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Miami Connection is the perfect storm of ugly people, bad acting,
stupid dialogue, horrendous action sequences, and bargain basement
special effects. I wasn't sure who to root for: the evil drug lord and
his retarded henchmen who are painfully clueless and inept at the
simple things like being threatening on any level - or the gangster
ninjas who show up and steal drugs and money from the drug lord and
easily demolish the loser henchmen - or the "heroes" of the flick, the
awesomely awful and culturally diverse synth rock band the Dragon
Sounds who I just wanted to watch get sawed in half a la the Scarface
Best lines include: "they don't make buns like that down at the bakery" and "my mother was Korean and my father was Black American"
God I love this movie, it has everything a true cinephile could ever dream for. Enjoy.
I was attending the school in central Florida where it was filmed at
the time so I'm one of the few people who actually saw this movie in a
theater when it came out. Such fond memories -- a friend and I still
quote this movie to each other. Dialog, acting, plot, fight scenes,
direction; all uniformly bad. The audience was laughing so hard at some
points that we couldn't hear the dialog; even during a touching scene
where one character was tearfully describing how he became estranged
from his father (Y. K. Kim's classic response was one we still quote:
"I did not know... you had a father.").
I feel a little guilty for slamming the movie here; by all accounts, Y. K. Kim is a decent and charitable guy. He just has no business making movies.
I doubt this movie is that available, but is probably worth a viewing for pure camp value, with a group of drunk friends.
What are you expecting from a bunch of people who have no acting experience and decide to get together and make a movie. The acting is terrible(duh). Y. K. Kim's english is really bad(double duh). But the good thing about this movie are the great fight sceans. They don't make you forget the horrible acting, but it makes up for it. If you want to laugh yourself silly watching a bad movie this movie is for you. Others beware. 5 out of 5(that's because I crack up every time I see this film.
When I first saw the trailer for 'Miami Connection," my mind was
literally blown. I knew the 1980s was a wasteland of Troma garbage and
horrible B films, but this film had something more than your run of the
mill awfulness. It was epic. It was beautiful. It was bad 80s pop
music, complete with bad feel good lyrics you might see in some TV
show, the kind of song a writer comes up with on the spot because
that's what they think the "youth" music sounds like. Never mind the
bad acting, editing, and overall quality of the film transfer--that was
something I was expecting. What I wasn't expecting was the bad after
school special side- plots, the rampant homo eroticism, the most
bizarre and random gang of thugs ever assembled and the sheer 80s-ness
of the film. What I really loved was the over acting by the extras in
the film. They must have known that they would never get another chance
to be in a film, so they hammed it up for all to see.
Now I will remind you, if you aren't into watching films that are bad enough to make Mystery Science Theater 3000, then you surely will not get the sheer awesomeness of this awful movie. If you like straight comedy or action films, then I suggest you stay away and save your money. As for the rest of us, enjoy.
This has to be one of the best bad movies ever made. My friend found
the cover for this movie online and we just had to see it. Wow, nothing
will prepare you for all the cheesy 80's awesomeness, the genuine
confusion, and incredible quotes(Oh my God!). Why are the bad guys
trying to kill these guys? I forgot half way through the movie,
something about ninjas and cocaine I think. They're in a band, really?
A ninja band!? Well technically it's Tae Kwon Do, but who cares. Those
songs will stick with you the rest of your life, they're not half bad
either, super catchy with ridiculous lyrics.
Y.K. Kim, God bless you. You are a stand up guy in real life, an ambassador for martial arts, an enthusiastic American immigrant, and have created something that encapsulates the absurdity that is the 1980's. This movie has to be seen by lovers of camp everywhere. No joke, it will change your life.
Okay let's get something outa the way right here and now. This film
critically... sucks. Hell it does more than merely suck. It's shoddy,
the acting is woeful, the plot is nonsensical and it has a hilariously
bad subplot involving one band member's quest to find his father. The
soundtrack is dire. So, for those of you who expect some form of
quality in their cinema, then I recommend The Exorcist or if you don't
like horror, then I dunno. The Lives of Others maybe. I haven't seen it
but lots of critics really seem to like it so knock yourselves out.
However... for those of you who are less discerning... well.
Every so often a film transcends its mere badness via its sheer unintentional hilarity. It becomes a different beast entirely and strays from the realm of crap to the magical plane of craptastic. Some have boldy come before it such as Mad Foxes, Raw Force, White Fire and Gymkata, leaving trash fans with their jaws slightly agape afterward and also pretty big shoes to fill. These films are passed along via word of mouth, so a select few people- those who are willing to overlook such niceties as "quality" and "technical prowess", or "pleasing cinematography"- can appreciate their crappy goodness and for you select fans who know what I'm talking about then have no fear... The Miami Connection is one of those films. And any fan of tacky 80s crap will thank me for this recommendation, trust me on this.
Oh yeah the plot. I dunno, a really bad syntho pop group go up against a drug cartel for some reason. I was too busy laughing to pay close attention.
Anyway, a strong solid 7/10 on the craptastic level, a perfect beer or whatevs flick or just a great flick to cheer you up if you're having a crappy day.
But critically, it's really really bad.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Jeff (William Eagle) and Yashito (Si Y Jo) are cocaine runners who are
close to dominating the world with their drug trade. There's only one
thing standing in their way, but it's of monumentally awesome
proportions: a rock band called Dragon Sound, consisting of members of
all different ethnicities who all practice Tae Kwon Do and perform in
Karate Gi's (when not sporting their sleeveless band logo shirt).
Jeff's sister Jane (Kathy Collier) just happens to sing for Dragon
Sound, and he severely disapproves of her Pat Benatar-like vocal
stylings, so he summons his army of biker ninjas to fight the "friends
forever" in mortal combat. So while keyboard player Jim (Smith) sorts
out his own personal family issues, it's up to guitarist (?) Mark (Y.K.
Kim in a stunning performance) to take on the baddies, while keeping
his band of brothers together. Can he do it? (P.S.: BIKER NINJAS.)
Wildly enjoyable, Miami Connection defines what cinematic fun is all
about. Man oh man does this movie deliver the goods you want. National
treasure Y.K. Kim's line readings are worth their weight in gold, so
much so that G. Gordon Liddy and William Devane are going to start
recommending them as the standard U.S. currency. Sadly, this was his
only film, putting him up there in the stars with Matt Hannon, Jay
Roberts Jr. and Andy Bauman. His, and everyone else's acting/fight
choreography is mind-boggling, and thank God for the new DVD release,
which is loaded up with features, including deleted scenes and an
alternate ending, so we can truly experience Miami Connection in all
Yet more proof that the 80's was uber-awesome, in order to properly soak up the copious charm of Miami Connection, you have to mentally transport yourself back to the golden days when guys and girls with feathered hair wore Ratt and Motley Crue T-shirts with blue and/or black 3/4-length sleeves, Pink Floyd painter's hats existed (and baddies wore them), and Oates rocked out a wailin' guitar solo while wearing white Karate pants while Y.K. Kim did a Martial Arts demonstration on stage by grabbing a dude's nose with his toes. It's not actually possible to get more radical than that.
But yet, there are action scenes with gore and violence, and a baddie saying "No More Mistakes". This from his hideout which looks like a little slice of Japan in the middle of Florida. Who knew Miami had such a large ninja population? That's just one of many life lessons you'll learn from Mr. Kim and the gang. That's the thing, there's a positive vibe, emphasizing friendship and camaraderie that you really don't see in movies anymore. And those classic songs! The songs by Dragon Sound, and the others on the soundtrack are extremely catchy and you can't help but love what you're seeing and hearing. A CD soundtrack needs to be released.
It's funny, it's winning, there are great classic computers, the guy who plays Jeff looks like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (if he had been a mid-80's Florida drug dealer, of course), and there's even a Godfrey Ho-style Final Field Fight. Truly this is the movie Godfrey Ho always wanted to make, but rarely reached the heights of. Truly YKK isn't something that's cryptically imprinted on all of our zippers anymore. He's a flesh and blood man who has found his way into all of our hearts.
They REALLY don't make 'em like this anymore. We would like to personally thank Drafthouse Films for reviving the majesty that is Miami Connection. We look forward to what they're going to do next. It's going to be hard to top this. Miami Connection isn't really the type of movie you see. It's the type of movie you live. Against the Ninja. We will fight the battle to win.
There's knowingly silly low budget garbage and then there's the sublime
"Miami Connection". So far it's the only movie that this viewer has
seen where the heroes are also the musical attraction. "Dragon Sound"
are an ethnically diverse group of martial artists who moonlight as a
pop rock band. They sing ditties such as "Against the Ninja" and
"Friends", and believe me, these songs will be stuck in your head long
after the movie is over. When they're not rocking the house, "Dragon
Sound" take on villainous motorcycle riding ninjas and other assorted
lowlifes trafficking in drugs in the Miami area.
If you want high class or real technical proficiency, look elsewhere. But if you just want a fun time, relax and enjoy the goof ball pleasures of "Miami Connection". The music alone commands a viewing. The action is all that it needs to be: good fun, and people who stick it out to the final bit of fighting will be rewarded with some hilarious bursts of splatter. Also ensuring hilarity are the attempts by our not quite A list cast to emote, in particular Maurice Smith as Jim and co-story author Y.K. Kim as Mark. There are also a number of bare breasts on display in the last half hour.
The bad guys are far from being the scariest you'll ever see in this kind of diversion. Angelo Janotti as Tom sports a glorious mullet and often parades around without a shirt on. Kathy Collier as Jane adds valuable sex appeal, playing the love interest to group member John (Vincent Hirsch). It seems that Janes' brother Jeff (William Ergle), who happens to be one of the villains, is possessive of her, and who can blame him?
The script, written by director Woo-Sang Park and cast member Joseph Diamond, has a couple of howlingly funny lines, such as "They don't make buns like that down at the bakery" while the guys ogle the lovely ladies at a beach.
Grand entertainment for one and all. The fact that it's inept is essential to its appeal.
Director Park also has a small role as Uncle Song.
Eight out of 10.
It doesn't take long into watching "Miami Connection" to come up with a sizeable list of various kinds of ineptness to be found in it. But I want to start off by listing a few positive things about the movie. It is well photographed and lit, including the night sequences. Plus, the themes of friendship and loyalty found in the movie are commendable. And I can't say that the movie is *boring*. But more often than not, the movie gets away from being boring by being amusingly inept. The acting is incredibly bad; it's easy to see that none of the cast is a professional actor. The fight sequences are awkward. The songs are awful, but catchy enough that you won't be able to get them out of your head. And don't let me get started on the motorcycle ninjas! Is this a classic so bad that it's good movie? In my opinion, no - it isn't *quite* that aggressive in its badness. But with modern so bad that they're good movies being nearly impossible to find these days, this is adequate enough to feed your appetite for cinematic silliness.
An incredibly awful movie, but it's awful in the best way possible. Holy cow, do they get everything just perfectly wrong here. The nonsensical plot is as follows: a rock band made up of taekwondo experts (led by director Y.K. Kim) crosses a gang of coke-dealing biker-ninjas ("bikers by day, ninjas by night," as the intro song informs us) and has to fend for their lives. The acting is hilariously bad - one guy clearly keeps turning to read cue cards, for instance. The editing frequently cuts far too soon or lingers on far too long. The glorious 80s music I have already mentioned. There's also a song about how awesome friendship is (the five heroes all live in a house together, go to college together, play in a band and practice taekwondo - which they pronounce tayKWONdo - together) and a song about dancing ninjas. Most of the actors are actually martial artists, but the choreography is stilted (people pause awkwardly with swords to wait to get kicked in the face), and the film goes into slow motion for no reason. It's all very laughable and it moves quickly, which makes it quite watchable. This can be watched on Netflix - nay, must be watched on Netflix.
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