Action Movie SUBGENRES
This is a huge, ongoing project :D
If a movie that you think
should be in a category is not there,
it's probably because I haven't gotten around to re-watching it to
be sure. Same thing, if you see any glaringly wrong placements
of films in categories, please email me:
For a list of movies, see my
All For L♥VE
PROBLEMS* . . .
Action was never so desperate as when it's
done All For Love. These movies take our hero to the
extreme for love (or sex). What will a man (or giant ape) do for
love? Once he sets eyes on your girl, he's going to
steal her away. Yeah, it's bad enough that he's going to beat you,
but your chick's gonna find him irresistible. Sucks to be you.
We get to watch the lengths to which he'll go to have, save,
or God Help You, if you killed or harmed his chick, avenge
It can also be brotherly or sisterly love,
protecting your family or your child—that drives you.
(*Just in case
you don't recognize the reference: It's the Jay-Z song 99
Problems "If you're having girl problems, I feel bad for you,
son. I got 99 problems but a bitch ain't one.")
All For L♥VE
ROMANCING THE STONE
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2
GONE IN 60 SECONDS
Mr. & Mrs. Smith
Mission: Impossible III
Knight & Day
3 DAYS TO KILL
Not technically "Action"
NATURAL BORN KILLERS
The opening of this movie sets up a really exciting premise. I love
the whole feel of it right up until you find out it's a giant monkey
(sigh), but it's a great movie, and until 2005, was the best Kong
ever. I liked
Mighty Joe Young
but it's too heartbreaking. (Come to think of it, I couldn't watch
the demise of Kong in the 2005 version either.) It's just hard
to love a movie that has animal cruelty and exploitation as the
heart of the story. Even if it makes a strong anti-cruelty message,
it's still hard to watch. I'd prefer some weird made-up evil and
dangerous creature we can hate and kill. Like a zenomorph! Oh, yeah
. . . and
Kong was a perv!
He couldn't help it.
Jessica Lange had such star power. She was so beautiful,
especially in the beach landing scene. Charles Grodin was
surprisingly awesome and appropriately cartoonish in his role. The
characters are all a little exaggerated but it works really well.
They dangle Jessica like blonde bait and the poor, dumb animal
follows along. It's an adventure, it's a tragedy, and it's All
Burt Reynolds as Sharky falls hard for Rachel Ward as
a call girl named
"Dominoe with an 'e'." The villain is played by
Henry Silva who was also in Code of Silence
and Above The Law, and he is really good at being super
creepy. The time spent on the voyeuristic one-way
surveillance Sharky does on Dominoe serves to show how lonely he is
and makes her seem all the more vulnerable. Rachel Ward is stunning
and ultra-feminine in that perfect
way of the 1980s. Sharky falls hard for Dominoe, but
she is killed before she can give up the life she's living and go
and live a 'normal' life in a house with a (not-so) 'nice' guy. After so much
beauty, the kill scene seems ungodly gruesome. Like Sharky,
you feel you know her.
Brian Keith and Charles Durning
were part of a boys' club cast that includes many popular
character actors, like Bernie Casey. Durning is great
as the angry, screaming Police Lieutenant that became so clichéd in
this era, it got comical. Loved the metaphysical angle. Based on the
novel by William Diehl (who also wrote Primal Fear
that Edward Norton was so good in), Sharky's Machine is as
good now as it was the first time I watched it. IMDB lists a
Sharky's Machine as "in development". I hope whoever takes it on knows how important/cool
Arch's philosophy is, and how it saves his life. This really adds a
sense of desperation to the movie. The villain must be super creepy,
and the soundtrack should keep you on edge. The girl must be heart-stoppingly
beautiful and have something vulnerable that brings out a protective
instinct (the watching makes Sharky fall in love). Sharky must do
something romantic like the wood carving. His strength contrasted
with his vulnerability is also a killer. He should be ruggedly
handsome but not a dandy. A man's man. This could also be a
Super Cop movie because when
you watch it you think, they couldn't pay me enough and it takes a
special kind of person to put their life on the line to do this
Romancing The Stone
A cross between and Action Adventure and a Romance Novel, this
treasure hunt was great fun as we watched the mismatched pair fall
in love. Michael Douglas was 40 and Kathleen Turner
30 and both were as good as the silliness of the material would
allow. Danny DeVito was funny as well.
It's been a long time
since there was anything like this (not counting
and Anne Heche in Six Days Seven Nights, the closest
we've come is Knight and Day.)
There was a listing on IMDB for a
2011 remake . . . Even if
you're not old enough to love the Doobie Brothers joke, it's
still a lot of fun (but more for women than men).
Mission: Impossible 2
(24 May 2000)
Love is not convenient when you are on an impossible mission but it
Tom Cruise anyway when he crosses paths with Thandie
Newton. This movie was impressive in its visuals (as you would
expect from John Woo). Tom really impressed in his stuntwork. You
could not tell if and when it was ever not him. The motorcycle chase
scene is really something until the fight on the beach and then
Tom's performance is kinda jaw dropping. What a
Tom Cruise for his role choices
and the values so often exhibited in them.
Mission: Impossible 2 has the added bonus
of being a John Woo film with all the stylistic beauty that
entails, and the out-of-hand creative action sequences. Mr.
final cut was
3 1/2 hours. How I would love
to see that!
in Sixty Seconds
(9 June 2000)
Brotherly love drives this cult classic Action Movie. They put a
timer on the heist of 50 cars, and then connected the dots with some
fantastic stunt driving. The movie won the Taurus Award for BEST
Chuck Picerni, Jr. (Stunt
Eddie Yansick (double for
"Memphis"). This movie is fun every single time you watch.
Nicolas Cage is as entertaining
as ever and it features a fantastic supporting cast, including:
Delroy Lindo, Angelina Jolie, Giovanni Ribisi, Timothy Olyphant
(he does a lot with a small part and punches up some plain
dialogue), Robert Duvall, Vinnie Jones, Scott Caan, Michael Peña,
and a cameo by the screenwriter, Scott Rosenberg (he also
wrote Con Air).
This movie fascinates me. First, for being so
negatively criticized when it first came out. I liked it then—it
seemed to me that it was picked on for all the things people call
"Action Movie clichés" when they don't get those things are exactly
what make an Action Movie great. Since then it has grown in
popularity and everyone loves the "Let's roll" moment (classic
Cage). Funny how the ending scene is such a Fast-and-Furious-family
moment, as if someone saw it and wanted to build a movie off that.
The action (like in Con Air) is fantastic: The construction chase is
original, over the top, and first rate.
& Mrs. Smith
(10 June 2005)
Brangelina. So easy on the eyes
for men and for women, this movie nonetheless delivers most of the
Action Movie Essentials.
There's a great car chase! Angelina Jolie rocks that.
There are massive explosions, a great fight scene, a
high killcount, a shootout, and camaraderie and
dominance of a different kind—and it's all great fun to watch.
The movie keeps you guessing a little. It's like Spy Kids
for adults, a total fantasy! It left me wondering what the movie
would have been like if the two main characters were not widely
considered the two best looking and sexiest people on the planet.
Would there have been as much interest? I doubt it. The appeal is
all them, and their chemistry plus the real life drama/gossip of the
time that this movie led to their being a couple. A lot of
credit has to go to Angelina Jolie because she holds her own
here against Brad Pitt and makes it looks believable. She
gets the better of him several times. The women have to love
that (plus the matching outfits)! It's enjoyable every time
you watch it, and that's the highest praise.
Mission: Impossible 3
(5 May 2006)
This movie was ahead of its time and not appreciated for how
incredible it was. The action sequences were advanced, even watching
it today, it seems up to date. Back then audiences took the
quality of the film as something related to what they perceived was
Tom Cruise's ego. What kind of bullshit backlash is that for giving
us something so incredible? I never tire of watching the M:I
movies. Whatever you like about Action Movies, this movie has it.
The opening is
hard to watch and then you see the how they got to the that point
and it's even harder. It has a happy ending you didn't think
was possible—beyond fairy tale. My hubbie the secret
agent. What lengths will a man go to rescue his fiancée?
(17 Nov 2006)
Yes, it's a James Bond movie, but with a twist. Yes, there are "Bond
girls", but this time, the real eye candy is Bond. First they show
us how all-out in great physical shape he is with not only one hell
of a fist fight, but then they cut to the intense chase scene using
Parkour, and if that wasn't enough, show him in that unforgettable
blue bathing suit. This is clearly not the soft Bond of
the past, who required so much suspension of disbelief. Not only is
he now physically up to the challenge, he's razor sharp mentally,
and no more crazy gadgets. At every turn, he uses his powers
of deduction as much as his strength in a script is as intelligent
as it is action packed.
Knight & Day
(23 June 2010)
Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz
proving they can still do it . . . I liked the movie a lot. So much
that I think it would have been better with unknowns, but that's
(23 May 2013)
Dom and Letty. Their passion has carried us through several movies.
In true movie magic, they bring Letty back from the dead. We love
The lengths a man will go
to for the woman he loves is what this movie is all about. When it's
a spectacularly strong and daring man, expect more than just
fireworks and chemistry. Vin Diesel is so hot in this, he's
(21 Feb 2014)
it says "Luc Besson", I'm there. The best part for me was how
perfect Kevin Costner was. It's an Oscar-worthy performance,
but because it's Action, and it's understated, it will go unnoticed.
Another great surprise was that it's not just an Action Movie, it's
a great movie, period.
(26 Sep 2014)
The love of his dead wife and
protective feelings for a young Russian girl who is forced into
prostitution makes Denzel Washington's character Robert McCall come
out of hiding and let loose his avenging angel/bad ass side as he
takes on and takes down the entire Russian mafia.
(6 Feb 2015)
Channing and Mila. In a sense,
it was just like
The Matrix, in reverse. Jupiter
is 'the one'. Earth, where she is an ordinary girl, is real life,
and being Queen is the Matrix. Jupiter just wants to get out of
being Queen and get re-inserted back into her real life. And, like
The Matrix she finds her true
love. The best line in the movie has to be when she says "I love
dogs. I've always loved dogs." And, at that moment, we couldn't
agree more. Channing Tatum is so likeable, so
everyman-yet-unattainable. He's that boy-next-door, all-American
hunk, good guy we all had a crush on. Take that to the bank, because
whatever else you think is going on, that's what's selling here.