Blind Fury

Blind Fury
Original title:Blind Fury
Director:Phillip Noyce
Running time:86 minutes
Release date:16 march 1980
He may be blind, but Nick Parker (Rutger Hauer) has a way with a sword. The Vietnam vet pays a visit to an old war buddy, Frank Deveraux (Terrance O'Quinn), only to discover that his friend is in deep trouble. Gangsters have killed Frank's wife (Meg Foster) and are holding him hostage in Reno, Nev. Making a narrow escape with Frank's young son (Brandon Call), Nick heads across the country to even the score. Needless to say, his opponents underestimate him -- and his sword skills.

Mulder's Review

Blind Fury, directed by Phillip Noyce, is a captivating action-comedy that brilliantly blends intense swordsmanship with heartfelt character development. It features Rutger Hauer in one of his most memorable roles, that of Nick Parker, a Vietnam veteran who, after being blinded in combat, is rescued by a Vietnamese village. The villagers not only nurse him back to health, they also teach him to enhance his remaining senses, transforming him into an extremely gifted swordsman. This intriguing premise sets the stage for a film as much about personal redemption and friendship as it is about action and adventure.

Rutger Hauer's portrayal of Nick Parker is simply brilliant. He brings to the character a unique blend of charm, wit and stoic toughness, making Nick a very endearing protagonist. His journey begins with a simple goal: to reconnect with his old army buddy, Frank Deveraux, played by Terrance O'Quinn. However, on his return to the U.S., Nick finds himself embroiled in a dangerous conspiracy involving Frank, who has been coerced into developing synthetic drugs by ruthless casino magnate Claude MacCready, played by Noble Willingham.

The film's plot centers on Nick's quest to save Frank and protect his son, Billy, played by Brandon Paul. The dynamic between Nick and Billy adds a rich layer of emotional depth to the story. At first, Billy is resentful and suspicious of Nick, but as the story progresses, their bond grows stronger. The evolution of this relationship provides some of the film's most touching moments, counterbalancing the high-octane action sequences.

When it comes to action, Blind Fury is up to the task on all fronts. The choreography, overseen by stunt coordinator Dick Ziker and swordfight coordinator Steven Lambert, is impressive, especially considering the film's budget constraints. The fight scenes are well-executed and thrilling, showcasing Nick's incredible skills and ingenuity. One memorable sequence features Nick confronting a group of thugs, whom he skillfully eliminates despite his blindness. Another highlight of the film is the final confrontation on a snowy mountain in Nevada, where Nick takes on martial arts legend Sho Kosugi. This final battle is the culmination of the film's blend of Eastern and Western action tropes.

Humor is another key element of Blind Fury. The film doesn't hesitate to inject comedic elements into its narrative, often through Nick's interactions with those around him. Whether it's Nick's ability to outwit his adversaries or the amusing reactions of passers-by to his exploits, humor adds a delightful lightness to the film. Notable secondary characters like Randall "Tex" Cobb and Nick Cassavetes contribute significantly to this aspect, providing comic relief that enhances the overall viewing experience.

Blind Fury is more than just an action film; it's a heartfelt story about redemption, friendship and the endurance of the human spirit. Despite its B-movie origins, the film manages to transcend the genre's conventions, offering a story that's both entertaining and emotional. Rutger Hauer's performance as Nick Parker is a tour de force, demonstrating his ability to give a character depth, humor and undeniable charisma.

Blind Fury is a late-1980s gem that continues to captivate audiences with its unique blend of action, comedy and heart. Whether you're a fan of action films, a lover of character-driven stories or simply looking for a captivating film to watch, Blind Fury is a cult favorite that delivers on all fronts.

Blind Fury
Directed by Phillip Noyce
Written by Charles Robert Carner
Story by Charles Robert Carner
Based on Zatoichi Challenged by Ryôzô Kasahara
Produced by Tim Matheson, Daniel Grodnik
Starring Rutger Hauer, Terrance O'Quinn, Lisa Blount, Randall "Tex" Cobb, Noble Willingham
Cinematography : Don Burgess
Edited by David A. Simmons
Music by J. Peter Robinson
Production company : Interscope Communications
Distributed by Tri-Star Pictures
Release dates : March 16, 1990 (United States), May 2, 1990 (France)
Running time : 86 minutes

reviewed on June 22, 2024 (DVD)

Mulder's Mark: