Dead or Alive is a fighting game series that first appeared in 1996 & is often known primarily for its female characters that are sexed up. Something that would even see a spin-off series, Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball get released.
In 2006, the popularity of the series would see it get its own live-action movie adaption. A film that is very loosely based on the series as a whole & focuses mainly on martial arts action scenes. There are a lot of them and not a lot else but DOA: Dead or Alive is still a fairly entertaining watch.
On a remote island, the DOA fighting competition is taking place & a number of fighters have been invited to take part. The winner doesn’t just get to boast, they also get 10 million dollars.
Victor Donovan (Eric Roberts) is the organiser, seemingly just wanting to witness the best fighters that the world has to offer. However, his actual motivations are far more sinister. Something that none of the fighters suspect at first.
Each person has their own motivations for being on the island & taking part in the competition. The major players are Kasumi (Devon Aoki), a shinobi ninja-princess. She is looking for her brother who took part in the last DOA competition & was supposedly killed. Then there is Tina (Jaime Pressly), a professional wrestler who wants to prove that she is a legitimate fighter. Her father, Bass (Kevin Nash) who doesn’t take her desire to prove herself seriously. Finally, there is Christie (Holly Valance), a thief who along with her partner, Max Marsh (Matthew Marsden) is looking to steal the money.
The rest of the cast pad out the movie, mainly for the competition fights. Those above are the main characters & ultimately the only ones that get any kind of development.
It’s no surprise that DOA: Dead or Alive is very light on plot. What it does have isn’t particularly interesting either. It’s all about the action & most of these scenes are really entertaining & well-choreographed. DOA: Dead or Alive has flair, it’s crisp looking & flows well, it’s just a pity that the acting isn’t up to standard & a lot of the dialogue is hilariously bad.
Who cares about plot, dialogue and acting when we’ve got beach volleyball though, right!?
There is nothing substantial here, it’s a throwaway popcorn flick that is best enjoyed with a beer & some friends. Don’t even think while watching it, just sit back & enjoy the over the top fights & silly action sequences.
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DOA: Dead or Alive