Ninja Terminator (1985)

If you owned a Korean film called The Uninvited Guest Of The Star Ferry, it probably wouldn’t sell in the west. But what if you shot new footage of Supreme Ninja having his three greatest warriors — Ninja Masters Tamashi, Baron and Harry MacQueen (Richard Harrison) — celebrate the second decade of his power by assembling the Golden Ninja Warrior and making him impervious from swords, well, then you’d be able to sell that.

Godfrey Ho. Genius or madman? Maybe both?

Two years after the three ninjas took each part of the statue to keep their master from becoming too strong, Karada has killed the ninja Tamashi and Baron and Harry have been manipulated into battling one another. Will Supreme Ninja take the statue and reign forever?

So yes, that’s the basic plot. What I have not captured — I really don’t know if I can — is just how lunatic this movie gets, constantly introducing new characters and ideas and rarely following up on them, like if someone introduced Jack Kirby to manga and then slipped him some amphetamines. I also am writing this under the influence of COVID-19 and the way my brain has been going from lucid to foggy to sleep to pain to being exhausted in a matter of seconds feels exactly like this movie but in a way better way than not being able to breathe and needing to sanitize my hands every ten seconds.

Richard Harrison is a hero. I mean, yes, his career probably was ruined by Godfrey Ho repeatedly re-editing him into movies. I wish there was a way I could send him some cash by Paypal to make up for that because in this movie he wears a camouflage ninja suit and talks on a Garfield phone and honestly, I’ve never seen Robert Deniro do that.

There’s also a scene where one ninja can shoot fire out of his hands and another shoots ice and you know, that’s no CGI, it’s two dudes putting their lives on the line to entertain you thirty some years in the digital future. Also: sex scenes that refine the word gratuitous.

You can watch this on Tubi.

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