The Video Vacuum (thevideovacuum) wrote,
The Video Vacuum
thevideovacuum

MAX HAVOC: CURSE OF THE DRAGON (2004) * ½

Max Havoc (Mickey Hardt) is a kickboxer that killed his opponent in the ring, Ivan Drago style then swore off fighting to live the life of a sports photographer.  He goes to Guam to cover a sporting event where his old trainer Richard Roundtree runs an antique shop.  Roundtree comes into possession of David Carradine’s dragon shaped paperweight so Davey Boy has him killed.  Max then goes out for revenge while simultaneously trying to protect a pair of hot sisters who are the thieves that really stole the dragon.

 

This movie must’ve been solely funded by the Guam tourism department because it’s filled with tons of travelogue scenes of people canoeing, swimming, checking into hotels, going clubbing, native dancing, etc. than actual plot.  Plus, people say “Guam” every other minute. Just in case you forgot where the movie takes place I suppose.  (UPDATE:  I just found out in the IMDB message boards that the flick was indeed funded by the government of Guam!  And there I was thinking I was just being smug and shit.)

 

The flick was directed by my pal Albert Pyun.  And as Pyun-directed kickboxing movies go, it’s definitely not up to snuff with Kickboxer 2.  Things started out OK enough but the kickboxing and Kung Fu become increasingly sporadic as the film lumbers on.  It’s as if the Guam Board of Tourism stepped in and said “Mr. Pyun, if you put too much Kung Fu in the movie, no one will come to Guam because they’ll be afraid they’ll be kickboxed to death!”

 

Max Havoc also has more flashbacks than a deranged Nam vet.  I can normally handle flashbacks in movies, but it gets on my nerves when they flash back to the same damn scene twenty times.  If you take a shot of your favorite alcoholic beverage every time Max has a flashback to when he killed his opponent, you’ll be sloshed long before the movie ends.

 

The film does offer up lots of chicks in bikinis but tragically none of them get naked.  There was this one scene where two girls started rubbing on each other, but just when you think there is going to be an outbreak of lesbianism, Pyun cuts away.  Bummer.

 

While it’s fun seeing Roundtree and Carradine sleepwalking through their roles, I have to admit that Hardt is pretty terrible.  He’s not too bad in the kickboxing department though.  The annoying sisters on the other hand will drive you nuts.  The scenes where they argue with each other are straight out of an episode of Sweet Valley High or something.

 

Online critics have made it a national pastime of making fun of Pyun, but he has a free lifetime pass from me because of The Sword and the Sorcerer.  I’m sure Pyun did what he could with the nonexistent budget and shoddy script.  Let me put it this way, I don’t think Martin Scorsese’s Max Havoc:  Curse of the Dragon would’ve turned out much better.  For some reason though, Isaac (the Undisputed sequels) Florentine was brought in for some of the fight sequences.  I don’t know why exactly.  He must’ve been a board member for the Guam tourism department or something.

 

Incredibly enough, a sequel followed.

Tags: action, david carradine, kung fu, m
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