The movie that helped elevate Scott Adkins and Michael Jai White into some of the most popular names in martial arts movies. Undisputed 2 follows George Chambers and his plummeting boxing career roughly 6 years after the events of Undisputed.
Goerge (Michael Jai White) is broke, no longer the heavy weight champ and appearing in an advertisement in Russia, a job and lifestyle he seems fed up with.
At the same time there’s a prisoner named Boyka (Scott Adkins). Boyka is undefeated and seemingly unstoppable champion of the Russian prison fighting circuit. The owner of the prison and the televised prison fights, a mobster named Gaga, is tired of seeing Boyka constantly destroying his opponents with little to no effort. So he takes advantage of George’s stay in Russia, and comes up with a plan.
Gaga sees in George Chambers a guy who can possibly defeat Boyka. As a champion of Boxing, Goerge has the skill, and Gaga wants to make a tonne of money by setting up a fight and betting against Boyka.
So Gaga has some men plant drugs in George Chamber’s hotel room, and frames him for possession.
With George now locked up in his prison, Gaga offers George a way out, fight Boyka (and win, as he mentions later in the film) and he will walk free, making a tonne of much needed money. Of course while George is furious over he whole situation, he agrees and fights Boyka.
George Chambers in Prison
In the first movie George was thrown into prison for a false accusation, but he never endured what he had to in the Russian prison. Happening for the second time, you can see the obvious frustration and anger, and the refusal to accept the fact that he is in prison.
Whenever he is told to follow prison rules or protocol George acts as if the guards have no right over him, and fights each incident to the bitter end. After being robbed of his freedom and dignity, there’s only so much he can take when he decides to fight in the ring.
While George has the same bad attitude as the first movie, he soon gains the respect of those around him after his first fight with Boyka. The prisoners all help him out when he is enduring torturous punishment but in particular he develops a trust for Nikolai.
Nikolai is an old man confined to a wheelchair. Locked up for life, he was a formerly trained in military grappling.
Nikolai is the first to help George. George initially asks why, following up with “Where I’m from, ain’t nothin’ for free” to which Nikolai responds by asking him “have you ever helped anybody?” The help he recieves after that from the prisoners and from Nikolai to expand his training, he becomes less aggressive (slightly), and changes his character, especially toward the very end of the film.
The massively popular character of Boyka is one filled with anger and mostly hatred in this movie. Extremely aggressive, he treats his group of followers horribly, injuring some regularly and even killing two of them after they drug Chambers in the first fight.
This is all quite interesting when you first see him praying to god, and collecting stamps!
Boyka is basically the king inside the prison. Everyone stands when he enters the kitchen, and they all live in fear of his aggression and abilities. He instantly tries to talk over George when he arrives. He lets George know he (Boyka) is the champion in the prison, to which George fires up and starts a fight which is broken up by the guards.
He does however seem a little threatened by Chambers, getting defensive when he or his training is mentioned.
The Fighting and Martial Arts
This movie is among the most exciting fight films of the past 10 years. The physical skill and acrobatic ability of both Scott Adkins and Michael Jai White elevate the level of the fight scenes beyond the level that Martial Arts movies were being made at the time.
Another incredible aspect of this movie is the physiques of both the main characters – both guys are built and ripped to shreds! This adds a visual degree of power to both Boyka and Chambers.
The style of the fights is half MMA half acrobtic/Wushu. The two are blended superbly, and the movie shows a cool progression of the fighting style of George Chambers.
With George’s boxing and lack of grappling and kicking skills (not to mention knees and elbows), he has trouble dealing with Boyka’s complete fighting style, but still holds his own right up until he feels the effects of the drugged water.
After his training with Nikolai and change of approach, he steps into the ring with a whole new fighting style. While he worked great angles and footwork in the first fight, the added knees, kicks and elbows makes him more than a match for Boyka, but the real victory comes when he hits the ground.
While Boyka has ground experience, Chambers is still able to use his skills to defeat Boyka on the ground and break his leg.
A really well told progression of martial art style is what Isaac Florentine achieved in this film, and it adds a extra level of development to Michael Jai White’s character.
‘The Most Complete Fighter in the World’ in relation to MMA
Boyka’s drive to defeat Chambers and prove him to be the ‘The most complete fighter in the world’ makes him obsessed, stating that many different cultures turned fighting into a science, and that he is ‘the next stage’.
This theory behind his own fighting style closely mirrors that of MMA. When Brazilian Jiu Jitsu was introduced into no rules competition, people started to see the fight as being both standing and on the ground. People then saw the need for a ‘complete’ personal style (similar to Jeet Kune Do, except with a defined ‘style’, in my opinion), that could enable a response or attack from any range in the fight.
While MMA was the next stage, much like how Boyka saw himself, it’s only a matter of time before more and more people realise this concept and apply it to their training. This huge surge in MMA can be represented by Chambers, stepping in from the outside world and applying Boyka’s concept to his own fighting style.
Whether you’re a fan of MMA or the story of Undisputed 2 (or not), the reference is hard to miss.
For more, check out the movie itself or check out the trailer at the bottom of this post. Thanks for reading!
The only movie to have made it to Blu-Ray is Undisputed 3.
It does seem hard to find for people in countries outside of America.
But have no fear – the movie is completely region free.
On DVD –