Top 5 Ninja Battles

Growing up in the 80’s and early 90’s, was there anything cooler than a ninja? FUCK NO.

Sho Kosugi and the Cannon Group helped to usher in a massive pop-culture movement that made a lot of people money.

I believe it all started with a little picture I like to call Revenge of the Ninja. Hands down the greatest ninja film of all time, motherfuckers. It was released in theaters the day I was born, September 16th, 1983. It was fate. Now, there was a previous picture called Enter the Ninja, which was part of the trilogy that had Revenge follow, and Ninja III: The Domination after wards.

But Revenge was the one that really did it. Once that was a sucess, they released probably their most popular film series; The American Ninja. It started what was to become a popular theme with the art of the ninja. A white guy being the true master. They made 5 films under the title of American Ninja, but the 5th was a slap in the fucking face and will NEVER be spoken of again on this website.

1-4 were incredible. The first two focused on Joe Armstrong. The third was about a duder named Sean Davidson. Joe has always been the favorite, but Sean was no slouch. The 4th brought them together, and when I saw that video cover at the video store, they had to shut down my town because of the MEGA-BONER I popped. Incredible stuff, man.

Anyways, because of these films, a ton of studios were churning them out and it lead into the massive awesomeness that was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. That was followed by 3 Ninjas, which was also awesome. Tons of video games such as Ninja Gaiden, Black Manta, and Shinobi. Ninja was all the rave, motherfucker.

So, were here to honor to the Top 5 greatest ninja battles that have ever been commited to celluloid.

Before we get cookin’, lets drop an honorable mention to the final battle in Pray for Death. Our man Sho, rocking a ninja mask that you only see 3 times a week or so.

V – Pray For Death – V
Reason For Ninjaing: Family is brutally attacked and wife killed

Pray for Death is a good movie, but other than the beginning and the end, there isn’t that much ninja-ness going on. So, it looses a couple points from me for that. Because, you’re waiting for ninjas to break out, and start cutting motherfuckers up, but it doesn’t happen.

But, like I mentioned, the beginning we get an awesome ninja brawl. Shuriken all up in the skulls, smoke bombs, back flips, tons of sword fighting. It’s a great way to bring in a movie.

IV – American Ninja 4: The Annihilation – IV
Reason for Ninjaing: American Marines were kidnapped by a group of ill-meaning ninjas. And as we all know, only a ninja, can kill a ninja.

American Ninja 4 is one of the best in the series. It teams up Joe and Sean from parts 1 & 2 [Joe] and part 3 [Sean], and unfortunately it doesn’t have Steve James. Part 3 would be his last American Ninja, as he died of Pancreatic cancer in ’94.

American Marines were sent in to take care of an uber-baddie who’s teaming up with another neir do-well, and they get their shit handed to them. Welp, they demand a ransom in order to get the duders back, other wise they’re going to force them to get a boner, and walk into a sliding-glass door. I did that once, no joke. I dropped to the ground, howling.

Well, as it would be, they don’t negotiate with terrorists, but they do send in ninjas. Of course, they don’t know Sean is a ninja, despite the fact it’s well known he was trained in ninjitsu and once he saw ninjas on the ransom video he started spouting off a bunch of trivia. Anyways, they get there, and as they’re walking through the woods, TADOW! An arrow hits the tree. So, Sean sends them some where safe, and the ninjas give him time to put his weapons together, and pray and stuff. Which, is nice. You have to stretch, otherwise you’ll pull a hammy when working with your convertible-nunchucks.

As a kid I thought this shit was just the coolest. Having a ninja-mask on at all times that no one noticed, and having all your weapons seemingly able to be brought in in a sun-glasses case. The nunchucks were THEE coolest things I ever saw. I bought a pair, and still have them. They’re the best.

III – Revenge of the Ninja – III
Reason for Ninjaing: Supposed best friend and business partner is a secret ninja who’s smuggling in heroin via your Japanese doll buisness

Hands down the greatest ninja movie ever. No doubts about it.

As a kid, there were few scenes as scary as this. I mean, holy shit man, they were merciless. One person would get like 5 ninjas on them at once, and they weren’t doing anything! The ninja were probably just hanging out and thought, well, I’m not pissed off, and that’s pissing me off. It’s never said why the ninjas killed his family, I suspect Braden set it up to get Sho to come to America.

I always wondered why on Earth Sho didn’t question why his Art Dealer friend was carrying a gun. Is this protocol for the safest jobs in the world? When I had my taxes done, the dude at H&R Block wasn’t swinging around an axe. Do Mall Santas keep an anti-personal mine in their beard? Man, that would rock. Anyways…

You get all types of brawls, all over the place. Plus, you get the most awesome thing you can hope for in a ninja movie, the arrow catch! Hell, Sho even catches one in his teeth, and you know that shit was for real, too. If I was him, I’d catch everything in my teeth.The remote, the baby, AIDS.

II – The American Ninja – II
Reason for Ninjaing: Because not Ninjaing is for nerds.

Man, there are few bigger bad-asses than Joe. He doesn’t like you, he doesn’t wanna speak to you, and he BAM! now you have a crushed trachea. And he doesn’t even know what that is, bitch.

Basically, there’s an evil foreign dictator [a plot device used in a couple of the American Ninja series. by a couple, I mean 1-4] who’s up to no good. Well, normal hench men just won’t do, so he searches to the ends of the world to find a ninja, and does just that. The Black Star ninja. Well, he’s got quite the find here, since a ninja master is so extremely rare, despite the fact that 10 miles away on an army base there’s one, and his own gardner is one too.  Regardless.

The end battle is marvelous for so many reasons. First, we get a wide array of ninjas, so we get to watch them all die in different manners. The whole scope of this fight breaks out almost every ninja weapon in the book. Sais, bow n arrow, shuriken, sword, flame thrower, laser beam…yes, laser beam, kamas, it’s freaking awesome! They get their thug on in and around the ninja training camp, so we get to see them flex their fitness skills.

My only beef with this movie, is the fact that the Black-Star Ninja has his nose poking out. He looks like an asshole. It’s like when your grandpa wears a hat, but it’s so high on his head it’s honestly almost like it’s floating above his head. He just looks awkward, and needs to get it right.

I – Revenge of the Ninja – I
Reason for Ninjaing: Family killed. Business a front for drugs. Wouldn’t let him borrow kashmir sweater in chilly apartment because he feared his giant-head would stretch out neck-hole.

Not only thee greatest ninja fight ever, but one of the greatest fights ever, period.

This time, I’m not going to go on about it, just watch it, and make sure no one sees your awesome ninja-boner that is bound to start rocking. Especially when it gets to the robotic ninja arm in the hot-tub.

And yes, I considered the films of Godfrey Ho, such as Ninja Terminator and such. But they’re just TOO good, you know?

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~ by Caliber Winfield on March 16, 2010.

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