Billy is a young fighter whose sister Judith was hurt after a near gang rape. When he learns she must have surgery, crime boss Russell has Billy compete in illegal street fights. When Billy... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
David Carster
...
Billy Edwards (as Sean Donohue)
Greg Douglass ...
Tony
Michelle Locke ...
Judith Edwards
Ned Hourani ...
Russell
Jerry Beyer ...
Murphy
Santi Jordana ...
Joyce
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mike Monty
Nick Nicholson
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Storyline

Billy is a young fighter whose sister Judith was hurt after a near gang rape. When he learns she must have surgery, crime boss Russell has Billy compete in illegal street fights. When Billy learns he may get killed, he quits but is later killed by Russell and his men, who were the ones responsible for Judith's accident. After his death, Billy must rely on one man to seek revenge for him: his best friend David. However, David must train in the martial arts before he can seek revenge. David seeks guidance from the ghost of Billy as well as Billy's trainer and ally, Murphy. Written by Ninja01

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1992 (USA)  »

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King of the Kickboxers 2  »

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Why Must This Be
Written and Performed by Larry Strong
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"I never believed there was anything more to this world than what we see..."
25 November 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The original THE KING OF THE KICKBOXERS is a hidden gem of B-movie/martial arts filmmaking. In 1993, Black Belt Magazine declared it one of the best fight flicks ever made, and twenty years later, it still holds up well. Oddly enough, two movies claiming to be its sequel were released in the same year a little while after the original's debut. American SHAOLIN was a sequel in name only, featuring no returning performers and a new storyline but a similar production style. And while that film isn't perfect by any means, it does a lot more things right than the piece of junk I'm reviewing here. KING OF THE KICKBOXERS 2 features the return of Loren Avedon as the star, albeit in a different storyline with a much lower standard of action and production.

The story: When fighter Billy Edwards (Sean Donahue) is killed after getting mixed up with a sadistic underground warlord (Ned Hourani), it falls to his best friend David Carster (Avedon) to protect Billy's girlfriend (Michelle Locke) and avenge his death.

I was expecting the bad acting, roundly dreadful as it may be, but I wasn't expecting half of Loren Avedon's lines to be noticeably dubbed by another performer. I was expecting the low-budget, made-in-the-Philippines production, but I wasn't expecting the filmmakers to get basic things like correct scene-to-scene blocking wrong (e.g. a performer somehow travels ten feet between shots to fall off an escarpment). I was expecting the soundtrack to be forgettable, but dang if it doesn't stand out for its invasiveness as a mixture of repetitive lounge music and weird sound effects. And though the movie only runs for approximately 90 minutes, the story feels overlong and convoluted, with strange and unnecessary plot inserts galore, like David being paranormally contact by his dead friend no less than three times . It's just not very engaging.

The same can be said about the majority of the fight action. Though there's no shortage of it with sixteen brawls going on, very few of these are any good. The fighting cast also includes ex-kickboxer Greg Douglass among others, but even with a large collection of talent, the fisticuffs don't amaze: the action is oftentimes sloppy and uncoordinated, as though only the loosest choreography had been planned, and the overlong brawls aren't filmed very dynamically. These faults temporarily lift near the end of the film when Loren Avedon invades the villains' hideout and takes on a horde of thugs in a respectable randori, but the problems return promptly for the two final showdowns.

KING OF THE KICKBOXERS 2 isn't quite so helplessly bad that it deserves a one-star rating, but it's not far off. While the movie may appeal to folks who have grown up on this style of cheap adventure, it cannot hope to match the quality of its predecessor-in-name, even with the lead star at the helm. Leave this one be.


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