The Video Vacuum (thevideovacuum) wrote,
The Video Vacuum


Chuck Norris stars in this tepid action flick that doesn't do a good job at showcasing his strengths; namely Kung Fuing the Hell out of people.  After a cool title sequence, we see Chuck's platoon getting ambushed in Vietnam.  Years later, he returns home and becomes a professor who wears likes to wear black turtlenecks.  Pretty soon, Chuck finds out that someone is bumping off all of his former Nam buddies and he teams up with a sexy reporter (Anne Archer) to find out who's doing the bumping.


Ted (Beneath the Planet of the Apes) Post's flat direction looks more in tune with a TV movie or something than an honest to goodness chopsocky flick.  Most of the action scenes suffer from a really cheap look (especially the Vietnam sequences) and often look blurry and/or dark.  The great supporting cast (which includes James Franciscus, Dana Andrews, and Jim Backus) is completely wasted and are given very little screen time.  The worst crime the movie commits though is that it's just plain boring.  It also takes FOREVER for action to heat up.  I mean Chuck doesn't even show off his Kung Fu prowess until about 70 minutes into the movie.  What's up with that?  Chuck would later pull off the whole bitter Nam vet thing much better in Missing in Action.


You can get a couple laughs from some of the film's glaring ineptness.  Like the opening titles that proudly proclaim, "Chuck Norris IS John T. Booker!"  Like the filmmakers meant for this to be the first in a series or something.  Also there's a great scene at an airport where Chuck's mystery assailant's identity is painfully obvious to everyone BUT Chuck.  (The dude just has on a wig and phony beard.)  There is one amazingly ludicrous scene that just has to be seen to be believed though.  It comes when Chuck drop kicks a guy through the windshield of a speeding car.  If the flick had two or three more inspired scenes of carefree nuttiness, it might've been worthwhile.


Chuck naturally gets the best line in this one when he says, "Everything went wrong by the numbers... and that takes planning!"


AKA:  Black Fighter.

Tags: action, chuck norris, g, kung fu
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