Thursday, August 27, 2009

Day of the Panther (1988)

Brian Trenchard-Smith is the man of the year for me. I don't know why, but suddenly my collection is flooded by his masterpieces. Day of the Panther is a slightly forgotten kung fu-movie that he did during the eighties, and I wonder what's the story behind it? He obviously shot the sequel at the same time and they where released the same years. The graphics looks cheap, but it's fun and a little bit cheesy slice of ozploitation!

Edward John Stazak plays Jason Blade, a kung fu-fighter trained in the ancient Panther-school in China. When his partner dies during a secret operation he comes to Australia to get the killers himself. The local police force is of course not happy with him going after the famous business man Damien Zukor (Michael Carman), but they realise also it's a good opportunity to let someone take of this evil drug dealer (and his henchmen) once and for all. 

Do you want eighties fashion? Eighties people and eighties dialogue? Then this is the movie for you! You'll also get some basic, but fast and good, kung fu and a lot of slow-motion! Brian Trenchard-Smith is a man of style, and even if the budget is low he really makes everything looks more expensive than it is. The first scene is a chase/fight in an old factory, that partly dosen't work because the woman who's chased isn't so good in fighting as you have wished. But the stunts are nice and it's shot in a glorious way. 

The rest of the action is better, and Edward John Stazak is a good fighter and really, really fast. What became of him anyway? He did these two movies and then disappeared. It's a pity, because he could had a decent career in Hong Kong as a western baddie or just continue ordinary acting. Anyway, Day of the Panther isn't a bad movie, it's cheesy but well made and has good action. If I have the power (and mostly, inspiration), I will try to watch the sequel tonite and see what happens to Jason Blade and his "mates".


Dennis Grondman said...

"Useless but very fun trivia Eddie Staszak is a performing musician (accordeon) nowadays billed as "Eduardo" Google altoproductions

Ninja Dixon said...

Dennis, thanks! What a career-change! :)