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Jiu Jitsu evaluation – Nicolas Cage offers it his all in mortal extra-terrestrial fight

The entertainingly frazzled presence of Nicolas Cage gives a motive to pay some consideration – however not a lot – to this in any other case uninspired and by-the-numbers martial-arts action-sci-fi crossover.

Kickboxing star Alain Moussi performs Jake, a man that we first see in some sort of mortal fight with a mysterious extraterrestrial determine that emerges from a temple in Burma each few years or so for a monumental showdown with humanity – or, at any price, that aspect of humanity who’re eager on one-on-one MMA smackdowns. Later, Jake wakes up along with his reminiscence gone, and should attempt to come to phrases along with his forgotten warrior future. In so doing, he makes contact with a priestly siblinghood of martial arts superstars who’re additionally useless set on taking down this invader. They embody the wacky Wylie (performed by Cage himself), Carmen (taekwondo champ JuJu Chan), Kueng (Thai martial arts legend Tony Jaa) and Forbes (muay Thai fanatic Marrese Crump).

The motion sequences are weirdly prolonged and bland, like game-play motion from a first-person recreation. Cage himself, as ever, offers it his freakily dedicated all, booming out the strains and at one stage displaying how he’s been making hats out of newspaper. As he grinningly tags together with the fighters, Cage appears a bit like Dennis Hopper from Apocalypse Now.

In any other case, although, it’s all a bit joyless and grim – besides, perhaps, for one change when Jake wakes at a safe navy facility to be informed that he’s in Burma. “Burma? I believed it was Myanmar!” he exclaims. May it’s that director and co-writer Dimitri Logothetis meant a reference to the basic second in Seinfeld when Elaine’s employer J Peterman calls her and broadcasts that he’s in Burma: “You almost certainly comprehend it as Myanmar. But it surely’ll at all times be Burma to me!”

• Jiu Jitsu is on digital codecs from 21 December.

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