The Last Dragon is a movie that I didn’t know about growing up. I only learned about it in the last decade or so, which is a shame. I would have loved watching it when I was younger. I appreciate it even more now with how it blends music in with all of the martial arts in the movie. This feels very 80s with how intertwined the music is, that also comes from the connection the movie had to Motown and its artists.
I’ve never seen anything from either writer or director before. I’ve heard of some of the movies that Michael Schultz had directed before, but never watched any of them. Louis Venosta is someone who I had never heard of before this and only knew of a couple of his other credits, though one is a credit on a personal favorite Sci-fi channel original show. They managed to make a masterpiece together.
Taimak, Julius Carry, Christopher Murney, Leo O’Brien, Faith Prince, Glen Eaton, and Vanity star. Taimak is a fantastic lead. I was surprised that this role didn’t make him a star, even with it being a critical failure. His onscreen chemistry with Vanity was something else, though it makes perfect sense for anyone to fall head over heels with her at first sight. Julius Carry is a fantastic antagonist as Sho’nuff. The amount of chemistry it takes for the character to be so enduring even now is something else. Christopher Murney is an interesting primary antagonist for the movie. Very much an interesting take on the traditional style of martial arts antagonists. There’s also a huge number of people that will surprise you in this movie.
The fight scenes are fantastic. The huge melee in the club is absolutely fantastic. The team behind all of the fight scenes did a great job. The ability to weave comedy into the fights when needed is impressive. The music by Bruce Miller and Misha Segal is great. The mix of Motown music and traditional score is awesome. The early visual effects look pretty good too.
The Last Dragon is an awesome comedy martial arts movie with a dash of 80s Motown flair. That flair comes from Berry Gordy being a producer of the movie. It really has no right to hold up as well as it does. Its currently on HBO Max, though it does leave at the end of March 2023. If you haven’t seen it or haven’t seen it in a while I can’t recommend it enough. I give The Last Dragon 9.5 fortune cookies out of 10.