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Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by todd stone, Dec 28, 2001.
I miss the days of predator, T2 etc. Do you think arnold is a has been?
Sadly, yes I think he is a has-been. This (Collateral Damage) is more Schwarz-light, which usually stinks. But what a great run he had in the 80's and early 90's
T-3 will make money, but will likely be a disaster.
The press has already been too bad on this thing to be truly successful. It doesn't look much better than 'Sixth Day' and that technically tanked.
T3 is just too draned expensive to make much of a real profit, so even if it does reasonably well it'll not be profitable enough to revive his career.
The problem with Arnie is that he's sticking to his schtick and not evolving with the times or his age. If he wants a career that lasts longer he'll need to embrace his age, like Clint did.
I didn't know Arnold's career was in need of "saving."
Even if he makes a dozen awful movies now, he's still one of the most successful movie icons of all time.
Sure, Clint could "embrace his age," but that's because he's actually an actor. Schwarzeneggar is a body builder who they put in movies because they needed a hulking mass of flesh to run around smashing things. It just so happened that a couple of those movies were huge. Therefore, celebrity. So they had to give him some dialogue.
Seriously, what can Arnold do besides the same ol' action movies? He really doesn't have much else he could do.
I don't think it can save it, but I will see it anyway. It's just that the movies that he's suited for aren't very popular anymore.
Personally, I thought "The Sixth Day" was a very good action movie, and "End of days" was pretty good too. If they had been released in the late 80's/early 90's they would have been huge. He's just not in style anymore, and I don't think he can do much to change that.
Arnold has painted himself in a proverbial corner, career-wise and he's paying the price for it.
He has to reinvent himself, like Bruce Willis did...playing small roles in carefully picked "small" films, for less money. Willis successfully rid himself of the "Die Hard" yoke, but Arnold has a harder job, as he isn't the versatile actor Willis is. All you can say is "Good Luck" !
I too, actually liked end of days.
Sad as it is to say, I think Arnie may be finished.
The trailer for CD looks laughable; doesn't look like a movie I want to see at all, and I generally enjoy and even look forward to 'mindless action fests' either theatrically or on DVD. I mean, not every film should be serious and heavy, right?
Excellent examples of Clint and Bruce, but the reasons were also already given. Both of those individuals are fine actors, they've had acting talent their entire careers but in both cases it wasn't until they'd established names doing mostly simple parts that people began to generally recognize they could each act quite well.
Arnie isn't a bad actor, but he's not great either. He has a great physical presence and is excellent in action films. Look at his film chronology, from http://www.imdb.com
1982 - shows up on radar for most people with Conan the Barbarian, an excellent film for '82, and makes great use of Arnold. Everyone marvels at Arnold's stature, and the role is perfect for his attributes.
1984 - contractually forced to do Conan the Destroyer, and it is ok. Not as good as C:tB, but a fine Arnold film in the scheme of things. Then he films The Terminator with James Cameron, and the Arnold everyone knows is fully launched from the film. The role again uses his stature to great effect, and enables Arnold to sink into the single minded character perfectly.
1985 - Red Sonja. About as much worse as C:tD was compared to C:tB, RS is compared to C:tD. Still not so bad, has some good Arnold moments, but is basically viewed as Conan III and doesn't go over very well. Genre die-hards like it, most everyone else shrugs. Commando gives everyone 'modern' Arnold, but is mostly received with amusement as it’s a very b-grade film overall. B-grade Arnold is still not so bad, and so everyone agrees to nod happily and move on.
1986 - Raw Deal. Arnold as a cop against the Mafia. A fine 80s action 'thriller', has some good moments and some good character work, but is what it is. Just another film without anything special.
1987 - Predator, classic Arnold. Is very well received, especially with some effects that are a bit ahead of their time as far as how they look on screen. Makes good use of location and character work, and gives us Jessie Ventura in a great side-role. Following Predator the mostly forgetable "Running Man", train-wreck 'adaptation' from the King short story shows up, and is a good Arnold film but isn't such a good movie. Comes across as what it is, a cheesy b-grade SciFi flick attempting to dress itself up as a big movie.
1988 - Red Heat. Fine Arnold role, not even such a terribly bad film, but generally isn't so well received. Twins comes out next, everyone talks about the new comedic Arnold, but also doesn't fare so well in pop-culture minds.
1990 - Total Recall. Classic Arnold again, is a big action SciFi film that makes a few rote attempts to be a big SciFi film, but overall the role and movie are well received. Following that is Kindergarden Cop, which fares better than Twins but mostly works out the same. A good role for Arnold, with a few decent acting chops scenes in it, but basically is Arnold being Arnold-as-a-fish-out-of-water. Both KC and Twins are Ivan Reitman films, so its interesting to look at both to see why one works better than the other.
1991 - Terminator 2, huge movie. Everyone hypes about it, after seeing it people keep hyping about it. Arnold revists his career defining role and grows it under the direction, again, of James Cameron. The Terminator from the first film becomes the hero / hero-sidekick in the sequel, and audiences eat it up.
1993 - Last Action Hero. Clever, extremely clever, story idea that fails in the public eye in execution, and both role and movie perform poorly.
1994 - True Lies. Last time Arnold works with James Cameron, and again it is excellent. Arnold is good in the role, and the film is well received. Junior comes out later, and flops horribly. No one buys the role or the film.
1996 - Eraser. A film that moves back to 'classic Arnold movie' territory, but fails in overall execution. Lukewarm responses. Jingle All The Way shows up next, and similar to Twins and Junior, isn't treated well.
1997 - Batman and Robin. Seemingly a great Arnold role, one he does well in. But overall the film is killed by a pathetic script and even worse direction, and is panned universally.
1999 - End of Days. A dark Arnold role, a burned out cop who starts the day with liquor and has nothing of joy in his life. The film is given a bland but smallishly positive response, but makes no great waves.
2000 - The 6th Day. Another classic Arnold role, but is viewed as, and is, an almost direct retelling of Total Recall with only minor plot variations. Fares blandly skewing towards bad.
2002 - Collateral Damage. Not out yet, was delayed following the September 11 incidents. Early takes aren't very positive or encouraging.
Looking at the whole of it, Arnold fans aren't in such good shape. The last excellent Arnold film was True Lies (almost nine years ago), and of his entire career the three best films he's done, in terms of performance and in pop-culture reactions are all directed by James Cameron. Other directors Arnold ends up saddled with seem to be unable to put together enjoyable films that lack problems with script, characters, or plot.
John Milius (C:tB) directs Red Dawn next, cranks out a few more forgettable projects sporadically, and that's it.
Richard Fleischer (C:tD, Red Sonja) has a good directoral record, but the films are iffy at best. Is also at the end of his career when he directs Arnold.
Mark Lester (Commando) had just come off the King adapted Firestarter, and later gave us Showdown in Little Tokyo with Brandon Lee, but basically is a forgettable director.
John Irvin (Raw Deal) was responsible for the horrid Next of Kin three years after Raw Deal, and directs sporadically over his career.
John McTiernan (Predator, LAH) is an excellent director, having been responsible for Die Hard, Hunt for Red October, and The Thomas Crowne Affair'99, among others. Last Action Hero was also his fault, though in that film's case it appears to have been a script thing that mostly ruined it.
Paul Michael Glaser (Running Man) was a TV director who apparently should've stayed there. He gave us the cute The Cutting Edge, and also Air Up There, and that's not very much.
Walter Hill (Red Heat) worked out fairly well, among his credits are 48 Hours and Another 48 Hours, Crossroads, and also Brewster's Millions. Never quite pulls it together magically, though he came close with 48 Hours.
Paul Verhoven (Total Recall) has great chops as a director, despite his tendancy towards gore over substance. Verhoven had come off RoboCop, and went on to Basic Instinct and Starship Troopers. He also did Showgirls and Hollow Man though.
Chuck Russell (Eraser), total wash. Had come off The Mask, which is the one anomaly in his career, and probably is what got him the Arnold movie ticket. His claim to fame prior to Mask was Nightmare on Elm Street 3, and he's also the director of The Scorpion King, the trailer to which my audience at Lord of the Rings burst into uncontrollable laughter over.
Joel Schumacher (Batman and Robin), odd. Seems to have been good early in his career and to have utterly lost any concept of how to make a good movie later. Early on gave us The Lost Boys, St. Elmo's Fire, and Flatliners, later on has been responsible for The Client and 8MM.
Roger Spottiswoode (The 6th Day) had just come off the okay but problematic Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies, and also had done Stop! Or my Mom will Shoot, Air America, Turner & Hooch, and Renegades. Did also do Shoot To Kill though, which wasn't bad for an 80s Thriller. Overall doesn't seem to have it all together as a director.
Looking at just the action directors, the majority of them are washes. Most appear to have been positioned "in the right place at the right time" with an unexpectedly successful prior project that caused a studio executive to punch their ticket to direct 'an Arnold movie', and most appear to have wasted the chance; both with Arnold and following the Arnold movie.
The good Arnold directors appear to have been James Cameron, John McTiernan, and Paul Verhoven, followed closely by Walter Hill. Looking at these films and their directors, I'd note three of the four are character directors. That is, their films always seem to have strong characters who develop themselves over the course of the film. Verhoven isn't so good on characters, but has a certain punch that audiences seem to respond to very well, and isn't afraid to do 'fanciful' films that use elements of Science Fiction or Fantasy.
Poor Arnold is all I can think of to say after looking at all this. He really really really really really really really needs to hook back up with James Cameron before either retires or dies, to give us a great film to remember them by. Arnold is 55 in 2002, Cameron 48. Unless Arnold can reinvent himself as a character actor ala Clint Eastwood, he can't have many action movie years left in him regardless of how good his workout routines are. I just think it'd be a shame for his career to wind down with films at the level of Commando when he could reach for a role like Terminator, Harry Tasker, or Dutch Schaefer. Or Conan.
Here's to a great Ah-rnold film to come!
I got a great idea. Lets wait till the movie is out, then ask the question again.
I feel he has spent his charisma and any talent he had, already. He spread himself tooooo thin.
I think the Last Action Hero is a fine movie. The problem was that the studio thought they could beat Jurassic Park. The result was the movie just looked stupid from the outset, regardless of content, and the critical mauling totally destroyed it.
I thought Twins was good too. Arnie is a good actor for comedies but he needs the straight role, as in True Lies and Twins. If he was offered the right script it would be fine. The trouble is that he won't be offered just any script - he'll be offered ones that take account of audience expectations and his size.
I guess he needs to get used to not being top dog for a while if he's to make a comeback of some sorts but personally I think he's in the Stallone bracket, so it just won't be easy. Possibly he needs to find more fare like Batman & Robin but with decent script/direction so that he becomes the villain, supporting guy, whatever.
I think it's a mistake to assume he can't act, however. His accent is a problem but I bet he'd be pretty excellent in an Austrian drama with subs, you know.
theo: arnold is in no way near the stallone bracket imho