Warriors of Virtue
Entertainment: +2
Acceptability: -2

Ryan (Mario Yedidia) is a young teenager longing to be included with the other boys on his school's football team. The best he can do, however, is be the team water boy and the brunt of cruel jokes. Ryan spends much of his spare time at the neighborhood Chinese restaurant where Ming (Dennis Dun), the chef, befriends him. Ming introduces Ryan to the eastern Tao philosophy to encourage the boy to get in touch with his inner self for strength and guidance. He even gives him a book containing the Tao manuscript. Ryan accidentally falls into a whirlpool and wakes up in a strange land of eastern mysticism. Five kangaroo-like warriors of virtue guard and protect the peace-loving Master Chung (Chao-Li Chi) from the evil warlord Komodo (Angus Macfadyen). Because Ryan has brought the Tao book of legends with him, he becomes the warlord's target. A beautiful young woman named Elysia (Marley Shelton) guides the boy to Chung, and Ryan joins in the battle to save the mystic Tao world. The "Dungeons and Dragons"-style plot, confusing characters and dark setting will frighten young children, but those over eight years old may enjoy the kung-fu action of this fantasy film. The New Age concept that our strength and guidance come from within permeates the Tao philosophy endorsed in this film. The five warriors represent the virtues of benevolence, righteousness, order, wisdom and loyalty, which are linked to the elements of earth, water, metal, wood and fire. Some of the battles between good and evil become surprisingly violent, with bloody wounds inflicted by kicks, swords and other weapons. It's revealed that the evil Komodo depends on drugs to stay young and strong, but no actual drug use is shown. Elysia falls under his spell and becomes a sensual vamp competing with a witch-like woman for their master's affection. Trying to bluff his knowledge of the Tao manuscript, Ryan tells the warlord that a particular page says "(s-word) happens." That tasteless, obscene phrase is repeated three more times. For a film designed exclusively for impressionable children, Warriors of Virtue delivers disturbing New Age messages, offers excessive violence and contains gratuitous obscenities spoken by a boy. Parents will not want their youngsters to see this dangerous movie.

Preview Reviewer: Mary Draughon
Distributor: MGM/UA, 450 N. Roxbury Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90210

Crude Language: None
Obscene Language: Few (4) times (s-word 4)
Profanity: Few (2) times Regular (G 2)
Violence: Many times Moderate and Severe (martial arts kicks and punches, sword battles, bloody hits to head, boy falls into whirlpool)
Sexual Intercourse: None
Nudity: None; near nudity few times (low-cut dresses)
Homosexual Conduct: None
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: Few times (man and woman caress each other suggestively)
Drug Abuse: None; implied drug use by villain
Other: New Age concepts and eastern mystical philosophy of Taoism promoted
Running Time: 102 minutes
Intended Audience: Children age eight and above

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