After a successful Kickstarter campaign and a series of well-received screenings throughout the U.S., “The Martial Arts Kid” a heartening movie with an ambitious message is finally out on DVD and Blu-ray for everyone to check out!
A contemporary ode to “The Karate Kid“, the film stars Jansen Panettiere as Robbie Oaks, a troubled kid who is sent to Cocoa Beach, Florida to live with his aunt and uncle, played by Cynthia Rothrock and Don “The Dragon” Wilson. He soon finds himself the target of bullies in his new environment but fortunately his aunt and uncle run a local martial arts’ school and under their tutelage, he learns the secrets of both self-defense and self-respect.
Special features on the DVD and Blu-ray include the film’s trailer, deleted scenes, an audio commentary with Don, his brother James who also served as producer on the film, Cynthia Rothrock, and director Michael Baumgarten, along with “The Journey”, a featurette covering the film’s release to the public.
Tracking through the audio commentary, fans are treated to a wonderful glimpse behind the scenes of the film from its conception to its Kickstarter campaign to its eventual release, in my opinion, “The Journey” is especially fitting a title and it sits the viewer right in the middle with the first audiences to see the film theatrically. For a look behind the curtain of how indie martial arts films are made, “The Martial Arts Kid” DVD certainly ticks the boxes! Also, if R. Marcos Taylor (the burly martial arts guy) Don brawls with in the film looks familiar, that’s because he was portraying Suge Knight in last summer’s “Straight Outta Compton”!
Special mention: If you didn’t know, another martial arts kid, Britain’s Got Talent finalist, and little ninja bundle of dynamite, Jesse Jane McParland also features briefly in the movie unleashing a flurry of moves of her own. Feel free to check out her interview and demo while you’re here!