Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Revenge of the Ninja

Plot Synopsis: After his family is killed in Japan by ninjas, Cho and his son Kane come to America to start a new life. He opens a doll shop but is unwittingly importing heroin in the dolls. When he finds out that his friend has betrayed him, Cho must prepare for the ultimate battle he has ever been involved in 

 Ok, ok, so this is far from a new film.  It was made in 1983, back when I was a young tender age of nine.  I always watched Kung Fu theater when I was little and stumbled upon this classic film around 2 in the morning on Cinemax one night.  I fell in love with it.  It was my favorite film until Robo Cop came along.  Funny thing though I've seen Robo Cop maybe 3 times in my life, and I own the Criterion DVD, but I've seen this hundreds.  I watched it this afternoon.  I wanted to be a Ninja, I bought a ninja costume and some throwing stars.  My parents didn't give a shit what I did so I soon had a sword, chain, and nunchiks, and a sweet ass belt buckle that was really a throwing star.  Cool toys for a nine year old.  My son wont be so "lucky"
  Ninjas are awesome, they run up walls, disappear in smoke, wear neat costumes, and know a bad ass form of martial arts.  Sho Kosugi was the man to me, he could kick Bruce Lee, and Chuck Norris's ass at the same time then disappear in a cloud of smoke.  He was the ninja master.  And during the 80's he was in more ninja movies they you could count.  Ninjas were everywhere.  And it was awesome!
  In Revenge of the Ninja Sho stars as Cho, wonder why they just didn't call him Sho, he could have been the Japanese answer to Joey Lawrence.  You know because he's always a character named Joey.  Anyway, Cho's family,with the exception of his mother, and newborn son are slaughtered by ninjas.  See Cho is in a different ninja gang and they kill each other.  I think, it's really never explained, but it gives him a chance to go to America with his friend Braden to open an art gallery that will feature Japanese dolls.  Problem is Braden works for the mob, and he going to smuggle heroine in the dolls.  That's a really bad way to smuggle drugs, wont customs check all packages from Hong Kong?  Also, if Cho and Braden are lifelong friends wouldn't Cho know hes a drug dealer?  And shouldn't Braden just open his own Gallery, rather then get some guy all set up from overseas?  Sounds like he's spending a lot of capitol here.   And come to think of it maybe it was Braden who had the other ninjas kill Cho's family.  That way it would be easy to get him to want to come to America.  But that is too much plot.  This is a Ninja movie damn it!
  Anyway the mob double crosses Braden, but wait, Braden is really an American Ninja.  Not too be confused with the also fantastic ninja film American Ninja, but he's a real American Ninja.  He wears a demon mask under his ninja hood and kills the mobsters who double crossed him.  He even send's a gang of thugs, complete with the most stereotypical Indian in film history complete with tomahawk's, pigtails, and yellow fringe boots to steal the dolls but Cho beats the crap out of them. Along the way he also kills Cho's mom, and kidnaps his kid.  So Cho has to put on the ninja outfit and go fight Braden on a rooftop in the middle of town.  I always wondered why they both put on there mask's before they fought.  They both new who each other was.  Oh well.  The more I think about this who taught Braden the way of the ninja?  They reference the fact it is an ancient secret!  You think Cho would have know his friend is a ninja too.  Don't ninjas hang out?  In a part that makes no real sense.  Braden kidnaps Cho's hot American girlfriend and son.  He strips her naked and keeps her tied up by a hot tub!  Yes a hot tub, naked.  Not that I am complaining, I just dont see why he didnt lock her in a closet.
  This film has it all, violence, blood, nudity, and ninjas.  Man I love ninjas.  This was hardcore violent action, not like that pansy Bruce Lee  who just kicks people.  No, these ninjas break necks, stab people, poke out eyes, throw spikes, they mean business, ninja business.  Even Cho's kid beats the crap out of kiddie street gang who try to take his bike.  This is not a family to mess with.  This film was basically remade a few years later as Pray For Death, which I will review soon.  I cant recommend this enough.  It holds up year after year.  I showed it too my wife once, she watched it without falling asleep, so I guess that counts as a female recommendation.  Check it out now!

Overall 5 out of 5 stars PERFECT REVIEW!!!


  1. I have to ask you, have you seen '9 Deaths of the Ninja'?

    Honestly, it's way sloppier than Revenge, but in a sad way, it's even better... It's been years since I have seen either.

    I only came across Sho in college, and at that time I was HEAVY into Sonny Chiba, and let's face it, next to Chiba, everyone looks like a pansy.

  2. I like 9 Deaths but that's mainly cause it's so bad my personal fab martial arts film is. Kill and Kill Again. Chiba is one bad ass dude. I remember seeing streetfighter when I was a kid and being blown away. Sorry took so long to post a comment. I had a he'll of a time figuring out Joe. Hope you got my email