Release Date: November 8, 2016
Released By: Image Entertainment
Cast: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dave Bautista, Gina Carano, Alain Moussi, and Darren Shahlavi
Run Time: 90 Minutes
“Eric and Kurt Sloan are the descendants of a well-known Venice, California-based family of martial artists. Kurt has always been in older brother, Eric’s shadow, as he lacks the instincts needed to become a champion. Against Kurt’s concerns, Eric accepts a paid offer and travels to Thailand to challenge the Muay Thai champion Tong Po and fails with dire consequences. Kurt sets out for revenge. He trains with his brother’s mentor, Durand, for a Muay Thai fight against the merciless champion, Tong Po. Durand first thinks Kurt is impossible to train, but through a series of spiritual exercises and tests, Durand discovers that Kurt has a deeper strength that will carry him through his final showdown with Tong Po.”
I want to start this review off by saying that the original Kickboxer is a pure Classic Action Movie. I grew up with those types of films, and that one was always fun to watch. When Kickboxer: Vengeance was first announced, I was skeptical because modern day low budget action movies don’t do all that well. Regardless, I was excited because I thought we were getting a direct sequel to the first film. Sadly, I was wrong. What we actually got was a remake of the of the original, starring the main lead from the original, Jean Claude Van Damme. Skeptical once more, I went into it with an open mind, as I do with every movie. Also like every movie, it has it’s good moments, and it’s bad moments. With that being said, the bad moments heavily outweigh the good ones. It’s a shame they didn’t completely reboot the movie and change the story up because when watching many of the scenes, you can’t help but compare it to the original. It’s not fun to watch a new movie when you already know what to expect. In addition to that, there are a lot of things that worked better on screen years ago that you just can’t get away with nowadays. On a positive note, the action was still entertaining to watch. Although the choreography felt a bit overdone occasionally, I still enjoyed watching the over the top butt-kickery. Van Damme still does a lot of his own stunts and action scenes, which was really cool to see. Alain Moussi & Dave Bautista did an alright job with their fight sequences but there’s nothing to really talk about. Overall, Kickboxer: Vengeance has it’s ups and downs but never really worked for me. It had some decent action in it but it was mainly predictable, underwhelming, and extremely overacted. If you like the original, I really can’t recommend it to you unless you’re a big Jean Claude Van Damme fan.
Picture & Audio Quality:
The Picture Quality was probably the highlight of this whole release in my opinion. A lot of the character closeup shots looked so detailed and crisp. The scenic shots were also a treat to watch. Occasionally, it was so clear that you could see the phony blood & “special effects” but that wasn’t really a big deal to me. Not when there were so many other issues with the movie. The Audio Quality was really nice as well. From the Music to the Sound Effects, all of it sounded top notch.
You don’t really get many Special Features on this Bluray set. There’s a small Behind The Scenes Featurette, and a Photo Gallery that doesn’t really add anything special. Sometimes the Special Features can make me appreciate a movie even if I didn’t really enjoy it. That wasn’t the case with this release.
Behind The Scenes Featurette
5.8 Out Of 10 Stars