Posts Tagged ‘vigilantes’

Bad Ass 2: Bad Asses

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

tn_badass2“Let’s go get those sonofabitches.”

BAD ASS 2 is the sequel to a DTV movie I almost forgot about, the one where they bought the life story rights to a mentally ill Vietnam vet who punched out a guy in a racial incident on a bus in a famous Youtube video and turned him into a heroic vigilante played by Danny Trejo. For part 2 they ditch the true story claims, but do have one in-joke reference to the video (a guy pronounces “ambulance” weird). The adventures continue for Trejo’s character Frank Vega, so I guess he’s Buford Pusser for the internet age.

This is three years later and Vega is settled in to a more normal life training boxers, with one particularly promising student Manny (Jeremy Ray Valdez) who is “almost like a son” to him and is about to have his first pro fight tomorrow. This will shock you to your very core and make you question everything you’ve ever believed, but the kid has gotten involved with some drug dealers who say he’s stealing and they murder him but the cops aren’t gonna do anything so Vega has to track them down and, I don’t know, trick them into getting on a bus so he can punch them, or whatever he does. (read the rest of this shit…)

Snake Eater II: The Drug Buster

Friday, April 27th, 2012

tn_snakeeateriiPart 2 in the SNAKE EATER saga came a couple years later, in 1991, and has a definite early ’90s vibe. In part 1 the goofiest obviously-painted-by-Canadian-production-assistants graffiti I noticed was the one that said “SUPER RAD,” in this one it was “RAP HEADS.” So times are a changin’. It opens in a school gym full of African-American youths in Nike “Just Do It” t-shirts doing double dutch while others practice kung fu nearby. All the kids are being overseen by a paroled ex-troublemaker named Speedboat, played by Larry B. Scott (he played Lamar, the gay guy in REVENGE OF THE NERDS). Speedboat tells all the kids they gotta get ready for “the tournament,” and we never find out if it’s a fighting tournament, a jump-roping tournament, or some combination of the two. Two of them suddenly fall down and die from some bad coke, and the shit is on. (read the rest of this shit…)

Recoil

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012
tn_recoil“You killed him?”
“Technically it was the explosion that killed him.”

In his latest, RECOIL, Steve Austin plays a little bit darker version of his usual screen persona. A little Stone Colder. He’s still an ex-cop who knows how to beat the shit out of people, still a stranger drifting into a small town and getting into trouble with the local criminals, still a scary-looking regular working man with a no bullshit attitude and an inherent sense of decency, but at least at the beginning he’s more of a Terminator than usual. He drives into Hope, WA in his black 1968 Plymouth GTX with 12 score marks burnt into his arm, apparently representing the number of killers and rapists he’s executed in his travels. He’s way ahead of the FBI, who want to put “24 hour surveillance” on a child killer before they figure out Stone Cold already “made abstract art out of him” 2 days ago. (read the rest of this shit…)

Superheroes

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

tn_superheroesIs SUPER HEROES a DECLINE OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION for the Nerd Age? This more-interesting-than-I-expected documentary takes a look at the burgeoning subculture of “Real Life Super Heroes,” people who create their own comic book inspired personas and costumes and “fight crime” (which seems to mostly mean walking around at night with other Real Life Super Heroes).

Seattle’s own Phoenix Jones is not represented. I’m not sure if this was filmed before his time or if he was too mysterious to be caught on camera. They do have a couple guys from Seattle, but one is just a fat guy in a t-shirt that says “Sky Man” on it. Another one carries a bow and arrow – what the fuck are you gonna do with that, shoot an arrow at some drunk guys fighting outside a club? Phoenix Jones got in trouble just using pepper spray. I don’t know about other cities, but I feel that Seattle is not bow-appropriate. (read the rest of this shit…)

Young Warriors

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

tn_youngwarriorsbacktoschoolYOUNG WARRIORS is a crazy fuckin movie released by Cannon in 1983. The description on the back of the VHS box begins like this:

“What do you get if you cross ‘Animal House’ with ‘Death Wish’? Young Warriors– a unique combination of fraternity hijinks, high-speed action, wildly imaginative animation, and hard-drivin’ rock!” (read the rest of this shit…)

Super

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

tn_superSUPER is the landmark thirty-seventh movie about “what if somebody really tried to be a super hero?” But this one was made by James Gunn, the Troma guy turned SCOOBY DOO screenwriter who got some cred when he wrote the DAWN OF THE DEAD remake and then directed SLITHER. Looks like he’s had trouble getting anything off the ground since then (I guess the suits didn’t go for his take on Pepe Le Pew) so he made this one independently like he used to do, but maybe with some more skills and connections he’s made in the big leagues. For example the bit part of the lady at the pet store is played by Linda Cardellini from E.R., because she was Velma in SCOOBY DOO. (That was weird, I thought that character would come back or something, but no. She’s just a pet store lady.) (read the rest of this shit…)

Hobo With a Shotgun

Friday, July 8th, 2011

tn_hobowshotgunHOBO WITH A SHOTGUN – which came out this week on the dvd and the blu-ray – stars Rutger Hauer (BLIND FURY) as the titleistical armed derelict. I don’t think he ever gets a name, he’s just an old drunk who rides the rails into Hope City, better known as “Fuck City,” a small Canadian town overrun with barbaric crime and ruled savagely by a psychotic crimelord called “The Drake” (Bryan Downey) and his two douchebag sons, who I think are supposed to be modeled after Tom Cruise in RISKY BUSINESS. They wear sunglasses and letterman’s jackets but participate in public beheadings and sex slavery. Some of the cops are corrupt too, and one likes to serenade the local prostitutes with smooth come-ons like “You’re so hot I wanna cut off my dick and rub it all over your tits.” (read the rest of this shit…)

The Horseman

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

tn_horsemanTHE HORSEMAN is an Australian revenge picture out on DVD in the U.S. today. At the start this guy’s daughter has already died of a heroin overdose just after filming a porno. It’s a low budget deal shot in a boxing gym – she’s not a Vivid girl or nothing. He doesn’t really know what happened but he blames the porn people for her death, so he’s tracking down everybody involved, burning them alive, etc. (read the rest of this shit…)

Harry Brown

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

tn_harrybrownMICHAEL CAINE IS… HARRY BROWN, a pensioner with two things left in the world: his wife (but then she dies) and one friend (who is murdered after complaining that he wants to stab the dumb assholes who keep dropping dog shit through his mail slot). So it’s about an old dude becoming lonely and deciding to hammer down on the hooligans that are ruining his neighborhood (not soccer/football hooligans, just regular unaffiliated hooligans. In fact an interest in sports or arts of some kind, such as graffiti or beatboxing, might be good for these particular hooligans, give them more of a productive focal point for their hooligannery).

Harry is one of the very best categories of badass: the type with a PHd in killing but who chose to go into another field. The war was a long time ago and he doesn’t even like to talk about it. But he told his friend to go to the police, he already had, and they were no help. And Harry is an old man in the same neighborhood, he has to walk past these fuckers too, and he’s always taking the scenic route to avoid them which wastes his time and causes him to miss out on opportunities (little things like being there with his wife when she died). (read the rest of this shit…)

The Gladiator

Saturday, May 16th, 2009

tn_thegladiatorTHE GLADIATOR is another movie I found on VHS by accident while browsing the video store. It’s a car vigilante TV movie, so I was surprised to find it with the Abel Ferrara movies. Yes, the director of KING OF NEW YORK and BAD LIEUTENANT also did a TV movie starring Ken Wahl and guest starring cheeseball ’80s top 40 DJ Rick Dees as his obnoxious boss. From about ’85 until ’88 Ferrara mostly worked in TV, doing some episodes of MIAMI VICE and CRIME STORY, plus this one in ’86. Seemed like something I should investigate.

Wahl plays Rick Benton, a stoic car mechanic working for Dees’s specialty car business. The only people in his life are his kid brother who he raised (Brian Robbins, director of NORBIT), his Vietnam buddy who works at the junkyard, and a customer he’s starting to date, talk radio host Nancy Allen. He works for rich people but chugs along in the kind of lower middle class existence not usually depicted casually in a TV movie. A couple nice touches I noticed: they eat on paper plates, and they wrap gifts with the Sunday funnies. You ever notice how presents on TV and movies are usually perfectly wrapped with shiny bows and sometimes even lids that just lift off? I could never pull that off. The Sunday funnies is more relatable. Good one Ferrara. (read the rest of this shit…)