release year: 2009
genre: martial arts action/drama
viewing setting: home Bluray 8/26/18

synopsis: American orphan-turned-martial-arts-student grows up and must face off against an angry former student while protecting the greatest treasures of the sensei.

impressions: The action was great, and this is a worthy ninja movie. There were some plot holes...aside from why you'd choose to protect your greatest treasure by moving it away from the entire ninja clan and into a university in America, there's the standard "expelled Japanese student returns years later for revenge" problem. If you're the sensei and you kick your best Japanese student out, after he has a spat with the sole American student, you can count on a couple of things: 1) the expelled Japanese student will hate you and come back and kill you, and 2) he will also hate that American student and go after him at some point. That happened in Enter the Ninja and it happens here too. But back to the, that Scott Adkins sure can fight. None of his fight scenes ever look fake, and it's undoubtedly him doing all the leaping and kicking and fighting. For that alone, this movie is well worth seeing.

acting: Scott Adkins, unlike most bigger-name action actors, can actually fight and do his own stunts, and he's really good at it. His acting is actually fine too. Mika Hijii is his fellow student and love interest, who can also fight pretty well. Tsuyoshi Ihara is the evil expelled ninja who has his own special armored ninja suit (complete with night vision goggles which enable him to cheat in ninja fights in the dark.) Miles Anderson is a vaguely-Willem-Dafoe-looking evil businessman.

final word: Slightly flawed, but solid action makes up for that. Worthy ninja fare.

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