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If I recall the first movie correctly, this sequel has nothing to do with the original AMERICAN KICKBOXER, so you're not missing anything if you skip ahead to this "sequel". Though if you are looking for straight entertainment, you won't be getting anything as well. I guess some of the fight sequences are okay, but otherwise this is an extremely cheap affair , with an uninspired story and filmed mostly in drab locations. Funny thing about those locations - even though this movie takes place in the L.A. area, I swear that most of the movie was filmed outside of the United States. It would certainly explain things like that bogus police car or the police precinct it comes from! Anyway, a good amount of enjoyment still can be derived from watching the movie, if you see it as an unintentional laughfest. The cheapness gets some laughs (check out that cabin near the end of the movie), there is some dopey dialogue, but what's really funny are the incredibly bad performances. Dale "Apollo" Cook gets the bad acting prize here, overacting so much that he simply must be seen to be believed. Maybe he has a futuristic television series in his future!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The people who have reviewed this film definitely didn't get it. In a
genre filled with garbage, American Kickboxer 2 kicks the lid off the
The story involves the kidnapping of a little girl. Afraid of what will happen if she calls the police, the girl's mother calls upon her ex-husband and ex-boyfriend (both highly skilled martial artists), to help. The catch, the two men absolutely DESPISE each other! They get into almost as many fights with each other as they do with the bad guys! For those who like fast-paced, tongue in cheek (but NOT a spoof) action movies that don't take themselves too seriously, then American KICKBOXER 2 is for you. The fantastic fights are the pudding on the cake, and this cake is filled with Snack Pack!
Dale Cook, as the ex-husband (a cop with martial arts skills) is the highlight. Standing head and shoulders above most performers in this genre of films, his over-the-top enthusiasm fits this somewhat silly genre to a tee. He knows that martial arts movies aren't suited to everybody's taste. They're made mostly for guys who like to see guys skillfully kicking each other's backsides in! His acting style, therefore, also not for everybody's taste. It would, however, fit right into the bigger than life world of the WWE.
In almost all of his films, Dale Cook's character has a chip on his shoulder, swears up a storm (get a load of his first few lines in the great sci-fi post apocalyptic martial arts action flick, FIST OF STEEL!), and fights like a mule (there is NO doubt that this guy was a real life world kick boxing champion!). He induces belly laugh after belly laugh playing a poor angry loser who can't seem to get ahead. Dale Cook is actually a first rate comedic actor. Sure, he hams it up, with facial grimaces, loud vocals, and universally understood body language, but this is exactly as intended. Like the performers in the world of professional wrestling, this kind of acting is aimed at a specific audience that "gets it". Think about it, movies about guys going around kicking each other in the face every few minutes? That kind of world is just a little goofy and unreal to begin with. Acting in a manner that is equally goofy and unreal, while still not mocking and making everything a joke, can help the audience buy into such a world, not examining it too seriously and just enjoying the ride. (If the shoe fits the face...) Dale "Apollo" Cook chooses to fill his film's worlds with a martial arts version of Butch, The Bully and/or Moe from the 3 Stooges! He gets mad as a hornet when upset, and sweet as honey when pleased. His acting makes you smile because he is so BIG in everything he does. This, however, is NOT bad acting. It is perfectly appropriate when placed in a film that is equally over the top, and the films he appears in are just that. There are serious martial arts action dramas (most of which are complete bores), and then there are films like American Kickboxer 2, popcorn movies set at a lightning pace, offering comedy, situational suspense, and crackerjack fighting along the way! Fans of serious deadpan martial arts actors like Chuck Norris, Steven Seagal, and Jean Claude Van Damme, get ready for a surprise. Martial artists can be tough, technically skilled, and dirt humor funny as well!
I rank Dale "Apollo" Cook up there with the following less popular (but better than many popular) charismatic martial arts/action stars: George Chung (Fight To Win, Karate Cops), Jerry Trimble (Live By The Fist, One Man Army), Loren Avedon (King Of The Kickboxers, No Retreat No Surrender 2-3), and "Rowdy" Roddy Piper (Back In Action, Tough And Deadly, They Live). If you like any of those guys, check out the works of Dale "Apollo" Cook (Blood Ring, Raw Target, Triple Impact, Fist Of Steel). You're in for a treat!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
When Lillian's (Kathy Shower) 6-year old daughter Susie is kidnapped in
broad daylight by a guy in a helicopter who looks like Jesse Ventura,
she calls the only people on the planet who can help: Mike Clark
(Cook), a hot-headed, unlikable L.A. cop and David (Lurie), a
kickfighting instructor with an eye for the ladies.
Henceforth, its Meatheads Unite! as Clark and David turn the city upside down looking for Susie. Will they survive the underground punchfighting matches they have to fight in, the many baddies that come after them, and who are the mysterious men "Mr. Po" and "Sam Driftie"? and most importantly will they get along long enough to complete the mission? There is also a loose subplot about who is the father of Susie. What is this? Maury? "AK2" is not related to AK1 in any way. It is much, much sillier. Despite their unexplained bodyguards, Lillian and her new husband Howard (David Graf) don't notice a helicopter landing in their backyard until it is too late. Maybe they were both distracted by Howard's stylish shorts.
All the men in AK2 look completely ridiculous. Even the butler has a funny ponytail. Take our main heroes for example. When we are first introduced to Clark, he is wearing a pink shirt and tight stonewashed jeans even as he chases a random homie. 90% of the movie Clark is wearing a blue tanktop and ill-fitting blue sweatpants.
Despite one character enthusiastically claiming "he has great hair!" David's long mane is hilarious and he wears pants with a very high belt. He is shirtless so much, even Clark angrily remarks: "Put your shirt back on, pretty boy!" (Also as part of their rivalry, Clark insults David by saying "You have been drinking too much carrot juice!") The opening credits misspell "Apollo" as "Appollo", you don't offen see a misspelling in movie credits. Because of his acting ability, meatheadyness, and the fact that he is always chewing on a tooth pick, Cook is downright incoherent. On the Vidmark VHS box it lists him as "five-time world champion" but doesn't say for what. The side of the box lists the genre of this movie as "Action Kickboxing".
Cook and Lurie's constant fighting is downright brain-numbing. In one sequence they are searching for a guy with a shark tattoo wearing a vest and no shirt. Of course they are.
More movie highlights include: A woman answering the phone at a bookstore by saying: "Bookstore?", when nudity appears on screen, a screeching, wailing saxophone is heard, A guy bringing a bottle of cockroaches to a big brawl just to make a baddie look down, and the best warehouse guard ever.
It ends with a freeze frame and the catchy tune "Fight For Power".
For an incredibly goofy, silly, unintentionally zany good time, don't miss American Kickboxer 2!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
American Kickboxer David(Evan Lurie), a long haired, buff, black-belt
pretty boy and a LAPD cop with a foul attitude, Mike Clark(Dale
"Apollo" Cook)join forces to find the kidnapped daughter of a former
flame, Lillian(Kathy Shower). They will encounter an army of thugs
working for Lillian's own relative, Xavier(Ted Markland)not knowing
that her current husband, Howard(..the late David Graf, Tackleberry of
POLICE ACADEMY fame)is actually the mastermind behind the whole ordeal.
Lillian and her slimy Uncle Francis(Greg Lewis)were left her father's company fortune, a plumbing business, and Howard, the one who actually built it into a great success, wants the royalties. So Mike and David must fight off a vast number of scumbags using their martial arts skills(..and handguns at their disposal, when necessary) in order to do so.
When I was a teenager, my stepfather used to rent these bad action flicks all the time, and I would sneak into his room and snatch them while he was gone to work, watching them. Most of the story-lines resembled each other and were recycled all the time. Normally you'd have a team(..a duo or trio)of cops, equipped with superior fighting skills, often engaged in hand-to-hand combat or exchanging gunfire with drug-runners or dirty, underhanded criminal lowlifes of some sort. While the criminals had automatic weapons which could fire off an endless supply of ammunition, they couldn't hit their desired targets while the heroes, with only handguns, could shoot a few bullets and down the opposition almost immediately. In physical battles the heroes could be outnumbered five to one and wipe them out with ease. Yet, no matter how ridiculous these scenarios are, I couldn't help but enjoy them. The heroes, including our duo in "American Kickboxer 2", aren't chosen for their acting abilities or skills at "emoting", but were hired for either the way they look on screen or fighting capabilities.
I had forgotten about Kathy Shower, quite a looker in her heyday, often a fixture in softcore Cinemax erotica during the 90s. She is the young woman who is the center of the three main male characters in the film. The villains are basically stuntmen who walk on screen to fire their guns, getting shot on cue or receiving their customary ass whippings. Plenty of squibs are used as henchmen become bullet fodder. When you enter an early 90's movie, often an action product of the direct-to-video market, you should not expect a stirring emotional story-line or complex characterizations featuring multi-faceted performances..because you will be ultimately disappointed. Yet, if you surrender to the mind-numbing ineptitude of these derivative, oh-so familiar action plots, then maybe "American Kickboxer 2" might provide you with a bit of forgettable entertainment to waste away 90 minutes. As expected, we get the usual female throwaway dropping by to show off her breasts near the beginning of the movie, a student of martial artist David, showing how it's important to be buff, with fighting skills, if you want arm candy or to get laid. Like a great many of these low budget actioners, "American Kickboxer 2" was shot in the Phillipines.
Dale "Apollo" Cook stars as Mike a renegade cop who joins forces with a Karate instructor (Evan Lurie) to save the daughter that could be either one of them could be the father. Awful cinematography and poor acting make this one unwatchable. Besides who asked for a sequel to American Kickboxer 1?
This film is indeed horrible. It makes the first American Kickboxer
movie look quite good, something it definitely is not. The problems are
many. I can't remember one single fight scene/action scene which was
even remotely memorable or exciting. The characters never caught my
interest, and I wished they would disappear from my TV screen. It seems
to be made by a bunch of amateurs. Maybe it really was a high school
project, where some Z-grade actors/models got hired and were told to do
a couple of karate moves. That's simply not enough to make a martial
arts movie. And why the title "American Kickboxer 2"? OK, it's set in
America, but it has nothing to do with the first movie at all. (and was
the American Kickboxer title something that could attract interest? Who
had heard of the first movie anyway?).
A failure at everything it tries to achieve.
This movie is one of the worst of the genere, the only actor with a hint
talent is Evan Lurie (David).
The story centers around two rivals a cop, and a playboy. They are both in love with the same woman, and neither of them knows if her daughter is their child. And when the child is kidnapped they put their differences aside and join forces in the search for the kidnappers.
On the whole a bad movie with, but with some good fighting scenes.
I give it 2/10
If this is your first kickbox flick, you might not be too bored. If otherwise - DON'T WATCH THIS. No story, no actors, no budget. And - worst of all - even the fight sequences are much less than standard. After 45 minutes I got angry at myself for having spent 5 bucks for the tape. Watch CYBORG or BLOODSPORT if you want the real thing - and if you've already seen them - do it again rather than watching this uninspired one. the webhamster's rating is 0/10.
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