Daily News header

Afro Ninja: Destiny DVD Review

By     get stories by email

YouTube-Inspired Martial Arts Flick Arrives on DVD


I guess it's not fair to expect much from a movie inspired by a homemade video posted on YouTube, even if the original registered over 80 million hits online. But this is what we have in Afro Ninja: Destiny, a picture calculated to cash in on the success of an internet phenomenon. If this is a new trend, can full-length feature spin-offs of Tay "Chocolate Rain" Zonday and Chris "Leave Britney Alone!" Crocker be far behind?
That being said, Afro Ninja actually looks more like a throwback to martial arts movies from the Seventies, and even includes a cameo by Jim Kelly who co-starred opposite the legendary Bruce Lee back then in Enter the Dragon. Regrettably, where that low budget chopsocky at least featured fantastic fight sequences, this cheesy retread has nothing going for it, despite the fact that writer/director/star Mark Hicks takes a credit for choreographing its sloppy stunts.

Afro Ninja is so bad it's a challenge to decipher exactly what Hicks was going for here. My guess is that it was designed as a comedy lampooning both the blaxploitation and karate genres. The cast does include a couple of recognizable faces in Marla "Florence" Gibbs of The Jeffersons, and that fast-talking fat guy who plays the delivery man in the latest series of Budweiser commercials.

The picture's plot is straightforward enough. At the point of departure we find the film's protagonist, Reggie (Hicks) harboring an unrequited crush on a pretty co-worker and yearning for his first promotion at the Post Office where he's worked for ten years. His fortunes change the day he opens a mysterious package postmarked 1975 which has just belatedly arrived from Japan. For, the box contains a magic sword which transforms the hapless loser into a butt-kicking hero with an enormous afro.

Anything this badly acted and cheaply produced, belongs on YouTube.

Fair (1 star)
Unrated
Running time: 88 minutes
Studio: Lightyear Entertainment

To see a trailer for Afro Ninja: Destiny,

Kam Williams is a syndicated film and book critic who writes for 100+ publications. He is a member of the New York Film Critics Online, the African-American Film Critics Association, and the NAACP Image Awards Nominating Committee. Contact him through NewsBlaze.

  Please click this get stories by email button to be notified about future stories, and please leave a comment below.

  Please leave a comment here     If it does not display within 10 seconds, please refresh the page

Related Movie Reviews News

Scarlett sets off on a bus in Iran and ends up in the tunnels that lie below Paris. There are encounters with a Grim Reaper, the odd zombie, blood spatter. Fodder for a B-rated horror movie but, unfortunately, not one you'd want to watch.
Movie reviewer Kam Williams shares his weekly previews that make choosing a film fun. Look for films that open this week such as Sin City: A Dame to Kill for, Are you Here and more
Movie reviewer Kam Williams gives the film, 'The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears' 2 stars. He states that it is difficult to decipher whodunit and it is guaranteed to have you still scratching your head even after its confounding resolution.
The documentary, Second Opinion investigates what two doctors say was a coverup of a toxic, but promising cancer drug, that may have been an effective cure.
Movie reviewer Kam Williams says the film. The Calling is tarnished slightly by periodic displays of grisly crime scenes apt to upset audience members averse to gratuitous gore.
Jeff Bridges eulogy for Robin Williams, plus James Scully reading at a Santa Cruz cafe, introduced by Adrienne Rich. Chris Butters reports.

 

NewsBlaze Writers Of The Month



Popular Stories This Month

newsletter logo

NewsBlaze
Copyright © 2004-2014 NewsBlaze Pty. Ltd.
Use of this website is subject to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy  | DMCA Notice               Press Room   |    Visit NewsBlaze Mobile Site