King of the Kickboxers film review
If you say that this is a ripoff of the JCVD film Kickboxer, well it's hard to argue against that. There is a lot of plot similarities going on here. However don't be so quick to dismiss this, there are some really cool martial artists showing their super talent, and the rest of the film has some unintentionally hilarious scenes. Loren Avedon does a great job as the lead, I was worried that a Tae Kwon Do expert like him was going to have some trouble facing Kickboxers and making it look real after all he is traveling to Thailand home of the Kickboxers to avenge his brother's death. When he plays drunk to save the girl named Molly shows that even the smaller fight scenes are still enjoyable and fun to watch in this film. And when he goes to a Muay Thai academy and acts like an A-hole, he is put in his place by the talented Ong Soo Han, in a short but sweet fight. The film really picks up when Loren encounters super hobo Keith Cooke from the Mortal Kombat films. Keith Cooke becomes his memorable mentor and helps him train to fight the main villain none other than Khan played by Billy Blanks. Khan talks like he has some kind of speech impediment, but he is very memorable as this role, in fact I heard that Khan was the character that was used to create DJ from Super Street Fighter. The training scenes are awesome, and I have to say that I liked every fight scene in this film, and the last fight where they dressed in traditional Thai theatre clothes complete with masks and Kriss swords, fighting in a bamboo Thunder dome was not disappointing even with the noticeable stunt double for Loren. The fight scene starts off kind of acrobatic, Khan uses his trademark triple kick (double ear slap kick, kangaroo kick, and jump spin kick) which did seem a bit ridiculous but hey it's still kind of cool. If you think the kicks sound a bit silly, wait until you see how Loren trains to block them involving logs! This is easily one of the most memorable 90s martial arts action flicks for me, and before I go, I have to mention not to miss the triple side kick by Keith Cooke. Highly recommended, although the sequel, seems to be totally unrelated to this one, and looks like it was made 10 years before this one with a lower budget. Sadly stay clear of that one.