Dragon And The Hawk

Movie Review by EDF

Starring: Julian Lee, Barbara Gehring, Trygve Lode, Michael L Amory
Director: Mark Steven Grove

The movie starts with two young Asian women running for their lives, chased by 2 men on motorbikes. There are caught by a third man who proceeds to inject one of them with a mysterious drug. Meanwhile Dragon Pak (Julian Lee) finds himself travelling to the States from Korea to find his missing sister Cindi (Gayle Galvez) who hasn’t been in contact for months. Upon landing, Dragon finds himself experiencing the usual hospitality you would expect from a cop buddy movie, he is attacked by some robbers but this is only to showcase what the Dragon’s martial arts abilities are like. A flashback to a conversation between the brother and sister prior to Cindi’s move to the States shows her in a confident mood that if anything were to happen to her, she knows big brother would come looking for her.

When the body of a young Asian woman turns up at the morgue, Lieutenant Dana Hawkins (Barbara Gehring) is asked to view the body by the coroner. The young victim has a distinctive needle mark on her arm, similar to the one found on the body of Hawkins’ sister.

Dragon goes to the bar where Cindi had worked at weekends to make ends meet. Enquiring about her whereabouts, Dragon is attacked by a group of men telling him to mind his own business. At the same time, Hawkins just happens to be hovering outside the bar asking questions relating to the dead girl in the morgue and goes over to help Dragon out with his predicament. Following a lead, Dragon finds out that the dead girl worked at the same modelling agency where Cindi had worked. Dragon informs Hawkins and they agree to help each other out.

It turns out the man behind the kidnappings is the mysterious Therion (Trygve Lode), who kidnaps young women and tests a new drug on them that manipulates their personalities. When Therion refuses to hand over the drug to a prospective buyer, we see what the towering Therion is capable of. Could it be that he has used the drug on himself? It is brought to Therion’s attention that a man and a woman are asking questions about Cindi and Therion responds by having them followed by a couple of his men. When Therion’s men set Dragon up and he is arrested by the police, he faces the threat of deportation. It is then up to Hawkins to decide whether she must listen to her head or her heart on what her next move should be.

Being a typical independent, martial arts, cop buddy movie, the storyline is predictable to the point where you know what will happen next. The leads are watchable enough but there is a repetitive joke about travellers’ cheques that is used one too many times. The usual cliches are there – a police captain who is not interested in the murder case, the frame up of the good guy, the usual bad guy ending. There is also something to listen out for as the credits roll at the end of the movie that might or might not suggest a sequel. You can be the judge of that. The fight scenes are above average and are well shot. A major let down is that this mysterious personality-changing drug is mentioned throughout the movie but there is never any example of how the drug works. All we get to see are dead bodies or women drugged up to the eyeballs, kept in storage until the drug takes full effect. Other than that, this is a watchable mindless action flick that is best watched on a wet Sunday afternoon. The extra features on the DVD are not much to talk about so you would basically be buying the movie and not much else.

There is also a soundtrack CD available composed by Guy Bianchini who delivers some dark, moody pieces with the odd dance track to heighten the excitement of the action scenes. Listen out for the menacing vocals on NOW YOU’RE MINE supplied by Trygve Lode who plays the evil Therion. Just as the movie itself – 3 out of 6 stars
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3 out of 6 stars

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