No Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee invented a genre; Jackie Chan invented a genre; Sly Stallone invented a minigenre, all with various approaches to personal combat. But these guys deeply understood how film works so they could tap the relevant pressure points.
Van Damme did not invent a genre here, despite the best efforts of his agents. Its not because he is stupid, after all we tolerate Arnie. No, the problem here is that this lug has no understanding of the distance between the screen and us, and if he did, no tools to help span that. Actually, I like the “sequels” I have seen better, if only because they had a better “Raging-Bull-like” mastery of photographing the ring.
Posted in 2003
Ted’s Evaluation — 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.