MY REVIEW OF IT!!!!
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SISTER STREET FIGHTER(1974)
(Directed by Kazuhiko Yamaguchi)
Plot: A female martial artist is recruited in a drug ring in order to save her undercover brother, who has gone missing.
“Sister Street Fighter” is considered to be a spin-off to the “Street Fighter” series. In truth, it’s not. Sure, Sonny Chiba is in it but he doesn’t play the same character. It’s only a sequel on tone, which combines the brutal approach of “Street Fighter” and the cartoonish approach of “Return of the Street Fighter”. The result, as expected, is an uneven movie.
The movie begins with our hottie heroine, Koryu, discovering her brother was an agent sent to infiltrate a drug smuggling ring and had vanished without a trace. It’s actually funny, as the movie begins in Hong Kong and the most stereotyped Chinese music ever plays. Don’t worry, we quickly learn that Koryu is half Chinese so there are no racist sentiments. Anyway, the Police ask that Koryu go in to save her brother and bring these guys down, and she accepts.
So Koryu meets up with her brothers teacher, who runs a respectable dojo. As always, these dojo’s tend to get involved with drug runners more than you’d expect. Sometimes they support them, sometimes they’re too righteous and intend to stop them. The result, while very unbelievable, is that people will get into a lot of fight scenes. I actually like how these dojo’s act. These type of subplots always interest me. The villain is the drug smuggler who has just made an alliance with a dojo who hate the good guys dojo, which is a pretty amusing coincidence. This guy collects martial artists as if they are pets, or toys, and apparently was a big fan of “Enter the Dragon”, as he uses a claw as a weapon. So the clash begins.
My movies main problems tend to tie in with the low budget. When a character falls off a bridge, it’s obviously a dummy. I also loved those fake looking bats near the end, which are so obviously strung up on a wire. My other problem is the unintentionally funny sequences that try to be dramatic. When a character starts freaking out about needing drugs, I couldn’t help but chuckle. It obviously intended to be dramatic and intense, but was way too overacted. It also doesn’t help that there is no buildup to this scene whatsoever. One moment she is calm and collected, showing no signs of the addiction, and then she starts spazzing out. Finally, there were too many useless supporting characters.
The other qualms are more subjective, and to be honest, I don’t care about them. It’s always the stuff like when people say “Since you’re about to die, I’ll tell you the truth behind everything”. There is lots of lazy exposition, but come on. We’re all used to this stuff, right? Really, even my first qualms are pretty subjective. I mean, we watch these types of movies expecting it to be bad, but enjoyable.
“Sister Street Fighter” delivers what I wanted it to deliver. It gives lots of impressive and brutal fight sequences, sleazy nudity, a fast pace, colorful characters and Sonny Chiba in a small role. The movie is pretty campy, but I liked that here. While this isn’t as good as the original “Street Fighter”, it does have one element that I preferred over that. The heroine is actually likeable. The first movie made me uncomfortable because I wasn’t sure why I should like this guy, besides the fact that he’s Sonny Chiba, but this one makes a character that we can root for.
If you think campy karate movies are in bad taste, and they usually are, then I’d avoid this. If you liked the “Street Fighter” movies, then you must check out this in-name only sequel. Hell, if you like these types of movies in general, then you should check this out. It delivers only what it promises…..well, except having anything to do with the “Street Fighter” movies. The best karate movie is still “Black Belt”.
I’m in love with Etsuko Shihomi(Koryu). There is something about a woman who can twist your head all the way around. Anyway, she’s just as intense as Sonny Chiba. In fact, if she was a man, she’d BE Sonny Chiba. A very beautiful man……who I’d like to take to the movies. Bin Amatsu(Kakuzaki) is menacing as the villain. Sonny Chiba(Hibiki) isn’t in the movie much, but he’s cool as always.
Violence: Rated R worthy(at least). Lots of brutal fight scenes with blood, stabbings, someone having their intestines pulled out(Romero would be proud) and more!
Nudity: Rated R worthy. There are 3 pairs of breasts I believe. However, one is during an attempted rape scene!
Overall: Compared to good movies, “Sister Street Fighter” sucks. However, for what it is, it’s a very enjoyable karate romp. Sure, it has its problems but I’d say it’s better than “Return of the Street Fighter” or “Street Fighters Last Revenge”.
my reviews of martial arts and horror films