Film Of The Week: BROKEN PATH

Synopsis via IMDb :
On an isolated ranch in the desert, one man must protect his wife from a secret past that he is now forced to confront. With the sun towering in the sky overhead, the ranch sits beneath the vast blue, isolated amidst the arid terrain, Though life is certainly evident as a house warming party ensues. Still under renovation, scaffolding and tools are strewn across the ranch, while benches and tables and are set up for the food and beverages. The neighbors chat amongst themselves as the hosts - Jack (Johnny Yong Bosch) and Lisa (Pamela Walworth) - hustle about to keep them entertained. As the evening creeps over the scene, the crowd disperses, and Maddy - the couple's daughter - prepares to leave for her first summer camp. By nightfall, they find themselves alone, the guests gone, on Maddy her way on the road, and the ranch left once again in the quiet. As Jack and Lisa prepare themselves for a summer of settling and renovating, they soon find themselves swept up into a storm of confusion and terror, as a group of ruthless, masked strangers descend upon their home. With the vicious group attacking relentlessly, Lisa watches as her husband reveals an impressive ability to defend and counteract the attack. As they are chased within their own home, struggling to survive, Lisa begins to question her husband, his past, his knowledge and his familiarity with one of their assailants who claims he wants to help them. With their hopeful new life quickly crumbling before their very eyes, the two must not only fight to survive, but also fight to save their own relationship and trust in one another in a whirlwind of action and chaos that stems from Jack's hidden past.

Back in 2008, I used to be on MySpace a lot. I was more used to it than Facebook and I had more "friends" as well. I often uploaded fight scenes from various films I had in my DVD collection. Yeah, MySpace locked my account down from time to time, but it was fun for me. I loved sharing an interest people took to, which is part of why I started up a martial arts cinema blog at the time, which ultimately ended with the free trial I took advantage of after my computer blew up.

*sigh... Good times.

Anyway, back then, I managed to catch a trailer for the film you see at the very top.

The film, Broken Path, to be honest, is anomalous to me. It is a brilliantly action packed martial arts movie, packaged with a great cast led by Johnny Yong Bosch, Pamela Walworth,
Dan Southworth, Makoto Sakamoto, Sonny Sison, Tadhiro Nakamura and Panuvat Anthony Nanakornpanom, and is rock-solid with some of the most plentiful martial arts action sequences ever put on film in the history of films featuring Alpha Stunts, the people behind the Power Rangers television series, and films such as the highly heralded modern-day action classic, Drive, starring Mark Dacascos and directed by Steve Wang.

Oddly however, for some reason or another, Broken Path never made its way to a proper DVD release in the United States. I have tried inquiring to a few people on Twitter before about this film and why it remained so quiet over the years. To say the least, my efforts to learn more about this film's promotional shortcomings have...well, come short.

I guess Mr. Bosch is waiting for an answer too:

Aug 16, 2009

Hey guys, 

I still don't know what they are doing with the film yet but I found this site in Africa.

I know the producers distributed it out there and not here yet. Not too bright, are they? Anyhow, I don't know much about the site but I know some fans have already gotten a copy and are most likely gonna upload it online for all of you. I can't condone that but if the producers don't release it here what do they expect. Hopefully, all the sales out of Africa will tell them something and they'll release it for the rest of us...Africa? What the heck were they thinking.

I personally hope we will learn more in the days, months, and years ahead about this particular title, the process behind its push, the name change as seen on the film's IMDb page, and when, if at all, this film will get a proper DVD release in the U.S. since its availability was made in Africa and the U.K.. Because Broken Path is a true gem for any fan of martial arts action cinema. And if you ask me, this film did not get the proper treatmemt it deserved.

Looking at the end credits, you can tell that this was truly a team effort, done for the love of the art on all accounts. JYB was excellent in this film, and not merely for his over all physical prowess. If you are familiar with his history in the Power Rangers franchise, his voiceover work and other projects like Fast Maxx (which never got off the ground, and I am curious to also learn more about this TV show that never was), then you can tell in the overall look and tone of the film that this is not your average made-for-kids martial arts film. Point in fact, the amount of blood being spilled in this movie speaks for itself.

Dan Southworth, actor, stuntman, motion capture performer and martial artist who also shares a history in the Power Rangers franchise, did a terrific job in both acting as well as choreographing the fight scenes for the film. And pitting both Bosch and Southworth in the film not only helped in further bringing out the best in Alpha Stunts, but also illuminated the type of pure, brutal and hard-core action that martial arts cinema fans LOVE. It makes me wonder why we hardly hear from people like director and Alpha Stunts co-founder Koichi Sakamoto, who is behind some of these amazing fight scenes we have seen on film for so many years.

I certainly hope we will hear from him again REAL soon. Good quality martial arts action cinema like this deserves to be appreciated.

I highly recommend this film to all of you, wherever you live and wherever you can find it. If you have a google account, you can currently rent the movie at Google Movies and TV by clicking here or purchase/rent your digital copy at Amazon Instant Video or wherever digital downloads are available. (If you are a UK resident, you can probably still score a decent DVD copy of the film under the title Broken Fist)

Then again, you could just go be a n00b and look for it someplace where you can download it for free, which helps no one. My point: Don't be a n00b. ;-)

You can currently catch Bosch in the latest film from The Stunt People and Action Pact Entertainment, DEATH GRIP with Eric Jacobus. You can also see some of Daniel Southworth's other choreography in the original sci-fi action webseries, Divergence, with new episodes coming soon. And don't forget to catch Daniel and Eric in the roles of Kenshi and Stryker, respectively, in this Spring's online release of Mortal Kombat: Legacy - Season 2.


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