Written by: Michael Den Boer on February 7th, 2007
Theatrical Release Dates: Hong Kong, 1989
Director: Shuji Goto
Cast: Yasuaki Kurata, Simon Yam, Ken-Ming Lum, Cristina Lawson, Bolo Yeung, John Ladalski, Stuart Smith
DVD released: March 30th, 2004
Approximate running time: 97 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1 Full Frame
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo
DVD Release: Brentwood
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $4.95
Masahiro Kai (Yasuaki Kurata) is a retired world champion martial artist who now beyond his fighting prime wants to find a student to pass on his knowledge to. Ryu Tenmei (Simon Yam) in young fighter who has a lot of potential and with the help Masahiro he becomes one of the best martial arts fighters in the world. During the 1987 martial arts world championships Ryu dies in the title match to a fighter named Chang Lee (Bolo Yeung). Masahiro battles his inner demons after the death of his student Ryu. When he sobers up he decides to avenge Ryu by returning to fighting where he will meet the imposing Chang Lee.
If this plot sounds a lot like you are experiencing déjà vu it is because it borrows heavily from the Jean-Claude Van Damme film Blood sport including using actor Bolo Yeung is a similar role as the one he played in Blood sport. The film jumps right into the action as the first ten minutes of the film is non-stop martial arts. Then the plot shifts as we are taken back in time via a flashback which explains the who’s, what’s, when’s and why’s of the story. The film is slow moving after the flashback happens and to much time is spent on unnecessary subplots one about a student who ends up not working out and then the cat and mouse courtship between Masahiro and Ryu before they decide to work together. This film like all action film has not one but count them two montage training sequences.
The acting is secondary in this film as no one really stands out. This is not a big deal since this film like many of its ilk is all about the fighting scene which range from average to good with nothing exceptional of jaw dropping. Two Hong Kong actors who have made their fare share of action films appear in this film. Simon Yam of Naked Killer and Full Contact gives the best performance in the film as the young student named Ryu. Bolo Yeung does what he does better then anyone else as he plays the villainess Chang Lee. Bolo’s character has a tattoo of a dragon on his forehead. Overall despite being predicable BloodFight does have a few entertaining moments that almost save this tedious affair.
This is your standard budget DVD release as colors range from above average to good and details range from soft during darker scenes to detailed and sharp during most day time scenes. There is no noticeable print damage and the film appears to be uncut. The aspect ratio starts out in a letterboxed ratio of about 1.85:1 before shifting to a 1.33:1 full frame ratio. I would venture to say that 1.85:1 is the correct aspect ratio and that the rest of the film is not open matte since many times during the film shots feel too cramped.
This release comes with one audio option a Dolby Digital stereo mix in English. There are no major sound defects and music, effects and dialog for the most part sound evenly mixed.
This release comes with no extra content.
Brentwood put very little effort into their budget release of BloodFight a mediocre marital arts film and despite its cheap price this one should be avoided unless you are a diehard fan of Bolo Yeung who needs to see every one of his legendary performances.