Blastfighter (1984)

3.5 out of 5

Much like a bastard offspring of First Blood and Deliverance, Blastfighter sees Michael Sopkiw as Jake Sharp in his second movie for Lamberto Bava. Bava, here using the John Old Jr. pseudonym as nod to his father’s John M. Old, delivers one of finest Italian “social outcast takes revenge themed” flicks of the period and also tells a story where his lead character has a certain amount of dimension and depth, something that happens when Dardano Sacchetti is part of the writing team.

Sharp is a former cop who just got out of jail after serving eight years for taking the life of his wife’s murderer. Leaving it all behind and starting anew, he returns to his home town deep in he woods where he’s greeted by his old mate Tom, George Eastman. During an evening of hunting Jake can’t bring himself to pull the trigger on the deer he has locked in his sights… but Tom’s younger brother and redneck stereotype does. And so starts the tormenting of Jake Sharp. A tormenting that will see his pet deer slaughtered, his daughter raped and his best friend murdered. The final act sees Sharp revealing a super-shotgun that would have the NRA green with envy, he starts to claim vengeance on his tormentors for all the grief they have inflicted upon him! And revenge is best served blasting hot from the muzzle of a shotgun.

A entertaining eighties action flick that has Michele Soavi in a supporting role, a cameo by Deliverance’s duelling banjo star Billy Redden and the music of composers Guido and Maurizio De Angelis hiding behind the pseudonym Andrew Barrymore.

Maurizio Merli header graphic courtesy of Paddy O'Neill of Foxyfide Graphics