stealing all of his scenes and, well the whole movie to be honest.

There's entertainment here, you just have to work for it. The movie doesn't really get going until the first good fight scene 45 minutes in. And the real ninja fun is kicked to the tail end. It's probably just me, I don't think I was prepared for the Tao of Dudikoff; the scowl, the saunter, it's a heady stew of low-rent charisma.

6/10

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