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Posts Tagged ‘Anthony Zerbe’

The Omega Man

Monday, April 13th, 2020

THE OMEGA MAN has been a favorite of mine since I first saw it on cable as a teenager. I would later read the novel I Am Legend by Richard Matheson (love it) and see the first adapation LAST MAN ON EARTH (pretty good) and third one I AM LEGEND (in some ways the best adaptation, despite its flaws). The story of all these versions is of a scientist (usually named Robert Neville) who is immune to a plague that wipes out most of the population and turns the rest into vampires/ghouls/mutants.

So during daylight he’s alone in the city, at night he hides in his well-stocked home, holding off the attacking hordes, as he searches for a cure. It’s the holing up, of course, that kept coming to my mind a few weeks into Washington state’s shelter-in-place order for the Covid-19 pandemic (if I read that sentence six months ago I would’ve thought it was a reference to some sci-fi movie). I’ve mostly been looking for escapist entertainment – I’m definitely not planning on watching CONTAGION again, as seems to be popular – but I’m doing okay with genre movies that have parallels to the situation. So I watched THE OMEGA MAN again. (read the rest of this shit…)

Licence to Kill

Thursday, July 18th, 2019

One summer of ’89 joint that seems older than most of the others is Timothy Dalton 007 movie #2 of 2, LICENCE TO KILL. It’s got a definite ’80s action influence in that James Bond is supposed to turn in his proverbial badge and actual gun (he keeps the gun though) and goes rogue to get revenge on a Colombian drug lord named Sanchez (Robert Davi, CITY HEAT, RAW DEAL, ACTION JACKSON, DIE HARD), who has invented a novel way to smuggle cocaine (mixed with gasoline). And the theme by Gladys Knight and end credits song by Patti Labelle could probly slip onto a BEVERLY HILLS COP soundtrack without causing a scene. It’s also pretty violent, and was seen as a darker interpretation of Bond, which to some was upsetting and to some others was more in keeping with the books by Ian Fleming. But in most ways it’s old timey James Bond shit with elaborate stunt sequences, gadgets that make computery sounds (what good did it do him to disguise the explosives as toothpaste and cigarettes, by the way?) and multiple gorgeous women who throw themselves at Bond for no reason. (read the rest of this shit…)

Steel Dawn

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017

STEEL DAWN takes the post-apocalyptic world of George Miller, pumps up the samurai and western influences, adds a little martial arts, replaces the internal combustion engine with wind power, and invents the Patrick Swayze action vehicle. He’d already made a name for himself in ensembles – THE OUTSIDERS, UNCOMMON VALOR, RED DAWN – but this was released only three months after his breakout role in DIRTY DANCING. It didn’t catch on in the same way, and it doesn’t play on cable nearly as much. But this last time I watched it was a profound experience.

It opens with Swayze balancing on his head in the middle of a desert. That’s how he meditates. But then a bunch of shrieking, masked mutants climb out of the sand to attack him. He uses martial arts to fight them off, pulling a sword out of his bag when he gets too outnumbered.

He’s a nomad. In fact, he’s credited as Nomad. Heading for a tavern, he gets attacked by an old warrior who turns out to be Cord (John Fujioka, AMERICAN NINJA, AMERICAN SAMURAI, AMERICAN YAKUZA), an old war comrade just fucking with him. They catch up over drinks but suddenly a bunch of brutes led by a guy named Sho (Christopher Neame, LUST FOR A VAMPIRE, DRACULA A.D. 1972, SPECIES III) in a ridiculous hair metal wig attack them and kill Cord. (read the rest of this shit…)