Revenge of the Ninja (1983) Revisited + Director Sam Firstenberg Interview

Revenge of the Ninja is up there with the best American Martial Arts movies ever made. Star Sho Kosugi had made a big impression in the Cannons Enter the Ninja the year before, stealing the show from his (heavily doubled) co-star Franco Nero. Ninja’s became such a sensation that in the sequel Kosugi would be elevated to the lead role and become the hero of one of The Cannon Group’s most profitable action films of the eighties.

In this Kosugi plays Cho, a former Ninja whose home is attacked by a rival clan. He flees to the United States with his surviving son, Kane (played by Kosugi’s own son, Kane Kosugi), to start an import/export business. Soon he discovers that his company is being used to import drugs, while an evil, demon-masked Ninja is terrorizing the city at the same time. Knowing that “only ninjas can defeat ninjas”, Cho once again dons his ninja yoroi to take on the bad guys with true ice martial artist Keith Vitale by his side. It all culminated in a spectacular fight between the good Ninja and the evil Ninja on top of a skyscraper in Salt Lake City, which is widely considered to be one of the best fight scenes of the eighties American shot.

In this special episode of Real Action (written and narrated by Travis Hopson, edited by EJ Tangonan), we revisited the Cannon Ninja classic while also sitting down for a very special interview with the film’s director, Sam Firstenberg. If that name sounds familiar, it is because Firstenberg directed most of the great canon films of the time, including Ninja III: The Domination, American Ninja, Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogalooand so many more.

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