Thursday, February 12, 2009

Bloodfist IV: Die Trying

By this point, executive producer Roger Corman had given up any pretext that the BLOODFIST movies should have any more in common than having World Lightweight Kickboxing Champion Don "The Dragon" Wilson star in them. 

In BLOODFIST IV: DIE TRYING, the friendly fighter plays Danny Holt, an L.A. repo man who accidentally repossesses the wrong BMW, this one belonging to a foreign agent named Weiss (soap actor Kale Browne) who was carrying a box of chocolates in the front seat. Danny delivers the candy to a female friend, not knowing that it camouflages nuclear warhead triggers that are being sold to a Middle Eastern country!

The body count is quite high, as Weiss and his goons murder everyone at Danny's car lot in an effort to retrieve the MacGuffin, and when they don't find it, chase him around the city, leaving more bodies in their wake. Of course, the cops and the FBI believe Danny to be responsible for the spree killings. The only one who believes in his innocence is a total stranger, Shannon (Amanda Wyss).

Nobody, especially the colorless Wilson, can add much zest to this routine and quite cheap DTV martial-arts flick. Paul Ziller, who would later work with the Dragon again on MOVING TARGET, writes and directs with little flair, moving his characters from point A to point B with little visual flair or excitement. Even the fight scenes, which were partially staged by Wilson, are of little interest. Character actors James Tolkan (BACK TO THE FUTURE) as an intense FBI agent and Liz Torres (THE JOHN LARROQUETTE SHOW) as a heavy-eating detective impart as much impact as they can, but Ziller's slight material lets them down.

The striking Cat Sassoon, an actress blessed with a hard body and exotically unusual features, plays an early story twist quite well and certainly makes her presence felt in the climax. Interestingly, her brother Oley Sassone directed Wilson's previous film, BLOODFIST III. Cat died New Year's Eve 2001.

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