Actor Brad Morris triumphs in fast paced ring saga!
W. Gantt | Birmingham, Alabama United States | 08/28/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Brad Morris is triumphant in "American Kickboxer 1" as ring heavy
Jacques Denard, a relentlessly self-promoting middleweight kickboxing champion. Described by a sports announcer in the movie as "the man the crowds love to hate," the colorful champ
blocks the "boos" of scornful fans by plugging in his Walkman
and dancing indifferently around the ring. He taunts his competitors by erupting into a rock-star kickboxer, who wears
loud arena gear and distracts them with mercurial punches before
overcoming them with direct hits. Denard doesn't break the rules
to win his matches. He reinvents them.
The role of Denard in this fight saga presents an actor with lots of opportunities to chew the scenery. But, Brad Morris shrewdly avoids any over-acting traps and brings Denard to life at a perfect pitch that never reduces the wily champ to a martial arts stereotype. The talented Morris, who developed his skills as a celebrated stage actor from Johannesburg, certainly portrays Denard's flamboyance, but he also allows the audience to see the volatility and insecurities that both handicap and fuel his ambitions. Morris' performance elevates "Boxer" far above Hollywood's usual arena angst dramas.
Morris also contributed to the film as its assistant fight choreographer, but it is his range and intensity as an actor that make multiple viewings of the movie compelling and assure
its frequent showings on television over a decade after its
original theatrical release. Brad Morris is a must-watch actor, and "American Kickboxer 1" is a must-see movie for martial arts fans.
The story is actually better than the action
dominion_ruler | Carolina, USA | 09/08/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Yes its true, American Kickboxer 1 is a pure American made kickboxing movie that actually has a better story than the action. Not that the story is anything that will win any awards, but it has some depth and development between character relationships.
John Barret (To The Death, Shootfighter) plays B.J. Quinn, the middleweight kickboxing champion of the world who's unpredictable rage and temper put him in jail for 10 months for accidently killing a man at an after fight party, where his nemesis Jaques Denard, pushed B.J. to the limit. After his release, Quinn trains hard with another kickboxer, Chad Taylor played by Keith Vitali (Superfights, No Retreat No Surrender 3), hoping Taylor will defeat Denard. Denard beats Taylor, becoming the new middleweight kickboxing champion. Because Quinn can not compete professionlly due to his sentence, a $100,000 fight is set up for Quinn and Denard. But in the meantime, Quinn deals with strong emotions within himself and those around him.
Despite the story to American Kickboxer, better acting could have made it more enjoyable. I have to say the actors are about ok in this film - many movies of this calibur have worse acting and some have better. The biggest dissapointment is the fighting. There are plenty of ring fights, mainly between the main characters, but they look fake and tiresome. You can even clearly see the camera jump a bit due to bad editing during the fight scenes. The last fight in the movie between Quinn and Denard lasts a good 9 minutes. The best part is when Denard throws Quinn over the ropes and out of the ring. As for the bad guy Denard, I have to give some credit that he does a pretty convincing job with his character.
American Kickboxer is the opposite of what I expected in every way. The fighting is much worse than I assumed, yet the story is actually better. I'd say give this one a try if you are looking for a bad American kickboxing movie with a little more story to it. Its not the worst movie of its kind made though, thats for sure."