Arnold Schwarzenegger Headshot

Arnold Schwarzenegger

113 Jibber-jabbers

  1. Somebody’s wearin’ a frowny face this weekend. His comeback movie opens in 10th place with a paltry $6.3 million. I’m almost embarrassed to say I watched this at a late show on Thursday night.

    OK for what it was; problem was it wasn’t enough. Arnold seemed rather listless, Forrest Whitaker going OTT when it wasn’t required, Johnny Knoxville and Luis Guzman not quite giving it the full comic relief “oomf”, and an uncompelling baddie.

    Please tell me I wasn’t the only one here who saw it?

  2. 10th place? OUCH! how times have changed

    but you know, here’s the sad fact guys, Arnold is really old now and has not really aged all that gracefully, it’s more than a little sad now to see him try to be an action star again, I just don’t think he can pull it off like Clint Eastwood or whatever, without the big muscles he just looks like….well an old man

  3. I just saw it tonight. It’s upsetting that the first thing anybody wants to talk about is how much money it didn’t make. I thought it was solid entertainment and just the sort of thing Arnold should be doing as he enters the Bronson-in-the-80s stage of his career. It’s light without being soft, funny without relying on Arnold himself for the laughs, and it’s a role that fits where he’s at in life. I had a great time.

  4. caruso_stalker217

    January 20th, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    I thought THE LAST STAND would have been perfect with a 79 minute running time.

  5. Well, at least the studio can blame it on the current “no gun violence” climate in the US. We all know that it isn’t true, because audiences were even after 9/11 in the mood for violent action movies, but at least they got an excuse now.

  6. I’m sure it’ll be the same excuse for when Stallone’s BULLET TO THE HEAD flops, as well.

  7. I concur with Mr. Majestyk’s assessment. It was a really fun time at the show.

  8. I haven’t seen it yet (Thursday is the day), but I hate when young people complain that Arnold or Bruce or somebody is old. Have you not figured out yet that there are old people? Do you only want to watch movies with kids in them? When you watch Commando or Die Hard do you just keep saying to yourself, “What youth! That’s the main thing I like about this! These guys are not yet old, and I would probly throw up if it was the same movie but they were older!”

    I hadn’t realized The Last Stand opened so poorly though. It does make me sad just because I want to see Arnold keep making movies. Maybe we can blame this one on Newtown.

  9. I sure hope this opens in Sweden, although i don´t know yet. Also, what the fuck?! Show the elderly respect! I have more respect for older people because of their experience and ( hopefully) wisdom. Young people don´t know shit.

    When a society values its young ones higher than its elders, that fuckin society has a big problem.

  10. It’s a good thing all these young people are never going to get old, because that would be embarrassing for them.

  11. If people stayed home to watch DEATH RACE 3:INFERNO instead, I kind of forgive them, snce that movie is pretty sweet.

  12. Old people should stick to their funny old people movies, where their advanced age can be safely mocked, eg GRUMPY OLD MEN, GRUMPIER OLD MEN, GRUMPY OLD MEN IN SPACE (SPACE COWBOYS).

  13. I’m just saying that it’s a little silly to see old people trying to be action stars, am I alone?

  14. Griff: It depends on how the actor’s age is handled. If it’s treated as an organic part of the character/story (eg comeback-era Sylvester Stallone) then it’s fine. If it’s treated as something shameful that needs to be disguised with hair dye, stunt doubles and 19-year-old underwear model girlfriends (eg DTV-era Seagal), then yes, it can be pretty silly. I haven’t seen THE LAST STAND, but from the trailer it looks like the former.

  15. I prefer older action heroes.

  16. Can’t help but think the trailers helped kill this one at the ol’ box office, but I dunno. Maybe people really do want a break from guns on the big screen at the moment (how did GANGSTER SQUAD fare?)

    Arnie looks just fine to me. Yes, he gotten older. That’s how time works. I have no problem with this. Kids these days etc etc.

  17. If people wouldn’t want to see fictional gun violence, DJANGO UNCHAINED would have been bombed either. (And that came out even closer to Newtown!)

  18. (“Would bombed”, without a “been”. So far we didn’t reach the point were audiences blow movies up, if they don’t want to see them.)

  19. At least one good thing might come from this film’s poor box office: Kim Jee-woon will hopefully go back to Korea, where he can make more movies like A Bittersweet Life, etc.

    America’s importing a lot of the great South Korean filmmakers these days, and I’m not sure how I feel about that (Stoker looks pretty damn good, though).

  20. I think the trailers helped kill this one as well. It made the movie seem overly goofy in my opinion. In reality it was pretty lighthearted, but it kept it’s edge and it’s heart. The trailers also didn’t indicate how kickass the car chases and escape were.

    I just can’t believe how bad it bombed. Damn! I knew it was in trouble though when the only occupants of the theater on Saturday evening were my friends and about 5 middle aged fat guys scattered around the theater all by themselves, just judging Arnold’s every move.

  21. The crowd reaction when I saw it was overwhelmingly positive. It wasn’t a full house, but respectable for a Sunday evening. I saw it at Court Street in downtown Brooklyn, a theater noted for audiences who aren’t shy about expressing their displeasure for a movie. I’ve long held that if a movie plays well at Court Street, it’ll play well anywhere in the world. And believe me, Court Street LOVED this movie. It’s a bummer that more people aren’t giving it a chance, because this is a real crowd-pleaser that would benefit from the party atmosphere of a packed theater.

    Oh well. I think it’ll eventually find a ROAD HOUSE-like audience on cable, and I bet it’ll make a profit internationally, since the world outside the U.S. hasn’t gotten the memo that we’re supposed to be too cool for ridiculously awesome things now. As long as Arnold keeps getting to make these mid budget action romps until the day his knees finally give out, I could give a shit about the box office.

  22. I too am completely baffled by the ambivalence the American public appears to have for this fun, splendidly-directed old-school action movie. EXPENDABLES 2 made 90 million in America, and LAST STAND –which has actual, exciting action sequences, actual, funny jokes, only one minor and subtle cheeky postmodern reference to another movie, and a great cast hamming it up– can’t make it? I honestly do not understand. Even completely unnecessary cash grabs like BOURNE LEGACY can make 100 mil. Do audiences just not want to have fun anymore? Is that it?

  23. OK and while I’m at it, Griff, I gotta call you out on complaining about old action stars. I’m sorry because you’re a nice guy and you’re gonna take the brunt of my irritation at a whole phenomenon simple because you said it. So, nothing personal man, but in this particular case I think it’s ridiculous to be against aging action stars. For God’s sake, time was MOST of our action stars were on the older side. Charles Bronson didn’t star in a movie until he was almost 40, and was more than 50 before he did DEATH WISH. Eastwood was still making Dirty Harry films until he was 58. Steve McQueen was 42 in THE GETAWAY, 50 in THE HUNTER. James Coburn was 43 in THE GREAT ESCAPE. All those guys went on to have long careers after that, each well into their 60s (obviously McQueen died young, but you and I both know he’d have been playing tough guys into his 70s had he lived). Hell, Bronson did a DEATH WISH at 73. What do all those guys have in common? They were all badass, hard-as-nails toughguys. They didn’t get soft as they got old, they just got grizzled. They started choosing roles that were about machismo and grit. And they were awesome.

    Nowadays, action movies mostly have a bunch of glum pretty boys who are still not that young (Jeremy Renner is 42, Jason Statham is 45) but tend to play youthful characters. And for some reason we don’t think that anyone who looks older than 35 knows how to shoot a gun anymore. It might be a little silly for Arnold to play an Olympic gymnast, but THE LAST STAND is perfectly in line with the later careers of all those old guys who maybe can’t run quite as far as they used to, but make up for it by being smarter and tougher than ever. Think it’s ridiculous to watch Arnold punch a guy at 65? Did you think it was ridiculous for him to push over that car in COMMANDO? Action movies are built on complete ridiculousness anyway, I don’t see how adding the factor of him being older somehow pushes them over the line.

  24. Arnold just confirmed he’s doing another TERMINATOR movie. I could get behind it if it’s the concept he’s talked about before, which is him playing the guy who the machines were based upon. In the back of my mind when I watch those movies, that’s one question that always popped up. There had to be a blueprint, in order to make them appear human.

  25. Because when I want to create a cyborg that blends seamlessly into a crowd of post-apocalyptic americans, I pick a hulking body builder with an eastern european accent.

  26. yeah really, that’s kind of a dumb idea

  27. The Original... Paul

    January 22nd, 2013 at 7:43 pm

    Mr S – given that I had no idea this movie even existed until I read about it a few days ago on this site, I’d say the problem is one of marketing. I mean, didn’t “Dredd” pretty much bomb as well? If it hadn’t been for the recommendations on this site, there would have been zero chance that I would’ve seen that film. Could never have guessed it’d be anywhere near as good as it was from the trailer.

    There’s a morning showing tomorrow, I might catch that.

  28. Well, originally, it was supposed to be Lance Henriksen, who would have played him like a guy you’d never look at twice. That probably would have been pretty awesome, but then Cameron met with Arnold and realized that he’d be an idiot not to make this humongous force of nature a killer robot. The guy was a walking special effect. He made the monster menacing just by showing up and being that massive. It might not make story sense for an infiltration unit to stick out like a sore thumb, but cinema is about images, not logic. If Arnold hadn’t been the star, we’d probably be talking about this cool old B-movie Cameron made before he got famous (it was bound to happen eventually), not one of the most iconic sci-fi thrillers of all time.

  29. The Original... Paul

    January 22nd, 2013 at 8:12 pm

    Morning showing of “The Last Stand”, I mean. Shoulda made that clear.

  30. Honestly, I don’t know that it’s that big a deal that Arnold stands out, since it’s not like the Terminator really goes out of his way to blend in. He just doesn’t give a fuck and knows that he’s pretty much unstoppable, so why bother pretending beyond the flimsiest disguise? I actually like Vern’s idea that Arnold is not so much the machines’ way of blending in, but rather their warped idea of a perfect human. Kind of a “fuck you, we can even do *human* better than you can.”

  31. Well shit, I didn’t know about this thread or discussion but here is what I just posted in the EX2 thread about THE LAST STAND.

    I saw THE LAST STAND and I am happy to report that it is an enjoyable R rated action film that does a nice job launching the old man phase of Arnie’s career and is a solid American debut for Korean director Kim Jee-woon. I grew up on Arnold’s films and love Kim’s work so I was really excited when this project was first announced, but after Arnold’s groan inducing performance in EX2 (Mr. M, his shtick gets worse with repeat viewings but I still like the film) and a trailer that featured way too much Johnny Knoxville I found myself lowering my expectations heading into the film’s release. I wanted it to be a homerun, but I was starting to feel that maybe my expectations were unrealistic. It turns out all that worrying was for nothing. I will wait for Vern’s review to go into greater detail, but THE LAST STAND is a fun modern western with some great action. Arnie is a little rusty and his performance has some uneven moments, but he find his groove and there are even a few more emotional and somber scenes latter in the film that he nails. However, I think Kim ultimately deserves the most credit for the film’s success. His skilled and confident direction carries the film. The action is all clearly staged and executed with lots of practical effects and stunt work. He also infuses the over the top action and violence with an almost cartoon quality that gives the film a blood soaked LOONEY TUNES meets RIO BRAVO quality.

    PS: Unfortunately the film had a terrible opening weekend. It bums me out because while THE LAST STAND is not Arnie or Kim’s best work it is a good film that deserves more attention than it is getting. It is also a bad sign for hard R action films and stories that are smaller in scope with smaller stakes then saving the world form an alien invasion or doomsday devise. With TLS tanking at the box like DREDD did it is only going to be that much harder to get a hard R action film made and/or released theatrically. People like to bitch about how much they hate how films that should be R rated are developed and released as PG-13 pictures, but this is the second quality hard R action film released theatrically (DREDD being the first, and I am not counting UNISOL: DAY OF RECKONING because it was only released in like 10 theaters nationally) in the past 6 months that is getting ignored in theaters. I not saying that if you are a fan of hard R action you need to run out and see THE LAST STAND, but if you don’t you lose the right to bitch about the DIE HARD franchise or other R rated stories going PG-13.

  32. Face it guys, he should have just done something a bit more high brow:

  33. I need a new TERMINATOR-movie as much as I need pile surgery, so I´ll just forget about that one. However one Arnie-rpject I´m kind of excited about is a potential KING CONAN-movie. I think it could be real interesting of having an old, weathered but tired Conan hardened by his battles, rather than having a young posing douchebag in the lead. Seams more interesting to me.

  34. I don’t want another Terminator either, 3 was mediocre and 4 was awful, if ever there was a movie series that they needed to just let lie, Terminator would be it

    but of course we know that wont happen

  35. I’d watch another TERMINATOR if they replaced Schwarzenegger with Griff’s icon.

    Shoot: Did you read somehwere that a new Schwarzenegger CONAN movie would make a point of not be a torch-passing movie with a lead young posing douchebag?

  36. Also, when Schwarzenegger starts talking about TERMINATOR sequels, am I the only one who suspects that he’s really pushing for a Sgt. Candy prequel?

  37. I’m not too excited about seeing Arnold as Dr. Terminatorstein (I somehow doubt most pioneering cybernetic engineers manage to make it to the gym all that often) but I’m all for any movie that can erase the bitter taste of TERMINATOR COLONS ARE FOR SISSIES SALVATION out of my mouth. Really, I just want to see John Connor lead the resistance to victory at long fucking last. I know it’s pure folly of me, but I want to see it and I want it to be awesome.

    Main problem: What motherfucker out there is actually inspirational and badass enough to be a fully realized John Connor and not the self-doubting works-in-progress we’ve seen thus far? Are we going to have to activate Viggo on this thing?

  38. Jareth: I don´t think I did.

    Also, if anyone is considering reading Arnie´s autobiography TOTAL RECALL? Don´t. It´s one of the boringest books I´ve ever read and I did not even finish it.

  39. It is my understanding that before Arnold returns to the Conan or Terminator franchises he is going to do a sequel to TWINS that he has wanted to make for years called TRIPLETS where he and Danny D find out they have another brother they never knew existed played by Eddie Murphy. Also, I want to be clear I am not making that shit up to be funny, TRIPLETS is a real.

  40. Shoot I listened to the audio version of “Total Recall”, and I agree that it is pretty boring. I wish he had spent more time talking about the making of his films instead of he got involved in politics or his personal life.

  41. Does he at least talk about his love of “the ass”?

  42. He talks alot about body building. Fucking useless. All that shit and hardly a single word about COMMANDO. That shit is shamefull. Also, there is a section where he shows how much more money he earned progressively for each film.. Who gives a fuck how much money he made?

    The book is almost the same kind of shit you´d expect some bullshit self-help guru to write about the “road to success” or some bullshit like that

  43. I love the idea of Old Arnold movies, but I don’t see how they do Old Arnold Robot. I can think of one scenario where we’d all get on board for Terminator 5, though: if it was written and directed by John Hyams.

    (Or the standard Paul Verhoeven or David Cronenberg. But Hyams would be a perfect fit.)

  44. I could see Hyams making a brilliant Terminator film. Neill Blomkamp would also be an interesting choice, and after seeing LOOPER I think Rian Johnson could revitalize the franchise. However, the only way they could feature an older Arnold in a new Terminator film would be the same way they used him in SALVATION and use CGI to make him young again, or it could take place in the future where he plays the man the design of the T101 is based on. I also think they should go small with the scope of the next Terminator instead of trying to go big. Forget trying to do epic battles with hundreds or thousands of Terminators or giant robots instead keep it grounded in the relationship between John Conner & Kyle Reese put them in a situation where they are have to fend off or attack Terminators with little to no guns and access to very little resources so they must rely on their wits and training to survive.

  45. I don´t know. THE TERMINATOR is one of those movies that deals with timetravel that is not convoluted and a concept easy to grasp and the storytelling in them is pretty straightforward.

    LOOPER was not all that great in dealing with timetravel, Now, they only travel backwards,like in TERMINATOR. But then you had to deal with that whole shit about future selfs meeting past selfs and I was so damn confused when suddenly the movie moved forward with the Willis/Levitt character; 1 YEAR LATER,10 YEARS LATER and I was like..what the hell is this? Now the audience is time travelling instead of the characters. It´s fucking hard to explain my confusion but I thought the narrative of LOOPER could have been clearer in that regard. That particular point in the movie bothered me.

  46. The Original... Paul

    January 24th, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    Well I know very little about “The Last Stand” but it doesn’t seem to be an example of Arnie’s best genre: sci-fi with an action bent that takes a simple concept (time-travelling robot hunts future messiah’s mother, war-loving alien hunts troops, man uses cloning technology to attempt world domination and must be stopped, etc) and does as much as possible with it. I’m hoping this isn’t an attempt to insert Arnie into a Western, because I can’t see that working for me. But I’ll see it nonetheless. Incidentally, google failed me yesterday, so I haven’t seen it yet – it was only released today.

    I’ll let you know what I think.

  47. Shoot, I thought LOOPER was excellent and I really liked how they handled the time travel elements and didn’t find them confusing. Either way I prefer that the next Terminator film stay away from time travel or not make it a central part of the plot. Part of the what I liked about how LOOPER and the original TERMINATOR film handled time travel was they didn’t try to explain the science of it or over explain the ramifications of time travel because that always leads to clunky exposition dialog and the more you look at the idea of time travel and its consequences and how it is used in film the more you see the flaws of the idea. I trust smart film makers that are gifted story tellers to play with the idea of time travel but in a lesser filmmakers hands it is often presented in a way that silly and clichéd. Besides the bizarre father figure dynamic John Conner has with Kyle Reese his biological father is way more interested than anything that has to do with time travel.

  48. In LOOPER Bruce Willis kind of throws all that time paradox/travel/future/past/present/past-present/future-past/past-present (or whatever) shit out the window by saying something like “Look we can sit here all day drawing diagrams all day”,like a way for the audience to go with the concept.

    Altough that is such a blatantly obvious thing that took me out of the movie, I kind of understand why they did that. But you should not need shit like that in a movie, they never did in the BACK TO THE FUTURE´s, why should we start now? It was a dealbreaker for me.

  49. Paul, THE LAST STAND is a modern western, but it is also could be viewed as Kim Jee-woon’s tribute to the Loony Tunes Roadrunner and Willy Coyote cartoons. (MILD SPOILERS) THE LAST STAND is about an escaped convict (the roadrunner) that steals a super car that allows him to drive 200 mph and his quest to race across the desert from Las Vegas to the Mexican border. Law enforcement (the coyote) keeps trying to catch and/or trap the roadrunner, but they are repeatedly outsmarted by the roadrunner while he laughs and races away. The climax of the film takes place near a desert cliff with bright blue skies and musical cues that give it a visual look and feel that is almost straight out of one of the cartoons. The climax is also the only scene in the film that you can tell they had to use CGI and green screen to capture, so the choice to make it look and feel like a real life cartoon seems to be intentional and further supports my Looney Tunes comparison. Also, I want to be clear that I am not calling THE LAST STAND silly in comparing it to the Roadrunner cartoons. I am just trying to explain how the action/violence and bloodshed in TLS is presented in a larger than life and at times playful way that would not be out of place alongside the violence in a Roadrunner cartoon. Did any of you guys that saw the film already see any of what I am talking about or is it all in my head?

  50. Shoot, you are right, but I think it is JGL that say something like “I could explain it but that would take a lot of time and I would have to draw diagrams and trying to understand it will just make your head hurt so let’s not get into”. However, I actually liked that they didn’t waste time trying to explain things any more than that and kept things focused on the characters.

  51. Charles – It´s Bruce who says the line I mean:


  52. Mr M — “Main problem: What motherfucker out there is actually inspirational and badass enough to be a fully realized John Connor and not the self-doubting works-in-progress we’ve seen thus far?”

    here’s your answer.


    You’re welcome.

  53. Thanks for the correct Shoot, my bad.

  54. Mr. S, Hendrickson would make an awesome older John Conner.

  55. The Original... Paul

    January 24th, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    Charles – I just saw it. I agree wholeheartedly. I don’t know how this thing isn’t making money, given that the cinema I was in was full to the brim – I actually had trouble finding a seat.

    But yeah, very good film, very funny, a little post-action bullshit but not enough to ruin the experience. My only question though: this film contains constant references to broken glass, a bar (well, a diner) fight, and a man character who everybody loves. How the fuck is this not a Seagal film?!

  56. The Original... Paul

    January 24th, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Arnie even gets a “just how badass is this guy” moment in it. Courtesy of Forrest Whittaker, no less. I could go on with the comparisons here, but you get my point.

  57. Mr S: So I guess Old John Connor looks exactly like Detective Hal Yukovich (thanks imdb)? Kyle Reese… you are NOT the father! *commence dancing*

  58. I saw LAST STAND today too and thought it was a lot of fun. Was surprised at how much it seemed like it could have been a PG movie, if they just cut out the graphic bullet wounds(particularly the ones to the face, of which there were quite a few).
    Also the main villain is a cartel boss who also has a high powered car and knows how to use it. Did he wander in from a FAST AND THE FURIOUS movie?

  59. I gotta say I’m disappointed Vern didn’t see this one. This place here is a bastion of bad-ass cinema and when THE action icon makes his return to movies I expect to read a review of that instead of some PG-13 ghost story called MAMA that opened on the same day. I guess Arnold’s power at the box office has been weakened not only by teenagers, but by fans as well.
    Sorry to grumble, I just thought this was where I could go to count on a decent Last Stand review and discussion.

  60. Don’t worry, dude. He said upthread that he’s seeing it tonight.

  61. Yeah, but I’m not worried, just disappointed that he slept on Arnold’s new joint and saw Mama instead.
    Oh well, judging from the box office he wasn’t alone.

  62. I’m guessing there was a lady involved in the “which movie we seeing tonight?” decision-making process last weekend.
    That, and Vern obviously wanted to honor me by wiping away the overrated memory of Jessica Chastain’s other performance currently in theatres.

    Regarding the previous & ongoing discussion on “older” action stars, I’m for ’em.

    Schwarzenegger has done so much awesome stuff, occupies such a prominent place in my cinematic experiences & my movie collection, that he owns several lifetime passes. It would be a privilege to someday smoke a j with Mr. Olympia while harassing dancers in Rio, to be seen as a threatening camel and peyote-punched by Conan while John Matrix delivers a one-liner about my stupid face, to be rescued by a scary cybernetic organism with a shotgun in a box of roses while pontificating a suicidal equestrian jump from a high-rise rooftop, to discuss climate change with a California ex-Governor while he ashes his cigar approvingly. I don’t care if this person turns gray & a little saggy.

  63. That’s funny, the reason I went to see THE LAST STAND instead of MAMA is BECAUSE there was a lady involved in the decision-making process.

  64. She sounds like a goddamn keeper.

  65. Really, the problem with these older badass action heroes is they don’t really write roles for them any more, everything has to be some cutesy gimmicky mindfuck handheld gloomy pretty boy spy thriller. If these guys aren’t ageing very gracefully, it’s because the thing they were good at doesn’t really exist anymore, not that they got too old to do it. Stallone survived by writing his own roles; LAST STAND is great because it’s a genuine badass icon role. You couldn’t put Jeremy Renner or someone in there and still have a movie. But roles like that are pretty rare these days. It took someone dumb enough to write the script to THE LAST STAND to do one. I really wish it had done better because it could have reminded people how much fun you can have with these larger-than-life action heroes and maybe gotten the whole crew a few more roles outside THE EXPENDABLES PART III: THERE AND BACK AGAIN.

  66. Darth Brooks, I appreciate the sentiment, but Mouth is exactly right. I was gonna see both for sure and I went to MAMA first because I had someone to see THE LAST STAND with later. I rarely go to critic’s screenings and I work full time, so I will be later than other people, but I strive to humiliate their puny for-the-money reviews with my powerful for-love-of-the-game ones. At least when my LAST STAND review goes up more people will have seen it to join in the discussion.

    I should be seeing BULLET TO THE HEAD and A GOOD DAY TO DIE HARD a few days early though.

  67. The Original... Paul

    January 25th, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    I wouldn’t worry about “The Last Stand” guys. The cinema I saw it in was absolutely packed (and the audience were loving the movie). I’d go as far as to say it was the exact opposite of “Prometheus”, where the audience started out enthusiastic but ended up openly mocking the film in the cinema. In “The Last Stand” the audience started out in an obvious state of not-too-much-involvement and then got more and more into it as the film progressed. It was a blast. Put it this way: I hope all the action films I see this year are as much fun to see in a crowded cinema as “The Last Stand” was.

    Mr Subtlety – I think it’s worse than that. I think the whole crop of eighties action movie stars have gone from being actors, to icons, to in-jokes. The really refreshing thing about “The Last Stand” was that while there was humour regarding Arnie’s age, none of it was of the obnoxious self-parodic kind that recurs so often in films like “The Expendables”. Arnie was simply treated as an actor playing a character.

    I saw the first British cinema trailer I’ve seen of “Good Day to Die Hard” before “The Last Stand”. It looked obnoxiously bad. A new character is introduced to the “franchise” (I use that term extremely loosely, given that nobody seems to give a shit about maintaining character continuity from one film to the next): John McClane’s superspy son. Because fuck the whole “Die Hard” plot of a single man trapped in a building, hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned, without so much as a pair of shoes to his name, trying to use his wits and his guile to separate and outsmart a group of terrorists while hindered by the very people who should be helping him; what the powers that be think that I REALLY want to see from the next “Die Hard” film is more badly-edited footage of CGI Bruce Willis and annoying sidekick jumping over helicopters. Gee, thanks guys!

  68. I want to see that. I’ve already seen the one where he didn’t have shoes.

  69. Paul— Thanks for the tip about The Pact (you recently mentioned it in a different thread). Very well executed for a no-budget horror movie. That psychic girl was creepy as hell, and much more believable than [the only other one who leaps immediately to mind] Lin Shaye from Insidious. Nice work from the former Johnny Rico as well.

    Anyway… good call, lad.

  70. The Original... Paul

    January 27th, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    Majestyk – you’ve seen the “jumping over helicopters” one too. In about half a dozen generic action movies. I know that it’s pretty much standard nowadays to make the trailers for action movies as unappealing as possible to the very people who are most likely to spend money on them – “Dredd” is proof of that – but it’s still all I have to go on. And it still looks bloody awful.

    Now I’m not saying they remake “Die Hard” shot for shot. But is it too much that they 1) remember what made the first one so popular, and 2) Try and add something new and original to the mythos in a way that doesn’t completely fuck over the returning characters? As opposed to, say, taking a generic action movie and slapping the “Die Hard” brand onto it, which is what they’ve done here if the trailer is at all accurate?

    (That wasn’t a rhetorical question by the way. I suspect the answer is “yes”, it’s too much. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to be proven wrong and get me a “Die Hard” sequel that at least stands comparison to the original movie fairly well. I’m not wishing for this to fail, I just don’t rate its chances of success very highly given what limited information I have.)

    Larry – thanks very much. “The Pact” was one of the biggest surprises for me. I kind of guessed what was going on about halfway through, but the execution was so good that the reveal of – let’s say, for the sake of no spoilers, the hostile entity – still caught me off-guard. A genuinely unpredictable horror movie is pretty rare nowadays.

  71. This just seems like an argument that’s about three sequels too late, Paul. Every DIE HARD movie gets bigger and crazier and gets spread over a wider canvas. Been that way for 23 years now. I don’t see the point in continuing to complain about it. It’s like people still harping on Tarantino ripping off CITY ON FIRE. By this point, you’re either you’re okay with the situation or you’re not. I’m sorry the franchise has changed into something you aren’t interested in, but you should have probably just let it go by now.

  72. The original Paul

    January 28th, 2013 at 5:25 pm

    Majestyk – I’m not complaining about the movies getting bigger, I’m complaining about them getting less interesting. I don’t care if they take place on the freaking Moon if they’re true to the characters and make something interesting out of the concept.

    But otherwise, yes, you’re absolutely right. I’m not obsessing over this, by the way. I’ve long since given up regarding DH sequels as anything other than practical proof of Bane’s theory that hope can be the greatest torture of all.

    Talking of Tarantino, just saw Django Unchained. Never has a movie built up so much goodwill over such a long time, only to lose it so quickly. I’ll post something in the review thread if I can be arsed, but let’s face it, you guys all saw it months ago. Not very much point.

  73. I know you’re joking, Paul, but I’m seriously considering writing a spec script for DIE HARD 6 that would take place on the moon. It would serve both of our needs: It would maintain the franchise’s trajectory of ever-escalating scope and ridiculousness, while bringing it back to its claustrophobic roots by taking place mostly in an enclosed facility. I even have what I think is a fairly compelling hook for the villain that not only attempts to justify the increasing unlikelihood that the same shit would happen to the same guy six times but will also lead to a final one-liner that will either be the greatest thing ever or the nadir of the series. Which is what every one-liner should really be shooting for, in my opinion.

    I’d tell you all about it but I’m actually kind of seriously thinking about doing it for real and I don’t want to reveal my potentially valuable intellectual property. Not like that JAWS V: IN SPACE idea I just gave away like a chump.

  74. I’ve never understood the complaints about the DIE HARD sequels being too over the top, because it’s not like the first film was brimming with understatedness and down to earth realism:
    Though I just noticed that the first 3 DIE HARDS kinda showed on how John’s ways resulted in him losing his wife and becoming estranged from his kids. 4 and 5 show him reconciling with his kids, so maybe part 6 could be TILL DYING HARD US DO PART, which ends with John and Bonnie getting remarried after he saves her from a Yakuza hit squad who take over ANOTHER Nakatomi Building (this time in Japan) in order to destroy the evidence of the company’s illegal dealings with them.

  75. Mr. M: Reading that alone just makes me want to give you my money. Go for it, all the way man.

  76. The Original... Paul

    January 29th, 2013 at 1:21 pm

    Mr M – I’d go see it.


  78. But if we are going to do DEEP BLUE SPACE we need another even more ridicouloser idea of experimenting on sharks. Let´s see…what´s even worse than Alzheimer´s…HIV? Cancer. No wait! Zombie-viruses!

    Humanity has fled the earth to the moon because of the zombie apocalypse and are trying to find a cure. And in the aquariums (?) on the moon ( that we built) lies the solution:Shark-testicles. Now they are experimenting with the sharks sexual libido to come up with something that can kill the dam zombies on earth. And shoot shark semen on the planet. Unfortunatly they gave the sharks astronaut helmets to cope with life on the moon. They should not have done that, because the sharks sexual activity increases and burst out of the facility and…well.there ends my synopsis.

  79. The Original... Paul

    January 30th, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Shoot – I’d go see it. Twice.

  80. Thanks,Paul. At least someone appreciates my deranged story ideas.

  81. News of Arnold doing that TOXIC AVENGER remake just took my breath away. Not because it’s awesome or awesomely bad, just random as hell.

    I liked Bleeding Cool’s suggestion that he play Cigar Face. I actually wouldn’t mind Arnold being a villain in a comedy that wasn’t BATMAN & ROBIN. Smoke cigars, run over kid’s heads for fun, etc.

  82. The Wrap got a further update on what role Arnold is playing:

    “”In a cheeky nod to his “Terminator days,” Schwarzenegger will play “The Exterminator,” a former black ops agent who trains the protagonist to use his powers for good. Together they take on the lurking menace created by the polluters, as well the polluters themselves.”

    You hear that crash? That’s my interest in this movie and casting, it bottomed out.


  83. On the one hand, everything about that is terrible.

    On the other hand, Arnold Schwarzenegger will be employed by Lloyd Kaufman.

    I need help reacting to this.

  84. Well at least the pro-environmentalism message seems to be still intact. TOXIC AVENGER is only a handful of movies I’ve ever seen with that agenda to actually successfully push it without being a lame, total suckfest.

    Its funny but I’ve been on and off watching the TOXIC CRUSADERS episodes that Troma has put up on YouTube. I remembered that show as a kid, but for a TMNT clone of its era, its got some damn good writing in satire and self-aware jokes. Hilarious. I actually would prefer a TC movie more than another Toxic Avenger film to be honest.

    Speaking of Kaufman, he just did a video with that Angry Video Game Nerd Who Likes to Curse and Make Poop Jokes. Well of course.


  85. RRA – bummer, you beat me to it, I was going to mention that video

  86. I remember as a kid the Toxic Avenger confused the hell out of me because I understood that it was a movie, but evidently R rated (I never saw it though) but also a cartoon and video game for kids? I just didn’t get it

    Attack of the Killer Tomatoes confused me for the same reasons, basically anytime there was a children’s cartoon based on an old cult classic film, I got confused, I guess I was too young

    all those old cult movies confused me as a kid, the only one that I seemed to really understand was the Rocky Horror Picture Show, which I watched on tv one Halloween night and I was like “oh, I get it, it’s a comedy!”

    (speaking of which, how come nobody ever attempted to make a Rocky Horror Picture Show cartoon?)

  87. by the way, if you’re wondering how I as a kid had even heard of cult movies like that, well let’s just say I spent many a day browsing the mom and pop video store shelves, too bad I wasn’t brave enough to actually try to rent them

  88. Griff – Mate that was the same era when R-rated Robocop and Rambo both produced childrens cartoon shows. (The same with Chuck Norris, who mostly did R-rated movies back then too if I remember right.) Par for the course.

    My mother rented TA for me because I really liked TOXIC CRUSADERS and somehow she learned of that creative connection, and watched it with me. She was horrified at this film, and finally had enough and stopped the movie when the dog gets shot*. Ah good times. Thankfully I saw the rest of TA (and later the sequels) on cable.

    Oh yeah, didn’t I mention? Troma movies used to air on USA network. (The “Up All Night” era.) You could also rent them at Blockbuster. And no, I don’t know how any Toxic Avenger cut to censorship standards like TV can be watchable at all. Then sometime in the 90s both stopped.

    *=Its weird but for all the parents whining about movies being too violent and mind-wrecking for children…never bothered me. I guess I saw TOXIC AVENGER at face value as just a live-action cartoon. And when you go absurd violence and sex, a cartoon is what you get. One rare exception where an action movie scene bothered me was TERMINATOR 2 (seen at age 6) when that dude gets stabbed through the throat. Penguin biting that dude’s nose off in BATMAN RETURNS did as well.

  89. LAST ACTION HERO is being re-released on Blu and on Blu-ray.com’s thread dedicated to the film I found this


    Great article on the making of the film. I’d always hoped there would have been a special edition of it (I actually love it, and my brother still quotes it often), but this explains why there probably never will be.

  90. I recently purchased the LAST ACTION HERO movie novelization for 50 cents. I haven’t read it yet (I’m saving it for a special occasion) but I wonder which version of the script it’s based on. I’ll report back with my findings.

  91. Dan Prestwich

    May 9th, 2014 at 7:40 am

    I am fairly certain I read it as a child, but I don’t remember enough about it to say how much it varied from the movie. I feel like maybe the last act was pretty different? Maybe?

    I apologize for this useless post.

  92. I’m kind of fascinated by movie novelizations. At their best, they delve deeper into the interior life of the characters or even provide backstory and motivations that were not in the films (the BATMAN and THE ABYSS novelizations, for example) and at worst they’re just a description of what’s happening onscreen, like those audio tracks on DVDs for blind people. As a writer who sees his profession as both art and craft, I find them to be interesting exercises. The story has already been laid out for you. Much of the dialogue is already there. You can’t change much. But how do you convert something from a visual medium to a written one? What personal angle can you bring to it that marks it as your work without fundamentally deviating from the source material?

    I also learn a lot from them about how to approach certain scenes. If you’re working in the long form, there will always be scenes where inspiration strikes and you know exactly how to enter them, explore them, and exit them. And other times, you know what needs to happen for the plot to work but fuck if you know how to get it across. The former I approach as a writer, with the language and construction already in my head. I have the words. The latter I approach as a viewer. I see the scene in my head, but I haven’t yet figured out how to translate that to the written word. It seems to me that writing a movie novelization would be almost entirely the latter. Seeing how another writer solved that problem, even if he didn’t do it very well, can be very instructive. If you’ve seen the movie (and why would you be reading a novelization for a movie you haven’t seen?) you can compare the words on the page to the finished scene and reverse engineer the approach the writer took. Even really bad writing can teach you something in this regard.

    I realize that most novelizations are written off of scripts, not finished films, but I’ve read plenty that were clearly not done that way. The first chapter of the SECRET OF MY SUCCESS novelization, for instance, perfectly mirrors the opening credits montage in its paragraph structure, and much of the staging of the dialogue matches the final editing beat for beat. It’s fascinating if you’re into the nuts and bolts of prose construction the way I am.

  93. The only novelization I’ve ever read was the one for STAR TREK: FIRST CONTACT, because a friend gave it to me. In it it was explained that Zephram Cochrane acted so weird, because he suffered from a desease, that usually would have been cured with the help of a brain implant. Unfortunately he couldn’t afford a good one. (But before the Enterprise crew leaves, Dr Crusher fixes it.) I’m glad they dropped that for the movie!

    Also I haven’t read it, but I’ve heard the GREMLINS 2 novelization is excellent. Especially because how the writer handles the moment, in which the Gremlins hijack the movie!

  94. I remember the MEN IN BLACK novelization throwing in a bunch of backstory for Linda Fiorentino’s character to explain why she became a doctor or whatever the fuck she was. Even as a youngster I remember thinking “why the fuck do these exist? why is this necessary? why I am reading this?”

    Come to think of it, I would have been like 12 or 13, which is probably too old to be reading it anyway.

  95. I also recall reading the novelization of ALIENS, which was not good but years later I discovered that author Alan Dean Foster is a legit and well-likedsci-fi author.

  96. Also, let me take this opportunity to link to Mr. Subtlety’s amazing review of the most fascinating and completely inexplicable novelization of all time that I forced him to write:


    It’s a novelization of the mostly forgotten horror movie FEAR NO EVIL written several years later by like the fucking make up or hair designer on the movie or some shit like that. Odd enough, but then they renamed it SATAN’S SPAWN which kind of disassociates it from the movie, raising the question of why it even exists.

  97. The Original... Paul

    May 9th, 2014 at 2:14 pm

    I read two novelizations by accident as a teenager: one of a videogame (“Desert Strike”), and one of a film (“Batman Forever”). I don’t remember much about the videogame one apart from the fact that it did exactly what you’d expect – expanded the characters a bit but stuck with the plot of the game. “Batman Forever” used the Riddler origin story that appeared in the “Arkham Asylum” videogame, which makes me think that this particular story was probably canon in the comics or something. Neither was great but I remember being entertained by both at least.

  98. I read novelizations a bunch when I was a kid. The first being Alien, because I couldn’t see it since it was R-rated. Great read.
    Some of my favorites felt just like watching a movie, not too much extra, but you were in the characters heads a bit (like Friday the 13th part 6 and T2).
    Its funny cause something like Cujo feels like a novelization instead of the other way around.
    And there’s Gremlins, which gave you a whole new backstory and understanding of the players.

  99. http://www.tmz.com/2015/01/26/arnold-schwarzenegger-wwe-hall-of-fame-wrestlemania/

    This is cool. Hope Jesse Ventura is the one to induct him.

  100. Well shit, they should do Liberace and Andy Warhol.

  101. They did induct Mr. T last year, in what was a rather weird speech to say the least.

  102. So apparently Arnie almost starred in a Stuart Gordon directed horror movie back in 1987.
    [visual-parse url=”http://www.blumhouse.com/2016/07/28/the-stuart-gordon-arnold-schwarzenegger-horror-movie-that-almost-was/”]

  103. [visual-parse url=”https://twitter.com/Schwarzenegger/status/827169996866347008″]

    Well it’s nice that with everything else going on, our President remembered where his priorities are – continuing his feud with Arnold Schwarzenegger! (Arnold’s comeback is pretty good though)

  104. You can just see the barely restrained contempt in his face.

  105. I was really looking forward for KILLING GUNTHER, but I didn’t know it’s a mockumentary. (At least a “real” one and not found footage.) Looks still like fun, though.

    [visual-parse url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2wAXWY6k-g”]

  106. I really like Tiriam Killiam but I’m not sure about this one yet. I hope it ends up being a sleeper. BTW, speaking of sleepers that also has Bobby Moynahan in it, I would highly recommend Mystery Team until the day I die.

  107. I really like Tiriam Killiam but I’m not sure about this one yet. I hope it ends up being a sleeper. BTW, speaking of sleepers that also has Bobby Moynahan in it, I would highly recommend Mystery Team until the day I die.

  108. Since you recommended it twice, I should check it out.

  109. Oops lol it’s a movie you will either love and quote all the time or you will think I’m nuts.

  110. It just seems that it was never released over here. Crap.

  111. Just got back from T2 in 3D. The screening was packed, the audience was totally amazing (no talking/phones etc.), and the film…….well to finally see it on the big screen was honestly a bucket list moment for me, it blew my mind all over again, and I’ve seen it at least 25 times over the years. And then, to top off an incredible night, I also won one of 3 special edition posters given out for the screening. I’d put a pic up here if I knew how to do it.

    I’m so buzzing I think I’m going to put the first Terminator on right now.

  112. I really, realy wanted to see it, but the 3D really prevented me from it. :( Let’s hhope they show T2 in 2D again one day.

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