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Case Number 12928

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Human Weapon: Military Combat

History Channel // 2007 // 94 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge John Floyd (Retired) // February 7th, 2008

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All Rise...

Judge John Floyd once saw the Human Weapon beat King Kong Bundy in a steel cage match at the county fair.

The Charge

"We'll start teaching you guys, because you don't know shit!"

Opening Statement

Forget "wax on, wax off." If you've got one or more bad dudes bearing down on you with intent to kill, you need practical knowledge of a truly lethal martial art. That's where the History Channel comes in.

Facts of the Case

This disc features two episodes of Human Weapon, a hard-nosed, insightful series in which mixed martial artist Jason Chambers and former pro football player Bill Duff travel the globe to study the world's deadliest hand-to-hand combat systems. This time out, our hosts learn the Israeli fighting art of Krav Maga and train with the Marines in the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program.

The Evidence

Krav Maga was developed by a Jewish boxer and wrestler named Imi Lichtenfeld in the 1930s as a practical system of self-defense against the Nazis. Based on the concepts of quick, lethal strikes, constant motion, and simultaneous or near-simultaneous defensive and offensive movements, it remains one of the most versatile close-combat methodologies in the world. In addition to being employed by the Israeli Defense Force and Mossad (Israeli intelligence), it is the preferred fighting style of numerous law enforcement agencies and professional security organizations around the globe. Krav Maga is far too deadly and eclectic to be employed in sporting martial arts competition.

In the early part of this century, the United States Marine Corps revised its existing hand-to-hand combat training to include techniques that could be employed either to kill or simply incapacitate an enemy, to adjust to the broader variety of scenarios that the service faces in the ongoing war against terrorism. This new system, the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP), is just as lethal as previous Corps methods but can be easily modified by a well-trained Marine when a situation (such as crowd control or the arrest of a suspect in possession of vital intel) does not call for deadly force. Like Krav Maga, MCMAP borrows techniques from a variety of Asian martial arts disciplines, adapting them for maximum efficiency and pragmatism in real life-or-death confrontations.

These are the kind of neat things you learn when you watch Human Weapon: Military Combat, a fascinating exploration of man's seemingly limitless capacity to devise new ways to kill and maim one another. Having served in the Marine Corps around the time of the first Gulf War, I have a great appreciation for the unique mindset and punishing training regimen of the professional combatant. Learning the history of unconventional military fighting methods and watching them executed by trained professionals is riveting entertainment for anyone who has ever been in the armed forces, or who just wants to know what the men and women fighting the conflicts raging today have to go through to prepare for war. Watching Duff and Campbell get their butts handed to them initially (before reaching a modicum of proficiency through some very grueling training exercises) is pretty entertaining, too.

The Rebuttal Witnesses

The only extras on the disc are text biographies of the hosts, but you probably won't feel much like reading after seeing a bunch of hard-charging Devil Dogs and hard-ass Israeli soldiers kicking the snot out of each other for 94 minutes. More likely, you'll be ready to run out and put your neighbor in a rear naked chokehold or deliver a devastating elbow strike to a sycamore tree. As the warning before the show says, however, you should not try these techniques at home, because the fighting arts detailed on this disc are dangerous business. Parents should probably send their kids into the other room to watch UFC or play "Grand Theft Auto" while this DVD is running, just to be on the safe side.

Closing Statement

Unless you absolutely detest violence in any form, this is an engaging and informative disc. It belongs in the DVD collection of any armchair military historian, self-proclaimed tough guy, or action movie fanatic.

The Verdict

Sure, you could just record these episodes off the History Channel, but why take up the room on your DVR? Human Weapon: Military Combat features two episodes worthy of multiple viewings, making this release more than a bargain at the $9.98 suggested retail price. Not guilty!

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Scales of Justice

Video: 99
Audio: 99
Extras: 25
Story: 0
Judgment: 90

Perp Profile

Studio: History Channel
Video Formats:
• 1.78:1 Non-Anamorphic
Audio Formats:
• Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
• None
Running Time: 94 Minutes
Release Year: 2007
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
• Documentary
• Television

Distinguishing Marks

• Biographies of Jason Chambers and Bill Duff


• IMDb
• Official Site

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