"I got news for 'em. There's gonna be hell to pay. 'Cause I ain't daddy's little boy no more."

Dolph Lundgren

He is a Master of the Universe and has a Master’s Degree in chemical engineering. He was a Punisher and an Expendable. He’s worked with John Woo, Craig Baxley, Isaac Florentine and John Hyams, fought James Bond, Skeletor, Rocky and Johnny Mnemonic. He wants you to meet your Maximum Potential. He is Dolph Lundgren.

Red Scorpion
1988
Red Scorpion

On the surface the movie is pretty harmless. We’ve all seen the overblown communist threat action movies of the ’80s, and this isn’t as over the top as RED DAWN or something. But the movie’s subject matter is another example of short sighted foreign policy, obsessing over one bad guy so much that we end up supporting a different bad guy that will later come bite us on the ass.

The Punisher
1989
The Punisher

Speaking of weapons, I don’t understand where Punisher gets his. He has these skull knives he always throws, and he never re-uses them. Just throws them at a guy and leaves them on the scene. These are nice knives, custom-made, and he goes through them like toilet paper. Not to mention all the guns and bullets he uses.

I Come in Peace
1990
I Come in Peace

Although the movie is completely worthwhile for its whole weird sci-fi/action combo, I didn’t think the stunts were as great as the ones in ACTION JACKSON and STONE COLD. Instead they seem to focus on coming up with interesting special effects like the bouncing CD, a guy glowing from inside and exploding, etc.

Showdown in Little Tokyo
1991
Showdown in Little Tokyo

This is a fun movie and as an added bonus it’s only 79 minutes long. I mean I like a good long movie but you gotta respect a good short one too. It just gets in there, does what needs to be done, and then gets out. Like a ninja. No time for fucking around. No time to stop and get a bottle of water out of the refrigerator like Steven Seagal in BELLY OF THE BEAST.

Universal Soldier
1992
Universal Soldier

I would say the Universal Soldier program is a failure, not just because two of them went rogue but because it was a stupid idea in the first place. These scientists don’t consider the moral and spiritual implications of bringing people back from the dead not because they’re bastards but because they’re too stupid to even understand that’s what they’re doing.

Army of One
1993
Army of One

I would not say that ARMY OF ONE reaches the level of STONE COLD when it comes to stunt coordinators dolloping awesomeness onto a ridiculous action movie starring a big brute with blond hair. But it’s in a similar category of silly action with some clever ideas and some impressive, violent action scenes.

Pentathlon
1994
Pentathlon

This is a pretty cool action premise, because as it explains in text at the beginning the pentathlon was designed to use the skills that a soldier needs. So of course in battling Müller and his men Eric ends up using his running, his shooting and his sword skills. I don’t think he swims or rides a horse though, which is wasted potential, but otherwise this is a very satisfying movie.

Men of War
1994
Men of War

I like Dolph in the movie, as always, and there are some other good people in the cast too. Along with Tiny “Zeus” Lister you also got Tom Wright (Charles, the Jamaican cop from MARKED FOR DEATH), and the great bad-guy actor Kevin Tighe plays Dolph’s mentor. And Goddard is kind of hilarious as the over-the-top villain who seems to take everything way too personally.

Silent Trigger
1996
Silent Trigger

I hoped this would be one of the better Dolph Lundgren vehicles, because it’s directed by Russell Mulcahy, who used to be so good. This was ’96, his next movie after ’94”²s THE SHADOW. I guess this is his punishment, but THE SHADOW is more fun. SILENT TRIGGER is at least watchable, but so are other things that are actually good.

Blackjack
1998
Blackjack

The great thing about watching BLACKJACK now is that it’s just become ripe. Because back in 1998 when it was made, there was still that naive hope that John Woo had great things ahead of him. He had just done FACE/OFF which seemed to prove he could fuse the strengths of his Hong Kong movies with the Hollywood method of filmatism.

Bridge of Dragons
1999
Bridge of Dragons

Although there are no dragons or even bridges this is kind of a fantasy film. It takes place “somewhere between the future and the past” (wouldn’t that be the present? I’m confused) so Dolph uses modern military gear and there are helicopters but most people dress medeival and use swords and horses and there are princesses and shit.

The Defender
2004
The Defender

Despite what you’d expect from a movie directed by Dolph Lundgren and starring Jerry Springer as the president, this is not really a funny or goofy movie. It’s a straight forward, competent low budget action movie is all. The action is mostly just gunfire, nothing too exciting.

Missionary Man
2007
Missionary Man

The action is okay, not great. He throws a baseball bat at a guy, shoots up a truck and a bar, announces that he’s going to break a man’s nose with his knee before he does it, etc. I like the part where he makes a western style hangman’s noose on a fire escape.

Direct Contact
2009
Direct Contact

This is definitely a decent and watchable DTV, but I prefer more flair. More rats eating bloody puke, more mid-air body explosions. The only other thing that seemed very unique to me is an irony in the story involving Helsinki Syndrome. In the beginning the CIA prick warns that the girl may have developed feelings for her kidnappers, and that’s a lie because she hasn’t really been kidnapped.

Command Performance
2009
Command Performance

I’m glad it’s not some spoof or something, but this movie could’ve benefited from embracing the absurdity of the concept more. I know it’s a fine line to walk, and it’s gotta be hard to put yourself out there in this world so full of condescending ironic dickheads on the internet and the E! network and shit who dedicate their lives to saying sarcastic bullshit about supposedly “has been” celebrities.

Universal Soldier: Regeneration
2009
Universal Soldier: Regeneration

What I’m telling you is that this is a real fucking good movie, made with care and skill. I can’t believe how much I liked it. It joins UNDISPUTED II as the rare DTV sequel better than its theatrical originator. It’s also probly the first ever part 5 that’s better than its part 1. Unless you count porn.

The Expendables
2010
The Expendables

I liked THE EXPENDABLES alot, I was not disappointed, but it’s seriously flawed. To put it in Stallone terms it’s wounded, and not able to sew itself up. So I’m not gonna come to you with hyperbole and Ain’t It Cool style dick metaphors and exclamation points, but I’m not coming to you with tears either.

One in the Chamber
2012
One in the Chamber

ONE IN THE CHAMBER is Kaufman’s newest, and has his best cast so far, by which I mean Dolph Lundgren is in it. Unfortunately I don’t think this one is really a step forward. Story-wise it’s more direct than SAINTS AND SINNERS, but not nearly as clever or gripping as HIT LIST.

The Expendables 2
2012
The Expendables 2

There are some ways that the sequel doesn’t seem as desperate to prove its relevance to stupid young people as the first one did. Part 1 had some kind of shitty modern metal bullshit music in it, this one sticks to oldies. Mostly classic rock but even a little old time rock ”˜n roll like PREDATOR or RED SCORPION.

Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning
2012
Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning

I love this movie. I couldn’t help but watch it twice during the 2-day VOD rental period, and I’ll watch it again November 30th if it plays in 3D here. You gotta respect that it’s the fifth sequel to a Roland Emmerich movie but it’s complex enough to reveal more over multiple viewings.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, November 28th, 2012 at 11:21 pm and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

26 Responses to “Dolph Lundgren”

  1. There are really good part of films.

  2. Vern, THE MECHANIK, THE MECHANIK, THE MECHANIK…

  3. It’s called THE RUSSIAN SPECIALIST over here, and I could have sworn Vern reviewed it but I guess I’m mistaken. I definitely agree with the recommendation. It’s my favorite of Dolph’s directorial works.

  4. Who is going to review this? Actually never saw this before until now. Pretty much seals the case of Dolph as a true renaissance man

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VHW9nwk4ujo

  5. So there are apparently photos and reports floating around, about Dolph shooting KINDERGARTEN COP 2. And while I’m not saying it is impossible that this is real, I more assume it’s a FUNNY OR DIE skit. (Especially because I have heard nothing about it and it’s not on imdb.)

  6. lol, would be funny if true – I could see that working but yeah it looks like its for some kind of sketch.

  7. Funny Or Die sketch is possible, but I’m assuming it’s real because a DTV remake or reboot was already reported before it was cast:

    http://www.showbiz411.com/2015/06/09/reboot-kindergarten-cop-without-arnold-headed-back-to-big-screen-with-indian-sidekick

    The outlet that has the Dolph photos I find to be repugnant and will not click on to see if their information matches up. Do they mention Don Michael Paul or an Indian sidekick?

  8. Yeah I believe that’s a legit new KINDERGARTEN COP.

    I think he was perfect casting actually. He was the second go to foreign blonde 80’s action beefcake. It makes sense.

    I’ll check it out cause Dolph is actually a pretty funny guy. Universal is doing ok with these DTV franchise updates now that they don’t only focus on AMERICAN PIE spinoffs. CURSE OF CHUCKY was a nice surprise.

  9. I kinda missed that announcement then. Which is weird, considering how every nostalgia heavy remabooquel becomes big showbiz news and social media fodder these days.
    I’ve never heard of that sight that had the photos until this morning and didn’t take a closer look at it, but they claim that it IS for that sequel, including Don Michael Paul and Indian sidekick. (But they probably have nothing to back that claim up and just copy pasted all info about it from another website.)

  10. I hope they keep the original’s unique blend of adorable kids saying the darnedest things and brutal, gratuitous violence in the presence of said kids. Even when I was a child, I knew the tone of that movie was just insane. It’s got a cold-blooded murder complete with squibs to the chest in the first five minutes. Who the hell was that movie made for? Me, apparently. One of my favorite things in the world is that Arnold kills more people in KC than he does in all the Terminator sequels combined. He blows away the bad guy right in front of his own son, and then goes right back to the kindergarten class the next day like nothing ever happened. Hey, no big deal. No one’s traumatized or anything. Sometimes grownups need to light a motherfucker up, that’s all.

    also how is it cool that the old kindergarten teacher was just like totally fired for no reason and never mentioned again so this vicious killing machine could take her job even though he has no credentials whatsoever? Is there no teacher’s union in this town?

    So yeah, I’ma watch the fucking shit out of KINDERGARTEN COP: NOT A 2MOR. There’s questions I need answered.

  11. I still believe that this is a situation like back then, when Tara Reid talked about a sequel to THE BIG LEBOWSKI and then Funny Or Die decided to turn this either into one of their vids or she actually was talking about that skit all the time and the world ridiculed her for an out of context comment. I forgot what it was.

    Maybe it’s because I’m European, but I never really cared for the weird tonal shifts in KINDERGARTEN COP. I grew up with watching crime shows with my mutha, so seeing someone get murdered on screen was totally normal for me. It was only when they aired that movie a few years ago on Boomerang, that I thought: “Hey, wait a second. Is this really kid appropriate?”

    The one thing that pissed me off even back then, was when that kid climbed up that radio mast to attach his tinfoil lazer gun or whatever. Yeah, he was young and most likely emotionaly traumatized, but even with 9 or 10 or whenever I watched it for the first time, I was like: “Ugh, do adults filmmakers really think that we kids are THAT stupid to risk our life for some shitty fantasy?”

  12. If you want to know my beef with that sight find the post about the first cast photo of the new Ghostbusters. Unbelievable. Makes me question liking the same type of movies that guy likes. Might inspire a Vern Like It Is columns one of these days though.

  13. Mr. Majestyki – I too found the combination of action movie and kid’s comedy very strange when I saw KINDERGARTEN COP as a kid.

  14. Jesus fuck that site makes me want to light myself on fire. Just reading that drivel makes me feel worse about the world, my movie collection, and my genitals. I can’t abide this–I use this term hesitantly–idea that the only reason someone might want to tell a story about women is because they have an ulterior motive. It is taken as a given that women are inherently uninteresting unless they have their boobies out–liking boobies is super manly, the way infants are–so there must be an agenda. Never mind that the big comedies of the past few years have all been female-oriented, so the motive, as always, is money. Nope. Big Cootie must have gotten to these filmmakers. They’re taking kickbacks from the tampon lobbyists. It’s the only plausible explanation.

    I’m glad you’re here, Griff, because this is a nice lesson for you. This is kind of how you sound when you go off on “the feminists”: Like a toddler throwing a tantrum because Mommy let Lil Sis play with his Hot Wheels.

  15. I’m sorry if that was harsh, and I realize you haven’t said anything like that in a while so the drive-by snarking was probably out of line, but dammit, these fuckers do get my dander up.

  16. Crushinator Jones

    August 13th, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    I don’t think I’ve seen Griff say anything truly cringe-worthy for at least 3 months so he’s getting better. Let’s not give him shit – that’s the kind of thing that forces a relapse.

  17. You’re right. Sorry, Griff. Poor form to turn on one of our own. The enemy’s out there, man, out there!

  18. Do you care to link to the article in question? I have no idea what you’re talking about, but it sounds stupid, please don’t pin any of that on me.

    If some guy really thinks female centric comedies are some feminist conspiracy or something, well that’s ridiculous, of course.

  19. That’s pretty much it. I don’t think Vern wants to sully his sight with their shitty name, so just look for the cited source of the Kindergarten Cop sequel story on any article about it and you’ll find it. I went through the link on the AV Club.

  20. Ew. I barely started reading that vomitous dreck about GHOSTBUSTERS and had to stop for the sake of my sanity. But, yay for Dolph and KINDERGARTEN COP 2.

  21. grimgrinningchris

    August 13th, 2015 at 5:27 pm

    That fucking sight though… What the fuck?!?! Who is this asshole?!?!

  22. Urgh! I just about forgot about that article and now you guys are bringing the memories back for reading that preposterous pile of pitiful putrid nonsensical bullshit. Thanks.

  23. I took a snapshot of that Ghostbusters story at archive.today so they won’t be getting any clicks or advertising out of it. Have a look if you’re morbidly curious, and don’t forget the antibacterial soap on your way out.

  24. Well, that didn’t work. The link is archive.is/zHoXQ but you’ll have to cut and paste.

  25. Aside from anything else why is a website called “Manly Movies” getting up in arms about a reboot of a silly comedy which was kept alive through a variety of products and spin-offs aimed at pre-teens?

  26. “Manly Insecurities around Movies”” would be a more proper name for that shitty site.

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