Tuesday, May 9

A Date with the DOA Girls

Ryu Hayabusa (Kane Kosugi) grips his ball while a bikini-clad Kasumi (Devon Aoki) looks on. Mm.

Ever since word of the Dead or Alive movie was sent out, reactions to the upcoming fighting game translation tot he big screen has been less than enthusiastic. Over at pretty much every DOA forum or message board, the feeling is almost universal that the movie will suck. I beg to differ. First of all, the DOA storyline really isn't a big deal... it's about ninja and various martial artists fighting for a big prize at the end of a tournament being held by the less-than-benign DOATEC Corporation... nothing really groundbreaking since this is pretty much the storyline for every fighting game from the dawn of man.

DOA is actually two game-to-movie translations in one, thanks to the DOAX vollyeball segment.

Not surprising given the fact that DOA's popularity rests almost solely on the assets of it's female characters, the movie as well will apparently be all about the ladies. Early word is that the story centers on the character of Christie (Australian actress Holly Valance), a sexy blonde bounty hunter who's after the head of the Tournament managing committee and probably the movie's main baddie, Donovan, played by Eric Roberts. This is a bit of a surprise for gamers since in the game, Christie was an assassin working for Donovan, and she was a pretty nasty piece of work.

Looking good.

Thankfully, the game will also focus on other DOA heroines- notably Kasumi(played by Sin City's Miho, Devon Aoki), the renegade ninja girl who has been the main DOA character for most of the games. Gunning for Kasumi as she does in the games is her purple-haired half-sister Ayane, played by the lovely Natassia Malthe, last seen locking lips with Jennifer Garner in the tragic Elektra movie. Then there's Tina Armstrong, a pro-wrestler with dreams of stardom played by sultry Jaime Pressley (I wonder if director Corey Yuen was staking out the Sin City set to cast his film) and finally Helena, an opera singer and martial artist played by Sarah Carter.

Kasumi shows off some of her ninja techniques.

Of course, there's the obligatory 'girl gets attacked while coming out of the bath' scene.

Fans of the game can look forward to seeing other DOA fighters like Ninja Gaiden's Ryu Hayabusa (Kane Kosugi), Hayate, Gen Fu, Bass and others in supporting roles. Noticeably missing so far are fan favorite Chinese femme fatale Leifang and karate kid Hitomi.

Outwardly, the film looks to be a cross between the past Charlie's Angels movies, Bruce Lee's Enter the Dragon and Game of Death, with bits of Kill Bill and American Ninja thrown in. Conceivably, it could actually be pretty cool.

Zack (Brian J. White) and Tina (Jaime Pressley) continue their non-existent relationship.

Anyway, the girls are gorgeous. The fighting looks decent, and there looks to be a lot of it. All I want is to see the lovely cast kick butt (or get their butts kicked) spectacularly, and for the movie to have a sense of humor but still remain reasonably faithful to the material. So far, the film looks fun. I'll be giving it the benefit of the doubt and declare that I am excited to see this flick. But hey, I was excited about the Street Fighter movie too years ago. Sigh.

Dead or Alive the Movie is set for an August 25 release.

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