Review: Kickboxer: Retaliation

Blu-ray & DVD: Kickboxer: Retaliation (2018)

How many movies get to the 7th instalment of their franchise? For the few that do, how many are actually worth watching? It was with a heavy heart that I put Kickboxer: Retaliation into the Blu-ray player here at 60MW Towers. 110 minutes later my heart was no longer heavy, in fact it was positively beating fast with excitement and I had a huge smile on my face. You could even say that I was in ‘7th heaven’.

One year after the events of (the also surprisingly good) Kickboxer: Vengeance, Kurt Sloan (Alain Moussi) has vowed never to return to Thailand. However, while training for an upcoming MMA fight he is drugged and awakes to find himself inside a dank and dirty Thai prison.

Captured by the evil Thomas Moore (Christopher Lambert) who wants Sloan to fight in a big money match-up against the human giant Mongkut (Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson), whereby Sloan’s wife will be killed if he refuses to fight, he is forced into literally fighting for both his and his wife’s lives.

Aided by Master Durand (Jean-Claude Van Damme returning to the role once again from Kickboxer: Vengeance) and Briggs (Mike Tyson), Sloan goes through an intense training period in order to face the seemingly unbeatable Mongkut.

Alain Moussi’s martial arts and stuntman training are once again brought to the fore in a series of spectacular fight scenes which are captured superbly by director Dimitri Logothetis. No quick cuts and shaky camerawork here to disguise the action, one particular free flowing fight scene across balconies and terracing is so good that I rewound it twice in succession to immediately watch it back again!

While not as intense and bloodthirsty as the previously reviewed Re:Born, Kickboxer: Retaliation pulls no punches in the expertly choreographed and executed fights that appear with heart pounding regularity throughout its entire running time.

Alain Moussi certainly has a screen presence to him that holds your attention, and his physical skills have you gasping on more than one occasion. Yes, you can probably already guess the outcome of the final fight before even watching the movie, but this in no way detracts from the almost 2 hours of sheer fun and excitement that you’ll get from the opening fight atop a train until the last punch has been thrown in a long and sweaty fight inside an illegal Thai fighting location.

If I had to try and find any faults, it would be with the odd unconvincing cgi effect here and there, but that would certainly be nitpicking.

It would be unfair to posit that Kickboxer: Retaliation is the best 7th movie in a franchise ever, as the opposition is hardly inspiring. I would however say that it is a hugely enjoyable action packed 110 minutes of entertainment that took me completely by surprise. I’m now very much looking forward to the upcoming Kickboxer: Armageddon.

Kickboxer: Retaliation is released on Blu-ray and DVD 5th March 2018 and you can buy it by clicking HERE. ALL money raised by purchasing from Amazon via our website is given back to our listeners and followers in upcoming competition prizes. The more people buy, the bigger our prizes. It is available on digital download now.

Review by Dave (host of 60 Minutes With) from a disc kindly supplied by Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment via Fetch Publicity.