Fist Fighter (1989)
Director: Frank Zuniga
Stars: Jorge "George" Rivero, Edward Albert, Brenda Bakke
CJ Thunderbird, which is either the coolest name in the world or an extremely cheap brand of malt liquor, travels to South America to fight a champion bare knuckles fighter named Rhino. Why you might ask? Let's test your action movie knowledge.
A. To avenge the death of his friend
B. Because Rhino raped and killed one of Thunderbird's relatives
C. Bitch owed him like ten bucks
D. Because he was infringing on CJ's titty bouncing copyright
While choice B is a pretty good staple of the genre, the right answer is A. Those of you that chose D make me ashamed. My head is slowly turning from side to side in disapproval as I type. I better stop cause this is making it hard to type.
So Rhino is there in South America, managed by the town's resident Brad Wesley, Billy Vance (played here by a post Mannix Mike Connors). After CJ starts whipping Rhino's ass, Vance has the police stop the fight. Thunderbird, not backing down or emoting in the least, is helped out by Punchy (Albert), an ex boxer/currently con man with one leg to stand on, and Ellen (Bakke) playing the Kelly Lynch role...which means she's gonna get some Thunderbird in her. I made myself a little ill typing that.
Vance knows that Rhino can't beat Thunderbird, so he arranges for CJ to be put in prison. There he becomes friends with his gay cellmate (we know he is gay by his bright pink outfit), fight a big ol' hairy mutant of a prisoner called the Beast (in a cage match no less), and catches the attention of the prison warden, who hates Vance.
Will CJ Thunderbird go on to finally avenge the death of his friend who we never get any sort of information about? Well of course he will...you'd have to have an IQ of four to not realize that.
Six Things I've Learned from Fist Fighter
1. Vance, Rhino, and the corrupt police captain are always seen hanging out together. I bet there were some wacky adventures going on with those guys while we watched Thunderbird and Punchy (a great TV show title by the way) train. I bet they went out and did karaoke a lot. I wonder what Rhino sang. I bet it was Hungry Eyes.
2. I'm not sure whose boobs are bigger...Bakke's or Jorge Rivero's. Both pretty hot.
3. If you want to help your best friend find out his enemy's weakness, going out and getting the ever loving shit beat out of you until you die days later is probably not the best way to go about it. Hire someone and get them to write you a report with their good hand instead. Smart AND safe.
5. There's a great scene at the beginning where Thunderbird takes on Superstar Billy Graham (the steroid-ed wrestler, not the steroid-ed preacher) in an arm wrestling contest and beats him. The bro code states in section 12 paragraph 8 that "if one man is beaten by another man fairly in a competitive event, the loser must gather as many of his out of shape buddies to get their asses kicked by the winner as well". Hey, it's in the rules.
6. Jorge Rivero is awesome. Most of you know him best as Uri, the hairstyle changing bastard from that awful movie Werewolf. Here he plays a hero so stoic, I was afraid he'd end up outside of a souvenir store in Phoenix. He reacts the same way for EVERYTHING. Friend dies? Stoic. Having sex? Stoic. Stuck in prison in a tiny solitary confinement box? Mother fucking stoic to the max. I hope to review Conquest, his Fulci directed sword and sorcery epic, soon.