Death Warrior (Review)
Cuneyt Arkin fights a gang of ninjas in this classic movie direct from Turkey! Cuneyt Arkin proves once again he is the king of Turkish cinema, in this non-stop Turkeywood marathon of action! When ninjas attack America, who do you call? That’s right, Turkey! What Turkey lacks on budget they try to make up for with pumping the film full of gratuitous blood and murder, with lots of fighting action. This film is part of the fine Turkish tradition of being ridiculously over the top and yet, oh, so appealing. Subtitles are not needed to enjoy this masterpiece, which is part of the fun. Knowing the little details would just distract us from the “wow” factor. Cuneyt Arkin is just as action star spectacular in Death Warrior as he was in Turkish Star Wars. Over the top is rarely this fun!
Ninjas practice their deadly ninja craft of ninjaism. The ninjas practice bow and arrows, throwing what looks like a match stick, and beating each other up. The lead ninja looks like a Turkish downgrade of Chuck Norris, and as we were unable to ascertain his name, that’s what we’re going to call him. The ninjas are bored with practice and decide instead to run around killing lots of random people, with plastic Arabian swords or whatever other swords were on sale at Toys R Turkey that week. There must be no standard ninja sword for this gang. One Arabian sworded ninja stealthily kills his target, but when a girl sees him, he lets her scream while he clumsily drowns her. She must have woken up all the neighbors, good job, Kenji! The ninjas usually kill thanks to some camera tricks that make them appear out of nowhere, as well as the film being sped up. They are nin-tastic.
In the middle of the ninja killing spree a man has his music record broken, then the lights in his place are turned off, and a hand reaches around that looks like a giant polar bear claw. What is it? It’s wacky, that’s what!
Back in Turkey, Cuneyt Arkin(!) is swimming with his bikini babe wife (who looks like the same actress who played the love interest in Turkish Star Wars) and water sounds are foleyed in at maximum volume. The audience is attacked by a flashback, where Cuneyt Arkin is practicing his moves and is attacked by a screeching ninja. We get a long fight scene here, where the two combatants hop around doing their moves. Now, neither of these guys have has any martial arts training besides maybe watching Bruce Lee movies, but they try their best to make it entertaining. They fight with swords. At one point, they are just jumping around side by side. Cuneyt gets disarmed, but continues fighting, including blocking sword chops with his hands. He gets the ninja disarmed as well, and soon they’ve resorted to Mortal Kombat style fighting. They both get their swords back, and Cuneyt gets hurt, but he kills the ninja. Later, we see him working for the police beating up some other people.
Enough of the flashback, let’s jump back to the Evil Ninjas in America! Evil Turkish Chuck Norris demonstrates his Jedi Mind Tricks by using his mind to pick up a rock and hurl it at a tree, where the tree promptly explodes. What is with Turkey and exploding rocks? This is a common theme in their movies. Turkey must be full of some weird type of rock that is explosive, I bet people just constantly explode there. Poor Turkish people. The Ninjas kill more people and utilize more video editing tricks. The police are baffled. By baffled I mean they are afraid of the ninjas or something. So they call who everyone calls when Ninjas attack. Cuneyt Arkin, ninja slayer! Arkin doesn’t want to go, but at his pad, a headless pigeon crashes through the window. They really killed a pigeon and threw it through a window while still flapping it’s wings. BOOOO! to Turkey for that one, even though pigeons are disgusting winged rats. Arkin swims a bit more thinking about it, and then heads to America to fight the ninja scourge! Go, Arkin, go!
More hot ninja action, and Evil Turkish Chuck Norris narrates (at least I think it’s him talking) as the ninjas ninjatize. The ninjas thrown down some guy to find out that a girl likes him, and four ninjas try to kill her. Why? That is a question best unasked. Not to matter, as Cuneyt Arkin arrives to kill the ninjas and save the girl! Doesn’t he already have a girl? Not to matter, now he has an American Cupcake! She tries to seduce him, but he turns her down. Cuneyt Arkin is a class act, all the way. Ninjas attack again! Ninjas defeated by Arkin again! Silly ninjas, don’t they know their days are numbered?
Evil Turkish Chuck Norris is not perturbed, he shows up killing people with playing card, and his ninja goons kill more random people. Arkin and the police chief and who I think is the mayor check out the aftermath of one such attack. Why is the mayor investigating? Where is this, anyway? Is he the mayor of America? I think it’s supposed to be New York, but it might be LA. The trick it, the ninjas who are lying all over the battlefield dead are just faking, and they spring to life and pounce! Arkin starts throwing them around like rag dolls, while the police chief demonstrates that ninjas can take six bullets in the gut and still fight unfazed, until Arkin weakly kicks them and they fall over, defeated. The Mayor guy holds up pretty long before he has to be saved as well. Afterwards, Arkin speaks with an overweight Oliver Hardy-type guy. This man is never made clear who he is via non-dialogue means, but I bet if I knew Turkish I would know. The talk must not have been that interesting, because Arkin then goes out into the countryside and speaks with a motorcycle gang, and fights a guy there. What has the motorcycle gang been doing? They’ve been doing nothing the entire movie; it’s been 100% ninja killing zone, with no bikers allowed. Odd that they added these scenes, because they could have just put the ninjas on motorcycles instead of inventing a whole new gang for some pointless shots.
Back in the city, Turkish Oliver Hardy is giving a press conference. A camera guy and a lighting guy constantly circle Turkish Oliver Hardy as he gives his speech, which is pretty amusing, though I am not sure if it was supposed to be. Back in the police headquarters, a dead body turns into some sort of monster/mummy/wampa and regains it’s life, killing the Chief and injuring the Assistant Chief.
At Turkish Oliver Hardy’s estate, he has some bikini babes chilling by the pool, showing it’s good to be the Turkish Hardy. That is, until some weeds start growing on the property. Growing pretty darn fast. The weeds grab the bodyguards and devour them. Ninjas then appear from the water and grab Turkish Oliver Hardy. So, is the fast growing, bodyguard eating weed a special ninja weed? Is there special Ninja Fertilizer? Special Ninja-strength weed killer?
To answer our pressing questions, the movie decided to add a scene involving two groups of bikers, who meet up in the countryside and start fighting each other, by having their passengers leap from the bikes onto the other bikes. They aren’t doing any special effects except speeding up the film slightly, so these are real guys leaping off moving motorcycles onto other motorcycles attacking people there. I will give them credit where credit is due. The music is pretty nice as well, but probably ripped off from somewhere. This doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the film at all. All of the motorcycle footage seems to be added later from a failed Cuneyt Arkin project to pad the film. I guess Turkey could only do so much ninja work.
Arkin practices and has a nonsensical dream sequence to reuse some shots. Later, the woman he save earlier appears, and turns into a ceramic iguana that leaps at Arkin’s throat. Yes, you read that correctly. Arkin throws the ceramic iguana at the wall, where it explodes in a geyser of blood. At first I thought this was more dreams, but it’s real and actually a part of the movie. Later, after a familiar ninja fighting scene, we see the real girl is tied up in the closet. So this was an impostor woman who turned herself into a ceramic iguana that is 99.9% blood. The secret art of the ninja! Or maybe the biker gang is behind this. Whatever the case, it seems martial arts films must have some odd editing when they’re shown in Turkey.
Time to conclude the Motorcycle Saga. Arkin races around with the motorcycle gang, at first it just looks like they are driving around, but then Arkin starts smacking a few of them with his bike, and I realized they were trying to show a chase sequence. After some more zipping around, it seems Arkin has defeated them all, for the scene ends. We jump to Turkish Oliver Hardy getting talked to by Evil Turkish Chuck Norris. Arkin goes to fight the ninjas now, and is lead to their base by the woman he saved earlier in the film. He quickly jumps into action, pulling out a bow and arrows from thin air and shooting arrows rapidly, downing ninjas by the dozen. He’s like Legolas, in Turkish Hunk form. Now there’s an idea, Turkish Lord of the Rings. That would be glorious. Cuneyt Arkin as Aragorn, Kilink as a Ringwraith, it just writes itself!
Arkin next pulls throwing knives out and tosses them, downing more ninjas. He must pull out close to twenty, which make me wonder where he was hiding them. So ninjas are now getting knifed down like crazy. Now ninjas rush him with swords, so Arkin fights them bare handed, and grabs swords out of their hands, using them on his enemies. All the ninjas fall before his might. Now it is time for the Final Battle against Evil Turkish Chuck Norris. They swordfight, they kick, they punch, they jump around. Evil Turkish Chuck Norris shoots arrows at Arkin, who blocks them with a hunk of wood. They do flying kicks, and then fight with bowstaffs. After a thrilling ride of battle melee, Arkin knocks Evil Turkish Chuck Norris down and does his stomping finishing move. Arkin walks away, but Evil Turkish Chuck Norris just gets up and attacks again. In what is one of the greatest moments in cinematic history, Evil Turkish Chuck Norris uses his Jedi Mind powers to lift a nearby rock and hurl it at Arkin. Arkin deflects it, and it lands on Evil Turkish Chuck Norris, who promptly explodes and bursts into flames. He still isn’t dead, and now Cuneyt Arkin fights a blazing dummy on a string waved around by an off camera effects guy. Arkin manages to beat the dummy with a stick until the string burns off and the dummy falls to the ground, lifeless.
This movie was a thrillstraviganza! It was exploitastic! It was Turkey-Lurkey-Great! No subtitles? No problem, 90% of this movie was easily figured out (except who Turkish Oliver Hardy was or why there were bikers) and you don’t need subtitles when the sound effects for punching are that loud. The movie also skips around the exploding iguana, the wampa arm, and the deformed mummy body, though I just attributed them all to ninja magic. The same ninja magic that was similar to Jedi powers, and caused rocks to explode. I didn’t say it was very good magic, just ninja magic. These ninjas may have been some of the most pathetic ninjas to hit the screen, but the movie had the one thing it needed: Cuneyt Arkin! We shall once again sing the praises of Cuneyt Arkin we sang during his last romp here, Turkish Star Wars, and a song we shall hopefully soon sing again, for somewhere buried on our video shelf is another fine Turkish production, Lion Man, starring the greatest actor to come out of Turkey ever.
And now it’s time, to say goodbye to all our Turkish friends. C-u-n, e-y-t, A-r-k-i-n!
Rated 9/10 (Arkin vs Ninja, Death by Ace of Spades, Troublesome Weed, Troublesome Iguana, Troublesome Wampa, Ninja used too much bleach, I have no clue what this is, Jumping while shooting arrows is a ninja tradition!)
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