BloodsportThis was one of my favourite movies as a kid, and I haven't seen it in about 20 years so I'm glad I had an excuse to go back and watch it. It's basically about Jean-Claude Van Damme plays a soldier who enters a no holds bared tournament despite being told by his superiors that he cannot. Bonus points for Van Damme doing the splits in like 4 scenes.
"O.K. USA! "
Andrey Konchalovsky's TANGO & CASH (1989, 104 min.) on DVD for the first time.From the director of such classic masterworks as "Maria's Lover" and "Shy People" (a Cannon Group picture no less!) comes a tender love story about two L.A. cops, an Oscar type and a Felix type (Sylvester Stallone and Kurt Russell, respectively), who spend the first half of their self-titled movie breaking out of prison for a crime they didn't commit while busting each other's (and everyone else's) chops. The second half they spend raiding the L.A. office of Q Branch (where Michael J. Pollard moonlights as the mini-Q in charge of, you know, cool shit) so they can go take care of business with the Cobra Commander of this movie universe, Jack Palance (whom John Peters and Peter Guber spent the summer of '89 murdering over and over, because "Batman" was a thing). Put that duck down, indeed.There's more homoerotic and barely-repressed bromance sexual tension in one minute of "Tango & Cash" than an entire day of Logo programming... and that's before Terri Hatcher shows up! In an old tradition that was as alive in the 80's as it is now, a talented foreign director is brought to Hollywood so his considerable auteur skills can be squandered by producers putting him to work on a dosposable action vehicle. Because what is Kim Jee-woon's "The Last Stand" if not the "Tango & Cash" of our time, except the latter had the balls to attempt telling a story with nothing but corny one-liners. Dry iced fog machines inside neon-lit exploding office warehouses for the win!
You have your Oscar & Felix backwards
Yeah, I know. Shows how little I know about either the Neil Simon play, the Lemon/Matthau movie or the Klugman/Randall sitcom. I do know my "Grumpy Old Men" series, though. :-P
This was my pick. I'd had always meant to watch it. Kurt Russell is awesome in this. There are to themes that the bad boys series seem to have directly ripped off from tango and cash.
I thought you meant the Stallone movie Oscar and was trying to figure out where Kurt Russell played someone called Felix...
Overkill (1987) - On NetflixThe IMDB cover art alone should make you want to check this movie out. Overkill is a true cheap 80's action film: mediocre on all counts, but entertaining as hell.Steve Rally plays Micky Delano, a Tom Selleck ringer L.A. cop trying to stop the Yakuza from taking over his city. Overkill has all of your 80's action staples, but it has some unique charms that elevate it, my favorite of which are the multiple buff men who go shirtless throughout the entire movie for no discernible reason.If for no other reason, you owe it to yourself to watch a great scene in which Micky goes undercover dancing at a male strip club (44 minutes in). It's brief, but Steve Rally commits wholeheartedly to his dancing, and it's absolute gold.
American Ninja (1985)Here we go back to some fun. American Ninja is a Cannon film from the 80s also with Ninjas (triple word score!) and while this movie wont win any Junesploitation awards its relaxing A-team like music and general tone made this a nice watch. Soldier G.I. Joe- wait he's just regular Joe- is also a trained Ninja who uncovers a conspiracy that the higher ups are selling weapons to evil businessmen. While there's nothing spectacular it was a nice trip down nostalgia lane with two dimensional bad guys, soldiers who die hilariously, and a special guest star from a doll whos supposed to be a young boy. Check it out before you sit down for that Charlies Angels TV marathon.8 Word Review (In preparation for SMM)"American Ninja will return after these important messages."
You do realize all these eight word reviews are going to mess you up when it comes time for the SMM SEVEN WORD REVIEW CHALLENGE format, right? Just checking.
Thanks for the reminder J.M. I just like doing the variety. If I am breaking F this movie code I shall refrain from them- the 8 word reviews are my funsploitation thing.
then fun be had
I watched this for the first time last Junesploitation and really enjoyed the massive face off near the end!
Megaforce (1982)This Hal Needham film, starring a headband with Bostwick under, Star Trek's Persis Khambatta, Xanadu's Michael Beck and one most beloved bad guys of the 80s – Henry Silva, is truly bad, and not in the `so bad it’s good` way. I was 16 when it arrived in Germany in 82 on the heels of `The road warrior` and `Battle truck` (ironically also starring Michael Beck) and a slew of Italian rip-offs like `The Bronx warriors` and I was extremely disappointed. I had high hopes for that because Hal Needham was an action guy with some great comedic action movies starring Burt Reynolds under his belt…. and he completely lost it on Megaforce. Nothing works here, the performances, the story, the effects, the score – everything is simply bad and laughable – but not in a funny way. Even the action sequences were badly staged. The whole thing looks like an amateur film with crazy costumes, bad hairdos and horrible dialogue. Watching this cheap and cheesy flick today is kind of torture. Maybe I should have downed some drinks before rewatching it.
"Starring a headband with Bostwick under" is fantastic.
The Terminator 1984I had always assumed I had seen Terminator at some point. But watching it I realised it was a first viewing. I know I am ashamed as well. It is a classic for a reason, its kinda brilliant. Cameron has always had a talent for filming action, thanks for the Corman University, and it was a surprisingly tight script for Cameron.
It's nice to hear that I'm not the only one in this boat! If you asked me if I saw The Terminator a week ago, I'd swear that I had. I'm familiar with most of it through cultural osmosis, but this is my first time too. It's great. Good old fashioned storytelling.
I am glade I am not the only one as well. Though this has got me a little worried about other movies I have think I have seen but really it is just pop culture. Oh well, this means more movie watching.
Scorpion (1986) William Riead who from 1976 - 1985 only directed 23 made for TV "making of insert movie here" documentaries. He finally got this, his first real film, that he wrote and directed in 1986. First off, do you remember this cover in the video store? I do. Why I never rented it, no clue. "Secret agent karate mustache" is how I have read this described and that's dead on! The IMDB synopsis reads "American spy Scorpion learns of the KGB capture of The Widow just as she is ready to retire. Later Scorpion gets kidnapped from her hot tub." WTF kind of synopsis it that?! Not much to say other than he never gets kidnapped from a hot tub, there is no character called the widow nor is the KGB ever mentioned. It's really damn boring and there's barely any ass kicking (there is literally about 3 total minutes of fighting!) No Heavy Action treatment here. Another example of a movie cover straight-up lying to you!
Action Jackson (1988, dir. Craig R. Baxley): The 2 word reviews from Cop Day yesterday summed it up better than I will. Carl Weathers is great! Craig T. Nelson is great! Vanity is… … Action Jackson is great! Textbook glossy ‘80’s Action. Loved it.
I want to see this now haha
Matt didn't mention that Craig T. injects heroin into Vanity's breast. Wow.
Haha good point! I thought he was legit menacing in this movie. He plays a great villain.
The Punisher (1989)Dolph Lundgren's Punisher is an underrated gem of 80's action.It has all the staples: Big guns, high body count, yakuza, the mafia, ninjas, wanton property destruction, Lou Gossett Jr.It's fun, it's violent, it's everything you could want from 80's action.Berkowitz: "Frank, what the hell do you call 125 murders in five years!?"Frank: "A work in progress..."
I'm glad that movie is getting some love. That was one of my "go to" movies for many years.
Nice choice!! The Punisher is, next to Joshua Tree & Dark Angel, the best movie Dolph Lundgren ever made!! Since a few months this gem isn't banned in Germany anymore, and I hope there'll be some nice releases!!
The Road Warrior This time around I was enthralled by the Lord Humungus : the ayatollah of rock-and-rollah!
The Running Man (1987)I don't think I've ever seen this all the way through before. It's fine, it's not great. If Arnie wasn't in it my interest would've drastically depleted. He basically gets thrown into a game show where a bunch of stalkers try to kill him. They all have a thing (ice guy, chainsaw guy, fire guy, and some dude dressed up in Christmas lights?) and Arnold turns that thing against them to kill them and says a pun. It's kinda repetitive but Family Feuds Richard Dawson gives a fun performance as the main scumbag. A lesser Arnold movie but I had an ok time watching it. Patrick recommended Turkey Shoot in his column today and I think that's a much better people being hunted movie.
I love Dawson in it, though. "I'll be back""Only in a rerun"
It might not be much without Arnold, but he does have some great moments. I'll need to give Turkey Shoot a watch.
Kings novel under the Bachman pseudonym is way better, but somehow the movie still works today despite those crazy characters and Dawson was fine.Reminds me of a time when Maria Conchita Alonso had a string of good roles in big movies like this, Predator 2, Colors or Extreme prejudice.
Raw Deal (1986)A bit less action than Schwarzenegger's other 80's output, but still one of my favorites. Arnie is undercover in the mob and he gets a rare (especially back then) chance to actually act. And he's good! Not surprisingly it devolves into 20 minutes of machine gun fire, explosions, and squibs, but as Arnie-dispatching-faceless-goons goes it's pretty great. Bonus points for the terrific supporting cast including Darren McGavin, Joe Regalbuto, Robert Fuckin' Davi, Ed Lauter, Sam Wanamaker, Steven Hill, Victor Argo...a murderer's row of awesome (mostly) soon-to-be-murdered character actors. Even Schwarzenegger perennial Sven-Ole Thorsen gets in on the mayhem. All the blood, bullets, and testosterone you crave from 80s action movies.
Robo-Vampire (1988)Robocop rip-off with hopping vampires, horrible special effects, one of the most obvious stuntmen scenes in any movie ever (a blonde woman jumps out of a church window and turns into a middle-aged man in a short grey wig) and tons of weird Chinese bootleg shirts that promote things that they think Americans like--one guy wears a shirt that just says "RACING" on it. The true test of this film is to get through it all the way without developing a drinking problem because of the stupidity exhibited in every frame. A completely nonsensical, slapped-together film where I'm pretty sure the guy wrote and shot it over an afternoon--and also, apparently, a much-anticipated sequel to the film Devil's Dynamite which has nothing to do with this film at all except maybe the vampire portion?Good news too! The entire film is available on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPFYwKC_JDc
They Live (1988)I've been meaning to rewatch this one for what feels like ages now, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I still love it even with the b-movie silliness of the concept and the excessiveness of the 6-minute fight scene, but I don't feel like I have anything really new to say about it so here's my SMM-style 7-word review:One man's quest for more bubble gum.
Yes to this movie
Dammit, J.M., stop hacking into my Junesploitation calendar! Second day in a row you beat me to a movie.Tango & Cash (1989) - First viewingYes, this was my first time seeing Tango & Cash. Deal with it.A buddy movie where at first the leads hate each other, but over time learn to appreciate and rely on one another. How original.No but seriously, a hugely fun romp of a movie that I can't believe I'd missed all these years. Will be coming back to this one.
You made it easy for me to hack your calendar by setting your password as 'TAISTS.' :-D
I need to watch this so bad.
BATTLETRUCK (1982)Coming out the same year as The Road Warrior, this one hits a lot of the same beats, but in different ways. It’s actually quite good, with a female heroine who’s more interested in being the nice girl than kicking ass. I like Furiosa as much as the next person, but when was the last time you saw a post-apocalypse movie with characters that are genuinely nice, instead of all hardened and emotionally scarred? The action isn’t as huge as the Road Warrior, but the titular Battletruck certainly goes out with a satisfying bang. Oh, and John Ratzenberger shows up in this. Just how many sci-fi/fantasy movie cameos has this guy done? Accompanying short film: Billy Ocean’s LOVERBOY (1984). This music video takes place in what is basically the cantina from Star Wars, with aliens hanging around drinking, and a laser fight breaking out. They don’t make ‘em like this anymore.
One Down, Two To Go (1982)Hammer, Slaughter, Shaft and B.B. Jones...and it aint even the 23rd!All that cool. It should be so much better, or more fun, or just cooler. Instead.....There is a documentary where Williamson talks about how Kelly was a terrible actor so they would write parts for him where he didnt need to act. In this movie they have him get shot in the opening action sequence and have him "recovering" in bed for the rest of the movie...as in, All Of It, right up to when the credits roll he is still lying in bed.Williamson and Brown are an entertaining duo, in that 'Why is Jjim Brown an actor" and "Fred Williamson seems like he'd be a massive dick in real life but he is so damn enjoyable to watch" kind of way. The script is brought to you by the "And Then..." school of detective stories and it is delivered like my highschool Media Studies assignment movie...its that bad. For a movie that seems to only exist so Williamson and Brown can swagger around together it does take a long time for them to show up. but when they do, they know what they're doing. The amateur hour is really highlighted in the final climax where the "creeping up on ya" scene is so drawn out that it stretches the composer's ability to extend his ascending scales until he just gives up, while Williamson still has a few steps to go now wit no musical unaccompaniment. How embarrassing :-/Glad I watched it. Probably Wont Again. Beatingdeadhorsessploitation
Cyborg (1989)I know Van Damme isn’t a “good actor” but there’s something about him that makes him one of my top favorite action stars ever. I think he’s very effective in this movie. He’s a sad, miserable man obsessed with his revenge vendetta and I think he conveys that very well. Is he actually a good actor??? It could be.This is exactly what I want in a post apocalyptic movie. I LOVED CYBORG. It was crazy violent, I liked the main characters and cared about them, and the atmosphere was nothing short of perfect. Fender, the villain, was absolutely terrifying and very effective. And I don’t think I’m off base when I say final fights are just better in the rain.1989 has to be one of my favorite movie years. So much greatness!
Red Heat (1988)First, a confession: this is my first Walter Hill film. I know, I know. I went in expecting to enjoy this one ironically (because yes, I am one of those hipster douchebags), but I legitimately enjoyed this from start to finish. When Arnold pulls off a man's leg in the first five minutes of the film, it was a true "holy shit!" moment. This film absolutely sweats the 80s, and has absolutely everything you expect from this kind of film: boobs, the angry police captain, squibs everywhere, police brutality, one liners, car chases--the climactic car chase is two buses playing chicken with each other! The interplay between Arnold and Belushi is great, the pacing is damn near perfect, and it has the most homoerotic bath house scene I've come across outside of gay porn. This is my favourite Junesploitation viewing thus far.
Open Fire (1989, dir. Roger Mende)David Carradine is the Governor of Wyoming, visiting Mexico to catch a small-town parade. His ex-wife and his daughter are also there, performing with the Children's World Peace Choir (this is my third Junesploitation movie in a row with a male divorcee protagonist.) Security is handled by an all-girl kung-fu squad, The Panthers. Terrorist warlord Pecos blows up the town and kidnaps the choir. Carradine rescues the hostages after seeing where they're being held in a dream. Possibly 50% of the movie's runtime is stuff blowing up. So much stuff blows up that most of the time I couldn't tell what was being blown up. The amount of gunfire is Invasion U.S.A. level. An aide asks Carradine "Why can't you just give up this kung-fu mumbo jumbo and eat jellybeans like everyone else?" Trailer
"So much stuff blows up that most of the time I couldn't tell what was being blown up." That was F-ing hilarious.
COMMANDO (1985)We did this for F This Movie! Fest a couple years back but I haven't watched it since then.Enjoying the hell out of it now and wondering just what I was thinking waiting so long.
Turkey Shoot a.k.a Escape 2000 (1982) Dir. Brian Trenchard-SmithThanks to Patrick and humanbeanjuice9! This ruled and was right up my alley. There is a VHS rip up on YouTube and I wouldn't have wanted to see it any other way. This kind of movie is best viewed as gritty as possible because it's a gritty-ass movie. It's "The Most Dangerous Game" and prison films amped up, Ozploitation style. Olivia Hussey and the wolfman villain were fantastic. The score was great and the setting looked really challenging for the actors; they looked like they were hot as hell. The ending is insane! Only thing that bums be out is that I'm guessing I saw the cut version cause some things seemed a bit "off". They build a scene with the blonde who you think is going to be tortured by the lesbian hunter only to have it cut away then a few minutes later cut back and she's dead on the ground. I'm sure they showed her being killed or tortured in the uncut version.
The Running Man (1987)"Well that hit the spot."Seriously. Arnold is so Arnoldy is this movie it's ridiculously Arnold. I enjoyed this movie! Funny how it takes place in the future, yet it's one of the most '80s movie you could watch. Maria Conchita Alonso is so lovely and charming. It's fun, it's violent, it's weird, and the music is awesome (I'm enjoying the ending song as I type). I got what I came for!
I remember loving that movie, it might have to be my icon movie!
Hell Squad (1985, dir. Kenneth Hartford)When a bigshot US ambassador's son is kidnapped by Middle Eastern terrorists, a group of Las Vegas showgirls have 30 days to go commando and save him. It's kind of like an extended episode of The A-Team, only cheaper. And with chicks. And with less production value. And worse acting. Written in part by Donald F. Glut and distributed by Cannon!
I guess the release date is 1986, not 1985. It came out 1/1/86.
Showgirls as commando's?! Cannon?! I'm in!!! Oh, wait, 1986 not '85? Forget it. ;)
I watched this one earlier this week. It's nuts. At NO POINT do they bother to explain why strippers are the ONLY OPTION to take down terrorists. It's just this thing where everyone is like "Yeah, I guess that makes sense."
Armour of God (1986)Jackie Chan’s version of an Indy movie see him and his astonishingly irritating sidekick bounce around Europe in search of said armour. The titular MacGuffin looks like it was bought at the same toy shop as the Crystal Skull and Jackie’s car has to be seen to be believed, but it’s a Jackie Chan movie so none of that matters. The action is typically brilliant with a wild car chase and bonkers finale real highlights.
Wheels on Meals (1984): Jackie Chan is one of the most likeable actors ever in my opinion. He's also awesome. This Thrree Muskateers vibe is very endearing. Heath have you seen this? It might be one for you too!
I want to see this one so bad!
I love this movie so much and I'm so glad someone else has seen it!!!!!!!!
PREDATOR (1987)I guess I read "80s Action" as "Arnold Day" because that's what it seems to be for me...no complaints here.This flick: still all manner of awesome.
Project A-2 (1987, Jackie Chan)Front-loaded with a needlessly convoluted plot, the film makes up for it with some incredible action in the second half. The sequence with Jackie Chan handcuffed to David Lam is one of my favorite comic action sequences I have ever seen Chan do. It's not nearly as good as the first one, but even a subpar Chan effort is usually head-and-shoulders above most action directors of the '80s.
Death Wish 3 (1985)There isn't much I can say that hasn't been said in Patrick's excellent post on this....wait...there is. Jimmy Page did the music for this movie at the height of his drug addiction. I hope he wore a reverse mohawk whilst recording it. From now on all bad guys shall be known as "creeps".See this movie.
JP, I'd forgot I'd seen this until you mentioned The Gigggler. This movie is fuckin' crazy.
My takeaway from this movie: Nobody kills Marina Sirtis and gets away with it.
Cobra (1986)Gotta wonder just how much of the 80s action that we all know and love is owed to cocaine? 95%? 98%? Anyway, I've never done the stuff myself, but that didn't stop me from loving the hell out of this movie. Oh, it's stupid, but it's my kind of stupid. I did have to suspend my disbelief at the thought of a matchstick-chewing Cobra standing in line at the DMV to get his custom "AWSOM 50" license plate, but other than that it pretty much felt like a documentary of what I assume LA in the 80s was like.
Deadly Prey (1987)Danton!!!!!!!!!!
The Picasso Trigger (Andy Sidaris) 1988One of Sidaris' more competent films and that's not a good thing. I would call this straight to video pioneer cynical, but he seems to genuinely love filming his boring softcore titty fests. I'll give him credit for knowing exactly how far his actresses wet suits should be unzipped. American Ninja (Sam Firstenberg) 1985'85 is one of the best years for movies but this childhood favorite doesn't quite hold up. Firstenberg does do a lot with a small budget and his movies are always well shot and edited despite other limitations. Dudikoff wouldn't reach these heights again until Soldier Boyz
Streets of Fire (1984) (first time viewing)A 50's biker gang led by Willem Dafoe kidnaps an 80's rocker played by Diane Lane? Rick Moranis is Lane's boyfriend? Michael Pare can blow up any vehicle with one shotgun blast? The mom from Field of Dreams is a tough soldier chick? Dottie from Pee-Wee's Big Adventure shows up in the last 15 minutes and randomly tags along for no apparent reason what-so-ever? I dug every minute of this movie and it's awesome all over the place soundtrack.
One of my all-time favorites. #ExplodingHeart
Cyborg (1989)Rico Suave as a white walker pirate. Yes.
My favorite discovery so far this month! I don't get all the bad reviews because I thought it was fantastic.
The amount of Cyborg love we have seen today is making me so happy.
I actually watched some of it before Junesploitation and never got around to seeing the rest. I guess that's what Free Spaces are for.
Cut and Run (1985, dir. Ruggero Deodato)Though it takes place in the jungle and is once again very racist, this is Deodato's "American" movie with a cast that includes Lisa Blount, Eriq La Salle, Karen Black, Richard Lynch and Willie Aames! An American news crew goes into the jungle to get an interview with Richard Lynch, who supposedly died years before. The movie is not great, but very much in the #Junesploitation spirit. Many heads are chopped off. One dude gets split in half long-ways up his body. Willie Aames cries a lot.
The Golden Child (1986)What is not awesome about this movie? Nothing. Is Charles Dance playing the devil's right hand creepy demon guy? You bet your fucking ass he is. Is he unable to say the letter J I guess because Jesus starts with J? I think. Is Eddie Murphy playing another wise-cracking cop named Chandler(Chandler?) Jarrell? Of course. If you haven't seen this movie you are stupid and I hate you.
I've been forgiven by my brother Noomsee.
Yekloin Huh? Yekloin, good to keep the yang up. Ain't nothing wrong with my yang.
First blood 1982Why are you Pushing me?Stallone and Dennehy together, Boom Stallone's acting is actually good in this one, I genuinely care for him in this movie and feel his pain, not something he pulls off to often in the future though I still have great feelings for some of the Rocky films too
To me still the best Stallone movie, which plays more like a survival drama in contrast to the other Rambo movies stuffed with crazy action setpieces.
Invasion U.S.A (1985) My first experence of a Chuck Norris flick was no dissapointment. Shoot, explode, repeat. I questioned the film slightly when the main character turns up at just the right time, but then I remembered that it's CHUCK NORRIS (I've read some rather alarming things about his abilities on the internet). Good, solid action.
Big Trouble in Little China (1986): 36-year-old Doug is disappointed in 10-year-old Doug's high opinion/memory of this movie. While it has a solid beginning and a fun finale, the middle is muddled and boring.
Kurt Russell was in full John Wayne mode and the movie doesn't make any god damn sense.
I felt the same way about Back to the Future. I mean a flying Delorean?! Traveling in time?! C'mon! At least the studio is giving us The Rock's version to right the ship.
it's one of my secret shames that i actually hate this movie.if you took russell and made a whole movie of him as a truck driver telling weird stories on the cb there's no way that's not a more entertaining movie. so many parts of this movie are nonsense in completely dull ways.
It's good to be ashamed to not like Big Trouble in Little China.
Cobra (1986)Ridiculous to the point that I'm not even sure it's an accurate depiction of being a cop in an '80s action movie.
Haha - yup,
HARD BOILED 2 a.k.a JUST HEROES(1989, John Woo/Wu Ma)Another late review!!Sorry for the delay, folks!!On day 5 of Junesploitation I had to make a very tough decision:Which 80's action movie is worth to watch or even worth for a revisit??? There are so many of them!!!!!!After struggling with myself all day long I decided to revisit the almost abandoned John-Woo-classic JUST HEROES which was released as HARD BOILED 2 in Germany.A simple heroic-bloodshed-story about gangsters, friendship and awesome shootouts!!This movie Woo directed in collaboration with Wu Ma, who directed some dialogue scenes. The rest is John Woo's action-craftsmanship!!Worth to watch!!!!
Raw Force (1982)What the hell is going on in this movie? It's very entertaining but I am just...I don't know what to say about it.
The Running Man (1987)This is a late post, because I've been really busy the last couple days and haven't been on line. Anyway The Running Man is a freakin insanity party. We all know it and most of us love it, I'd assume. Ahnuld dropping one-liners and threatening to break spines while wearing a jump suit. This is cinema.
Big Trouble in Little China (1986)Not BAD... just underwhelming (considering its reputation). I really enjoyed Kurt Russell and the movie was really fun, just not as fun as I thought it should have been.(and I know that this post is really late, I've just been busy all week because of finals)