Sunday, August 14, 2011

365 Movies Day #139 "The Hunted"

No, not the 2009 film with Tommy Lee Jones and Benicio Del Toro. We're talking 90s action here! And who better to add to a 90s action queue than Christopher Lambert? Well there are plenty of other icons to chose from. We'ved used Jean Claude and Brian Bosworth. Of course there are Segal, Speakman, Schwartzenneger, Lundgren and a myriad of other bad hombres, but Lambert is definitely a player. Some of his films like "Highlander", "Fortress" and "Mortal Kombat" were important parts of my formative years. This film is one of his best.

Lambert plays a businessman on a trip to Japan where he meets a beautiful girl. It's love at first site until a ninja assassin shows up to kill her. In the process Lambert barely escapes with his life after seeing the assassin's face. From that point on he is marked for death and the only way to fight back is to become like the assassin with the help of a wisened ninja mentor.

The main badguy is played by John Lone ("War", "The Shadow", "The Last Emperor"). Lambert's badass mentor is played by Yoshio Harada who, unfortunately died this year. The film also stars Joan Chen ("The Last Emperor", "Twin Peaks") and James Saito (SHREDDER FROM "TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURLES: THE MOVIE"!!!). Filled with some amazing sword sequences such as Harada fending off a ninja army in the subway and the final battle between Lone and Lambert, this movie delivers all sorts of ninja goodness. Any time you get a sword in Lambert's hands it's a good thing.

Director J.F. Lawton hasn't really done much else in the directing arena, but he has written a few of the most memorable screenplays around including "Pretty Woman" and one of Segal's cooler flicks in "Under Siege".

A great way to end a 90s action film streak!


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