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  • Widescreen 1.85:1
  • 16:9 Enhanced
  • Dual Layer ( )
  • English: Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono
  • Animated menus

An Eye for an Eye

Universal/Universal . R4 . COLOR . 100 mins . M15+ . PAL


Ah, Chuck Norris. He who made the long bowl cut the superstar of haircuts it is today. He is also responsible for white guys doing karate in films, being the first to break the mould way back when. However, there was no wirework back in 1981; actors had to really learn how to kick and fly through the air and do spin kicks while maintaining their own balance. They sure don’t make films like this any more.

Thank God.

Chuck plays Sean Kane, a police officer whose partner gets killed by Montoya, a baddie. The partner’s girlfriend Linda Chan, an investigative journalist, then takes up the case and, before you know it, she’s been hunted down and killed as well. Now Chuck is really pissed (because I think he had plans to be knockin’ it with Linda or something) and using the help of her best friend, Heather, he starts an investigation of his own. However, he resigned after his partner’s death, so he also recruited Linda’s father, the ancient Chinese warrior who trained him in his karate ways.

With stunts co-ordinated by Aaron Norris, and a script possibly scrawled by Chuck, this film is reference quality cliché. Naturally Chuck and Heather, working so closely in the investigation, soon get down and dingy in some truly cheesy romantic bits. Mako plays the father of Linda and he is the unlikely foil to Norris’ lack of acting ability, over-hamming his role to become some sort of crappy wise teacher and effectively making fun of the Asian community.

My favourite bits though have to be the fight scenes, in which Norris and Mako take on endless reserves of bad guys who just keep coming. They kill ‘em, they beat ‘em unconscious, they pile the corpses up and still they keep coming like some underpaid cannon fodder. And no one seems to clean up the bodies afterward or, for that matter, investigate all these killings by the ex-police officer and an old Chinese dude. Plus, and this is the bestest part, Norris seems to have a Steve Austin-like dunununununununuhhhh sound effect whenever he pulls off a truly radical move (which for the time, means he jumps in the air to kick someone).

Yes folks, this is Norris Gold. He also drives a hot rod, like all policemen do, as the salaries are so good. The real money’s in being a copper, not being a thug. I guess that’s why criminals are fools.


Surprisingly, this 1981 film is fairly clean with very few artefacts. The only real drama comes in some of the night shots and interior darks when a little graininess shows up, but that’s really all. Colours are bright and even, flesh tones are realistic and blacks are true. Shadow detail is a little murky and flat, but this isn’t such a big deal, comparatively speaking. The cinema aspect ratio of 1.85:1 features anamorphic enhancement as well, which will cheer all one of Norris’ fan if they have a widescreen telly.


Dialogue is all clear and cheesy enough in this suspenseful vengeance epic of epic proportions. Norris delivers evenly whenever he’s got a line, but he is quickly swamped by the other cast members with more experience. Sound effects have taken liberal scoops from the Stock Sound Effects Bucket with gunfire and ricochets being so familiar as to bring back memories of other, better films. William Goldstein’s musical score is subdued enough to be aural wallpaper and unremarkable to say the least. Dolby Digital 2.0 does a practical job here, but isn’t more than a regular and average delivery of a budget transfer.


Well, we get an animated menu.

That’s good, right?


If you’re collecting the Chuck Norris collection of B-grade films on DVD you can’t live without this one. If you teach scriptwriting, this is a particularly good reference for standard film scripts and the use of clichés. If you are a person who enjoys modern cinema you shouldn’t even be reading this and if you, like me, demand a little more from your films, you should avoid this entirely average film like it’s got cooties.

Because it just might.

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      And I quote...
    "It’s a Chuck Norris thriller from 1981. And by thriller I mean clichéd string of kung-fu fights and driving a hot rod."
    - Jules Faber
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Teac DVD-990
    • TV:
          AKAI CT-T29S32S 68cm
    • Speakers:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Centre Speaker:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Surrounds:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Subwoofer:
    • Audio Cables:
          Standard RCA
    • Video Cables:
          Standard Component RCA
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