Private Joe Armstrong (Michael Dudikoff) makes his dramatic debut to Stinker Madness with enough cool guy stares to melt a polar bear when he and Steve James team-up to punch and kick guys....and shoot them...and blow them up....sometimes run them over....and other ways you can kill guys.
Joining us for this episode is Joe Fulgham from the always funny and sometimes grody podcast, Caustic Soda. If you've never heard or had the chance to listen to these guys you are blowing it. As in "not ever having seen No Holds Barred blowing it". We listen to each and every episode, its that good.
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American Ninja is one of those golden bad movies. It's non-stop fun from beginning to end with no shortage of head slapping stupidity. Cannon Group again wows us with the complete lack of knowledge on their favorite subject, the ninja. For silent assassins, these ninjas sure blow a lot of stuff up.
Dudikoff is at his finest (worst) here as he is forced to do his best James Dean while also being a ninja and Army guy. He appears to be the worst military recruit of all time and would normally be relegated to latrine duty only but he can't do even that since he's too busy looking "so cool". On the other side of the action is Steve James and he just can't keep his shirt on.
The film wastes no time in telling the audience and potentially the actors that this does not take place within reality when Chuck claims that he invented hackysack and then violates the only rule in hackysack which is "don't use your hands" all while Dudikoff leans against and truck looking smoldery. Shortly after this, ninjas attack a military convoy that seems to happen a lot...the most modern military in the world can't stop attacking locals from hijacking their supplies...for the third time in as many weeks. The main bad guy's name is Victor Ortega....the Frenchman? What country is this guy from?
There's an entire sense of the production being a series of "You know, that'll do. Let's just use that" moments. Badassing takes priority over story. Looking tough and being shirtless is more important than reality. It's nonsense at 11. But it's a nice symphony of nonsense. At no point are you not thoroughly enjoying every moment of this gem. It moves at a great pace, the action is non-stop and the laughs keep coming.
American Ninja is a landmark in bad movies and shouldn't be missed by anyone.
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