Plot: Sean (David Bradley) has always been a martial arts enthusiast, but he also has some dark memories in that area. His father was gunned down at a tournament when he was a child, after which he was raised and trained by his father’s sensei. His skills were honed and fine tuned, turning him into a champion and an elite level warrior. So when a huge tournament rolls around, of course he is there, along with his friend Curtis Jackson (Steve James). This tournament has collected the best martial artists in the world, but there is more at stake than just honor and bragging rights. Sean’s sensei has been taken prisoner by terrorist known as The Cobra (Marjoe Gortner), who heads up an evil cartel looking to create an army of cloned martial artists. And since Sean is perhaps the best there is, he would make an ideal source for these clones. But can The Cobra enact his vile plan, or will Sean and Curtis take out The Cobra for good?
Entertainment Value: An American Ninja movie without Michael Dudikoff seems like a bad dream, but Blood Hunt is all too real. The result is still a fun action movie, but it just doesn’t feel like an American Ninja movie. Steve James is brought back to add familiar vibes and he is awesome, but Dudikoff is sorely missed. He is replaced here by David Bradley, who is fine in terms of action scenes, but doesn’t have the charisma or cold steel glares of Dudikoff. As I said, this is still a fun action movie and if you like ninjas, holy shit this movie has the ninjas. Ninjas in black, ninjas in blue, ninjas in red, cloned ninjas, hell, even aquatic ninjas, this one has them all. The emphasis is on martial arts, so more hand to hand and less guns than previous American Ninja entries. I didn’t mind that approach at all and I love the tournament inclusion, but I do wish we had more colorful entrants and focus on those fights. The story gives us a ridiculous villain, dreams of a cloned ninja militia, an ASMR glider lesson, and of course, a toxin that only be cured through the power of ninja skills. I do miss Dudikoff, but Blood Hunt is still good fun and fans of 80s action and ninjas should give it a chance.
No nakedness. A slight amount of blood, from gunshot wounds, but most of the violence is bloodless. The action here is almost relentless, with a wealth of ninja battles of all kinds throughout and some cool set pieces. All manner of weapons are unleashed, from ninja stars to nunchaku to dual scimitars and beyond. While most of the action is martial arts related, the finale uncorks some epic gun battles as well. Few men can fire off endless rounds without aiming like Steve James, so expect him to do just that here and rack up an impressive body count. A good amount of tough guy talk and bromance lines, with the strange ASMR glider talk standing out as especially bizarre. James also yells a ninja to death, believe it or not. In addition to the glider scene and James’ insane presence, this movie has a wild disguise reveal that is hilarious and awesome, a bad ass female ninja, and a plot that is nonsense but still fun to watch. A little out there at times, but mostly in line with what you’d expect. But in conclusion, I have no idea what they were thinking and the movie is both disappointing and glorious at the same time.
Overall Insanity: 3/10