Above Pic: Poster for Dragon Eyes
It has been awhile since I reviewed a straight ahead action flick. Dragon Eyes was just what the action Dr ordered! MMA fighter/actor Cung Le famous for his MMA style and transition in to movies, delivers his quiet intensity and unique style in Dragon Eyes.
The story of Dragon Eyes is told in a non-linear style with a series of flashback from the prison where Cung Le and Jan Claude Van Damme are held. Van Damme plays Tiano the only man in the gang run town who stood up to the corrupt Mr. V played with maniacal fervor by Peter Weller. Van Dame's role is very limited, would have been nice to see him more in the town prior to being incarcerated.
Cung Le (Mr Hong) finds his way to to St Jude after being released from prison for the accidental shooting of his lady while he was chasing a thug. He stays in a small appartment run by Rossana (Crystal Mantecon) and her grandfather. Mantecon plays up the mousy not wanting to get involved person well and does not want any trouble from the war between 6th St Kings and East side gangsters. The rival gangs have been tearing up the town and the corrup sargent Mr V always takes his cut.
The movie heats up when money goes missing from the strong boxes of the the rival gangs and now an outside even more violent gang The Devil Dogs is recruited by Mr V to clean up the mess and retrieve his money and kill Cung Le. Dragon eyes is full of enough fists and kicks to keep even the most discerning MMA and action fan happy, Cung Lee and the rest of the cast are put through the action ringer.
Few words are spoken throughout Dragon Eyes and sometimes, as in this case the fewer the better, the visuals tell the story. Director John Hayms, who has directed several NYPD blue episodes and the latest two Universal Soldier flicks was an excellent choice, as he handles the gritty style with ease.
The fight scenes are well lit, all the moves can be seen in violent detail, some fighting sequences are interspersed with slow motion, but in this case it works as Cung's movement is so quick that the audience might miss the action and only see the result.
Sari Cummings as Honey Darling and a couple of junkies provide the only lighter moments, as this is a serious film all the way. It is a reccomended rent or purchase, I rate it 6.5 out of 10.
For more info on Cung Le's happenings double kick your browsers over to:www.cungle.com