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The Gratuitous B-Movie Column: Out for Blood

June 14, 2021 | Posted by Bryan Kristopowitz
Out For Blood Don The Dragon Wilson

The Gratuitous B-Movie Column Issue #593: Out for Blood

Hello, everyone, and welcome once again to the internets movie review column that has never experienced multiple flashbacks in real life (also, this column has never worn a trenchocat and a cowboy hat, either), The Gratuitous B-Movie Column, and I am your host Bryan Kristopowitz. In this issue, issue five hundred and ninety-three, I take a look at the low budget action flick Out for Blood, which hit home video in mid-November 1993.

Out for Blood


Out for Blood, also known in some parts of the world as Karate Man and directed by Richard W. Munchkin, stars real deal martial artist Don “The Dragon” Wilson (he’s also given a “based on a concept by” credit) as John Decker, a badass martial artist and lawyer who, after watching his family get brutally murdered by a gang of thugs, is afflicted with selective amnesia and a burning need for retribution. Every so often Decker experiences a cloudy flashback where he can see who killed his wife and child and then tried to kill him but he can’t see the killers clearly. Decker’s doctor Jay McConnell (Ron Steelman) isn’t sure that Decker will ever regain/obtain the memories he seems to be missing, but he wants Decker to keep coming to therapy and trying to remember.

One night, while jogging in downtown Los Angeles, Decker witnesses a drug deal on the street and immediately goes into a rage. Decker attacks both the sellers and the buyers, killing several of them after being chased to the roof of a nearby building. This experience leads to Decker deciding that he should go out every night and kill any and all drug dealers and criminals he runs into. Maybe being a vigilante will bring the memories back. And maybe Decker will run into the criminals that killed his wife and child.

And so Decker becomes the Karate Man (the name is given to him by the local news media after an interview with a homeless person, the only witness to Decker’s first set of vigilante killings). Wearing some sort of black martial arts outfit (it’s almost like a shiny ninja outfit without the hood and the pants), he roams the streets at night, taking down the local criminal element. The police are pissed because it’s never a good idea to have a vigilante running around killing people, and, as you’d expect, the local criminal element isn’t too keen on the presence of a vigilante. In fact, the two drug dealing bad guys who actually attacked and killed Decker’s wife and child, the weirdly dressed psycho cowboy Rick (Todd Curtis) and generic but deadly henchman Blade (Ken McLeod), are hot on the Karate Man’s trail. They have no interest in all in allowing the Karate Man to disrupt their business more than he has.

Now, while all of that is going on, Decker strikes up a romantic relationship with Joanna Montague (Shari Shattuck), a local big deal artist/art dealer who, unbeknownst to Decker at first, is mobbed up. Decker doesn’t seem all that concerned about Joanna’s criminal connections, though. Even when he finds out about them he seems fairly okay with them. I mean, yeah, Decker doesn’t like it when Joanna’s “boss” Jerry (Robert Miano) shows up and tries to intimidate Joanna, but Decker is more than capable of handling himself against Jerry and his henchmen (one of them happens to be the great Deron McBee, the former American Gladiator and Motaro from Mortal Kombat: Annihilation). It’s all very annoying, sure, but, again, it’s not like Decker can’t destroy the scumbags Jerry sends his way. And while all of that is going on, Decker is meeting with/talking with/learning from Hiroshi (the great Aki Aleong), an artist and martial arts master of some sort that works for/with Joanna. What is Decker learning from Hiroshi, exactly? It’s almost like Decker’s time with Hiroshi is meant to be a sort of counter therapy to what he’s doing with Dr. “Mack” McConnell. Decker sure seems to experience more progress when talking with Hiroshi.

And so Decker kills various bad guys, the police investigate, Rick and Blade try to stop the Karate Man from destroying their business, and Joanna wonders if Decker is not telling her something super important. And, obviously, he is because Decker doesn’t want to get Joanna involved in his quest for revenge. It doesn’t work out, of course, but Decker does try. Lt. Edward Croft (Michael DeLano) is fairly certain that Decker is the Karate Man and tries to use his sort of friendship with Decker to get him to admit to it. Decker won’t do that because, really, why would he? Why would Decker talk to the cops and tell them what he’s doing?

The various plot threads do come together at the end and, for the most part, what we get is satisfying enough. There’s a bit of a twist at the end that sort of neuters a chunk of the Rick and Blade story (amazingly, Decker doesn’t fight Rick at the end of the movie, something that you swear is going to happen as soon as you find out who Rick is). There’s also a “corrupt cop” bit that, as far as I can tell, makes no sense because it comes out of nowhere. I mean, unless I’m missing something, when was it established in the story that Detective Hubbel (Beau Billingslea) is in cahoots with the bad guys? I don’t think it ever was. The ending is a bit abrupt, but there is a pretty damn good explosion before the very end, so there is that to look forward to. The fine folks at the now late but always great PM Entertainment always knew how to make shit explode.

The movie’s various fight sequences range from damn good to exceptional, which you definitely expect to see in a Don “The Dragon” Wilson movie. Wilson always looks phenomenal kicking the crap out of the bad guys. Wilson also knows that his Decker character, despite being a badass vigilante, can’t be a full on superhero and that he has to appear vulnerable from time to time. Wilson kicks ass and gets his ass kicked every so often. There’s a terrific batshit brawl in a hospital where Wilson’s Decker takes on the great Bob Schott, who plays a “mega high on super drugs” biker. There are a few moments where it looks like Decker might lose and get destroyed. There aren’t as many gun fights as you’d expect to see in a vigilante movie, but the ones that we do get are decent enough. The best part is all of the guns sound different, especially Decker’s submachine gun (I think this is a gun that Decker picks up in the course of his nightly vigilante excursions. It isn’t something that he owns).

I would like to know why the producers/PM Entertainment didn’t go with the Karate Man title. I’m just going to assume that they thought the Karate Man title made the movie sound like a superhero movie and they didn’t want to confuse people. Out for Blood is a kind of superhero movie, though. The hero decides to become a vigilante after his family is murdered, and he commits his vigilante deeds at night while doing his day job without fail (the movie really doesn’t get into Decker’s day-to-day as a lawyer but we do see him in his office a few times). Decker also wears a special outfit to commit his vigilante deeds. It sure sounds like they’re making a superhero movie. Of course, it’s also possible that Wilson and company wanted to make more of a Death Wish vigilante movie but instead of “The Dragon” walking around Los Angeles with a handgun he uses his deadly, real deal martial arts skills. Out for Blood, in that sense, makes for a better sounding title. It sounds less ridiculous. But the cops and the media in the movie call Decker “Karate Man.” Why not just lean into that and keep the title as Karate Man? It’s a title that works quite well. Out for Blood works, too, but not as well as Karate Man. A true missed opportunity.

Don “The Dragon” Wilson is awesome as Decker. He does a great job, as you would expect, with his many action and fight scenes. He makes the Karate Man deadly as hell (the character wouldn’t work as well with an actor that isn’t a legit martial arts badass. There would definitely be something missing). Wilson also does a fine job with his dramatic and non-action scenes, showing that he was always a better actor than he was ever given credit for. He also has actual chemistry with co-star Shari Shattuck, something that’s always wonderful to see. I’m always amazed that, by and large, Wilson isn’t a bigger star than he is because he really was the total package. He could do anything. I think I need to review more of “The Dragon’s” movies.

Shari Shattuck does a nice job as Joanna Montague, the artist/art dealer that’s mobbed up and begins a romantic relationship with Wilson’s Decker. She has a snarky, smartass streak that butts up against Wilson’s smartassery (that’s another thing Wilson is never given credit for. The guy can be hilarious). She also has some nice dramatic scenes where she freaks out about what’s happening in her life that play well. And, as I said, she has tremendous chemistry with Wilson, which is what you want to see in a movie like this.

Todd Curtis is fantastic as Rick, the lead bad guy and apparent cowboy aficionado. Why is he dressed as a cowboy/gunfighter when absolutely no one else in the big hooha drug gang is dressed as a cowboy/gunfighter? Damned if I know. The clothing does help with Rick’s batshit persona. He’s exactly the kind of loonbag asshole you don’t want to mess with in a major drug gang. And Ken McLeod does a good job as Blade, the sort of lead henchman. Blade is another guy who seems out of place in the gang, but once you see him in action you get why he’s there. Of course, much like Wilson, McLeod is also a real deal martial artist and his fight scene with Wilson at the end, while brief, is damn good.

Michael DeLano has a few nice scenes as Lt. Edward Croft, the cop that’s hot on Decker’s trail. I think you will be surprised by how his character turns out. The same can be said for Ron Steelman as Decker’s doctor Jay “Mack” McConnell. I didn’t expect to see what we end up seeing with him. Robert Miano has some funny scenes as Jerry Geisler, the mob boss that Joanna works for. Does he do anything new with the mob character that he plays? No, but he does do it well, and that’s always fun to see.

And Aki Aleong? The man is always awesome. Deron McBee, too. The man has a presence that you can’t deny and his performance is usually fascinating.

Be on the lookout for action ace Art Camacho as a street dealer and the The Return of Swamp Thing asshole bad guy Joey Sagal as a guy named Bubbah. And Bob Schott is very memorable as the drugged out Biker that attacks Decker in the hospital. Scott deserved to have a bigger career.

Out for Blood is a great low budget action flick from PM Entertainment. It’s a terrific showcase for its star Don “The Dragon” Wilson and is a fine example of what low budget action cinema can be. It’s a shame the movie world doesn’t have more of this kind of movie today. The movie world would be a better place for it.

See Out for Blood. See it, see it, see it.

So what do we have here?

Dead bodies: 20+

Explosions: Multiple. There’s a terrific one at the end.

Nudity?: None.

Doobage: Slow motion beach karate exercises, jogging, weird flashbacks, elbow attack, drug dealing, a street attack, drug bag destruction, a fire escape chase, a 3-on-1 brawl on the roof, bloody face flashbacks, guy gets kicked off the roof and then lands on top of a car with the car’s glass windows exploding in slow motion, cop bullshit, art gallery hooey, mental anguish, off screen dog killing, a doctor’s visit, multiple headaches, a mega hospital brawl, briefcase to the face, more slow motion beach karate exercising, briefcase handle fixing, parking garage attack, attempted Molotov cocktail, face burning, throat kicking, more flashbacks, handgun removal, beer bottle to the head, a flashback kiss, pill taking, a drug lab hidden in the city somewhere, cocaine snorting, serious leg breaking, attempted romantic date, deliberate water spilling, a fight outside of the bathroom, multiple news reports, sculpture hooey, of screen sex (probably), abandoned train drug den attack, machine gun hooey, sudden tooth removal, a forced drug overdose, talk about a big drug shipment coming in, public pay phone hooey, parking garage chase, police suspicion, serious throat slitting, a lab shootout, mega chop to the face, exploding drug lab with double man on fire gags in slow motion, real need for forensics, more off screen sex (possibly), cop capture, cop killing, back flip, attempted choke out with a 2 x 4, bloody earring removal, serious gut stabbing, a big public shootout, a single engine World War fighter plane, attempted wing walking, attempted homicide via plane propeller, an interview with Brutus “The Barber” Beefcake, and a worthwhile ending.

Kim Richards?: Off screen.

Gratuitous: PM Entertainment, Don “The Dragon” Wilson, Don “The Dragon” Wilson doing slow motion karate exercises in slow motion, elbow hooey, a fire escape chase, Don “The Dragon” Wilson breaking open a bag of drugs in slow motion, Don “The Dragon” Wilson breaking a guy’s neck three times, Don “The Dragon” Wilson throwing a guy off the roof of a building in slow motion, talk of selective amnesia, art gallery hooey, Don “The Dragon” Wilson looking intently at art work, a waterfall, Don “The Dragon” Wilson looking at his beeper, off screen dog killing, persistent headaches, a “you need to get laid” advice from your mother, Aki Aleong, Don “The Dragon” Wilson going to therapy, Bob Schott, Don “The Dragon” Wilson attempting to fix the handle of his broken briefcase with duct tape, Don “The Dragon” Wilson caressing a photo frame, Don “The Dragon” Wilson fighting a guy on the front lawn, Don “The Dragon” Wilson eating soup, serious leg breaking, Don “The Dragon” Wilson ordering a Caesar’s salad, Deron McBee, a bathroom hallway brawl, multiple TV news reports, cops openly wondering if they should hire a vigilante to work for them, Don “The Dragon” Wilson holding onto the hood of a car, exploding drug lab with double man on fire gags in slow motion, multiple potential off screen sex moments, Don “The Dragon” Wilson wielding an Uzi, a big hooha twist, a lame death, small plane bullshit, and a worthwhile ending.

Best lines: “Watch where you’re going, asshole!,” “What are you looking at? Dirt,” “You can’t kill a man who is already dead,” “They’re for headaches. I feel one coming on now,” “There’s some beautiful work in here. There sure is,” “Do you like it? Yeah, I do,” “What has turned you inside out? I don’t know,” “John, how do you feel? No better than a train wreck,” “Where did you get these drugs?,” “No one walks on this operation!,” “See you later, guys,” “Karate Man. I wonder if he wears tights and shit,” “Don’t you think you’re overreaching?,” “How you wanna die, boy? Old!,” “Hey, the Bobbsey Twins! You guys look great. Nice stitches,” “You made a call!,” “Just tell your boyfriend I’m coming after him!,” “Friends of yours? Dissatisfied clients,” “You gotta be kidding me? You think I’m a vigilante? You think I’m the Karate Man?,” “What happened to you? You smell like an ashtray,” “The Karate Man is finished,” “You should have called first. We would have made sandwiches,” “You murdered my family!,” “Those goddamn headache pills!,” “Karate Man. I’ll see you in hell!,” and “Small planes can be very dangerous.”

Rating: 8.0/10.0


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Things to Watch Out For


Assault on VA-33: This new low budget action flick, directed by Christopher Ray, features Sean Patrick Flanery as some sort of badass veteran with shell shock who has to fight a team of terrorists that have taken over a veteran’s hospital. The great Michael Jai White is in the movie, too, as are Mark Dacascos, Rob Van Dam, and Blue Bloods regular Abigail Hawk. I’ve heard good things about this movie, and it’s definitely something I need to see and review. When will that happen? Hopefully, soon. If you’re a low budget action movie fan, you should join me in checking it out. Anyone out there see this yet? Anyone at all?


Endangered Species: This is a new low budget action adventure flick from director MJ Bassett, who I interviewed for the action horror flick Rogue not that long ago (scroll down below for the link to the interview). She actually talked, briefly, about going off to Africa to make this movie. As you can see from the trailer, the movie is about a family of rich Americans who go on some sort of safari in Kenya and end up getting attacked by both the local wildlife and a team of bad guys (poachers, I guess). Rebecca Romijn and Philip Winchester are the husband and wife of the family, and it looks like Romijn’s real life husband Jerry O’Connell is the bad guy. MJ’s daughter and co-screenwriter for the movie, Isabel Bassett, is also in the movie as a member of Romijn and Winchester’s family. I plan on finally reviewing Rogue at some point soon, and I suspect that, eventually, I’ll get to this, too. It doesn’t look half bad.


Trigger Point: While I don’t typically consider Barry Pepper an action star, he looks pretty badass in the trailer for this low budget action flick. Apparently, Pepper plays some sort of retired CIA agent/operator/whatever you want to call him who is brought back into action when Colm Feore finds him. There’s also a conspiracy afoot that Pepper’s character will have to deal with (because isn’t that what always happens when retired secret agents are brought back into action?). Definitely worth a rental, just to see what the heck it’s all about. Feore is usually pretty good. Anyone out there see this?


Spare Parts: This is some sort low budget sci-fi action horror movie about a female punk band that ends up getting captured by a weird beard cult and forced to fight to the death for the cult’s amusement. The band members are also forced to have surgeries that replace their limbs with weapons that they then use in the fights. Sounds weird as hell, and, if it actually works, could be a new modern classic. I mean, just the plot description alone is audacious stuff and makes me want to see it. The trailer is pretty bonkers, too. This is another “must see” for the year, and hopefully that happens soon because this looks all sorts of cool. The visuals look amazing. Is the punk music in it any good? I want to find out!


Next Issue: It’s the horror comedy sequel Tremors: Shrieker Island !


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Well, I think that’ll be about it for now. Don’t forget to sign up with disqus if you want to comment on this article and any other 411 article. You know you want to, so just go do it.

B-movies rule. Always remember that.

Out for Blood

Don “The Dragon” Wilson– John Decker
Shari Shattuck– Joanna Montague
Michael DeLano– Lt. Edward Croft
Ron Steelman– Dr. Jay “Mack” McConnell
Ken McLeod– Blade
Todd Curtis– Rick
Aki Aleong– Hiroshi
Robert Miano– Jerry Geisler
Deron McBee– 1st Bodyguard
Bob Schott– Mad Biker
Joey Sagal– Bubbah
Art Camacho– Street Dealer

(check out the rest of the cast here)

Directed by Richard Munchkin
Screenplay by Robert Easter (as David S. Green), Neva Friedenn, and Paul Maslak, based on a story by Robert Easter (as David S. Green) and a concept by Don “The Dragon” Wilson

Distributed by PM Entertainment Group

Rated R for violence and language
Runtime– 90 minutes

Available on Tubi TV as I write this.