Harsh Texture

Miami Connection

Orlando's hottest band are also practicing martial artists, and woe betide the drug-dealing ninjas seeking to take them down.

Woo-Sang Park is an auteur on par with Ed Wood. While neither never troubled the cinema world with classics, they still were able to build up a surprising number of films before their luck ran out. IMDB lists twenty directing credits for Woo-Sang Park stretching from the early seventies to the late nineties. As Wood found out, when busking on the edges of cinema you pretty much hop from sucker to sucker, giving your patrons enough of what they want while sneaking in at least part of your vision.  

The sucker this time was one Y. K. Kim, a grandmaster in martial arts. Kim footed the bill for this film, which he intended as a treatise on his philosophy. Park delivered pretty much that, even finding himself a small cameo as restaurant owner who gets to flash a bit of his fighting skill in a dead end subplot.  

This may imply that the bulk of Miami Connection is a Y.K. Kim vanity project, but he hardly crowds the stage. Perhaps due to Kim’s obvious unfamiliarity with English, most of the sub plots are handled by other actors.

Whereas I’d generally call out the inept subplots, I’m more inclined to congratulate the filmmakers just for knowing what subplots are and attempting to add a few. Such is the power of Miami Connection.  

Although pity poor Si Y Jo, cast here as the drug kingpin, ninja master Yashito. While Jo can pass for a brooding villain in a small room full of masked extras, Park tries to add gravitas to the character by also making him the leader of a bike gang. The bikers seems to be drawn from the local Harley/Hell’s Angels knockoff and couldn’t look further from ninja shape. Amongst them, in real honest to goodness biker bars, Yashito visibly seems to fret for his well being.  

Published: Aug. 18, 2016, 11:02 p.m.
Updated: Aug. 18, 2016, 11:02 p.m.