Well here it is, friends. If there are ANY regular readers out there you might be happy to know that the time has finally arrived for finalizing the World Badass Committee’s Top 100 Badass Pictures of All Time list. This is a project that I started way back in Vern Tell’s It lIke It Is #38, when I asked:
So please my friends, ladies and fellas, send me your top Badass movies of all time. The definition is up to you. You can send me as many as you want, except not over 100. Please try to have them in approximate ranking order (your favorite first) and put the name of the Badass performer in parentheses afterwards.
I got many responses, and believe me people I am very grateful. And most of you came up with some great ones. I was happy to get a lot of votes for individuals like Clint, Steve McQueen, the Bruces, etc. However you can’t say my readers aren’t worldly. There were many contenders of many nationalities, and from all eras including many movies I never even heard of. I believe Toshiro Mifune got more of his movies on there than Schwarzenegger or Van Damme. That motherfucker really is popular with you guys.
Anyway, I would really like to apologize for taking so god damned long to get to the second round of voting here, but unfortunately it just ain’t my fault. So I ain’t saying shit.
Look, I’m not a professional at listing. This is my first time for lists. I mean I suppose I’ve made lists before but this is the first one I’m really trying to make count. This is the big time.
THere are things I didn’t know that for example your AFI or your BFI or your National Voting Registry or what have you, those guys would know. For example, you don’t say that it’s okay to vote for up to 100 movies. Because then every single one of em is gonna try to think of 100. And if they can’t, they still fill the list with all kinds of retarded crap. Take for example one young kid, I’m not gonna give his name but you can e-mail him at AbeScott@aol.com.
Now this Scott kid is one of my dedicated fans, he even started a discussion group for me on yahoo clubs that you should please stop by to discuss these topics and Badass Cinema in general. But that doesn’t make the motherfucker bullet proof. When I smell horse shit I gotta call it so I’m gonna have to say Scott, I’m sorry but the following are not Badass films:
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Bosko’s Picture Show
Man On the Moon
Now I know some of those are probaly good pictures, but that don’t make em Badass pictures. And I know I said the definition of Badass was up to you, but show some fucking responsibility here people. This is why motherfuckers always end up starting governments. Everybody SHOULD be able to manage without one, but then they start fucking around and doing stupid shit like including Inspector Gadget in your definition of a Badass.
Let me put it another way. If I tell you you can borrow my car whenever you want, that doesn’t mean you should get in when it’s parked in front of my house and just take a huge shit in the backseat. You gotta use the two commons, sense and courtesy.
At first I was gonna even include these retarded nominees on the final ballot, but I decided not to waste everybody’s time and I just deleted them. I’m sure you fuckers got a couple of jewels past me. Look buddy I’ve only been in the open air just over a year I’m not exactly familiar with every picture in the world, it’s not exactly a huge accomplishment to get one past ol’ Vern.
So we got a good collection here. Time to narrow it down to only a mere 100. The weak will be trampled by the Dirty Harrys and etceteras until they are pulp beneath the feet of the WBC Top 100 Badass Pictures of All Time. What we have so far is not accurate enough to really make it into the history books, in my opinion. But just so you know these would be the top ten slots based on the first round of votes:
So we got some impressive achievements in Badass cinematics there if you ask me. For one, Bruce has two pictures in the top ten, including number one. For two, my man Clint has FOUR pictures in the top ten. But the number one achiever here is undoubtedly the small, boot-shaped colony of Italy. Those motherfuckers are all over the place. Sergio Leone has three of his directorial works, Once Upon a Time in the West, For a Few Dollars More and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Martin Scorsese, an Italian-American, has Taxi Driver. And The Godfather is of course a picture about a family of Italian-American entrepreneurs.
The major upset here is definitely over the chinese, who only got Hardboiled in there. There was a good showing though for pictures like The Killer, Enter the Dragon, Iron Monkey, and etc. so definitely look for some of these motherfuckers like Bruce, Jet and Chow to give some SERIOUS competition to the Italians in the finals. Not to mention Toshiro Mifune and Branded to Kill, both hailing from the island of Japan.
One more interesting note on this, let’s look at the type of Badasses who are getting the votes. A surprising showing for the pigs, who have four representatives in there. Even more surprising is the upset tie for the cowboys with four of their own. Criminals came in a disappointing second with three followed closely by other.
These top vote getters here don’t give an idea of the diversity of pictures that received votes, but they do show that we mean some fucking business here people. We’re talking Bruce, we’re talking Clint, we’re talking Steve, we’re talking Fat. If the rest of the pictures on this list are in that league at all, they are must sees. So I vow right now, I’m gonna try to watch and review all 100 of the movies on the final list. Even if it takes me 30 years.
Now on to the voting.
Just for you smart asses out there, let me tell you a little bit about what a Badass picture is. It is a picture layered with cockiness, and dolloped in atmosphere crackling with the electricity of potential violence. (I spent a long fucking time on that last sentence so I hope it turned out okay.) When you walk out of a Badass picture, chances are you will be strutting a little bit, picturing yourself as the Badass who starred in the film. Imagining his theme music as you drive home, squinting a little bit, your lips tight and grim, only coming loose to smoke a cigarette in a most intimidating type fashion.
It is a movie where somebody does something so tough, or says something so tough, or even just WALKS so tough, that it makes you smile. I’m talking about Tequila sliding down a banister still firing his gun. I’m talking about Steve McQueen in The Getaway realizing he’s been recognized in a hardware store, walking out to the car to tell Ali McGraw “We got trouble,” then walking next door to the gun shop to buy a gun and have a shootout. I’m talking about Wilson in The Limey getting thrown out of that warehouse, then getting up and walking right in to kill everybody.
You know what I’m talking about here. I’m talking about Dirty Harry standing on a bridge waiting to jump on the hijacked bus. Or foiling a bank robbery while still chewing his hot dog. I’m NOT talking about Andy Kaufman running around in long underwear making monkey noises. This means you AbeScott@aol.com.
So remember, this is all about respecting the Artform of the Badass picture. Not shooting diarhea all over it, god damn it. With that in mind, and without further whatever, let me present to you the official ballot. What I want you to do is copy the the ballot and paste it into an e-mail to me. THE WHOLE THING, PLEASE. Don’t fuck around. Don’t get fancy and use decimals. AND DON’T include your commentary or nothing. Save that for the yahoo discussion group, people. On the ballot it will just be a pain in my ass.
AFTER the title and the Badass in parentheses, please rate the movies you’ve seen on a 1-10 Badass scale, 10 being the most Badass.
THIS IS NOT RATING THE BADASS PERFORMANCE. The names of the Badasses are only included in adherance to the Badass theory which states that the Badass is the auteur of a Badass film. What we are rating though is the movie as a whole. If you feel that the performance of the Badass elevates the entire movie to a powerful Badass level, then rate accordingly. But don’t give a ten to some pantywaist movie just because there is a tough guy in one scene. THIS IS WHY I DID NOT INCLUDE MR. T’S ALLEGED PERFORMANCE IN INSPECTOR GADGET, ABESCOTT@AOL.COM.
Now I know this is gonna be a LOT of fucking work for you guys. But remember, this is for the history books for crying out fucking loud. 100 years, 100 Badass pictures. You’re only rating over 300 movies here, it’s not gonna kill ya. Let’s do this.
I put it on a different page so you can control-a for easy cut and paste. pretty fucking fancy if I do say so myself.
VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.