1993 / Director. Patrick Allen.
Review by Glenn Cochrane.
Remember Martin Grove? He was the bad guy from THE KARATE KID who ran the Cobra Kai dojo. And remember William Zabka? He played Johnny, the blonde thug from THE KARATE KID. Well they star alongside each other in SHOOTFIGHTER: FIGHT TO THE DEATH. It's a martial arts movie from the early 90s about an illegal fight scene known as Shoot Fighting. It's a no-holds barred, ultra violent fight movie where every fight is to the death and any weapon of choice is allowed. This movie eluded me over the years and I only recently discovered it for the first time. Ha, it's pretty fucking cool. In the opening scene Martin Grove walks into the ring and literally tears out his opponents throat. I was kind of shocked by the graphic nature of it and suddenly realised that I was watching a kick-ass flick. Two brothers are tricked into fighting in a Shoot Fight tournament in Mexico and when they've in too deep their sensai comes to their rescue (played by the legendary Bolo Yeung). The movie doesn't offer anything original and the script is mostly contrived, as expected... but the fight scenes are well staged and the contact is brutal. I love it when movies pass me by and I discover them decades later. SHOOTFIGHTER is certainly a cut above many other DTV movies and probably deserves more respect than I got. It must have been popular enough because it spawned a sequel four years later, which included the same cast. If you love BLOODSPORT then this is the next best thing. Pretty cool.