"Today, you have the chance to be the greatest martial artists in the world. It's up to you. If you give everything you've got, everything, you'll be winners. That I promise you. You can be the best of the best."Best of the Best is a 1989 sports movie about competetive martial arts starring Eric Roberts.A group of American martial artists must overcome their differences and personal demons to win an international fighting tournament, which for years has been dominated by South Koreans.The film got three sequels in the nineties, all of which were more typical action movies.
The first movie features examples of:
- Brick Break: Occurs twice in the film; once during a demonstration by Ms. Wade, and again in the tournament itself. Also doubles as Chekhov's Skill.
- Defeat Means Friendship: After his defeat at the tournament, Dae Han becomes a friend to his American opponents.
- Determinator: Despite dislocating his shoulder, Grady refuses to give into it the second time and demands that it is popped back into place. He then proceeds continue the match with one arm in a sling.
- Eyepatch of Power: Sported by Dae Han.
- "Hey, You!" Haymaker: Attempted when an angry bar patron tries to take revenge on Travis for dancing with his girlfriend. Subverted when Travis ducks, letting the girlfriend take the punch that ultimately leads to a Bar Brawl.Travis: Well, that's a good move, Burt! Don't take any lip from her.
- It's Personal: Tommy isn't just interested in winning the competition, he wants revenge on Dae Han for the death of his brother.
- Limited Reference Pools: All throughout the movie, the sport of tae-kwon-do is constantly referred to as karate, even though it is blatantly obvious what it is supposed to be, as it is the South Korean national sport where the South Koreans are powerhouses on the international scene.
- Meditating Under a Waterfall: The South Korean Taekwondo team is shown standing under a waterfall during their training.
- Title Drop: During Couzo's speech to the team, as quoted above.
- Training Montage: When the US team start getting their act together, a montage materializes.
- We All Live in America: The South-Korean Taek Kwon Do team cheered for their country as "Korea, Korea!" while it should've been "Hanguk, Hanguk!" "Daehan Minguk," being another possibility.
- The X of Y
The sequels have the examples of:
- Actionized Sequel: The sequels shift into a standard action movie when compared to the traditional sports movie of the first.
- The Mafiya: They are the antagonists of the fourth film.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners: Alex Grady and Tommy Lee. Built-up in the first movie, demonstrated in the 2nd movie.
- No-Holds-Barred Contest: The Colosseum fights in 2.Announcer: What are the rules?Audience: There Are No Rules!
- Numbered Sequels
- Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: The main conflict in the second film is set in motion when Travis dies in a fight against the Big Bad.
- You Kill It, You Bought It: After Tommy kills Brakus, the Colosseum is offered to him.
- Genre Shift: The first movie is considered a standard sports movie while the sequels that followed, especially 2, are straight up action films.
- Worthy Opponent: Eventhough he wants to kill him, Brakus considers Tommy the one opponent who'd pose a challenge to him.