10 Best 80″²s Martial Arts Movies1 min readReading Time: < 1 minute
The 10 best ’80s martial arts movies cover a wide range of stories from simple action to stories of redemption. These movies had long been a staple for Eastern audiences and when they hit in the West, they hit hard. Out of the many great movies from this genre that came from the ’80s, here are ten of the best.
- “American Ninja” Michael Dudikoff plays Joe Armstrong, a shiftless drifter that finds himself enlisted in the US Army after being given the choice of enlistment or prison. While driving a supply convoy, his entire platoon is attacked and wiped out, with the killers trying to take a colonel’s daughter hostage. Armstrong gets the daughter back but is shunned by his superiors as the only man alive from his outfit, while the killers seek revenge.
- “Best of the Best” Centered around a group of American martial artists as they fight their way to the top of a Korean Tae Kwon Do tournament, this movie is full of tons of action. It hits on all the necessary aspects of a good martial arts film: good fights, national honor and redemption. Eric Roberts plays the reluctant hero of the movie being pushed to succeed by what could be seen as his “former master” in James Earl Jones.
- “Bloodsport” Based around Frank Dux (Jean Claude Van Damme) and his claims of fighting in the actual Kumite tourney that the movie is based on, this movie is one of the more “Eastern” themed of the purely western martial arts films. Dux travels to Hong Kong to fight for the honor of his masters style, meeting a barrage of enemies and allies along the way.