I won’t lie, seeing that Vidmark Entertainment logo made a tear slowly creep down my face. We’re a worse off people for the loss of direct to video companies like this and the warm hazy feel of a rented VHS tape. This is the movie that you never wanted to rent — the kid-friendly movie — when you really just wanted to watch Laserblast or Bleeders, the only rental I’ve ever seen that had blood inside the cover art that you could play with. But hey — for the dads, here’s some Linda Blair to assuage your pain.
Jimmy and Lisa (Jimmy got a special thanks in 3 Ninjas, the film this rips off the most) get into trouble when their dad (Dale Cook from American Kickboxer 2 and numerous other kick and punch films with numbers in their titles) goes away for a tournament. They witness some bad guys kidnap an archaeologist named Claudia (if you’re gonna get kidnapped in a movie like this, chances are you’re Linda Blair) and decide to save her.
The main bad guy is named Nadir and he’s played by Joe Estevez, the Sheen brother who never got the chance to make opposites attract with Paula Abdul or have tiger blood in his DNA. No, he was too busy putting his head down and appearing in films like Soultaker, The Roller Blade Seven, Legend of the Roller Blade Seven, Karate Raider, Baby Ghost, Blood Slaves of the Vampire Wolf (where he plays Joe Estevez) and the eventual Return of the Roller Blade Seven. Joe’s a worker — his IMDB count is at 285 movie appearances.
Of course, the other bad guys all pretty much are lifeless, minus Maniac Cop himself Robert Z’Dar, whose face is the best special effect ever.
There’s some nonsense about a stolen tablet and the kids have to outwit guns and hardened criminals with their magical kung fu. I started watching this at 4 AM and fell asleep at some point — it could have been 3 or 33 minutes, much like how time is distorted in heaven or hell — and my wife came down, watched a minute and fell asleep, only to wake up repeatedly to the same scene and the same fight. Truly, this is the movie that never ends. Even as I write this review, I’m worried that this is all going to end like Jacob’s Ladder and I’ll be back on my couch, watching Double Blast all over again.