Here’s the thing — I secretly like Stephen Sommers’ “G.I. Joe”. Although I hated every minute of the film during my initial viewing, I have found myself popping the DVD in the ol’ player on several occasions, particularly when I need something as background noise. Somewhere along the way, I began to appreciate the film for what it was: a big, stupid, loud-mouthed action flick. Was this much-maligned adaptation of my favorite childhood cartoon show dumber than a box of rocks? Of course it was; I don’t think anyone will argue with that. However, there’s entertainment value to be had, especially if you just let yourself go with it. I’m sure a few of my friends are getting a kick out of this.
Below you’ll find a small gathering of films that, I think, most people secretly enjoy. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong, but, deep down, you know I’m right. Of course, you don’t have to admit such things if you don’t feel comfortable. We totally understand.
DOA: Dead or Alive
It’s hard to properly defend director Corey Yuen’s underrated martial arts gem, especially with women. They immediately think it’s a pervy guy thing, and that’s simply not the case. Sandwiched in-between the ample cleavage and the long legs are a bevy of insanely enjoyable set pieces, a few of which involve the always-enjoyable Kane Kosugi. What’s more, you get to watch a few lovely ladies beat the absolute crap out of Eric Roberts. Eric Roberts! What’s not to love about that?
What didn’t you like about Kurt Wimmer’s grossly unappreciated sci-fi mash-up? Was it the scene with the puppy? Was it all of that stuff about artistic oppression? Did you not like Gun Kata? Regardless of how you may have felt the first time through, I implore you to give it another shot. You’ll quickly discover that Wimmer was way ahead of his time with this one, despite the fact that it’s essentially style over substance. Besides, isn’t it ultra hip to rip off Orwell these days, anyway?
Fire Down Below
As a reasonably intelligent resident of the Bluegrass state, I should be deeply offended by the stereotypes portrayed in this weirdly entertaining Steven Seagal outing. However, instead of shaking my fist angrily and accusing the filmmakers of classism, I have watched the film more times that I care to admit. After all, who doesn’t like watching my favorite aikido master beat the absolute crap out of a band of nefarious rednecks? That’s right — nobody. Plus: Harry Dean Stanton.
In this misguided film fanatic’s humble opinion, John Woo’s American debut is the Holy Grail of unloved action flicks. The movie has everything: Jean-Claude Van Damme, mullets, Wilford Brimley, bad one liners, Arnold Vosloo — in other words, all of the elements of a classic motion picture are present and accounted for. Sure, it’s not “Hard Boiled”, but it’s definitely a lot better than what most people give it credit for. Don’t be ashamed to love Chance Boudreaux.
Since I didn’t read the comic book, I honestly can’t comment on how terrible this particular adaptation truly is. However, as a nonsensical sci-fi actioner co-starring Rob Schneider and Diane Lane, it isn’t nearly as bad as others would have you believe. Armand Assante chews scenery like there’s no tomorrow, and the cannibal redneck sequence, while unnecessary and mildly moronic, is the stuff of B-movie bliss. Stallone is the law, and I think you should obey. You know you want to.
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