Jason Stillwell, a Bruce Lee fan, is beaten numerous times and trains from the ghost of Lee. Jason then must use his newly acquired skills to save Seattle from a crime syndicate, whose top martial artist is the deadly Ivan
Rating: 2 out of 10
Sometimes it’s hard to tell where terrible movie begins, and movie camp ends. Such is the case with “No Retreat, No Surrender.”
This is truly a laughably bad movie. A boy’s father has his dojo taken from him, they split town to Seattle, only to find he runs into trouble with local kids. Stop me if you’ve heard this one… cough… Karate Kid… cough. So he takes up karate lessons with the ghost of Bruce Lee after visiting his grave and begging him for guidance. Yup, couldn’t make this up.
Throw in terrible acting, unfocused directing, and a love story wedged in with a montage of corny cliches, and you have a mess of a movie. No bad movie would be complete without a stereotypical, token black best friend who raps and break dances, a fat bully who shovels down burgers and cake, along with a Russian bad guy played by Jean Claud Van Dam who he fights in an anti-climactic ending. It’s the perfect a wretched movie that jumps the boundaries of skill and storytelling into a place where there is a complete lack of imagination and narrative.
There are moments that are really funny because of how bad they are, especially when the token black friend busts some cheesy-ass rhymes while the scene cuts to break-dancing sequences that obviously use a dance double. This is the poor man’s “Karate Kid,” without any endearing qualities. I with I could give “No Retreat, No Surrender” a roundhouse kick to the face.