Thursday, November 4, 2010

Those wacky Ninja and their wackiness!

Ninja Champion (1980)
Starring: Nancy Chang, Bruce Baron, Jack Lam, Richard Harrison, and Pierre Tremblay
Director: Godfrey Ho
Rating: One of Ten Stars

A rape victim, Rose (Chang), infiltrates a diamond smuggling ring so she can more effectively stalk and kill the three men who raped her (as well as uncover who ordered them to do it). Meanwhile, the Good Ninja (Baron), who also happens to be an Interpol agent, is attacking and killing the followers of the Evil Ninja (Tremblay) because... um... well, just because. It might have something to do with the diamond smuggling, but, then again, it might not. Who can tell with these cazy ninjas?

"Ninja Champion" is one of the most inane, muddled martial arts movies I've ever seen. The plot with rape victim is fairly trite, but comprehensible in and of itself, even if the whole diamond smuggling bit is rather farfetched and rediculous. The ninja stuff, however, is so stupid that it doesn't make any sense even after the Evil Ninja (who is named Maurice, so it was obviously the cruelty of his parents that made him choose a life of crime and evil) explains his plot the the Good Ninja. It understandable the Good Ninja wants to kick his ass... I wanted to do the same to the writer/director who came up with this crap.

This is a One Tomato movie that I'm nonetheless awarding Two Tomatoes for, due to much unintended hiariity in the bad dubbing and the bizarre final battle between the Good Ninja and the Bad Ninja.

I can't really recommend this movie to anyone, because I think I felt the braincells dying as I was watching it. However, it might be good for a Bad Movie Night if you've got someone in your crowd that's good at quipping while a film unfolds.


venoms5 said...

These Godfrey Ho/Joseph Lai ninja composite movies have an inordinate amount of fans, Steve. All of them are patchwork jobs taking unfinished, or unreleased movies and shooting ten or so minutes of new footage with anglo "actors" decked out in the most ridiculous "ninja" suits imaginable.

Producer Tomas Tang of Filmark Productions did his own string of ninja composite jobs that are even more hilarious than the Ho/Lai outings. Richard Harrison did a bunch of them.

Steve Miller, Writer of Stuff said...

Agreed. I just got done watching one of the better "patchwork" ninja flicks I've seen, one that doesn't appear to be listed at, even though it's a Tomas Tang production--"Golden Ninja Invasion." Is there an AKA it's better known under? I think the "A" movie takes place in Burma, while the "B" movie ninja footage involves some blonde haired fellow being charged by his elderly ninja master to go put a stop to the Red Dragons and their sullying the Ninja Profession. The blonde guy is "Blue Ninja", and the hero of the "A" movie gets a iron hand capable of shooting electrical bolts early in the film.

Does it sound familiar to anyone? (I'll be doing a review in "Watching the Detectives" next week, most likely.)

venoms5 said...

I've seen it in the video store, but never rented it. I did used to own GOLDEN NINJA WARRIOR also from Transworld. I had a bunch of these I bought used mainly for the attractive, glossy and often times reflective box art. Some of the ones I used to own off the top of my head are....

and a few others whose titles I can't remember right now.

Steve Miller, Writer of Stuff said...

You should write a post or two for my "Nine Days of the Ninja"!

As a kid, I saw many of those films on your list there... every one but the first four, I think. However, they all run together in my head, as I discovered when I revisited some of them over the past couple of years.

venoms5 said...

Out of those, Steve, I'd say NINJA TERMINATOR and NINJA: AMERICAN WARRIOR are the "best". Some of the others like COBRA VS. NINJA (my first exposure to these craptacular mix and match movies) have moments of unbridled "brilliance".

venoms5 said...

I suppose I could, although I don't have anymore of these Ho/Lai/Tang ninja movies in my collection now. I sold them all at a yard sale oblivious to how much people would ultimately pay for these awful things.

There are a couple I wouldn't mind owning again just because they are so enjoyably bad.

Steve Miller, Writer of Stuff said...

It's occurring to me that I saw a film called "American Ninja," not "Ninja: American Warrior." There might be others on your list that I've not seen, but rather have seen the film that Lai and Tang and Company hoped they would be mistaken for at the video rental place. :)

venoms5 said...

Yeah, the whole ninja craze started with that awful, but hilarious international flick, ENTER THE NINJA with Franco Nero and Sho Kosugi. I reviewed it at my site some time back. Then Cannon perpetuated them even further with AMERICAN NINJA with Michael Dudikoff and Tadashi Yamashita.

Apparently those Ho/Lai/Tang patch jobs made a lot of money as I can't see why there'd be so many of them otherwise.