Ninja Apocalypse (2014)

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From director Lloyd Lee Barnett comes this post-apocalyptic martial arts version of The Warriors that more or less fails to impress, despite a pretty good cast.

After the apocalypse has struck, many warriors have formed clans and have spent many years fighting each other. One such clan is the Lost Clan, led by Cage. When Grandmaster Fumitaka invites all clans for a summit, Cage chooses his top warriors to head to the summit. The warriors chose are Surge, Sky, Mar, and Trillion.

At the summit, Fumitaka has invited all of the martial arts clans to join together to face an even bigger threat. At the end of his speech, which results in the clans accepting Fumitaka’s offer, the Grandmaster is assassinated. Someone has spotted Cage as the assassin and now, the Lost Clan must fend for themselves by taking on rival clans, zombies, and the real assassin, all in order to survive.

The script for this interesting film, done by Ashley Scott Meyers, is somewhat influenced by the cult classic film The Warriors. However, what stands out between the two is that here, the clans each possess a special skill. The Lost Clan’s power is electricity. It is understandable to a film Ninja Apocalypse, but there aren’t many ninjas in the film and it seems when the script calls for zombies to enter the fray, it somewhat goes downhill from there. Had the film just been about rival clans facing off against each other in the post apocalypse, then it could have been far better.

Credit does go out to the cast for getting through with the film. German actor Christian Oliver, who had starred in the kickboxing film Romantic Fighter in 1999 and has appeared in many films since, holds his own as clan leader Cage. The rest of the clan members all show different personalities, from Les Brandt’s hot-headed Surge (who is also Cage’s brother) to the brains of the bunch, Kaiwi Lyman’s Trillion. In his brief time, it seems like Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa seems to make anything he does watchable and his cameo as Fumitaka proves no different. However, one can only wish Ernie Reyes Jr. had more to offer as Hiroshi, Fumitaka’s right hand man.

The action sequences, choreographed by Kim Do Nguyen, are short and are a mixed bag as well. Some fight scenes are okay, some are not okay. The fight scenes consist of swordplay, extreme martial arts, and some pretty, or rather, not so pretty special effects. Some of the special effects looked quite hokey during certain aspects of the fight scenes. Plus, the addition of zombies seem to hamper the film rather than make the film more exciting.

Ninja Apocalypse is a “meh” kind of film that had potential with an all-round cast. However, when a top martial artist and actor is wasted, special effects are not exciting, and has an unnecessary addition of zombies, this is something that should go in the vaults of Mystery Science Theater 3000 rather than be taken seriously. Worth a rental only if interested.

WFG RATING: C-

Naedomi Media presents a Ninja Production Services production. Director: Lloyd Lee Barnett. Producers: A. Shawn Austin and Mark Heidelberger. Writer: Ashley Scott Meyers. Cinematography: Aashish Gandhi. Editing: Max Carlson.

Cast: Christian Oliver, Les Brandt, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Ernie Reyes Jr., Isaac C Singleton Jr., Kaiwi Lyman, West Liang, Tara Macken, Antoinette Kalaj, Alvin Hsing, Bryan Cartago.

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