Movies & TV / Columns

The Man Movie Encyclopedia: American Samurai

February 9, 2018 | Posted by Caliber Winfield


Greetings, all.

A couple announcements before we get down to the burly business.

First up, your pal Cal is getting back into the wrestling review game. Teaming up with an old writing partner of mine. It’s going to be standard review style, but a little different. Basically he’ll write up a standard review, and then I just pop in randomly with my thoughts or statements, and then also what I thought of the match at the end. Here’s a taste, lemme know what you think. The Only Review Of The 2018 Royal Rumble That You’ll Ever Need.

Second, there’s a new book on it’s way in two weeks. [I’m sorry the cover is so damn huge, I tried to shrink it here but to no avail. Well, at least now you can see it if you’re standing about 100 feet from your phone or computer]


An all ninja edition of the Man Movie Encyclopedia, titled Only A Ninja Can Review A Ninja. Starting with Enter The Ninja, it will then feature Revenge of the Ninja, Ninja III, Pray For Death, American Ninja’s 1-4, American Samurai, The Hunted, Ninja, Ninja Assassin, and finally Ninja 2: Shadow of a Tear. Now, there will be FIVE, yes count’em FIVE brand new reviews: Ninja III, Pray For Death, Ninja 1 & 2, as well as Ninja Assassin have never been seen by the public, and it will remain that way for at least a year after the book drops. So, you won’t have to worry about paying for exclusive content only for me to post it a week later. The only way to read these is to get the future Pulitzer Prize winning, Only A Ninja Can Review A Ninja.
OK, now let’s get down to business…


We start off with a plane flying through the mountains. What mountains, I don’t know. But what I do know, is it crashes, with a baby in the back. It’s found by a samurai master, who was also Joe’s father in American Ninja. Well, he raises the kid as his own, much to the chagrin of his biological son, Kenjo. Well, Andrew proves himself the man, naturally, and gets handed down the family’s samurai sword. Again, much to the chagrin of Kenjo, who also reveals he’s now Yakuza, which causes his father to disown him immediately.


Andrew goes on to…I don’t know, some other place to live, and one night his placed is high jacked and the sword taken, despite his best efforts. He later learns of a friend killed in Turkey, and heads over there with a photographer, because I assume he’s some sort of writer. Naturally it’s a chick, and they’re eat each other’s throats the whole time. Well, Andrew assumes Kenjo is behind all of this. The first night there, he has a dream that Kenjo snuck into his room and is about to cut him down, so Andrew leaps out of bed with his sword drawn. That’s when the photographer chick comes out of her room, to see Andrew standing there in some small briefs with a samurai sword in hand. Man, consider her signed, sealed, and delivered. She immediately asks him for the sex, because, c’mon, could ANY woman resist a man after she saw him standing alone in a pair of briefs, brandishing a samurai sword? That shit is first date, mandatory action for me. Women are lucky if we make it past the introductions without me standing in my underwear, sword in hand.


Anyway, turns out Kenjo is the champion of an underground fight tournament, as well as hanging out in Turkey with his Yakuza peeps to smuggle heroin. Dig it. Well, Andrew heads to a local hot spot to get some info on Kenjo, but ends up tranked and kidnapped. Where does he wake up? At the arena where the fights are held, of course. Kenjo has planned all of this, so that he can finally defeat his brother.

Andrew makes friends with a tall cowboy who showed up to fight. Soon after we get a pretty good fight between a Wushu cat with a spear/blade, and a guy with two swords and a blade at the end of his very long ponytail. Following that, the big Texan dude fights…I dunno, he looks like a bad guy from Cobra, who’d be called Sand Pirate or something. He doesn’t kill him, instead just stabs him in the thigh and knocks him out. After this, Andrew fights a viking and makes light work of him. Then it’s the Texan’s turn again, although this time he fights Kenjo, and dies quickly. Andrew then fights a guy from earlier who killed a guy dressed up like Conan The Barbarian. Before this, we see this guy warming up/practicing by doing bicep curls and flexing in the mirror. Man, if only that made you a great fighter. Andrew easily handles him, forcing the guy to submit.

Kenjo is up next, facing the dude with the wicked pony tail and sword. This guy lasts quite a while, but ultimately gets his head cut off.

Finally, we get the match up we’ve all been waiting for, Andrew vs Kenjo, and…it’s over. Damn, really? We waited the whole movie for this showdown, and it’s about a minute long. I was hoping for something quite a bit more. He ends up killing Kenjo in the most practical way ever. As Ken throws his sword at him while his back is turned, only for Andrew to whip around, hit the sword, and send it sailing back, impaling Kenjo and killing him. Super legit. With that, him and the photographer chick ride off into the sunset.

Man Movie Encyclopedia Tally:
1-Liners: 0
Guys Beat Up: 8
Guys Killed: 6
Swear Words: 1
Boobies: 0
Car Chases: 0
Chases on Foot:
Broken Bones: 5
Fight/Shoot-Out At A Motel?: Yes
Guy Get The Girl?: Yeap
Lead Hero Smoke?: Nope
Name Of Movie Said: No

This was obviously a straight to video, because there was zero box office information, and zero interesting facts that I could find. That said, it’s typical Cannon fare, but it’s not bad, and actually quite a bit of fun. I never had an issue with David Bradley as an actor, he had a quiet charisma about him, and Mark is always fun. Too bad he didn’t get to do any real martial arts, as the dude is pretty damn talented. Not too much to say, other than it’s a fun movie with some cool fight scenes, and just the right about of B-Movie quality to it.
3 & ¼ Head-Butts Out Of 5

Any questions, comments, drunk-ramblings, feel free to send them my way, I always dig hearing from you, the beautiful people.
Twitter: @CaliberWinfield
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I post almost daily with workout related stuff to help you cats out, along with what’s coming down the pike via the MME, and general pop culture from the 80s and 90s that I can’t seem to let go of.
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If you just can’t wait until next week, you can also find me at these fine places:
The Man Movie Encyclopedia: The Hall of Burly – Vol. 1 – A collection of the first 19 MME articles written for 411. You get all the classics like Commando, Robocop, and Die Hard, not to mention bad-assery such as Point Break and They Live. Beyond that, you also get two new articles. My Top 5 favorite action movies, and what I believe to be the Top 5 most over-the-top scenes in action movie history. I won’t lie, it’s the greatest self=help/martial arts instruction book of all time.

My Summer Vacation At Camp Crystal Lake – My brand new ebook that’s become so popular it’s charting on the album sales charts. I cover the Friday The 13th franchise in Man Movie Encyclopedia fashion, followed up by a few list-based articles, chronicling my favorite kills, moments from the franchise, and a few other subjects. $3 via amazon, or simply email me and get it for $2, either way, it’ll probably change your life.
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