Throwback martial arts action film The Last Kumite heads to streaming in 2024, and here’s the trailer.
There is no question that the 1980s was a vintage time for action films, particularly in Hong Kong. There was a fruitful period in the mid 1980s when Hong Kong directors would hire American martial artists to go toe to toe with onscreen, both to broaden the international appeal and show a wide range of styles.
From Cynthia Rothrock going up against Sammo Hung in Shanghai Express to Richard Norton’s multiple bust ups with Jackie Chan in the likes of City Hunter and Mr Nice Guy, these performers went on to headline a series of low budget American action films that have since gained a cult following, perhaps most notably the China O’Brien series and the numerous No Retreat, No Surrender sequels
The Last Kumite looks set to be a throwback to that style, the synopsis reads as follows:
One last kumite, one final battle – for the life of his daughter.
The Last Kumite is an action packed old school martial arts fighting movie in the style of 80’s and 90’s classics like Bloodsport, Kickboxer and No Retreat, No Surrender. It follows Michael Rivers, a skilled martial artist and is forced to fight in an illegal fighting tournament in order to save his daughter. Along his journey he discovers other martial artists have also been forced to fight to save their loved ones.
The ensemble cast is akin to an Expendables of 1990s martial arts cinema, including genre legends Cynthia Rothrock, Michel Qissi, Matthias Hues, Richard Norton, Kurt McKinney, Billy Blanks, Abdel Qissi, David Yeung, and David Kurzhal. Newcomer Mathis Landwehr stars in the leading role of Michael.
Ross W. Clarkson directed the film from a screenplay he co-wrote with Sean David Lowe.
The film was funded by action cinema fans via IndieGoGo and Kickstarter and is currently due to be released straight to streaming in early 2024.
Watch the trailer below: