USA, 2009: Blood and Bone
Blood and Bone
Genre: Dramatic Action, Gangster
Michael Jai White stars as an ex-convict fighting his way through the underground martial arts circuit, hoping to fulfill a deathbed promise.
“Blood and Bone” markets itself as a gritty MMA movie for the next generation of fighters, billing popular stars like Bob Sapp and Gina Carano. However, it fails to live up its own hype, and presents the same flashy kung fu choreography we have seen time and time again with some flashy groundwork thrown in as an afterthought. By the climactic fights, the pretense is dropped completely to make way for spinning jump kicks and a katana vs. Chinese jian battle. The fights themselves aren’t too bad, although only the last two really last long enough for any satisfaction.
The film is mostly well-shot and edited, although it feels like it’s trying very hard to come off as edgy and street bred, hoping to identify with the no-nonsense-tough-guy-raised-on-the-streets-but-is-still-a-good-person demographic out there.
Sarcasm aside, it becomes difficult to identify with White’s hero, who is an amalgam of characters played by David Carradine, Steven Seagal, and Jet Li; cool and in control under all circumstances, capable of playing with the mom and kids one minute, then breaking a man’s arm with no regrets in the next. White does have some chemistry with Dante Basco’s Pinball, an underground fight promoter, manager, and announcer rolled into one very fashionable street thug. Still, White seems to only display his acting skills when, ironically, his character is acting in a role of his own. The talented Eamonn Walker, on the other hand, does extremely well portraying the bushido-obsessed villain James, who demonstrates a very discernible character arc throughout the film. Gina Carano and Kimbo Slice, who became selling points for the film, are present for only one scene each and Carano speaks only one line, which is to be expected for an MMA-sploitation film as this. Bob Sapp, however, plays a thick-headed villain through most of the film. As in his fights, he plays a two-dimensional heel perfectly, and is subsequently vanquished by our hero during the rising action.
“Blood and Bone” doesn’t really present us with anything new, but it is a quick and entertaining romp through the tough and dirty streets and pit fights. If you don’t expect too much from the story, action, or acting, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the above-average quality of production put into the film. The decision to go straight to DVD was probably a smart one, and makes for great pre-UFC entertainment with popcorn and a good group of friends.
Last edited by Conde Koma; 9/24/2010 5:15pm at .
wasnt there something like this with jean claude van damme? not blood sport, but he was in a prison doing something similar. like the guards made the prisoners fight and theyd bet on them or some ****
EDIT: "In Hell"
Yes, and I've seen that one too. "In Hell" is, quite possibly, the dumbest MMA-sploitation movie made to date, but I haven't seen "Never Back Down" yet.
Has everyone forgotten about Undisputed 2?
Is he about to get hardcore gangbanged in that picture?
MJW and Mark Dacascos are two action actors who I feel have been sorely underutilized in the action genre. They both have great skills but have been put in mostly crappy films. When put in the right films, they show some pretty good acting skills too. For shame Hollywood (if you can call some of the stuff the've been in "Hollywood"), for shame!
They are pretty decent when it comes to acting, when they want to be. Unfortunately, as we have seen in Hollywood, neither White nor Dacascos are popular enough to warrant getting a big film break, and without such a break they will probably not become popular enough to warrant one. I'm glad White actually got this role, which was a really great chance for him to exhibit said talent and acting skills. Unfortunately, due either to his own beliefs or his director's, he didn't, and this film will likely fade away into cult obscurity like most of his others.
Dwk - Yes. Yes he is.
Last edited by Conde Koma; 10/07/2009 11:49pm at .
There is something very jcvd about mjw.