January 1, 2014

Bloodfist 3: Force to Fight (1992 film)

Building on how Bloodfist 2 had so little continuity with Bloodfist 1 that Jake Riley seemed like a completely different dude in both, Bloodfist 3 tosses Jake aside entirely and sets the remainder of the franchise down the path of each being a separate film with a separate lead, with only the Bloodfist moniker and the presence of Don "The Dragon" Wilson (in all but the last) being what strings these together in the barest minimum requirement for being a series. This wasn't actually started through intention, as Forced to Fight was produced as a separate film, and even lacks the tagged on Bloodfist 3 when the title appears in the credits. The brand was slapped on to give it an extra kick in theaters, but it didn't succeed as the film performed so poorly (pulling in just over $35,000 in its limited theatrical run) that every other installment from here on out will be straight to video.

December 18, 2013

Bloodfist 2 (1990 film)

Let's open this by saying there's absolutely zero continuity between this film and the last. I about expected as much, but it still feels a little hollow that we never find out what happened to Nancy (the first film was Riley Bowman's lone credit, so they might not even have been able to get her back), what Jake's business partner Hal has been up to (probably still bumming around the Philippines to dodge the IRS), Jake apparently has both kidneys again (though it's never commented on either way), and the villain of both pictures is played by the exact same actor (Joe Mari Avellana) with zero reference to him visibly being the same guy. No "I was the third brother!", no "I'm still alive muwhahahahahah!", no "I'm a slightly more well fed clone!" He's just there and we move forward. If I had to guess, I'd bet this was a separate kickboxing script they had laying around which was retooled for the franchise when they needed a quick sequel. To this day, it's a pretty standard Hollywood tactic, though most will do a hair more work than simply "search and replace" the lead's name.