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"On the surface, "Modern Warriors" seems to be a documentary
celebrating the diversity, philosophy and techniques of the modern world of martial arts. However, about one third of the way through this film it becomes apparent that what you are really watching is really more propoganda in support of no-holds-barred fighting and glorification of the violent attitudes inherent in street-fighting.Although it features true legends of the martial arts such as
Furio Demura, Jet Li, Tak Kubota, Benny "the Jet" Urquidez,
Don "The Dragon" Wilson, Rorion Gracie, Bill "Superfoot" Wallace, Bong Soo Han,and Bas Rutten, it understates the importance of the philosophy of the martial arts and fails to provide the answer to the important question of what distinguishes martial arts from the simple bully mentality and sloppy tactics of street fighting. What's worse is that the video seems to cover traditional martial arts in the introduction only to later ridicule it when juxtaposed next to semi-realistic
footage of street fights and no-holds-barred matches.I'm not exactly sure what the point of showing miscellaneous home video style street-fighting footage is either. In covering this phenomena, the film itself seems to drop down to the level of its subject matter and even some of the martial artists who should know better such as Richard Norton and actor Louis Mandylor get caught up in the bashing of formal martial arts training. These comments contribute to the overall negative feeling of this film.If the point of this film is to present the emergence and evolution of the sport known as no-holds-barred fighting,
then it falls short here as well by neglecting to mention the fact that even in these so called "reality fighting" contests, good technique and disciplined training usually win out in the end.
The filmmakers fail to point out that one of the primary goals of martial arts is the _striving_for_perfection_ of technique, whether it be a technique of striking, blocking, throwing or grappling.The only saving grace of this video are the interviews and footage of Benny "the Jet" Urquidez, Don the Dragon Wilson and Bill "Superfoot" Wallace: three exceptional martial artists who successfully applied their martial arts training in the world of full-contact fighting without forgetting about their roots in traditional martial arts.Do you know the difference between Martial Arts and fighting ?
Unfortunately the filmmakers of "Modern Warriors" do not seem
to know. Instead of using the tremendous amount of wisdom and talent they had before them to create an inspirational documentary about the true meaning of the martial arts and the spirit and dedication of its practitioners, they decided to
edit the footage and interviews in such a way that ultimately
glorifies macho street violence and no-holds-barred fighting."
A possible History of Martial arts
John Ranold | NorthHollywood, CA United States | 01/17/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Im not going to list the martial artist since others have already done so. Instead, I'll describe the DVDs contents. It starts by tracing asian martial arts back to China from which it spread and changed as it entered different parts of asia. From their, it spread to America and Europe. As people became aware of the different styles of combat, a desire to find out which is the best naturally developed. Mixed martial arts events (MMA) were held and quickly techniques that worked and those that didn't revealed themselves. Today, do to contests like Pride FC and UFC, the modern martial artist is a mixture of styles using any technique from any style to win. Although I liked this DVD and recomend it, I disagree that tournaments are the testing grounds for real street fighting techniques. Even the "No holds barred" fights (NHB) have rules that prevent eye gouging, fish hooking, single-finger locks. Think about the above three, aren't they the most effective way to attack someone? Specially if his stronger than you?"
Great look at modern martial arts practice
Dm Deetlefs | Table View South Africa | 09/10/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is a highly enjoyable and informative look at some exceptional martial artists and the martial arts they practice. The footage from fights featuring the likes of Bill Wallace and Benny Urquidez is great value for money.
Some questions have to be asked though: Why on earth is there no mention of Bruce Lee? Even David Carradine gets to say his piece! Where is Dan Inosanto? They interview his daughter briefly, is all. Where is Joe Lewis? The complete absence of these three hurts the film. If it weren't for that I would give it 4 or even 5 stars, though those dodgy footage of real-life situations should have been left out.
As for the "bashing" of formal martial arts, all this film does is point out what Bruce stressed long ago: forms and kata don't work on the street. When Richard Norton and Sammo Hung say that you can believe them. So if you want your style to look dojo-good, good for you, and if you want to be able to survive on the street, good for you. I don't think this film bashes anything; it just points out that there is a difference between good form and practicality."
A true warrior comes from the heart.
Evelyn O. Simon | South Florida. U.S.A. | 02/25/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a documentary of karate and kung fu fighters and instructors, who explain how to train yourself in martial artistry. The experienced instructors are: (Jet Li, David Carradine, Rorion Gracie, Bas Rutten, Don "The Dragon" Wilson, and Benny "The Jet" Urquidez.) All give and demonstrate with old films, the art of self control as well as self defense. You'll see some karate kickboxing action as well. So if you like to learn some karate moves, or just watch; then this is the film for you."
Obscure MA Doco. Offers Unique Realism
Brett J. Burrett | Brisbane, Australia | 10/12/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"After the first twenty minutes, which sets the scene and is indistinguishable from any other martial arts doco, the real tone of this film begins to emerge. The film makers have been wise enough to go to the fighters who have actually gotten results in the fighting/martial arts world, that is, those who have actually been a part of real life fighting action.
And what a selection. The Gracies, Benny Urquidez, Richard Norton, Dan Inosanto and many, many others all speak candidly about what they believe the true essence of fighting/martial arts is. You feel like you are sitting on the gym floor with them as they share advice and anecdotes. They mostly say one thing: real fighting is damn ugly and if you can't hit hard, and take a hard hit, you have a lot of work to do before you can consider yourself ready for the world out there. That's not to say they don't expound good technique. Quite the contrary.
What I find refreshing about this doco is that it focuses on the ugly, nitty gritty side of fighting/martial arts instead of showing the other-worldly, visually spectacular aspect of martial arts which has been done ad infinitum.
I gave it four stars because in terms of classic cinema it does not stand out, but frankly, the content is so good I don't care personally. For me its a five star. Sports/motivation fans should get something out of this too. It is entertaining for non-martial artists but they may find it less absorbing.
There is only one real extra on the DVD but it is worth the cost of another DVD, as it is over an hour of outtakes from the interviews, clipped together on various subjects. This is just what I liked as the film left me wanting more.
I'm glad I bought this DVD and I will be watching it many times over. I recommend that any serious martial artist/security worker watch this doco. at least once. If you don't find it informative (and I'd be very surprised) you'll find it entertaining."