Review – The Martial Arts Kid 2015
Very rarely do martial arts films have a message or have a sense of emotion that complements the action. This film is clearly aimed towards families with a message that conveys the dangers and prevention of an epidemic known as bullying.
…The other breakout star truly is Matthew Ziff, who underwent a transformation by bulking up a bit and changing his look to play the bully Bo Whitlaw. Ziff, who is a martial artist himself, uses more force than technical skills but it is clear with this role, he is one to look out for. From his introduction scene and hitting Robbie in the face to the way he tends to treat his girlfriend Rina, played well by Kathryn Newton, Bo is just bad news from the start. It is clear that he truly wants to make Robbie squirm as much as possible, but seems to be shocked when at one point, he confronts Robbie and Robbie does nothing but stares him down. This perhaps shows that Robbie, having underwent his training, doesn’t necessarily have to use his fists to stand up to Bo, but is forced to follow the “protect others” rule when Rina, who leaves Bo for Robbie, is threatened by the bully.
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