Thursday, June 2, 2016

Junesploitation 2016 Day 2: '90s Action!

Search...identify...shoot!

137 comments:

  1. Death Warrant (1990)

    JCVD goes to prison! He plays a Canadian policeman who insanely volunteers to go undercover as a prisoner to investigate some murders. This couldn't possibly go wrong right? The plot is very thin and basically gets forgotten about in the last 20 minutes. This prison apparently has their conjugal visits in a trailer in the yard which was erotic. The main villain of the film is called the Sandman and I guess he has regenerative powers because he's impossible to kill so that's a thing. I give it 2 and a half out of 5 splits.

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    1. Yes! This is my pick for today as well. Can't wait to watch it tonight, I haven't see it since I was about 12.

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  2. Universal Soldier (1992)

    A rare JCVD joint I haven't seen before and as a whole I don't think it works real well (although JCVD butt shots would dispute that sentence) its got some fun banter between JCVD and Dolph (assuming your not a Vietnam vet) and when the movie basically turns into just Dolph vs Van Damme it does get to be fun. I put this one at upper middle class for Van Damme, its light years above Double Team but not quite Hard Target.

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    1. Check out the recent Universal Soldier movies, Regeneration (2009) and Day of Reckoning (2012). Although released direct to video, they're better than most action that makes it to the theater these days.

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    2. Totally agree, I was pretty blown away by those two movies. Some of the best action I've seen in a while.

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    3. Totally agree, I was pretty blown away by those two movies. Some of the best action I've seen in a while.

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  3. A Perfect Weapon (1991)

    Frequent Van Damme collaborator Mark DiSalle tried to make a star out of Jeff Speakman - didn´t work out that well.
    The guy is a good fighter but just has zero charisma, although this is a decent effort and the only of his few movies, that got released here in Germany.
    And no movie that stars great guys like Mako, James Hong or the legendary Professor Toru Tanaka can be really bad, right?

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    1. Michael GiammarinoJune 2, 2016 at 10:12 AM

      I watched this for Junesploitation last year, and was amazed with all the similarities with The Wolverine, to the point I began calling the movie The Perfect Weapon: Weapon X.

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  4. The Last Boy Scout (1991)

    "Head or gut?"

    "I spilled my warm cup of piss."

    "I'd cut off three of my fingers if God would let me fuck her."

    "You tripped, slipped on the floor and accidentally stuck your dick in my wife."

    "If I survive this fuckin case I'm gonna dance a jig."

    "This is the 90s. You cant just walk up and slap a guy, you have to say somethen cool first."

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    1. Top 10 fav movies of all time.

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    2. I love that it's in your top ten Chaybee, it deserves a spot for sure. Mad respect.

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    3. Thanks Travis! It's in my #8 spot. I know it's our man Brent Peterson's #3. Good taste all around!

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    4. $600. The pants, they done have like a TV in um?


      Possibly the most rewatchable movie of all time, I never don't enjoy it

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    5. I agree, although I will say since I've seen it 100 times that some of the dialog and parts of the performance that Wayans delivers are cringe inducing.

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    6. I want to know how many of the lines in the movie are Willis improvisations and how many were actually in Shane Blacks original script.

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    7. If anyone doesn't like this movie, I'll stick an umbrella up their ass and open it.

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    8. Michael GiammarinoJune 2, 2016 at 9:38 AM

      I rewatched Last Boy Scout in a triple feature with Long Kiss Goodnight and Kiss Kiss Bang Bang in my lead up to seeing The Nice Guys. Otherwise I would see this again in a heartbeat.

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    9. The ultimate "Show a friend who has never seen this movie the first 10 minutes and see how they react" movie.

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    10. Friday night's a great night for football!

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    11. Chaybee, I take offense to any notion that any part Damon Wayans' performance was cringe-inducing. How dare you;)

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    12. I guess Willis and Wayans hated eachother on the set which makes Wayans performance more impressive to me. I love them both.

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    13. Yeah, I had heard that they didn't get along. Sorry, Brent. One example is when Jimmy is giving his speech after Joe busts him in the face in the bathroom. He's so bad and whiny in that scene. Luckily, the line that follows is perfection - "When you're done feeling sorry for yourself the front doors that way." Love it.

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    14. Let's agree to disagree. I've actually never loved Halle Berry's performance. Also, don't be a stripper in a movie and keep your clothes on. This is America for Christ's sake!

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  5. Freejack (1992)

    Because it's rare to have a legitimate reason to watch Freejack and then a website you frequent suggests that you watch some 90's action movies. And you tell yourself "Hey, Rene Russo has only done like 20-25 movies, and one of them was The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle but I want to support her career somehow and there's only so many times I can watch Nightcrawler and Major League."

    And well, here we are.

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  6. Double Impact (1991)

    Keeping with the JCVD love. This movie is bonkers. Though I think I still have a low threshold for the berzek. But I still had so much fun with this. It is double Van Damme, there are more slowed down and quick shot round kicks than you can through a stick at. This is the kind of movie I was in the mood for.

    Is it just me - or was the scene near the end of the movie where one of the Van Damme twins was searching the house, look a lot like the setting of the cold open of Never Sat Never Again?

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    1. What did you think of that epic sex scene where it cuts back and forth between it and Alex drinking and freaking out? So classic.

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    2. It was almost like a werid threesome. Doc Manhattan with all the hands. Though I have to admitt, Van Damme has the best facial expressions in this movie.

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    3. "Take your fancy clothes and your black silk underwear and go back to... disneyland."

      Best line!

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  7. The Defender (1994)

    AKA The Bodyguard from Beijing. Hong Kong apparently decided they needed their own version of the 1992 film The Bodyguard, so they made this with Jet Li in the Kevin Costner role. There’s quite a few things to like in this movie. Li may not have Jackie Chan’s sense of humor and skill in staging elaborate action sequences, but he brings a quiet intensity to his scenes that works for me. The action is a little cluttered and confusing at times, but still enjoyable (with the expected crazy sound design – every punch sounds like a gunshot). The main villain’s introduction (a sequence in a morgue) is gloriously over the top. Kent Cheng plays “Fat Po,” who is introduced as the comic relief. However, he and Li have a quiet scene together near the end that is well played and gives Po unexpected depth. The major weakness of the film is the love story, which is tedious in the extreme and threatens to sink the movie. As the female lead Michelle, Christy Chung is so obnoxious and abrasive in the beginning that you end up wishing the bad guys would succeed in offing her (she does get more likable later on). Overall I would recommend this. One last word of warning – the main musical theme is repeated so many times it will get stuck in your head for hours.

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  8. Face/Off (1997)

    After watching Double Impact I decided to keep the theme going. Because its like looking into a mirror, but not. Okay yes, for me this movie is too long. But when there are moments where it is on fire, and you can throw all the Woo-isms at me and its awesome sauce. Then there are other times things don't mesh as well and the woo-isms start to grate. But I do now want to check out his earlier Hong Kong movies.

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    1. I do love Nicholas Cage being full on crazy Nicholas Cage in this movie. Maybe and John Woo should do a Double Impact remake, how awesome would that be.

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    2. That's a fantastic and inspired double feature lol I love it. Check out Hard Boiled it's crazy awesome Woo, especially the ending. The Killer is also great Woo and I think it's on Netflix.

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    3. I Will definitely check those out!!

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  9. Double Feature Stone Cold (1991) & Martial Law (1990)

    Stone Cold: The movie is dumb, has a ridiculous story, predictable plot and boring lead but hell yes I would recommend it to any fan of action movies. "The Boz" Brian Bosworth had the right look to be an action star but his on field allure never transfered to movies. It's your run of the mill undercover cop infiltrating a gang story, think Point Break or The Fast and The Furious except this time with a biker gang. For all that Boz is lacking though Lance Henriksen makes up for, he oozes charisma as the evil gang lead Chains and William Forsyth is awesome as the crazy lead henchman who doesn't trust Boz's John Stone. I final mention has to go to the forgotten WMDs that are motorcycles, here they are highly efficient missiles that explode on contact with anything, cars, walls and helicopters all go boom when hit. I loved it.

    Martial Law: Before Gina Carano and Ronda Rousey there was Cynthia Rothrock and boy could she kick ass. It was a toss up between this and China O'Brien and I chose poorly. It was my first time watching this and went with it because it had Rothrock and David Carradine. Unfortunately Rothrock is relegated to being the side kick of Chad McQueen (son of Steve) a cop who's nickname is Martial Law (I know right) and Carradine is given very little to do except put people away with his heart stop death punch. The first hour of the movie labours by and the final 25 minutes becomes an undercover revenge movie so rushed there was no need to include it. The final fight between McQueen and Carradine is a dull labour while in the background the best action is taking place between Rothrock and Philip Tan (who steals all his scenes with Carradine).

    Final thoughts Stone Cold - guilty pleasure good, Martial Law - bad, very bad (except for the Rothrock Tan fight)

    Anyway that's day 2 done, really enjoying my first Junesploitation.

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  10. Men of War (1995) (first time viewing)
    Dolph Lundgren leads a group of mercenaries that are charged with getting a small village to sign over their land to a big corporation. This was pretty generic 90's action. Nothing to make it stand out. It did also have Tiny "Zeus" Lister and B.D. Wong, so that's something. And Kevin Tighe gets a fun ending. Wasn't great, but wasn't that bad either. I guess if you're a Dolph Lundgren completionist, I'd check it out.

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  11. I see a trend developing... ;-)

    Jean-Claude Van Damme in LIONHEART (1990, 108 min.) on DVD for the first time.

    Fresh off his success with late 80's movies about underground fighting tournaments, JCVD co-wrote this late 80's movie about... guess! But you see, Lyon (!) is a good guy who had to desert his African post in the French Foreign Legion to visit his dying drug-dealing brother that was burned alive while buying dope in an L.A. slum. To help his ungrateful sister-in-law and cute-as-a-button niece, Lyon partners with a black homeless dude (Harrison Page's Joshua, an "In Living Color" character if I've ever seen one) and rich white lady that has the hots for him (Ashley Johnson's Nicole) to fight for the amusement of elites on both coasts. Meanwhile his French Legion bosses (who clearly have nothing better to do) stalk Lyon's whereabouts so they can nab him court marshal his ass as a deserter.

    "Lionheart" is so inept at basic storytelling it literally loses track of the main story for its first act. Then the promising 'JVCD avenging his brother' revenge angle is literally dropped with a throwaway line, leaving us with repetitive seen-it-all-before fighting/betting in a variety of backgrounds straight out a second-tier mid-90's fighting game (parking garage lit by car lights, empty pool, squash court, etc.). How do you cast Brian Thompson as Nicole's right-hand man and not have a mano-a-mano fight with Van Damme? Still, there are moments here and there (Scotsman fighter wearing a quilt,'I don't know whether I want to fight you or fuck you!') that are Junesploitation worthy... just not as many as I expected from the usual fountain of goodness that JCVD movies are.

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    1. It's very weird how that movie starts out with JCVDs brother getting brutally murdered and that never comes back into play for the entire movie.

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    2. He's actually not murdered, but severely burned and dying for a good portion of the movie while waiting for brother Lyon to make it Stateside. But yeah, from the little we see of him this brother is a sucky excuse of a human being to justify brother Van Damme pissing the French legionnaires to get his ass shipped to L.A.

      It may have a 1990 release year (and the cool collage of Universal logos for the 75th anniversary opening logo), but "Lionheart" screams late 80's every every fiber of its misplaced sexy sax background music, which it shares with mismatched needlepoint background music straight out of many "Looney Tunes" cartoons (for real!). :-)

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  12. Stone Cold (1991 dir. Craig R. Baxley) on Blu-ray

    What a crazy, stupid movie! While Brian Bosworth is barely passable as an actor and about average as an action star, the stunts and a great performance by Lance Hendriksen more than make up for it. It's funny how ineffectual Joe Huff/John Stone is in the scheme of things. The villain's main plan succeeds, and he seemingly kills the entire Alabama Supreme Court! This movie lives up to the cult following.

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    1. Correction: Mississippi Supreme Court

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  13. Fire Down Below (1997, dir. Felix Enriquez Alcala, on DVD) – First Time Viewing: Steven Seagal goes country! Patrick has written about this #HeavyAction phenomenon and I think this is a pretty entertaining example although Seagal has started his decline here and doesn’t really flex his martial arts chops as much as I’d hope. Fun performances from Harry Dean Stanton, Stephen Lang, Kris Kristofferson, Levon Helm, and Randy Travis help. Oh, and Seagal wrote the songs on the soundtrack, which narrate what is happening throughout the movie. Steven Seagal and his guitar were nominated for a Razzie for worst screen couple. This movie is so silly and ‘90’s, I couldn’t help but enjoy it (4 out of 5 Griers).

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  14. Michael GiammarinoJune 2, 2016 at 9:45 AM

    Timecop (1994)

    The mystery for me is how I've been able to get by without ever seeing Timecop all these years. I guess I've been avoiding latter day Peter Hyams movies. I was pleasantly surprised. What I wasn't expecting were all the similarities to Minority Report. Spielberg is clearly a fan of this movie; he has to be. (I should also have my head examined for avoiding a movie that stars Mia Sara, regardless of screen time.)

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  15. Another 48 Hrs. (1990)

    Just in case you need a reminder, Eddie Murphy at the height of his "Too Rich and Famous to Give a Fuck" period was just plain no fun. Returning here to the role that catapulted him into movie stardom, Eddie is a phony, preening shell of his former charismatic self.

    Speaking of shells of former selves, this movie is a lame beat-for-beat retread of the first, from hitting the reset button right at the beginning to having one of the villains be the brother of James Remar's character from the first. It's lazy, boring, and worst of all completely unfunny. It's still Walter Hill directing, so at the very least there are a couple of standout stunts, but they're in service of nothing. A waste of time.

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  16. Pushed to the Limit (1992, dir. Michael Mileham) Trailer
    Beyond Fear (1993, dir. Robert F. Lyons) Trailer

    Mimi Lesseos double feature! In PttL, she's a pro-wrestler/Vegas showgirl whose brother gets murdered by a Chinese mobster. The mobster also runs his own private Kumite(!), so Lesseos trains and joins up so she can get close enough for revenge. In other words, it's a gender-swapped Bloodsport. In BF, she's an ex-pro wrestler who quit after accidentally paralyzing her best friend in a match. She becomes a wilderness guide taking civilians on camping trips. One of her customers videotapes some rednecks killing a hooker, and the rednecks chase the group into the woods. Except they wait until there's only ten minutes left in the movie first. The rest of the picture is Mimi getting to know her campers on a personal level and helping them face inner demons. Mimi writes her own movies, and seems like she wishes she were a self-help diva/motivational speaker more than she was an action star. Check out Streets of Rage (directed by Richard Elfman!) instead.

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  17. Nikita aka La Femme Nikita (1990)

    After a drugged-out criminal is sentenced to life in prison, she's recruited to be a covert spy/assassin for the French government. More thriller than an action movie, but there's some good action there too. Luc Besson's visual flair is recognizable in this early movie of his, and Anne Parillaud does an excellent job as the frail girl forced to find her inner strength.

    Fun fact: the American remake of this movie (starring Bridget Fonda) casts Harvey Keitel as "the cleaner", a role which QT lifted straight into Pulp Fiction.

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  18. "MORTAL KOMBAT" (1995)

    Realm Wars. Johnny Cage OOZES cool. Sonya Blade (miss veronica vaughn).

    Win. Win. Win (win).

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  19. 1990: The Bronx Warrior (1982)

    I didn't break the category rule. To quote Damon Wayans in The Last Boy Scout "I circumvented it."

    This movie was quite a welcome surprise after a lackluster first day. It reminds me a little of a great movie I saw for the first time thanks to the help of my man, Chaybee, called She (1982). She is a better movie but I really enjoyed 1990. Vic Morrow's last movie before dying on the set of Twilight Zone: The Movie. If you want to see Fred Williamson as "the Ogre" and his fantastic mustache, watch this movie.

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    1. Well, it's tough to be as good as "She" as that could be the best movie ever made. Glad you enjoyed this one though, man! Nice LBS reference to boot!

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    2. I'm an idiot, so much so that I completely, unabashedly, unironically love that movie! It's like one of my top ten movies of the '80's! That's were the 1990 of my profile name comes from, not my birth year.

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  20. Stone Cold (1991, dir. Craig R. Baxley)
    Had to cheat on this one and rewatch it for a guest spot on an upcoming Nerds of Nostalgia podcast, but it still matches the theme and is a GREAT example of '90s action. Bosworth remains the weak link, but everything else is fun. Even his participation ends up being fun because it makes the movie a cultural touchpoint/failed experiment.

    I also tried to watch Mission Killfast but am really, really struggling to finish it.

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    1. Mission Killfast was what I was going to watch. Started filming in 82 and finished in 91. Even that doesn't look interesting? Oh well. Onto another.

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  21. Double Impact (1991)

    First time watching this. We get the splits at about the 10 minute mark. It was great to see the awesome Bolo Yeung and JCVD rip off their shirts for a Bloodsport rematch. JCVD's acting chops have come a long way since his early days, especially considering he's acting against no one (or his double) throughout much of the movie. I though the composited shots with 2 Van Dammes were very well done. And Griffith's female bodyguard! Woof! She's so bad, and muscular, but sexy...sexy strong. She could choke me out with those legs! 2 JCVD's means 5+5=10 stars!

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  22. Sudden Death (1995)

    First-time viewing, if you can believe it. Not an all-time classic by any metric other than goofball fun and folks getting splattered / fryolated, but fun nonetheless. That mascot fight scene is pretty great. I never thought about it before but yeah, those furry freaks are incredibly well padded. God help us if they ever decide to rise up against us.

    Oh, and I still don't understand hockey.

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    1. It's an all-time classic Erich. Get your head out of your ass :-)

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    2. It takes place during the fictional game 7 final between the Pens and the Blackhawks in 92! In reality, the Hawks were swept in 4 games :( I think I read that the movie was produced by the owner of the Penguins. They did a good job using the extras to make it seem like the seats were all filled, although they must have filmed some with a full stadium. A lot of minor league players got to "act" in the movie, although there were a bunch of NHL players like Robitaille and Lemieux. I didn't know it was a hockey movie going in the first time, and was pleasantly surprised. I thought the story was a level above most JCVD movies.

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  23. STONE COLD (1991)
    I remember Brian Bosworth being famous, but darned if I can remember just what he was famous for. In this movie he plays a block of wood who goes undercover in a biker gang to, I don’t know, foil their plot for world domination. You’re all praising this movie, but I was bored.

    CYBORG 2: GLASS SHADOW (1993)
    I expected Van Damme, and was surprised instead to see pre-fame Angelina Jolie. Still, it’s all cyber-technobabble with little action, and a waste of cult actors Elias Koteas, Billy Drago, Sven Ole Thorsen, and especially Jack Palance, who spends most of the movie as a close-up of just his mouth on TV screens.

    INTERCEPTOR (1992)
    An ultra-low-budget take on the “Die Hard, but on a plane” thing. The producers got some real-life stealth bomber footage, and decided to Ed Wood-ize it into an action movie. There are a few cool fight scenes, but mostly you’re not missing anything.

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  24. Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)
    Not endorsed by the national foster parent association.

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  25. Grosse Pointe Blank (1997)
    I've been to worse high school reunions. Not really, I skipped mine.
    Not great, but gets the job done. Decent laughs, but action scene were lacking. Fun to see John Cusack from before his direct to Netflix thriller attempts. Needed more split-punches to the balls.

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    1. Worth checking out for the soundtrack alone - The Clash, Violent Femmes, Pixies, Echo and the Bunnymen etc

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    2. Speaking of the soundtrack, maybe my favorite joke in the movie is Cusack standing outside the convenience store where his house used to be and Guns 'N Roses Live and Let Die is playing on the soundtrack. He steps inside the convenience store, and the same song is playing on the piped-in Musak inside. Makes me laugh every time.

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  26. Sniper (1993)

    I'm sure if I'd seen this in my teenage years I would've loved it. When it gets going it's pretty good fun, but Tom Berenger and Billy Zane wandering through the jungle for an hour is really quite dull. Also, giving J.T. Walsh one scene is unforgivable!

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  27. Are you guys thinking what I'm thinking?

    I hope not, cause im thinking how much my Balls hurt!


    The long Kiss Goodnight

    Another popcorn flick for me tonight, I like the tough Geena Davies character, and Samuel does his thing, he is a total pimp in this movie, I only own this on Dvd, time to upgrade to a lovely Bluray I think

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    1. I remember Samuel is rocking some pretty impressive attire - the sort of thing ONLY a super cool black man could!

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    2. Haha well someone did it! Bravo Dennis. Ah, le sigh, Geena

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    3. I got this on Blu-Ray a couple of months ago, and this was the perfect excuse to bust it out. In a film full of awesome one liners, my favorite line might be "Mommy, the cars!" just for the sheer ridiculousness. I also loved the Burt Macklin-esque conversation at the end.

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    4. One thing I really love about The Long Kiss Goodnight, and had completely forgotten about, is how much the first half of the film plays like a Jekyll and Hyde horror movie.

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    5. I gotta buy that blu, Geena being dunked in the water in HD, Sigh...

      Ps I thought Samuel was the biggest Coolest pimp ever but Bruce A. Young who plays Raymond in Trespass wears a suit that puts Samuels suit to shame.

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  28. The Glimmer Man (1996) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0116421

    The Glimmer Man is a likeable buddy cop movie that has Segal playing Jack Cole, a monk-smock wearing Buddhist complete with jangly beads and a ready supply a ground deer-penis. As you know, Buddhists hold ALL LIFE sacred. Thankfully for this 90’s action flick, life is not so sacred as to spare the fate of any goon within a 10 mile radius.

    “We called him The Glimmer Man. They’d be nothing in the jungle but total silence then, a small glimmer and you’re DEAD. That’s the Glimmer Man”
    Possibly Brian Cox’s finest line of movie dialogue ever!
    Not for it’s eloquence but for Brian’s ability to say this without the slightest hint of a smirk.
    Pretty impressive you’d agree if you try to equate that line with a 300 pound Segal lumbering through the undergrowth just as silently as a water buffalo stampeding across a floor full of bubble wrap and bicycle horns.

    Segal’s production company had a large part to play in this project which is why it is packed full of New Age Buddhist crap sorry, philosophy and has Segal described by his partner Keenen Ivory Wayans as “like Bruce Lee only better”.
    I’m guessing this must be use of the word “better” meaning “slower & fatter”?
    Joking aside, Segal is in fine form and has some pretty cool fight scenes, the one in the restaurant being a lot of fun. However, Wayans arguably has the best action scene, a brutal ninja fight in a burning apartment climaxing in a dive through a first floor window as the whole floor of the building explodes in SLO MO!! – THIS IS 90’s Action!!
    As in all in good buddy cop movies the leads have a good rapport and there are many enjoyable jibes at one another and the appearance of Brian Cox gives the whole thing a touch of polish.

    It’s dumb fun and was just what was required for Day Two!!

    Personal rating 1/5

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    1. I still like Glimmer man very much. Every time I see it, I ask myself if actor Bob Gunton, who has been in everything since forever, has ever played anything else than a slimy scumbag in an expensive suit.

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  29. Time Bomb (1991 dir. Avi Nesher)

    I picked this up in a second hand DVD sale a few months ago for $1 and was waiting for an excuse to give it a spin. It's a rare solo lead performance from Michael Biehn, and it's batshit crazy. Biehn plays a watchmaker with a secret ass-kicking past. Wears it's R rating (Australian rating, NC-17 for America I think?) on its sleeve proudly. And although it was released in 1991 it has a distinctive mid-80's feel to it. Wouldn't be surprised if it had sat on the shelf for a few years.
    Worth checking out!!

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    1. Biehn, Billy Blanks, Pasty Kinset, Robert Culp?! Yes please. Sounds awesome!

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  30. Hard Justice (1995 DTV) Dir. (Emmy Award Winning) Greg Yaitanes

    This movie crushes your face. It’s got a coldness, grittiness and attitude to it that most action movies these days can’t replicate. A cop goes undercover in a prison to...who the hell cares, this movie kicked ass! It’s obviously inspired partially by John Woo’s Hard Boiled but that isn’t a bad thing in my opinion.

    “You play a heavy game man.” “It’s a heavy world”, our hero, David Bradley (American Ninja 3, 4, 5, Cyborg Cop 1, 2) states after fighting his cellmate, Mr. Clean. Yes!! Charles Napier is the prison warden, of course. The villain from Karate Kid 2 is our villain here. Nu Image definitely took a cue from PM Ent. and blasts you with a barrage of carnage in the first ten minutes, but the momentum stays up for the most part and the climax is actually a climax that delivers. Good pacing, great fighting/action scenes make this a definitive example of a top notch 90’s action film.

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  31. ERASER (1996):

    How exactly would you categorize the phases Arnold's career? Peak 80s Arnold, sure, and then there's Old Arnold, but what kind of mark did he leave on the 90s? END OF DAYS, TRUE LIES, and ERASER strike me as the "serious action work" he did between schlock like BATMAN AND ROBIN and JINGLE ALL THE WAY. I haven't seen the other two lately, but I'm pleased with how competent ERASER is. Of course it's predictable and the action is all 90s (LASER GUN!), but he's quiet and steely in a way that he's rarely allowed to be. Found myself pretty into it.

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    1. This isn't suggesting that TRUE LIES and END OF DAYS aren't ridiculous schlock (they are), and even ERASER has some insanity, I just mean it felt like he was TRYING to do more serious stuff.

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    2. I stand by Eraser (and True Lies even more so) as legitimately good movies, so you don't need to defend yourself haha. Haven't seen End of Days in so long I can't comment, but 90s Arnold definitely had some solid offerings

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    3. I just remember End of Days as the one where Gabriel Byrne plays the devil. Am I remembering that right?

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  32. Sudden Death (1995)

    I do understand hockey.

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  33. Showdown in Little Tokyo (1991, dir. Mark L. Lester) - first viewing

    Bullets fly. Asians die. The title 'theme' loops eight billion times. Dolph Lundgren fatalities Shang Tsung(!) in most ludicrous fashion. Brandon Lee is a national treasure ("You have the right to be dead." *flicks lighter*). You'd better believe Al Leong shows up at some point. Poorly edited wall-to-wall ultraviolence as only Mark L. Lester can deliver.

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    1. Classic. One of the best!

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    2. Just watched this earlier today having only watched it once before when it came out on VHS. I had completely forgotten about the... compliment Brandon Lee gives gives Dolph Lundgren at one point.

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  35. RAPID FIRE (1992)

    A first viewing for me. After hearing Patrick mention it on an episode, I kept my eyes out for it. Finally snagged a copy only to put off finally watching it until now, months later.
    Brandon Lee witnesses a murder and finds himself hunted by two gangs, the police, and the FBI. Powers Boothe is fantastic as always. Lots of shooting guns, shooting guns at glass, and blowing stuff up by shooting it with guns or driving a car into it. This was a ton of fun, I love Junesploitation and the Scary Movie Challenge. They allow me a guilt-free month of binging movies I've collected but haven't actually watched.
    I hope the rest of the month continues like this!

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  36. Watched Con Air for the first time, twas great fun, Cage elevates everything! Malkovich is great also and some great cheesy action.

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    1. Words cannot express my profound appreciation for Con Air.

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  37. Dark Angel (I Come in Peace, 1990)

    Outside of Universal Soldier, I'd never seen a Dolph Lundgren film. Junesploitation seemed the time to rectify that. Dolph Lundgren is the badass Chuck Norris wakes up in the morning wishing he could be. And lucky for Dolph, he's in a movie that's just about perfect. Or at least perfect for me. It's a buddy cop/sci-fi/action movie with great action, great effects, and terrific chemistry between the characters! And don't forget about those one liners...

    5 Junesploitation Stars!

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  38. HARD BOILED (1992)

    John Woo made one of the best that's ever been with this movie.

    If you haven't yet taken the plunge, I'd humbly-yet-strongly suggest you should, and soon.

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    1. This is absolutely Woo's best and one of the best actions films ever. Yes, I like it better than The Killer as I think it's faster paced. The Killer is fantastic but Woo learned from it and created Hard Boiled.

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    2. I agree, such a good movie. It's been too long since I've last watched it. Time for a revisit.

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    3. Action cinema at its most pure. Love it

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  39. Street Fighter (1994): I need to change the direction on the 'this is still a video game' movies. I had a dream where I was immersed in The Long Kiss Goodnight and was all mixed up with other things. I should have taken this as a sign and watched that instead. Learn fronm my mistake. Watch Long Kiss Goodnight!

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    1. Long Kiss Good Night is always the right choice! :)

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    2. Do you mean where you were immersed as in the torture scene? I believe I may have had a dream or two about that dripping wet Genna scene......

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  40. Last Boy Scout... been planning this watch all day, had to go buy another $3 copy since i couldnt find mine. Black's trying to be so hip it hurts dialogue feels strained coming from Wayans and Willis..but i'd rather recast the film than remove some of these ridiculous and memorable lines. "If we go any faster we are gonna travel back in time." Perhaps the boys just needed some more years on them to bring the gravitas necessary to deliver this stuff without irony.

    strange to say, it's kinda nice having black be such a one trick pony, he does it better than his imitators

    "be careful with that case, it's the one that goes bang."

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    1. Bruce Willis was already acting like an old has-been coot when John MacClaine was just three years prior. WTF??!! :-P

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    2. Hallenbeck is the depressed, could give a fuck, McClane. I love Hallenbeck almost as much as he's internally aware with his own flaws and the fucked up shit around him, much of which he's responsible for. He finds his wife cheating on him and still has the presence of mind to know that it's partially his fault. He's aware he's no better than Sarah.

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  41. Nowhere to Run (1993)

    Watched this one based on Patrick's recommendation and I'm glad I did. I run hot or cold with JCVD movies, mostly cold, but I found this one off beat and kind of fun. He's more natural and relaxed then in most of his performances and I like the movies weird sense of humor. One gripe would be that even at 90 minutes his movie feels long. Still I think this film is a lot better than some of JCVD'S output during this period and is definitely better than the similarly themed Fire Down Below with Segal.

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  42. Escape from LA (1997) First viewing.

    *first 45 minutes* "hey this isn't bad, I don't see what all the fuss is about"
    *basketball scene* "wait, hold on"
    *surfing scene* "ohhhhh, now I get it."

    I didn't hate it. It's.....fine. It had just enough schlock to keep me interested. I did like the weird Demolition Man speech at the end. And loved all the Cleveland references. GO CAVS!

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    1. Michael GiammarinoJune 3, 2016 at 12:01 AM

      It's so much fun! And I love the social commentary!

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  43. Universal Soldier (1992)

    JCVD vs Dolph Lundgren, how had I never seen this? Sadly, this wasn't as much fun as I was hoping it would be. Given that the two leads are essentially reanimated corpses acting like robots, its not terribly exciting for much of the runtime.

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  44. Speed (1994)
    One of the many embarrassing omissions in my movie watching history. Like Point Break, it transcends its silly one-sentence premise and is way better than it should be. Love all four leads, though Sandy B steals my heart -- she's so brave in the face of her fear that you can't help but root for her and the other hostages even though Keanu is ostensibly the hero.

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    1. When I saw this in theater I said "This is the best action movie since Die Hard". I renege on that now, but I still think Speed is one of the top 5 best of the 90's. Awesome!!

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    2. I was planning to watch this for cop day - haven't seen it since the theatre

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    3. Aside from Speed and Point Break being just great movies I love, every time I watch one of them - and I think I wrote this once or twice before - I´m stunned what a damn beautiful guy Keanu Reeves was back then.

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  45. Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot (1992)

    Sylvester Stallone plays a cop whose mother comes to stay with him for a few days. While staying with him, she witnesses a murder. The two of them have to work together to bring the criminals to justice.
    This is a goofy movie, I haven't seen it in over 20 years. I was shocked how much I enjoyed it.

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    1. That was going to be my cop day choice! We'll see.

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  46. Desperado (1995)
    I couldn't pass up watching one of my favorite action movies of all time for '90s action day.
    Robert Rodriguez combined the "stranger comes to town" western, with the bullet ballet of a John Woo film. Loved it when I saw it in theaters in '95. Still love it today.

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    1. It still gets it done; it's still as good as that night I saw it in the theater. Easily, actually -- because it's badass. How I wish Rodriguez would go make a movie like this again with 1000 half-gallon bullet squibs.

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  47. Hard Target (1993):

    There is too much to say. John Woo's version of New Orleans is very strange. Like a bunch of movie sets from different movies cobbled together to match a one paragraph encyclopedia entry of "the south." Lance Henricksen is great as Lance Henricksen, especially during the fiery fight at the end and that grenade scene. Oh yeah, it was also great to finally see that snake punching clip from the internet in context!

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  48. Desperado (1995)

    My favorite Robert Rodriguez movie and one of my all-time favorite action movies. More movies should be this fun.

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  49. The Crow (1994)

    Better then I thought it would be. The scenes of Brandon Lee being stealthy and menacing are great. It's sad that he died (obviously). I wonder where his career would have gone...

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  50. Once a Thief (1991)

    A bit disappointed in this one. Going into it I didn't expect such a goofy action comedy. I mean there is a lot of goofy shit going on in this movie. There are a few pretty good action sequences that made it worth the watch though. If you are not a John Woo completist I would have to say skip it.

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  51. Under Seige (1992)

    Maybe the best Seagal movie, though I still have some oersonal love for On Deadly Ground despite its flaws. Patrick's Heavy Action column says more about this movie than I could, but it's a really solid Die Hard ripoff, with a great Tommy Lee Jones performance and some occasional good action scenes. It always leaves me wanting a little more than what I got, but it's still a great way to spend 100 minutes.

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    1. Agreed! I think I first watched this last Junesploutation

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  52. Eraser 1996

    Was there any other decade that could get away with having a film where Arnold shoots an alligator in the mouth (says a trademark one-liner), literally plays chicken with a crashing airplane while parachuting, AND has a third-act centered around lazer guns?

    No, I think not. Eraser isn't what I'd call a great film, but it's very enjoyable, and not one I'd have visited anytime soon had it not been for Junesploitation. So thank you, guys! I call day 2 a success.

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  53. SPEED (1994):

    What a ridiculous movie, but all the better for it. And honestly, it's one of the few 90s action movies I can tolerate as I'm generally just not a huge fan of actions films. Random anecdote: A friend of mine once did an art installation at our local community college by draping the tape strands from about 100 VHS copies of this movie along the building, creating an analog forest of sorts.

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  54. Escape From L.A.

    Snake is up against the hellish backdrop of early cgi. Loved it in spite of everything. Carpenter has a way with endings if he can make this one so satisfying.
    I want the story of Cleveland!!!

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  55. MORTAL KOMBAT: ANNIHILATION (1997)
    I've seen this movie as bunch, it was one of those that I would watch on sleepovers and junk like that back in the day, so I thought I had a pretty good grasp on this movie. By which I mean I thought it was going to be super awful. But it is actually just goofy enough to be somewhat entertaining in a few places. And the fights aren't bad. Just fast forward through the scenes of people talking and it should be a decent time if you're up for some real '90s goofiness.

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  56. Michael GiammarinoJune 3, 2016 at 12:44 AM

    Black Dog (1998)
    Swayze almost always delivers, and I was pleasantly surprised with this one. Swayze is stuck running artillery without a trucker's license, with Meat Loaf on his tail, the FBI on his tail, and his wife and daughter under threat of death. There is an incredicle truck stunt at the end of this movie, where the truck busts through a window and spins before crashing and exploding. It's a remarkable stunt. Performances run the gamut from the goofy to the severely over the top (Charles S Dutton), but it was definitely entertaining. We've seen all of these tropes before, but it was a fun diversion to see them play out once again. And I don't think they make enough good trucker/chase movies anymore.

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  57. Michael GiammarinoJune 3, 2016 at 12:56 AM

    Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man (1991)
    I saw this movie once decades ago and I didn't remember a second of it. You best believe I'll never forget it now. I'm kind of a sucker for modern Westerns and this one was a doozy. Tom Sizemore and Stephen Baldwin are totally ludicrous as the corporate banker villain and the lead henchman. Baldwin and his crew wear futuristic style dusters, but they're more like the wardrobe you see in Equilibrium. It's just funky. Watching the camaraderie of Mickey Rourke and Don Johnson in this movie is a joy, and it disappoints me that their resurgence has been so momentary, especially in Mickey's case.

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  58. Michael GiammarinoJune 3, 2016 at 1:03 AM

    Tango and Cash (1989)
    Okay, I cheated. A little bit. But this one's been on my mind... and I've never seen it. And I own it. That needed to be remedied. This movie is so ludicrous it's exquisite. Sylvester Stallone and Kurt Russell vs Robert Z'Dar? Hammy Jack Palance? Teri Hatcher? Michael J Pollard? Really? Where have I been, under a rock?

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    1. What matters is that now you've eaten at the Tango & Cash table. You never really leave.

      Welcome...

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    2. Michael GiammarinoJune 3, 2016 at 8:42 AM

      Yep. I'll never be the same. I'm changed. Wait... did I just turn into Gil Hicks?

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  59. Timecop (1994)

    Hmmm...a shopping mall, Jean-Claude Van Damme and a guy on rollerblades, all in the first 10 minutes? Yup, it's the 90s! Yeah, it's dripping with some 90's JCVD cheese but it's a fun watch and it really got me thinking: what happened to rollerblades anyway?

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    1. Like the Mormon's before them, they couldn't take the ridicule of the skateboarders, and headed West, settling in places like Chilliwack and Surrey. It is rumored they even play "hockey" on rollerblades in those parts.

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  60. Kuffs (1992) :
    hadn't seen this movie for more than 20 years. Slater is fun. the movie has a nice rhythm & flow that used to be common but is absent from most modern movies. I enjoyed it.

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  61. Hard Target (1993)

    "Good whiskey make jack rabbit slap the bear." With only 1/2 hour left in Day 2, I started this, but fell asleep and had to finish this morning. Wow, this movie's amazing. Why have I never seen this. I've never seen JVCD do so many flips. The sound design was interesting, as every gun cocking, bullet whizzing, and squibs bursting was louder and enhanced. I'm sure glad that Oncle Douvee made it to the end. Any movie where Van Damme sports the most bad-ass of mullets, gets 5 stars!

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  62. Point Break (1991)- I thought yesterday presented the ideal opportunity for my first viewing of this FTM favorite. Though I was a little slow to hop totally onboard for the first half hour, I thoroughly enjoyed the thrill ride and agree that the foot chase in the middle is one of the all time great chases in cinema. I'm still on the fence on Keanu's performance (being a big fan), but I have to admit it delivered where it counts and won me over by the time we got to "adios amigo."

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  63. Face/Off (1997)

    Wowee wow wow. I had written in response to the recent podcast on this that I have somehow spent my life so clueless about this film that I didn't even know that faces actually come off of the people involved. Bonkers premise aside, Cage and Travolta somehow balance the act with a strange alchemy together. I think the action hits the right marks, and I couldn't have looked away if I wanted to because I needed to understand which is best: Cage as Troy or Travolta as Troy or Cage as Archer or Travolta as Archer (definitely not the last one). Anyway it ended and I still didn't have a verdict, but it was nice to finally see the origin of lots of leading Cage internet memes (priest costume ass grab!). And I laughed, a lot.

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  64. KUFFS (1993)
    I'd say your enjoyment of this really depends on your feelings about Christian Slater. I'm one of other fortunate to see his genius. This felt tailor made for junesploitation.

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  65. Trespass (1992): Undiscovered (by me) action gem featuring both Ices -- T and Cube. YOU ARE NOW SOLD ON TRESPASS. It's also streaming on HBO, so check it out there if you already subscribe.

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