Never Back Down (Single-Disc Edition)
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Product Description Set against the action-packed world of Mixed Martial Arts, Never Back Down is the story of Jake Tyler, a tough kid who leads with his fists, and, often, with his heart. Jake Tyler, played by Sean Faris, is the new kid in town with a troubled past. He has recently moved to Orlando, Florida with his family who has relocated to support his younger brother's shot at a professional tennis career. Jake was a star athlete on the football team at home, but in this new city he is an outsider with a reputation for being a quick tempered brawler. Making an attempt to fit in, at the invitation of a flirtatious classmate, Baja (Amber Heard) Jake goes to a party where he is unwittingly pulled into a fight with a bully named Ryan McDonald (Cam Gigandet). While he is defeated and humiliated in the fight, a classmate introduces himself to Jake and tells him about the sport known as Mixed Marshall Arts (MMA). He sees a star in Jake and asks that he meet with his mentor, Jean Roqua, played by Djimon Hounsou. It is immediately apparent to Jake that MMA is not street fighting, but rather an art form he wants to master. Roqua will take Jake under his wing, but it is up to Jake to find the patience, discipline, willingness and reason within him to succeed. For Jake, there is much more at stake than mere victory. His decision will not just settle a score; it will define who he is. Amazon.com If you get caught up in the sweaty fight scenes in Never Back Down--and, despite the formulaic plot, you very likely will--it will be due to the sheer kinetic pleasure of muscular bodies in motion. Jake (Tom Cruise look-alike Sean Faris, Yours, Mine, and Ours), full of anger after his father's death, starts to find a place for himself at his new Florida high school--until Ryan, the head of an underground mixed-martial arts (Cam Gigandet, The O.C.), picks Jake out as a prime opponent. After being trounced by Ryan in front of everyone in school, Jake begins training under the firm, moral guidance of a martial arts master with a hidden past (Djimon Hounsou, a long way from Blood Diamond, but still bringing his essential gravitas to the screen). Basically, Never Back Down boils down to a cross between The Karate Kid and Fight Club, minus the sociopolitical commentary. The story and characters are a bundle of featherweight cliches, but that won't stop the aggressively edited fight sequences from stoking a viewer's adrenaline. Also starring Amber Heard ( All the Boys Love Mandy Lane) as the very blonde love interest, who (along with an abundance of girls in bikinis--'cause, y'know, it's Florida) is there to assure everyone that these handsome, chiseled boys are strictly heterosexual. --Bret Fetzer