80s action cheese! A movie so corny it's good. Who doesn't want to see Joe, an American taught Ninjutsu who joined the army because of amnesia, who ends up fighting ninjas!? Because I do!
Michael Dudikoff stars in this 80s action movie at a time where Ninja movies were a pretty big thing in my kid eyes. Any time I went to a movie rental place I'd automatically go near the back where the Ninja movies stood on the racks, yup, right next to the drapes that covered the door to the back that had the porn, that's where these warriors sat awaiting to be rented.
On those racks sat American Ninja, a classic tale of deception, betrayal, and obviously the story of a warrior saving a princess.
It all starts out with a convoy being attacked, one that had happened multiple times before, except this time the 'New guy' was part of this convoy, along with the Colonels daughter for some odd reason. The attack started and even though his commanding officer told him to stand down, he said Fuck this and fought back against the attackers. He and his army guys beat the piss out of these normal machine gun holding thieves, for a time. Until the ninjas showed up. Yes, you're God damn right Ninjas showed up, it's what we're here for! Total Ninja action 80s cheese whiz! Machine gun vs Ninja....pffft, get your bullets out of here, not while I have my bow and arrow up in here!
Black star, who is the teacher of these ninjas and leader, because he led these warriors into battle, that's what leaders do. He admires the skills of this unknown enemy who not only fought back but actually technically won. Black star should be a anime character, I can see him having some terrible childhood where he overcame much and most likely killed his master and took over what ever clan he was a part of.
The daughter of the general of the base or who ever the hell he was basically falls in love with Joe, the main character, during the chase through the jungles by ninja. This whole movie is weird yet oddly satisfying and Judie Aronson is pretty cute in this movie.
What plays is a cat and mouse game between the Ninja, Joe Armstrong who has amnesia about his childhood and doesn't realize he's actually a ninja himself, and a military betrayal by a lesser officer who is helping the Drug dealer who has the ninja work for him. Jesus Christ this is messy.
From then on Black star has his eyes on destroying Joe, meanwhile, Joe Armstrong is all about ruining the enemy soldiers and ninjas plans, despite being fucked over by a officer of his own unit.
Let's stop right there. Let's appreciate Curtis Jackson for a minute. He believed Joe Armstrong interfered in a high jacking and for that reason fellow soldiers were killed, he challenged Joe to fight, and was basically tossed around like a doll. At that point they became friends and that's how life works sometimes. He is loyal and has Joe's back and vice versa for Curtis, and it would play out later on.
I'm all over the place here. Joe is arrested for leaving the base and doing something that for some reason I can't seem to remember. Black star tries to kill Joe again and again he fails.
It's a fun cringe movie, the typical 80s styled action and acting that people grew to love at that time. It ends with a Giant ninja vs ninjas action, a master and student together back to back, and the US army crashing into the drug dealers home full guns blazing into the wind in an all out offensive against innocent ninjas.
It's one of my favorite ninja movies, maybe top five for me. This shall get a 3.1 out of 5 shurikens, but a 4.3 out of 5 for massive cheese cringe that you can't help but laugh and love. So average it out to a 3.7 and get off my back about it.