The best movie you’ve never seen!
In 1989, the film Best best had a slightly shorter run in theaters. With just $1.7 million, the film was a hit on home video and cable. That’s why, three years later, a sequel, Best of the best 2, hit theaters… for a while. While the first film has maintained a certain cult status, the sequel, and the two others that followed, have been largely forgotten – until this edition of The Best Film You Haven’t Seen ever.
Best of the best 2 came from the same creative team behind the original, including director Robert Radler and producer/star Philip Rhee. Interestingly, it was co-written by a TV actor at the time named John Allen Nelson, who starred in Bay Watch for a few seasons, he played Paul The Wine Guy Friends, and has appeared as a guest star on most of TV’s biggest shows. In the nineties, he had a good side as a writer of B-action films. But I’m fading.
Best of the best 2 picks up where the first film left off, with the USA Karate Team being crowned the winners of their international competition by their rivals, the Koreans, who are watching their courage and brotherhood in the ring. The three directors from the last film, Eric Roberts’ Alex Grady, Philip Rhee’s Tommy Lee, and Chris Penn’s Travis Brickley, have gone into business together, operating a Karate School in Las Vegas, where Alex’s son, Walter, is a prized student. As a fan of the first film, there’s something strange about the three guys coming together to raise Alex’s son, especially since Travis was originally a violent racist who was completely liberated by the second film and which is now a peach of a. boy But, unfortunately, Chris Penn is still not a convincing martial artist, something the film plays up when Travis gets in over his head competing in underground cage matches at a fight club. called the Coliseum, which is ruled by a brutal killer named Brakus, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger’s former training partner, Ralf Moeller, who would be cast again – to very effective – in Ridley Scott’s Gladiator. Travis is killed while poor Walter watches, sending Tommy and Alex on the warpath.
So here’s the thing – Best of the best 2 very different from the first film. That one was a The Karate Kid/Rocky– sports movie style, while this is much more of an action movie driven by martial arts in a way Kickboxer or Blood sport. It shouldn’t really work, but it does, mainly because of the brilliant acting of directors Eric Roberts and Philip Rhee. Both men are often maligned as DTV guys, but they brought a lot of heart to it Best best movies, making them more than the average action fare you might find at a video store in the nineties.
Eric Roberts, in particular, is one of the most sensitive action heroes of all time, breaking into tears at the drop of a hat. He does that again in both films, but it’s very impressive. As a former martial arts student, I remember it being very affecting in the early series when Walter fails his test for his next belt but takes it gracefully, leading to a speech with a teary-eyed father about how he showed him a real winner. Yes. It’s cheesy but beautiful and a good message in line with the first film.
But, again, the film is much more than an action film, with Tommy and Alex trying to avenge the death of their friend at the hands of Brakus and his handler, a Vegas smoothie played by none other than Wayne Newton. The two, with Walter, the only witness, must be inside, high tail into the wilderness to live with their Native American grandmother, along with their uncle, played by Predator star Sonny Landham, conveniently revealed as a one-time fighter who defeated the unstoppable Brakus back in the day, which led him to train Alex and Tommy to fight him.
One thing that stands out is how Eric Roberts, despite being the bigger star, takes a back seat here in action to the more trained Phillip Rhee, who was given the kidnapped by Brakus’ men and forced into a series of brutal fights at the Coliseum, while Alex looks out for him. Roberts gets some gunplay, which seems to be more of a comfort zone than the Karate in the first film, but all the big fights go to Rhee, who is a great fighter but also has a vulnerability that many of his contemporaries had. The battle between him and Brakus almost has a terrible vibe, because Tommy doesn’t want to kill him, but fate makes him the killer. The sequel, Best of the best 3, it’s about Tommy leaving his friends behind and traveling across America to accept that he had to kill. But, in a strange twist, he ends up fighting the KKK in a small town as well as the franchise that seems to have more models on it. First blood than the other films.
Best of the best 2 different from the first film. However, there are plenty of moments that pay off for fans, such as Tommy’s adversary from the first film, Dae Han (played by Rhee’s real-life brother Simon), helping Alex save Tommy, and he swears a blood oath at the end of the first film to take the place of the brother he killed first in the ring. It’s good to see him live up to the promise so that the brotherhood aspect of the first film was not ignored. Roberts also gets a good love interest in Meg Foster as a TV reporter who, at first, seems to turn on him, only to go to bat for him in the end.
Surprisingly, Best of the best 2 it did much better than the first film in theaters, making about five times as much at the box office. However, due to the low gross of the first film, it was only about $6 million. But, again, it was a big hit on video, spawning two more direct-to-video sequels, though sadly, they had little in common with the first two films.
Taken together, both Best best movies are strong, host two great performances from Roberts and Rhee and good fights. If you haven’t checked them out but enjoy fight movies from that era or a show like Cobra Kaiwhich feels more like the Best best movies than The Karate KidI recommend it.