The Man Movie Encyclopedia: The Last Dragon
Sorry about the MME no-showing last Monday. I did a pilot episode for my new wrestling column, and for some reason they didn’t post it until Friday. I have no idea why. Anyway, here’s the article if you guys missed it. It seemed like those who’ve read it, really dug it. So, we’re gonna go with it. I’m gonna talk with the bigwigs, get this bad boy scheduled. Hot damn, Caliber two-times a week.
Anyways, we’re back in action this week with a movie that defines the term “cult film”, as well as the term “insane”, The Last Dragon.
We start off with Bruce Leroy in training, where his sensei will just randomly shoot arrows at him. Now, I’m gonna tell you right now that if I’m Bruce Leroy, me and the old guy are gonna have a talk. As in, look old man, while I’m training, if you throw anything at me that’s harder than a Beanie Baby, I’m gonna punch you in the face so hard it’ll break your leg.
So, Bruce ends up catching a special arrow, which the sensei says means he’s completed his training. However, Bruce is bummed, so the sensei tells him to find The Master, some where in New York, and gives him a medallion. Bruce leaves, and dresses like he lives in China, circa 1756, it’s ridiculous. Immediately afterward, he’s in some theater watching Enter The Dragon, where for some fucking reason people think it’s acceptable to just turn on a boombox and start break dancing. After order is restored, the film cuts off, and we meet Sho’ Nuff. He’s the self-proclaimed Shogun of Harlem. I mean…what fucking world am I in? This is absolute insanity at it’s best.
The movie starts up again, and just as Sho is about to enjoy the movie, a kid yells out that he knows who could beat him, at which point Sho and his crew calmly enquirer about who. The kid says Bruce Leroy, someone that Sho is not familiar with. Yet for some reason, one of his crew knows that Bruce Leroy is what standing between Sho and total supremacy. I’d be really pissed if I was wondering what kept me from total supremacy, and my boy is just like “What? You never asked me!”. Anyway, Bruce Leroy is eating popcorn with fucking chopsticks, blowing my mind, and declines to fight. Also, Sho’ rattles off a bunch of legends about Bruce, a guy he didn’t know 5 seconds prior. A fight breaks out with a host of movie goers, and Sho makes quick work of them, because as he says, he’s the Shogun of Harlem.
We then watch the music video for Rhythm of the Night, because why not, Motown paid for this movie, you’re damn well gonna dig Debarge. We also meet Eddie Arcadian, kind of a crime boss who’s big crime ambitions are to get his annoying girlfriend’s music video on her show. Afterwards we’re introduced to Laura Charles, a video host and singer. Her manager, or something, I don’t know, he says that Arcadian is gonna kill him if she doesn’t play the video, and she’s a total bitch and says tough shit. After her show is over, she’s leaving, just as Bruce happens to be walking by, dressed like in the picture up there, and she’s caught the vapors. She can’t quit staring at him. Of course! I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been out, dressed like Macho Man Randy Savage, and the girls are just over-come with desire. Good Lord. If I were dressed like Bruce Leroy and even glanced at a woman, SVU detectives would be at my door in 20 minutes. So, her limo driver is actually one of Arcadian’s guys, and they attempt to kidnap her, but Bruce puts the kibosh on that, but accidentally drops his medal.
Well, Laura ends up getting kidnapped and shown the video, and still she denies them. I do love this world where the host has a shit ton of clout, as if I wanted to get on Jeopardy and kidnapped Trebek to demand he put me on. So, because this movie is this movie, the bad guys accidentally leave behind something that contains the address of their evil head quarters. Naturally. So, Bruce shows up, dressed like a ninja, and makes light work of the room. He then takes Laura home and gets his medallion back. Elsewhere, Sho Nuff shows up at Bruce’s dad’s pizza parlor, and trashes the place. Like, I get they’re trying to create a tense, emotional moment, but Sho Nuff walks around without a shirt, and just football shoulder pads with the Japanese flag on them. How the fuck am I to take this seriously? I mean, let’s take Schindler’s List. What if all the Nazis were dressed like Sho Nuff? I think it might lose a bit of it’s emotional impact. Man, now I desperately want to see that movie.
In order to deal with Bruce, Arcadian hires an all star team of goons. Later, Laura convinces him to be her bodyguard, and while at her dance club, she shows him a montage of Bruce Lee clips, and he starts getting all giddy and going “waaaa!” while kicking and punching, and Laura is all “Oh man, what a stud”. NO! I mean, I’ll take anything this movie gives with a smile, but I absolutely cannot accept a girl seeing that and still be digging him. It’d be like if I was with a girl and Arnold came on screen, so I jumped up and started flexing. Or Hulk Hogan, and I got up and again started flexing, and doing the “lemme hear you!” thing. No way she’s sticking around. Although I do freely admit to a few months ago, I was getting amorous with a woman and I insisted on putting on Bloodsport, so I could basically have it all, George Costanza style. She kept getting annoyed with me because I’d stop every now and then and be like “Oh shit! I love this part! Chong Li is such a bad-ass!”.
Bruce ends up leaving, because he thinks he knows how to find the Master. But it just ends up being a Fortune Cookie machine. Naturally. Over at 7th Heaven, Laura has been tied up, along with Bruce’s brother, so he can fulfill his masterplan of….you know, I have absolutely zero fucking idea what he wants at this point. Bruce shows up, along with his students, and they do battle with Arcadian’s gang. Afterwards, it all comes down to the final showdown with Sho Nuff, where midway through, Sho obtains the Glow. He’s all red and awesome, making sparks and shit fly out of his hands and feet. He has the upper hand [and feet], but makes the mistake of asking Leroy one too many times who’s the Master. As it happens, Leroy is the Master, and now he gets to Glow too. So, they have a human-light-saber duel, which ends with Arcadian trying to shoot Leory, because he’s too stupid to assume that he’s just gonna catch the bullet with his teeth. Duh. Well, everyone is tied up for the cops, and everything ends well. Except, nobody was like “Holy shit! HE CAUGHT A FUCKING BULLET WITH HIS TEETH!”. They literally acted as if were nothing. Seriously? If I did something like that, I’d have to move to a remote location in the mountains for 2 reasons: 1. Because I couldn’t be around people who didn’t lose their minds with amazement that I just caught a bullet with my TEETH, and 2. Because of me doing that, I’d become a super douchebag, with a massive ego, and no one would want to be around me, because everything I did would be a reminder of that moment. Like, if I were foolish enough to get married, our wedding vows would simply be my fiance telling everyone about the time I was super sweet, glowing, and catching bullets with my teeth. And then I’d get the Glow and chop the cake in half. Awesome.
MAN MOVIE ENCYCLOPEDIA TALLY:
Guys Beat Up: 32
Swear Words: 7
Fight at a Motel? No
Guy Get Girl? Yes
Guy Smoke Cigarettes? No
In the opening, we see Bruce chop an arrow as it flies through the air. This was done for real, and took 2 hours to get right.
Billy Blanks, the King of Tae-Bo, was also in running for Bruce Leroy, but they felt Taimak had an innocence that was needed for the role.
Vanity was their one and only choice for Laura.
Vanity was also a major, MAJOR coke-fiend, and almost died due to kidney failure as a result. She coasted for quite a while, but did end up dying from it just a few months ago.
Released by Tristar on March 22nd, 1985, to 1,038 theaters. The Last Dragon was created on a budget of $10 million dollars, and opened up at #4, with a theater average of $5,062, and a first weekend total of $5,254,359 . After it’s run, The Last Dragon ended up with a domestic total of $25,754,284 .
C’MON BENNETT, LET’S PARTY:
I can only sum up The Last Dragon in one word: INSANE. The fact that his movie was made with serious intentions is beyond all comprehension, and 100% confirms to me that everyone in Hollywood was BLASTED OUT OF THEIR MINDS ON COCAINE. I mean…holy shit. How is something like this created? How did people in power read this and decide to green light it?! Don’t get me wrong, I love this movie. It’s absolutely amazing. It’s insanely fun and original, but it wasn’t made to be a cult-like film, it was made with serious intention. A movie made with serious intention with a character like Sho Nuff, and where people catch bullets with their teeth. The Last Dragon is unlike anything else, and is a film that has to be seen to be believed. Absolutely top shelf stuff.
5 Head-Butts Out Of 5. [this is graded on a very different scale, because this movie is insane]