Mark Dacascos, the chairman of Food Networks Iron Chef America, has been named this week as Iron Chef: Quest for an Iron Legend. But Dacascos is also one of the best screen fighters we have ever seen, including providing spectacular action performances in the 90s and beyond.
Dacascos unique charm and skill combined with his laid-back attitude made him stand out from other martial arts heroes of his era, like Steven Seagal or Jean-Claude Van Damme. Recently, he was seeing a resurgence in the midst of a massive career, launching a strong role in Batman: Soul of the Dragon, and reportedly joining the cast of the critically acclaimed Warrior for its third season.
Dacascos was also one of the best interviews on Scott Adkins'' excellent Art of Action interview series, who dive into his life and career. It''s really worth your time.
While some of his finest films (including the capoeira drama Only the Strong and Crying Freeman''s live-action adaptation) are not currently available for viewing at home, these three are, and all have a drawback, while also giving excellent displays of Dacascos talents.
This is my personal favorite of Dacascos movies, and it made our list of our favorite martial arts films you can watch at home. In Drive, Dacascos plays a superhuman escapeing a group of fatal assassins. His laidback wit, good looks, and great martial arts abilities suit the role of a bionic man. Along the way, he matches up with a down-on-his luck songwriter (Kadeem Hardison) and a motelier (a very charming
Drive is now available on Vudu, Tubi, and Pluto TV for free.
Brotherhood of the Wolf
Dacascos stars in Christophe Gans'' 2001 martial arts-action-horror period film Brotherhood of the Wolf as Mani, the formidable and ever-loyal Iroquois companion to Sir Gregoire de Fronsac, a knight and royal naturalist of King Louis XV. When the province of Gevaudan is besieged by a mysterious massacre, Fronsac and Mani are sent to investigate. What they discover is a conspiracy that could not only the local
Dacascos Mani is a talented warrior of short words and swift actions, and a guy who is not afraid to go toe-to-toe (and blow-for-blow) against a gang of devious adversaries or a horrifying armor-plated monster. Seriously, this guy could have given the Predator a run for his money. Brotherhood of the Wolf is a must-see movie in the canon of Dacascos'' best performances. Toussaint Egan
On Shudder, Brotherhood of the Wolf is available.
John Wick: Chapter 3 Parabellum
Dacascos wasn''t initially expected to play the lead villain in this film, according to Adkins. When filmmaker Chad Stahelski asked if he would do a cameo in the new John Wick film, which includes perhaps a line of dialogue and a lengthy fight. As soon as the actor who was initially scheduled to play the villain dismissed the role, we decided to go for a far-dying role.
The Wick series has redefined modern action in many ways, and the third installment is the most martial arts-heavy of the bunch. Its a shift for Dacascos that he plays Zero, an assassin hunting Wick, and has a showtopper of an ending fight scene on a floor filled with glass panes. That scene took three to four weeks to shoot, according to Dacascos, and he said he nearly approached one of those panes twice. PV
Chapter 3 Parabellum, written by John Wick, is available on Amazon, Apple, and Vudu.