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Enter the Ninja (1981)

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After just completing his training at a ninja school, an army vet travels to the Phillippines and finds himself battling a land grabber who wants his war-buddy's property. He must also ... See full summary »


Menahem Golan


Dick Desmond (screen story), Dick Desmond (screenplay) | 1 more credit »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Franco Nero ... Cole
Susan George ... Mary Ann
Shô Kosugi ... Hasegawa
Christopher George ... Venarius
Alex Courtney ... Frank
Will Hare ... Dollars
Zachi Noy ... The Hook
Constantine Gregory ... Mr. Parker (as Constantin de Goguel)
Dale Ishimoto Dale Ishimoto ... Komori
Joonee Gamboa ... Mr. Mesuda
Leo Martinez ... Pee Wee
Ken Metcalfe ... Elliot
Subas Herrero ... Alberto
Alan Amiel Alan Amiel ... Maroon Ninja
Douglas Ivan Douglas Ivan ... Maroon Ninja (as Doug Ivan)


After just completing his training at a ninja school, an army vet travels to the Phillippines and finds himself battling a land grabber who wants his war-buddy's property. He must also fight his rival. Written by Michael Pilkington <mjpilkington@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Warriors of a lost martial art! Hired assassins ...human killing machines! See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »






Release Date:

2 October 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ninja I See more »


Box Office


$1,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(uncut) | (edited for TV)

Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This is the first of three "Ninja" movies in Cannon's Ninja series. The others are Revenge of the Ninja (1983) and Ninja III: The Domination (1984). Both sequels were unrelated in terms of story. Cannon also went on to make American Ninja (1985), which spawned its own five-movie franchise. See more »


During the opening sequence, Cole, the white ninja, shoots an arrow at a maroon ninja standing by a tree. When he draws back the arrow and fires it, the arrow is white, but when the arrow hits the tree narrowly missing the ninja's face, the arrow is brown. See more »


Dollars: So who are you going to kill next, Mr. Ninja?
Cole: My friend, a ninja doesn't kill. He eliminates and only for defensive purposes.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK version was heavily cut by around 4-5 minutes by the BBFC when submitted in 1981. All shots of weapons that were not allowed in UK film releases at the time (e.g. nunchakus, shuriken etc) were cut, as were some highly-dangerous combat techniques such as throat-cuts, repeated punches, ear-claps and limb-and neck-breaking. Also missing is a scene that contravenes the UK's Cinematograph Films (Animals) Act 1937, namely some genuine scenes of cockfights. Video releases, plus the MIA DVD, all featured the same cut print. The 2011 Optimum DVD restores the violence though 1 min 5 secs are cut to remove the cockfight footage. See more »


Spoofed in The Transformers: Enter the Nightbird (1985) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A Good film
4 October 1999 | by Filmbuff-55See all my reviews

This action film is about a westerner named Cole(Franco Nero) who has learned the ways of the Ninja, until a Hosagowa(Sho Kosugi) has bitter frustration against him after he realizes that Cole having the right to be a "Ninja Warrior". He later visits an old army buddy Frank(Alex Courtney) who is having some personal problems of his own with a greedy landgrabber named Charlie Venarious(Christopher George). However Cole has to take the matter of taking on the landgrabbers as well as Hosagawa who was just recently hired by Venarious to help eliminate Cole. The ending is very fascinating and the battle scenes between the Ninja warriors is the best sequence in this film. The cast is excellent in the film. I give it ******** out of **********.

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