Now On Tubi: In GREEN GHOST AND THE MASTERS OF THE STONE, A Palatable Fantasy Action Comedy Adventure For All
Writer/director Michael D. Olmos’ latest martial arts action comedy adventure, Green Ghost and The Masters of the Stone, quietly landed on Tubi sometime this week and much to my own delight as the film was previously given a very (and I mean VERY) limited theatrical run earlier this year.
The film is based on a concept birthed many years ago by Charlie Clark, a car salesman who ultimately found his way into bringing the character to life in a webseries format that now had independent production backing, and starpower to boot. That means having heavy hitters like Michelle Lee and Chilean action star Marko Zaror front and center, the latter wearing multiple hats on the project, including the role of fight choreographer which should entice anyone within reach of Zaror’s filmography in the last fifteen years.
It also means having former Jackie Chan stunt cohort Andy Cheng, who has long since paved a way for himself in directing action for the big and small screen, in addition to the occasional character performance from time to time. Peppering things up a little more, of course, is the casting of Danny Trejo to bring some extra authenticity to a feature thriller with a largely hispanic cast and a narrative set against Mexican culture and mythology.
This brings us to a story that sees our protagonist, Charlie (Charlie Clark), a struggling car salesman-by-day and masked Lucha libre-by-night who finds himself thrust into an epic battle with a sorceress named Luchesa (Elpidia Carillo) and her power hungry son, Drake (Zaror), who look to ascertain the power of a mystical stone to bring about the Mayan apocalypse. The only ones capable of stopping them are the “Trio Of Light,” with none other than Charlie’s adoptive Mexican siblibgs, Marco (Kuno Becker) and Karina (Sofia Pernas) already prepared to step up and take on Luchesa and her minions. The only lynchpin among them is Charlie, ill-prepared and far from ready, and who must undergo an intense crash course with three masters if he’s to tap into his power and save the world once and for all.
Clark, who is bilingual in the film in that he speaks both English and Spanish, holds up as a decent, palatable choice for the lead with a proven ability to carry the character both dramatically and physically. His performance is more textbook than anything, which helps in its delivery in that there aren’t any extremes to his performance, which leaves plenty of shared room for the rest of the roster to flourish. This also means action fan service aplenty with the presence of the aforementioned Lee, Cheng, and Zaror, in addition to action actors Arnold Chon and Chris Balualua, and former MMA fighter Cain Velasquez, who joins Cheng and Trejo as one of the three masters assigned by Nana to train Charlie for the battle ahead.
Family sits as one of the film’s foremost themes in Green Ghost and The Masters Of The Stone as we watch Charlie struggle to grasp with finding his place in a family he’s had to make for himself after running away from home. While it’s plausible that this theme culminates with his on-screen siblings, it feels more perfunctory trying to watch as the film reaches over to our hero’s struggling car dealership. It’s more of a side quest after all said and done, happy endings notwithstanding.
I can’t complain too much, though, especially for a film that landed on the festival scene with a teaser poster ahead of a few mini-promos and took just several more years to finally become a reality. Just shy of a cheesy, campy suit comedy from the 60s, Green Ghost and The Masters of the Stone is as small-scale as it gets, but fares decently as a fun family flick with a great cast, loads of action and enough martial arts cinema starpower to garner your interest.
Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.