5.5/10
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81 user 76 critic

American Ninja (1985)

American soldier, obviously very skilled in martial arts, single-handedly takes on mercenaries in the Philippines.

Director:

Sam Firstenberg

Writers:

Paul De Mielche (screenplay), Avi Kleinberger (story) | 1 more credit »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Dudikoff ... Pvt. Joe T. Armstrong
Steve James ... Cpl. Curtis Jackson
Judie Aronson ... Patricia Hickock
Guich Koock Guich Koock ... Col. William T. Hickock
John Fujioka ... Shinyuki
Don Stewart ... Victor Ortega
John LaMotta John LaMotta ... Rinaldo (as John La Motta)
Tadashi Yamashita ... Black Star Ninja
Phillip Brock ... Pvt. Charley Madison (as Phil Brock)
Tony Carreon Tony Carreon ... Older Colombian
Roi Vinzon ... Younger Colombian
Manolet Escudero Manolet Escudero ... Bodyguard
Greg Rocero Greg Rocero ... Bodyguard (as Gregg Rocero)
Berto Spoor Berto Spoor ... Bodyguard
Michael Hackbart Michael Hackbart ... Bodyguard
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Storyline

Joe Armstrong, an orphaned drifter will little respect for much other than martial arts, finds himself on an American Army base in The Philippines after a judge gives him a choice of enlistment or prison. On one of his first missions driving a convoy, his platoon is attacked by a group of rebels who try to steal the weapons the platoon is transporting and kidnap Patricia, the base colonel's daughter, who happens to be along for the ride. Joe rescues Patricia and gets her safely back to the base, but everyone else in the platoon is killed, leading his superiors to conclude that Joe is guilty of cowardice, collaboration or simple incompetence. At the same time, the rebel leader vows revenge against the serviceman who disrupted his plans, and sends an army of ninjas to assassinate him and bring back Patricia. If he wants to survive and save the girl, Joe's going to have to draw on every last ounce of his training. Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Orient created the world's deadliest art. Now there's an American master! See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Philippines

Language:

English | Spanish | Japanese

Release Date:

30 August 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

American Warrior See more »

Filming Locations:

Philippines

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,234,837, 2 September 1985

Gross USA:

$10,499,694

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$10,499,694
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color (TVC)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After interviewing over 400 actors for the role of Joe Armstrong, it was Menahem Golan who saw Michael Dudikoff during one of his auditions and saw that he had a James Dean look to him and immediately stated "Get the Dudikoff kid!". See more »

Goofs

When Ninjas attack the convoy, a soldier enters a truck and Joe orders him to drive on. The truck's back is open as it drives toward the excavator blocking its way. After the truck passes the blockade, the back is closed with a green cover. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Pvt. Charley Madison: Hey! I'm great at that game. Back home in California, I'm like deadly. Hold on, I'll teach you girls how to play.
First Soldier: Yeah. Yeah.
Pvt. Charley Madison: Hey, Buddy, come on. We need an extra guy to even up the sides. Hey, come on.
See more »

Alternate Versions

All previous cuts were waived for the UK DVD release which is uncut. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Newhart: Jail, Jail, the Gang's All Here (1987) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Dudikoff is moved to violence using his deadly skills in this action- adventure in comic book-style
15 December 2008 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

This action art-martial movie is starred by the ranger Armstrong(Michael Duddikoff), a new soldier from an American base in Philipines islands. At the beginning he fights against corporal Jackson(Steve James), but early they befriend. But the colonel's daughter(Judie Aronson) is kidnapped and the prime suspect is a nasty villain, a gunrunner with a private army formed by violent Ninjas.The criminal ninjas worn in black, hooded, wielding a Katana on the black and using Shinkaisen, a metallic star they throw.Armstrong encounters ample reasons and opportunity to utilize his deadly skills trained by a Ninja master(John Fujioka).Armstrong along with Jackson go to evil's haunt and wipe out a passel of heinous nasties.

This classic-Ninja film is a violent and gripping story plenty of action and fights. Michel Dudikoff who is beefy as ever plays a tough ranger soldier forced into action and metes out his own justice when his girlfriend is abducted. The film is co-starred by Steve James(1952-1993), a bouncing and muscular actor, he habitually performed pal to action-stars; as, Michael Dudikoff,( three times: American Ninja 2, Avenging force), Chuck Norris and David Carradine, but unfortunately he early died. Furthermore appears John Fujioka, who trains Dudikoff in the Ninjitsu art-martial and he'll repeat in the following movie. Atmospheric musical score is composed by Michael Linn, made by means of synthesizer and appropriately adjusted to action.The picture is interestingly written by Gideon Amir, also producer, along with the usual, Menahem Golan and Yoram Globlus, from Cannon productions. The motion picture is acceptably directed by Sam Firstemberg, he's a low grade specialist on art-martial and Ninjas sub-genre. Followed by various sequels, starred by Dudikoff , later substituted by David Bradley, such as ¨American Ninja 2 : the Controntation, Ninja 3 : Blood Hunt, American Ninja: Annihilation, American Ninja V¨. Rating : Passable and entertaining.


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