Film: Double Dragon

Double Dragon is a 1994 film loosely based on the Double Dragon video game series. And by "loosely based", we mean it has nothing in common with the original video games other than the names of a few characters and the title.

Set in the then-futuristic year of 2007, a huge natural disaster known as the "Big One" has left most of California flooded. In the city of New Angeles, a powerful crime lord named Koga Shuko (Robert Patrick) owns one half of a mythical medallion known as the "Double Dragon". When Koga learns that two young brothers named Billy and Jimmy Lee (Scott Wolf and Mark Dacascos) have uncovered the other half, he orders the entire gang population of New Angeles to go after the Lee boys.

When their adopted mother Satori (Julia Nickson) is killed during an explosion, the Lees must team with a Guardian Angel-style group of vigilantes known as the Power Corps, led by the police chief's daughter Marian Delario (Alyssa Milano), in order to avenge the woman that raised them and save the city.

Aside from deviating from the original game's basic plot of two brothers beating up gang members in order to rescue a common love interest, the film also downplays the Lee brothers' martial art skills from the game by having their movie alter-egos spend most of their screen time screaming like girls and running away from the bad guys, Completely Missing the Point of the original games, which was about beating people up.

For those looking for a more faithful adaptation of the games, just watch the Jean Claude Van-Damme movie Double Impact and pretend that Alex and Chad are really just Billy and Jimmy.

  • Action Girl: Marian, who's leading a band of rebels and who pretty much saves the brothers' bacon at every turn.
  • Amulet of Concentrated Awesome: The Double Dragon Medallion.
  • Big Bad: Koga Shuko, also known as "Geistman" by Satori, the brothers' guardian.
  • Curse Cut Short / Oh, Crap
    Billy and Jimmy: Oh, sh-
    Koga Shuko: You said it.
  • Demonic Possession: The second half of the Dragon Medallion, which gives the user power over the soul, and which is used to evil effect by Koga Shuko, as well as to hilarious effect when Jimmy possesses Shuko at the end.
  • Dragons Up the Yin Yang: In addition to the dragons in promotional imagery from the game, the film added various dragon-themed props.
  • Elite Mooks: The Ninja Wraiths that the brothers have to fight when Shuko unites both halves of the medallion.
  • Fascinating Eyebrow: Shuko, after possessing Jimmy, as Billy fights just before the final battle.
  • Gratuitous Special Effects: Marian's little brother, at one point, uses a VR headset solely to work in more CGI effects.
  • In Name Only: An odd case; the movie keeps many character names, and even attempts to depict some elements of it accurately, preserving some of the villains and the central plot twist of the first game. But then there's the rest of it.
  • MacGuffin: The Double Dragon Medallion. One half, belonging to Billy, grants power over the body, while the other half, used by both Shuko and Jimmy, grants power over the soul.
  • Recursive Canon: A Double Dragon arcade cabinet appears in the background. A Shuko-possessed Jimmy breaks it while fighting Billy.
  • She Did Everything She Could: Jimmy thinks Satori should have told him and Billy the truth about the medallion sooner. But Billy defends her, saying she had no idea Shuko would find the first half and be looking for the other, "she did the best she could". Billy calls him out on that, since Satori was the only family they had.
  • Those Two Bad Guys
  • Wonder Twin Powers: The only way the Dragon medallion could be used in the movie without corrupting the user with its power, with Billy using one half of the medallion and Jimmy using the other.
  • Xenafication: Marian, the Power Corps leader, is supposed to be the same character who gets gut-punched and carried off by the bad guys in the original game.
  • Your Mom:
    Shuko: You're weak like your father.
    Billy: You're ugly like your mother!
  • Zeerust: The film takes place in a future after a huge natural disaster has left most of Los Angeles (now dubbed New Angeles) flooded... in the year 2007.