Ninja III: The Domination
Directed by Sam Firstenberg
Starring Sho Kosugi, Lucinda Dickey, and Jordan Bennett
Release Date: June 11, 2013
Ninjas. Remember those guys? We all wanted to be them when we were kids. They were big in the ’80s. Every discount store you went into had some cheap plastic ninja toys that your mom would buy you because she had to use that money originally earmarked for your Atari 2600 to buy your little sister corrective orthopedic shoes. Almost every action movie heavy had a few ninjas – or even an army of them – at their disposal, and disposed they easily were in the final battle royale. For a few years during the rule of Ronald Reagan – yes, the actor – ninjas were even bigger than Jesus. Some of us even figured Christ himself could have been a ninja. He did some pretty ninja stuff in that Bible, you know. Ninjas ruled all. Film production companies from Hong Kong to Halifax were churning out their own ultra-violent chop socky epics at bargain prices for the waning grindhouses and drive-ins of the world and the thriving home video market.
Remember Cannon Films? The blowhard indie movie studio that specialized in cheapjack action flicks and endless movies about interchangeable dance crazes (thank heavens they didn’t survive long enough to make Macarena: The Motion Picture) really loved ninjas. In fact, they banked their entire financial longevity on ninja movies. If they had made the Harry Potter movies somehow ninjas would have been worked into the narrative. Infamous studio heads Menahem Golan and Yoram Globus were the undisputed kings of low-rent cinematic trash that went better with pizza and brown ale than wine and pita crisps. Before Cannon’s theatrical output consisted mostly of flag-waving Chuck Norris adventures and inner city revenge yarns, the studio released movies with ninjas or at least the word “ninja” in the title once a year on average. They have even their very own ninja franchise, unsurprisingly titled American Ninja.
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