Welcome back to 1 out of 5 – Would Recommend, where movies that are awfully great (in a literal sense) get their due. This week, we will be examining the 1987 masterpiece of poorly executed action cinema known as The Miami Connection.
What’s The Plot?
A group of multiethnic orphan Taekwondo experts/rock musicians/college roommates/best friends – one alien wizard away from being a Power Ranger team – called Dragon Sound run afoul of biker ninja drug dealers. Poorly choreographed fight scenes ensue.
Who Was The Brain Trust Behind It?
Low budget filmmaker Richard Park and Taekwondo Grandmaster/Motivational Speaker Y. K. Kim. Kim was a mild celebrity in Central Florida and Park thought he’d be the ideal personality to build an action movie around. Kim, despite having never acted before, felt that a movie would be a great way to spread his philosophy. It was a match made in bad movie heaven.
Unfortunately for the rest of us, Kim figured that out pretty quickly after the movie’s release and it never had more than a short regional run in theaters and quickly disappeared into obscurity. Luckily for those of us who love bad movies, Drafthouse Films rescued it three years ago and it is now available in all its glory.
Five Reasons to See It
- Literally everyone, from pudgy nightclub managers to middle aged restaurateurs to white trash drug dealers, knows Taekwondo, albeit not necessarily very well.
- Dragon Sound. They play cheesy songs about friendship and are bigger than Jesus (in Orlando), despite clearly never having held or even seen an instrument before.
- Most of Dragon Sound’s scenes relate to them doing fun guy stuff to show off what cool, close knit, fun loving guys they are. Which is nice and all, but rarely has anything to do with the film having a plot.
- The fact that the villains are a drug dealing ninja biker gang? The heroes don’t exactly approve (see point five), but it has absolutely nothing to do with why the two groups fight. It’s music related, actually.
- “He’s always in there every night with his damn… gang… selling their stupid cocaine.”
The movie barely has a plot, can only charitably be said to be acted, and is the result of well-intentioned people trying their damnedest. That is what makes the absolute best 1 out of 5 movies: a magical combination of honest, enthusiastic indie effort and a genuine lack of talent/skill that so rarely comes along. It is to action what The Room is to drama and Plan 9 from Outer Space is to sci-fi/horror. You can go watch it right now through Netflix or iTunes, and RiffTrax will be bringing it live to theaters in October, so there’s no reason not to check it out.
NEXT WEEK: A tech millionaire turned filmmaker rips off Hitchcock to make 2008’s Birdemic: Shock and Terror!