Sometimes it happens that although you know a movie is bad, it still surprises you to be worse than your expectations. We had this with Transformers III and One way trip, now we have it with the 1994 videogame-adaptation “Double Dragon“. Based on a popular fighting game franchise, where you and your pal walk as the brothers Billy (blue) and Jimmy (Red) Lee through the streets and knock out (kill?) every person you encounter, for absolutely everyone wants to kill you.
You do this in order to safe (DD1+3,4,5…)Billy’s girlfriend Marion or avenge her death (DD II), though it then turns out she hsn’t been dead at all. You get the idea…
In the midninties, Hollywood decided to screw the whole franchise by making a movie out of it. Starring Scott Wolf as Billie, Marc Dacassos as Jimmy, Alyssa Milano as Marion, and, oh, Robert Patrick as the villain. Robert. Fucking. Patrick. The man that almost killed the Terminator, and who is probably one of the greatest villains of all time. The T-1000. He is the villain in a video-game based martial arts flick. Oh there is no way this movie could possibly suck.
Or is it?
Well, first of all: The acting (not that you would look for oscar-candidates here) is really bad. It’s so bad that even the synchro-actors didn’t care (the funny thing is: I just bought the DVD, and it has no OV, just the German version ). Only Patrick has got a little bit of coolness, but even that he loses at the end whe he gets his ass kicked by…himself? Yeah that’s part of the story, and I will come to that in a minute. Fact is: Patrick does not deal a single blow in the movie! Niente. Oh, he is super rich and powerful, can take over other people’s bodies and so (hm, that reminds me of Terminator II…), but he himself does not fight.
Then we have the Lees. God, they are obnoxious! Especially Billy, who is a pain in the neck. He cheats, he makes fun of other people, he is disrespectful, he is a bad loser, he is after every skirt and that causes to endanger everybody’s life… our hero, ladies and gentlemen.
Now the story: As I told above, the usual plot of DD is that the Lee brothers try to rescue their girlfriend Marion from the shadowgang, and fight everybody that stands in their way.
The typical action movie story. So how can they possibly fuck this up?G uess what: There is no kidnapped girlfriend! Marian, who is a girlfriend to neither of them, is a gang leader herself (!) and does… actually nothing in the movie, she’s just there, and at the end she kicks another chick’s butt (not as interesting as it may sound, folks). It’s not that Alyssa Milano had no experience in being kidnapped in an action movie…
Instead we get New Angeles’ (yep, after an earthquake everything went downhill) most powerful man (Patrick) in his journey to become the most powerful man…of New Angeles? If you’re scratching your head right now and ask youself what the reason behind this is, you know exactly how I’m feeling. In order to achieve his goal, he has to put together the two halfs of a magic medallion, of which he has got the one half. The other half belongs to the Lee-brothers. And that’s it.
And now the most important part: The fight scenes. I mean, in a martial arts movie, even if it’s a comedy, there should at least be decent/ good fight scenes. Am I right? Well, it looks like I’m wrong, and a movie called “Double Dragon” doesn’t need to be about fighting. Why not let the protagonists run away instead of kicking ass? They few times they actually fight… well, let’s just say a Bud Spence and Terrence Hill movie has better fight scenes than Double Dragon – the movie
While this is a sad thing for Double Dragon, this certainly makes Spencer-Hill movies even more awesome!
The Double Dragon Franchise also has some kick-ass soundtrack. So you can be sure that none of the music from the games are in the movie.
Oh, one thing I forget to tell you: The story was written by Paul Dini. Dini, would later become one of DC’s lead comicbook authors and also responsible for the Batman: Arkham Asylum games…
Finally, I give you the music trailer for the movie, which – so sad it is – seems to promiss a decent movie.