10. Jail Fight — Blood and Bone (2009)
2009’s “Blood and Bone” is a fascinating example of Michael Jai White’s profession. As he’s clarified in various meetings, he had generally shunned activity situated parts in the beginning phases of his vocation, out of his craving to be viewed appropriately as an entertainer first, and realizing that a plenitude of combative techniques weighty jobs would effectively dominate that. This isn’t to imply that he didn’t dunk his toes in those waters by any means, as found in 1999’s “Widespread Soldier: The Return” and 2004’s “Silver Hawk”, yet Mike by and by had held off from kicking and punching on-screen, generally. That changed with “Blood and Bone”, which starts off with quite possibly the most fulfilling opening battle scenes you’ll at any point look at, which given its relative curtness, is significantly more amazing. At the point when a posse of his kindred detainees, driven by the late Kimbo Slice, get ready to attack our saint, Isaiah Bone, you could break a pecan with the strain that is noticeable all around.
Bone obviously views his adversaries as less a danger than a flashing disturbance. There will never be a solitary second’s uncertainty of shouldn’t something be said about’s to happen to them, and instantly, their arrangements to put the hurt on Bone are totally wrecked. All things considered, he’s making an illustration of his foes, and in a real sense requests that them spread the word to the remainder of the prisoner populace to remain in their path. You simply don’t see a battle arrangement this short take care of business this successfully, or with so numerous rewind minutes, for example the Aikido-esque tosses Bone dispatches two of his rivals with. We never discover precisely what Bone is in jail for, yet it’s declaration to how carefully created “Blood and Bone” is that it need just dedicate around twenty seconds to pointing out that he realizes how to deal with himself in a correctional facility!
9. Dark Dynamite versus Richard Nixon — Black Dynamite (2009)
Michael Jai White’s confronted numerous impressive foes all through his vocation, yet what number of activity stars can say that they’ve clashed with the President of the United States? For any individual who hasn’t seen “Dark Dynamite”, we’ll leave the specifics of why our saint is swinging nunchuku with Richard Nixon out, in light of a legitimate concern for keeping the lowlife plot pristine, alongside the, suppose, surprisingly shameful nature of said scoundrel plot. “Dark Dynamite” is a cherishing, tender send-up to the Blaxploitation type, something that it pulls off so well that the late Roger Ebert felt it could authentically be confused with a result of the 70’s, and that is absolutely difficult to debate.
Everything from the outfits to the set plan to the soundtrack is deftly in a state of harmony with any Blaxploitation flick you could pull out from that time, however what at last seals it is how much the battle movement of “Dark Dynamite” inspires that time also. Contrasted with any semblance of “Undisputed 2” or “Blood and Bone”, the activity in “Dark Dynamite”, is fastidiously created to reflect what was typical in Blaxploitation films during the 70’s, and our legend’s nunchuku duel with Richard Nixon brings the most mainstream weapon of the time up front. Include Black Dynamite’s ki-ai’s that are plainly predicated on those of Jim Kelly in “Enter the Dragon”, and everything makes our saint’s last smackdown with Richard Nixon a Blaxploitation Hall of Famer!
8. Case Walker versus terrible cops — Never Back Down 2: The Beatdown (2011)
Michael Jai White made his first time at the helm with 2011’s “Never Back Down 2: The Beatdown”, while likewise showing up in the film as previous MMA contender Case Walker. In spite of the fact that he’s not a member in the nominal Beatdown, filling in as a guide to the film’s young legends, Case actually has his own fights to battle as a group of bigoted cops excited for any pardon they can discover to beat and capture him, in a specific order. Case is further in a tough spot by being cuffed, and needs to depend predominantly on his kicks to hold his rivals under control. As anybody with a foundation in kicking-focused combative techniques can advise you, tossing incredible kicks with one’s hands bound isn’t pretty much as simple as you would might suspect it is, however Case makes it look incredibly simple surely, doling out each kick in the book, while likewise making it appear as though the sort of specialized delineations you’d find in a book. Case doesn’t completely move into middle of everyone’s attention until 2016’s “Never Back Down: No Surrender”, yet even without contending in The Beatdown itself, he actually leaves his imprint and afterward some on “The Beatdown”!
7. Three versus John Chapman — Falcon Rising (2014)
At the point when we meet John “Hawk” Chapman in the kickoff of 2014’s “Bird of prey Rising”, it doesn’t take long to see that he’s doing combating some genuine inward evil presences from his time in the military. Following his nerve racking encounters in Iraq and Afghanistan, he’s everything except lost the will to live when the film opens, however is compelled to take on another conflict in the favelas of Brazil. Chapman’s central goal eventually finishes in a three-on-one fight with his decided foes. The finale begins with Mike and famous Capoeira example, Lateef Crowder, clashing, and dynamically develops the test with our saint holding off additional assaults from a bad cop and a katana-using yakuza chief.
Seeing our saint explore a reformist expansion in resistance causes us to remain alert while every warrior bringing an alternate range of abilities to the table gives the battle a “Round of Death”- like feel with John adjusting to three unique strategies for assault at the same time. Eventually, notwithstanding, it’s the information on exactly the amount of an interior fight Chapman is battling that gives the crowd substantially more of an enthusiastic interest in seeing him arise successful. The finale of “Hawk Rising” adopts an exceptionally remarkable strategy without a doubt to making its profoundly gifted legend with muscles on top of muscles into the dark horse.
6. Tony versus Reed — Skin Trade (2015)
There’s a second in 2015’s “Skin Trade” that is quite possibly the most unobtrusive yet all the while obvious presentations of “Hoorah” macho villainy I’ve at any point seen. It comes when our saint Tony Vitayakul, played by the incomparable Tony Jaa, attempts to kick his adversary Reed, played by Michael Jai White, in the chest. Reed’s counterattack is to in a real sense chest-knock the approaching dismiss and toss his rival from balance. We’ve seen some astounding David versus Goliath duels previously, however has there at any point been one where Goliath utilized a protective strategy like that, where he’s in a real sense pounding his chest with satisfaction as he puts his foe down? That one second is as deserving of a feature reel as any, however clearly, the general fight among Tony and Reed is amazing, too. Tony takes a serious beating from his a lot bigger adversary, however the agony limit of Muay Thai contenders is just probably surprisingly high, also, which is the reason Tony can constantly pummel his shins into Reed’s and not be flustered at all. The confrontation of Reed and Tony is the undisputed feature of “Skin Trade”, and would likewise anticipate them running into each other on the saint miscreant range again in “Triple Threat” – but, with one of Tony’s countrymen now clashing with Mike, which carries us to…
5. Jaka versus Devereaux — Triple Threat (2019)
Here’s a standoff that had a significant development! At the point when it was first declared, “Triple Threat” was quickly situated as an Asian-driven adaptation of “The Expendables”, and for activity devotees, it was more than worth the stand by when it at long last showed up a month ago. As 33% of the nominal diverse team, Jaka, played by Iko Uwais, adopts a manikin expert’s strategy to his mission for retaliation, guiding his adversaries, and surprisingly his partners, right where he needs them to be, the point at which he needs them to be there.
Devereaux, notwithstanding, is the one in particular who sees through Jaka’s veneer, and spreads the word about his sentiments, however does all that he can to trap Jaka into uncovering his ulterior intentions. That, obviously, simply makes it considerably more fulfilling when Jaka is at last ready to drop the demonstration and go head to head with the one who conveys his significant other’s blood on his hands, with a little assistance from his new partner Long Fei, played by Tiger Chen. Jaka’s more modest height and breathtaking capacities in Silat is consummately differentiated against Devereaux’s size and strength advantage, alongside his proportionate dexterity. Mike himself confronted the test of adjusting his kicking abilities to an adversary of Iko’s height, something he depicts top to bottom in KFK’s selective meeting with him on the creation of “Triple Threat”. Look at it presently to acquire a more noteworthy enthusiasm for Devereaux’s climactic smackdown with Jaka!
4. Deveraux versus SETH — Universal Soldier: The Return (1999)
Dever… comparative name, how regularly does that occur! The “Widespread Soldier” arrangement is absolutely a peculiarity among activity film establishments. Starting in theaters, the arrangement moved to satellite TV with two made-for-TV continuations, and got back to theaters prior to moving to the home video market with two reality-twisting spin-off reboot half breeds. It’s additionally an inquisitive section in the vocation of Michael Jai White, who showed up in 1992’s “Widespread Soldier”, however in his own words, “you need the interruption catch to see me.” That changed with 1999’s “General Soldier: The Return”, where he graduated to the focal antagonist of the film, the malignant A.I. known as SETH, who gives himself a human body and secured the UniSols in his bid to vanquish the world. So far, the “General Soldier” arrangement had never conveyed a battle grouping this great, and the arrangement’s pillar Luc Devereaux, played again by Jean-Claude Van Damme, feels really overpowered as a UniSol engaging a further developed model of what he was made into. Mike really satisfies what both a supervillain and a super-soldier can do with the agility and fighting prowess he imbues SETH with – especially with that rewind-worthy aerial kick at 1:30. Fun fact – despite his extremely well-defined physique, by his own account, playing SETH was actually the lightest Mike has ever gotten for a role, but it certainly paid off in spades!
3. Chambers vs Boyka: Round Two — Undisputed 2: Last Man Standing (2006)
If George “The Iceman” Chambers’ rematch with Yuri Boyka in “Undisputed 2: Last Man Standing” can be summarized in one word, it would be “reversal”. And that doesn’t just refer to Chambers’ reversal of fortunes in the fight itself, either, but also to the fact that, well, you’re actually rooting for him this time. Among the many tricks it had up its sleeve, “Undisputed 2” pulled off a terrific bait and switch with its two main characters. Boyka may not yet have graduated to the fully-fledged hero of the series at this point, but his portrayal in “Undisputed 2” as an out-of-this-world fighting machine with a firm code of honor made you cheer to see him do his thing the ring. Add in the fact that Chambers, the villain of the first “Undisputed”, is both written and portrayed by Michael Jai White as an arrogant, hot-tempered, self-absorbed jerk, and who among us didn’t spend the first three-quarters of “Undisputed 2” rooting for Boyka to kick his face in? That, of course, only makes it that much more satisfying to see Chambers reform himself for his rematch with Boyka and learn just enough MMA techniques to get by. It even required a little “unlearning” on Mike’s part, as he had to learn to “kick bad”, in the words of director Isaac Florentine. Chambers’ means of achieving victory would also prove to be the MacGuffin of “Undisputed 3: Redemption”, and give Boyka his own test of humility to overcome, making Chambers’ final showdown with Boyka arguably the most pivotal fight of the entire “Undisputed” series.
2. Bone vs Price — Blood and Bone (2009)
“Blood and Bone” is a surprisingly dense and layered film. Its opening prison fight is over in the blink of an eye, and it still manages to be one of the best opening kickoffs you’d could ever ask for. We see in the opening that Isaiah Bone knows how to fight, but as we see throughout the rest of the film, he’s also sharp as a tack and incredibly strategic. Bone faces his most formidable enemy in the form of the arrogant henchman Price, played by Matt Mullins, and it’s great fun to see he and Bone feel each other out in the beginning, with the pace of fighting growing steadily as each one counters the other’s respective strengths.
Bone ultimately proves better at standing his ground, as we see when each combatant tries to fake out the other, with only Price flinching, and you can see the turning point of the fight unfold before your very eyes as Bone finds the perfect rhythm to penetrate his opponent’s defenses. Ultimately, however, Price is just a lackey for Bone’s real enemy James, played by Eamon Walker, leading our hero to end the fight in a way that adds insult to injury in the most flippant way possible, and leads right into their final confrontation. “Blood and Bone” is a movie with a head on its shoulders, and the title character’s smackdown with Price is the most shining example of the cerebral approach it takes to martial arts action. Be sure to also watch out for those cameos by Fumio Demura and Bob Wall, the latter adopting the name of his famed character from “Enter the Dragon”, O’Hara!
…and in at #1 is…
1. Case Walker vs Caesar Braga — Never Back Down: No Surrender (2016)
Given his pretty imposing build, the idea of doing a David vs Goliath fight with Michael Jai White in which he’s David is a tricky proposition. Fortunately, Australian pro-wrestler and strongman Nathan Jones can loom a few heads taller than almost anybody. Well- known to action fans for his villainous appearances in “Tom Yum Goong”, “Fearless”, and “Mad Max: Fury Road”, Jones portrays the hulking, and quite simple-minded Caesar Braga, and that latter character trait is hilariously illustrated in the finale of “Never Back Down: No Surrender”.
Braga is no brains and all brawn, as we see when Case Walker manages to push his buttons to instigate their fight before they even step into the cage. But make no mistake, while our hero is more than capable of outwitting him, Braga’s still got a LOT of brawn to throw at him. It’s exceedingly rare to see a David vs Goliath battle in which the David in question could be (and, indeed, has been) the Goliath of other battles, but the final smackdown of “No Surrender” does not disappoint in its blend of powerful fisticuffs and intellectual maneuvering.