Back Add a Comment Share:
Facebook Button

Feature


Based on Capcom’s video game series Street Fighter, Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist is a live-action web series created by director, fight choreographer, writer, actor and martial artist Joey Ansah and writer and martial artist Christian Howard.  The story focuses on Ryu (Mike Moh ) and Ken Master (Christian Howard) as they uncover the past of their master, Gouken (Akira Koieyama), and learn the secrets of their dark art, Ansatsuken.

Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist
This web series obviously doesn't have the budget of Hollywood blockbuster in the action department or even that of a half decent TV show in terms of writing and acting but it certainly has heart and its passion to give us the beginnings of a legitimate Street Fighter live action experience is felt throughout, even when it’s the sillier elements, that only a fan of the long running game series will appreciate get their silliest.

The show looks at character more than anything and there’s not actually a great deal of fighting really but when it comes along it sounds so much like playing the games it’s really quite feel good. The fighting itself sort of lives up to it too but it’s hard to fully accept the flashy CGI and practical trickery overkill of some of the madder Street Fighter moves in live action, so there's always a sense that this project is doing its best with limited resources and it dampens the impact somewhat.

I'm a big fan of the Street Fighter series and I adore the mythology it’s built up over the years but despite the best efforts of all involved here I just don’t think I've ever seen any evidence that Street Fighter can live in the world of live action movie making without a seriously huge budget or a team with a lot more experience than what’s available here. It’s not that Joey Ansah hasn’t got the chops for this sort of thing, he really does seem to be able to tell his story and let the action play out well but there’s something unavoidably cheap about what’s going on here and not alot about it proves that Street Fighter in a live action format could parallel the kinetic action of the games or even some of the astonishing anime that’s out there.

Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist

Video


Assassin's Fist feels a touch like a porn parody of classic fighting series in terms of film quality. The presentation is very digital looking with a lot of bright colours and plenty of pinky skin tones. It's very much a cartoony feel with its overkill of coloured costumes but its comes with the territory given the celebration of Street Fighter this is and i'm glad they didnt shy away from it. The general look of the film is quite creamy with many of the whiter elements coming off a bit magnolia (except Ryu's outfit with is bright and white). Shadows are never black and once again suffer from a softer creamy feel to them, which makes everything look a little too clean fresh at times.

At the end of the day, this is a web series made with a limited budget and its struggling to retain the Street Fighter look all while trying to be a film people can take seriously. It generally has a look of most internet based shows and fanfilms and there's no avoiding that but the locations show off well here and detail is pretty good for a DVD release.

Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist

Audio


The stereo track is actually quite impressive in terms of depth and layering. Lots of ambience, lots of well placed dialogue and a score that boosts everything nicely. Sure the score is very cheap and synthy but it's got a fair bit of power and a solid bit of bass. Dialogue is always crisp and clear and even at its lowest is always easy to follow and the fight scenes whack everything up a notch with a totally genuine sounding Street Fighter audio attack from grunts and yelps to bassy punches and screams, it;s all there for fans to enjoy.

Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist

Extras


Direcotr Joey Ansah provides a commentary and he gives us everything we'd need to know from the Bulgarian location to the casting and his history with the game franchise . He's upbeat and a bit like a gym instructor with his enthusiasm for his project but that still doesn't stop there being a lot of dead air at times until he starts again and throws out plenty more detail about what were seeing and behind the scenes.  

The 'Ken Video Diary' is three short entries of characters doing his own take on his situation. They all run about a minute or so long each.

Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist
There's four deleted scenes and then we're onto 'The Making Of...' which is 9 featurettes all running at about 1-3 minutes long. The opening featurette with stuntman turned actor/director (he was actually in the Bourne Ultimatum) talks about his history with the franchise (he says he was there since the start but then begins with Marvel vs Capcom 2 as his jump on point?) and bigs up his project up a whole bunch. That follows through all the other featurettes, with many of the participants sort of promising all the good stuff we'll see here and always seem to be on the sell rather than being casual about it but hey, this is web based TV, I guess it goes with the territory if they want viewers.

Lastly there's some Outtakes (05:17) and a Trailer (01:44).

Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist

Overall


I so wanted to like Street Fighter: Assassins Fist I really did but I really struggled to connect to it beyond a well orchestrated example of fanfilm. The cheap production, not ever convincing acting and minimal fight sequences just weren't enough to excite and the dialogue, though true to the gaming franchise just clunked along in a live action world and made everything hard to believe in. The disc looks okay, despite the cheap production and the sound has more going on that I expected . The extras are all fairly short but cobbled together with the director's commentary there's a lot to learn about this project so fans or up coming film-makers wanting to find out how this all happened should be pleased.


Links: