Life, the Universe, and L.A. Streetfighting
Now, the Lady and I have been discussing making a big move out of state. We’re both growing tired of humdrum Arizona. Surprisingly, we’ve been thinking a lot about Los Angeles. I know, right? Me in L.A.? But I promise you, this ain’t a hoax or an imaginary tale right here. This is what we’re looking to do (unless we decide we’d rather live boring, normal lives somewhere more vanilla, like Phoenix). Being the big smart guy that I am, I decided that maybe I could do some research on the city of L.A. through one of its chief exports, film. Instead of sitting down with, say, L.A. Story (which a friend of ours swears is a great representation of life in Los Angeleez), I found myself sitting down with a relatively obscure flick called L.A. Streetfighters, from ACTION BROTHERS PRODUCTIONS. Frankly, you could just put ACTION BROTHERS on the cover for any movie and I’ll probably buy it. I like the mental image of a pair of kung-fuing Italian plumbers.
There’s plenty of kung-fuing going on in L.A. Streetfighters, and while the two main dudes aren’t brothers, at least one of them has a mustache. That’s gotta count for something.
If there’s one thing I can take away from this movie, it’s that I might not want to raise my children in the public schools of Los Angeles. Our heroes, Young and Tony, attend a high school where you’d be hard pressed to find a student under the age of 30. You know when kids make their own movies, and you have that funny, cute thing where a 12-year-old is dressed up in an ill-fitting suit, pretending to be some middle-aged detective? L.A. Streetfighters is like the opposite of that.
I’m going to have to start training my kids in kung-fu straight out of the womb if I have any hope of them surviving high school. I suppose I should also expect them to be stuck in high school and living with me well into their adult years. Says a lot about public education in California, I guess.
There are plenty of things I’d love to tell you about the action (both with the chicks and in the titular street fighting), but I spent 90% of the time not sure what was going on. I think there might have been a part where Tony makes out with his girl, but frankly you’d have an easier time following the action in a scrambled porno on cable than you would figuring out what’s what in this movie. Why is that? Because the vast majority of the action takes place in pitch darkness. It’s as though the people responsible for the film didn’t want to run the risk of the audience realizing the movie sucks.
There’s a scene when our heroes (and their friends) are leaving a party (where they’ve been working security) and encounter a gang of thugs (led by a pot-bellied, blonde version of Gallagher in a half-shirt). The thugs bust out their baseball bats and start doing… well, something. I think they were hitting Young’s car with their bats, but for all I know they could’ve been putting on an impromptu breakdancing performance or giving an elephant a prostate exam. Fucked if I know.
At least I can tell you that you’ll know when a fight is starting, because nearly all of the fights start like the beginning of the video for Beat It, and there’s a pretty kickin’ tune that starts up each time.
But this movie isn’t just about 30-year-old teenagers fighting with wooden sticks in the streets of Los Angeles. It’s also about the human condition. See, life isn’t easy for the kids in Young and Tony’s group. Early in the movie we witness a birthday party (in what appears to be an abandoned building) for one of their friends, who breaks down in front of his macho brothers and admits that he’s never had a birthday cake before. Meanwhile, Young has his own problems living with his divorced mother. In a page straight out of the Hasselhoff family handbook, Tony meets Young’s mom when she arrives home intoxicated and accompanied by some random oily bohunk. As Young says to Tony later in his most Wiseau-esque delivery, “Mom’s always drunk. I don’t know what to do with her.”
In the urban jungle of L.A., it’s either kung-fu or be kung-fued. When you’re not getting whacked repeatedly in the face with a wooden sword, your car is getting pissed on by fat, shirtless latino gangbangers. Or you’re being called racial slurs by women that might or might not be actual prostitutes. Or you’re getting pushed around at school by grown men whose shirts are tailored by the same guy Lando Calrissian goes to. Just because you’re still living with your parents and have a mullet or a mustache.
Young wants to be free, man. He wants to live his life, and it’s been tough since he came to America. Tony wants to live the American dream. But it’s hard out there when greasy, stereotypical Italian drug dealers are after you because you stole their briefcase filled with money while they were too busy sexing up small-breasted chicks in bathtubs to notice. And then they hire Karate Champion Bill “Superfoot” Wallace to kick your ass (along with some ninja dude who has a mustache identical to yours and a penchant for only wearing one sleeve).
Clearly, the Action Brothers have brought us the Great American Novel as kung-fu cinema.
In this movie, you will see:
- 2 Asian dudes with mustaches
- A gang of thugs featuring a guy with a giant flute
- A toga party
- Hookers (and some women that might or might not also be hookers)
- Poor fashion decisions
- Drug use
- Simulated underage drinking
- 1 set of naked breasts
- Lots of bad dancing
- 1 billboard for Pink Floyd’s The Wall, the only film I can think of right now that’s less coherent than L.A. Streetfighters
As for how this has informed me on the city of Los Angeles, I have to say it has only made me more intent on moving there. I’m already placing a bulk order on woodenfightingstickshop.com.
Final word: See it, but only if your brain has been pumped full of a decent mix of legal and illegal substances.