T.J. Roberts makes his final film for PM Entertainment in this exciting action drama that is definitely for the teen audience.
Roberts plays Eric Chase, a young man from a rich family who has typical teen issues. He is deemed a nerd for hanging out with local goofball Brad (Timothy Williams) and he hopes to get into college. However, Eric does have a black belt in karate. He trains at a dojo in a more shady area of Los Angeles.
When he meets Stephanie (Jennifer Lyons), the niece of convenient store owner Mr. Johnson (Rance Howard), they are instantly attracted to each other. However, Mr. Johnson is constantly being threatened by Paolo (Robert LaSardo), the lackey for businessman Nathaniel (Christopher Kriesa), who wants the store and all the places near there to tear down and build a mini-mart. When both Stephanie and Mr. Johnson are harassed, Eric decides to help them the only way he knows how: use his martial arts skills.
After being a teen action hero in the 1990’s, karate champion Ted Jan (T.J.) Roberts decides to make his final action film with this pretty good action film. What is interesting here is that Roberts plays a high schooler who not only possesses amazing martial arts skills, but he has typical teenager issues. From his first love to always dealing with snobby classmates, Roberts’ Eric can be aggressive, but he does have a heart. While Eric himself comes from a rich family, he doesn’t really care about the wealth. To him, martial arts is his passion and perhaps, an escape from the issues that plague him.
Thankfully, Roberts doesn’t have to carry the film himself. Timothy Williams seems like the perfect counterpart in the goofy high schooler department as Eric’s friend Brad. He may tend to get Eric in a jam at times, but when it all boils down to it, the power of friendship works well with the chemistry between the two.
Once again, Art Camacho comes in as fight choreographer and again, the choreography is nice and crisp. He even plays Roberts’ sensei in the film and in the best fight scene of the film, both Roberts and Camacho take on all comers. This is where PM dazzles with their double-triple take shots with slow-motion used just right. Roberts truly has the skills and gets to use primarily his kicking skills and some nice throws mixed in during his fight scene. The last fight kind of looks like a cheesy version of a particular fight from THE LAST DRAGON (1985), but what the heck…it’s geared toward the young ones so who cares?
TIGER HEART is a great film for T.J. Roberts. While he recently appeared in the drama MILK (2009), one only wishes he could make a comeback in martial arts films. Definitely worth renting.