The Dragon Lives Again 2022 Redux (1977)

Look…I had to okay? I just had to. My first review on the channel WAY back in 2017 was “The Dragon Lives Again” a film I chose mainly because it was (at the time) my all time favourite good/bad movie. and while I’ve grown and diversified in all the time i’ve been doing this, my love for this film has honestly not deminished one iota. I LOVE this movie, for its big, stupid, bizarre, copyright infringing heart and soul it manifests and everything it stands for.

Obviously with it being my first review on the channel and the 2nd ever review I wrote for this thing! (the first being a pilot episode I wrote and partially edited that…didnt feel right so I scrapped it.) after 5 years it waaaas beginning to look a little creaky. at the time I wrote the review I wasnt as honed on research as I am now, I didnt have nice lighting kits or a studio grade mic or a decent machine to edit on, I didnt structure my scripts, my work around pacing and my channel branding was frankly atrocious, I put ZERO passion into my delivery on the mic… (the things you learn as you grow)

I worked with what I could at the time, but generally I kind of treat my work at this point as two “eras” the first being Seasons 1-5 Basically everything from the first review up to “Jack Frost” which was a learning curve and as such things are very much a “Work in progress” and then from Seasons 6 to the this review I kind of feel like I had chance to stop, recharge, rework my content, improve my methodology and develop into something that today im beyond happy with. it feels like my work from Season 6 has led to now and my revisiting this video.

So much has been discovered about “The Dragon Lives Again” in the 5 years since my initial review went live, better quality copies of the film have surfaced, theres more information around how it was distributed, not to mention that theres generally just…a TON to talk about in this film that in my original review I absolutely failed to do. I didnt want to do a 2.5D remake of my original review like I did with “The American Ninja 2” because I felt more needed to be said. So this is a from the ground up redo. taking on what i’ve learned and putting it into one of the most comprehensive reviews of this movie that I could possibly aim for. we’ve come full circle and this era of TYTD is now coming to something of an end. I feel a lot happier about things with this movie now having proper representation on the channel, and I hope you enjoy it.

As for the future? well; in the time that this review was completed and uploaded i’ve upgraded my mic, my computer, my editing software and much much more. it’s a new beginning, and I hope you enjoy where we take the show going forward (Dont worry, we arnt shaking things up THAT much…consider it a polish and shine rather than a ‘ripping the heart out’ moment)

So! To ‘The Dragon Lives Again’ the film that launched the channel and forever may it sail!

The poster is SO badass, I just wish there was more high quality promotional material from this film available because as it stands ALL my editing work for promotional materials for this movie had to revolve around this poster and low res screengrabs…poo poo.

The Ninja Sqaud (1986)

I cant believe it took almost 5 years to get onto a Godfrey Ho movie! Since this review was published I have been made aware that I’ve covered a couple of movies that Ho was *rumoured* to have worked on and in one case a film he was responsible for supervising distribution in the west for.

But this is the first out and out indisputable Ho movie to come through the doors of TYTD towers and, while all the Ho tropes are here, it’s…not exactly his best known work. it’s a fine enough movie. I just dont really think it delivers the full Ho clout that say “Ninja Terminator” would.

That being said! I do hope to cover more Ho in future! going so far as to pick up Gold Ninja Videos “Ninja Vortex” set so that I can really bring out the best of Ho in future!

Really; thats one of the only problems with doing this channel on a weekly basis, given how long it takes to write, record and edit each episode I can only really produce 1 maybe 2 videos a week tops (and im stretched at that!) I also have a MASSIVE pile of martial arts movies to go through even with the 7 movie Ho pack out of the equation! I just wish I had more time to put to the channel honestly as some of these martial arts movies have been in my collection “to watch” since before I even STARTED doing reviews…anyway! Godfrey Ho! pink ninjas! its all good! give it a watch!

This poster says NOTHING about the movie. and because all the colours are kind of on the same side of the colour wheel it doesnt really make anything stand out. it just looks like a load of variations of red splatted on the poster. needs more distinction.

The American Ninja 4: The Annihilation (1990)

As part of the 2nd half of our 5th anniversairy celebrations, im going to be dipping into the vaults to cover some movies that, in the past, i’d promised to get round to at some point. and kicking this off we’re finally putting a lid on “The American Ninja” series. I’ve been covering the sequels now for almost as long as the channels been in existence. and with the exception of the first film (which I intend to do a ‘Comedy Dining Experience’ on at some point in the future) we’ve finally arrived at the final chapter here. and WHAT a dissapointing wind down it was.

Im not going to say much more because, honestly, my review here says all there is to say. But I will say that I still find it frankly ASTOUNDING that they had two decently sized action stars in this film and they utilised them in probably the most cack handed way it’s possible to handle these things. I left BEYOND dissapointed. but yeh! after 5 years! we’re bringing this series to a close!

I really like this poster, its such a shame it’s in NO way reflective of the film itself.

Best of the Best 2 (1993)

Oh how the mighty have fallen. I wanted to like this one, I really did. but honestly it’s a total nothing of a film. a totally wasted opportunity thats so forgettable, that apart from the colosseum sections and being angry that Eric Roberts got top billing despite barely doing ANYTHING for the vast majority of the runtime. I can bearly remember anything about this film.

The original film was quite a decent effort, and set the bar very high on a sequel. I didnt expect the sequel to do better than the original. but I didnt expect the quality to drop quite so quickly. This is a series where my excitement to see part 3 went from “Oh man I cant wait!” to “If I can be bothered… in less than 80 minutes.

To add insult to injury, I cant even really show you exactly whats wrong with this film as due to a spurious copyright claim by returning absolute bastard company “Lasso Entertainment” who blocked the video worldwide and abused the appeals process to make sure my review never saw the light of day. Fortunately I uploaded an audio only version, so while its not what I envisioned. at least you can kind of see where I was going (a fully uncensored version with video will be making its way up to breach.tv in the new year.)

The posters literally the best part of this movie, and is 10 times cooler than the film ever will be.

“The Dragon Lives Again” (1978) Comedy Dining Experience

Lets not beat around the bush, this IS definitely a James Bond movie. heres my evidence:

*Bond theme – Check

*James Bond is actually in it – Check

*James Bond does the gun barrell thingie – Check

*James Bond tries to shag everything that moves – Check

* James Bond uses the phrase “This fellow reckons himself a fighter, what a stupid jerk.” – Check AND check.

I will be taking no further questions on this, if anyone has any issues with this clearly factual claim. talk to my co-host.

Greatest. martial arts film. ever.

Best of the Best (1989)

So; Here’s a bit of a cards on the table “Confessions” moment. a decent chunk of this season is VHS based; and the main reason for that decision is because while I was doing the writing and planning for this season I was also unpacking all my belongings into my recently refurbished room (I started writing scripts for this season in October last year) so while I was putting everything back it gave me a bit of chance to try and have a clearout and of all the formats in my collection, VHS is the most bulky and the the hardest to properly store.

So; I kinda sorta used this season to do some spring cleaning on my collection so I could thin out tapes I thought I might not keep based on the title and box art. and honestly? it’s been quite effective for most of the choices this season. a lot of what i’ve watched has either ended up being gifted on to others or found its way to refuse. but this movie? this movie right here? I was genuinely surprised at how entertaining it was. As I say in the review it really does have a lot going for it.

I initially chose it because I had 3 of the 4 films in this franchise on VHS and I figured if I did one of these a season it’d probably be a good way to get rid of 3 “Meathead” tapes from collection pretty easily. But instead the opposites ended up happening. I genuinely cant wait to watch the second one of these later in the year and I’ve been keeping my eye on a bluray collection of these movies now since I saw this one. Im hoping the sequels are as entertaining (if not as good) as this first one because if they are. I literally have no hesitation on upgrading all these to bluray quality and having the set as soon as possible.

Genuinely entertaining, fun and Eric Roberts is frankly astonishingly good in this. if you dont have the 20(ish) minutes needed to get through my full review and just want a quick caption. BUY THIS MOVIE NOW!

The poster for this ones a bit shite in all honesty. it doesnt really speak to me and it’s kind of difficult to work into marketing as it’s just a load of boxes inside boxes. Its hardly the most revolutionary jawdropping poster i’ve seen…its just…weird.

Jaws of the Dragon (1974)

This film was pretty rubbish. thats the lasting memory I have of this review (which was written and recorded in November/December last year and edited in early January of this year.) I literally cannot remember single detail of this film other than the fact it was cut to shreds and…well…for lack of a better word. it was shite. and im pretty happy I never have to sit through it again. it’s a total filler movie. it exists to simply kill time and make the movie that follows it look ten times better. once this review goes live; I shall be looking into selling my copy at the next convenience.

Actually; while we’re dealing with this. Here’s as good a place as any to talk about the VHS movie reviews of this season. so. for this season I decided to have a bit of a spring clean and as such I chose to try and cover more VHS based movies as possible (As they tend to take up the most shelf space and tend to be in various states of disrepair) so this seasons a little more top heavy on VHS content than previous seasons. all of the tape based movies in this run (barring 1) were first time watches and I had no idea what I was getting into. all I knew was that I wanted to free up some space and that the tapes I covered more often than not had interesting covers. Jaws of the dragon was a total mystery tape in that regard as the original boxart was missing and the spool of tape within the chassy was woefully short. It had a simple white lable and plaine text…I really didnt know what I was getting into with this one, and I’d saved this tape specifically because of it being a bit of an enigma. I was not impressed.

The True Game of Death (1979)

Yep. We’re doing Brucesplotation again. Look; theres honestly so many of them with such wildly varying quality that frankly. I cant NOT cover them. they’re such a fascinating concept to me. I touch upon this in my review for the film itself but…can you actually imagine a celebrity known for a VERY specific thing dying. and rather than cementing there talent for the work they produced. 2 dozen studios launch knock off versions of the exact same act while TRYING to make out that the now dead celebrity is in someway tied to the movie (Chevviesploitation lives on in our minds, hearts and souls.)

I just find the whole thing a REALLY weird concept and like a moth to a flame I just keep having to come back to it. That and im not going to lie…I own a metric crap ton of these movies via hauls i’ve inhereted over the years. So yeh! “The True Game of Death” one of the more boring and bizzare moves from the genre. basically a near shot for shot remake of “Game of death” but with way more slow-mo, all the expensive scenes missing and slightly crappier direction. is it the worst Brucesploitation film in the world? well. of all the ones i’ve seen and reviewed for this channel yes. yes it is…at least so far.

The UK big box ex-rental cover for this release is way better than this poster, unfortunately my VHS copy was super faded and there wernt any high res copies online. So the poster’s the best I have to work with. It’s not offensively bad. it’s just not my thing.

Mission for the Dragon (Maegwon) (1979)

Once again I decide to cover a martial arts movie. Once again I am dissapointed and baffled by exactly what the hell im watching. seriously I’ve very quickly learnt with the martial arts genre that the fight scenes rarely live up to the expectations of awesomness that the box art offers. but at the same time total randomness and bizarre asides always keep me hooked as I wonder what on earth is going on.

This films no different. Though the themes of Giallo cinema that run through this are very welcome and a refreshing change to the norm. It’s just a shame it isnt more widely utilised.

The only other thing I have to say is that since this episode was recorded and edited I’ve since found some more evidence to suggest that it’s the IMDB listing that is incorrect and that this film IS in fact a Godfrey Ho movie…Though as I said in the review Im not entirely surprised by that. Still Im always one who will admit a correction when needed!

 

(The VHS cover for this film is MUCH too good for this movie. this movie doesnt deserve it.)

 

Equally once again we have a film where finding decent posters or covers for them is remarkably slim. So here’s a copy of the UK VHS cover scanned in at 3k. hope you like it!:

 

Mission for the Dragon

Shogun Saints (Boxers of Loyalty and Righteousness) (1972)

A second article in one day!? yes I am spoiling you all! So! I’ve cocked up basically…when I plan my seasons I always try and do 3 TYTD episodes followed by a red triangle. This is for a couple of reasons. First and foremost is that their are more TYTD style films in the world than their are Red triangle ones. Red triangle episodes also take much longer to produce than TYTD episodes due to the amount of information that goes into them. And generally? I quite like keeping the red triangle episodes as once a month episodes purely because it’s like a nice little treat for the end of the month.

This month however I messed up. I’ve had a lot of work on my plate both in my personal life and behind the scenes on the channel and as a result I misread my schedules and ended up with 1 episode too many in this season…I usually try and aim for 18…though based on my current counting it’s now closer to 19 if not 20…rest assured next week their will be an “As scheduled” red triangle episode but in the mean time here’s one more TYTD episode to keep you going.

This ones a bit of an oddity…apparently it’s a quite rare film to own on video tape…it was part of the haul I secured a number of months ago and honestly? It’s very unmemorable. I dont want to come across as egotistical or vein in any sense but honestly? I’d say if you’ve watched this review of the film you’ve pretty much seen everything worth seeing from the movie. it’s not at all memorable and when I need to free up some space in a few months time I’ll most likely end up flogging this one…it’s about as much fun as a quite tame kung-fu movie can be…meh..this film is meh…

 

(the label on my VHS copy of this keeps falling off and the spindles that are supposed to hold the tape inside the carton artn snug enough to hold it…as a result doing the “Packaging shot” for this episode was a total nightmare…with either the label falling off while on the turntable, Or the whole tape falling out of the carton and taking the box with it as they hurtle towards the ground…cracking fun I can assure you.)