What's new

The 100 Greatest Action Movies on Blu-ray (1 Viewer)

Mike_Nepo

Grip
Joined
Apr 11, 2002
Messages
21
One thing I have a difficulty with is determining whether a film is an action movie, as it can also be categorized as a borderline thriller. Also, a lot of the films that are sequeled should probably be lumped into their own: Mission Impossible, Die Hard, Alien, Fast and Furious, MCU movies, DC movies, James Bond, Bourne, etc.

I would also, for ease of classifying, most of the films that starred these actors as action:
1) Schwarzenegger
2) Stallone
3) Chris Pratt
4) Vin Diesel
5) The Rock
6) Bruce Willis
7) Keanu Reeves
8) Liam Neeson

I would also rather place Star Wars, LOTR, The Mummy series, Indiana Jones more as adventures, and not pure action.
 

fdabbott

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Jun 22, 2018
Messages
111
Real Name
Doug
10 - Braveheart (1995)

9 - The Bourne Identity (2002)

8 - Das Boot (1982)

7 - Bonnie and Clyde (1967)

6 - Blade Runner (1982)

5 - Black Hawk Down (2001)

4 - Ben-Hur (1959)

3 - Battleship Potemkin (1926)

2 - Assault on Precinct 13 (1976)

1. Aliens (1986)
Your top 10 films are terrible, with the exception of Blade Runner, I wouldn't give any of them a second look and a lot of them, like #2, #3, and #8 I passed up on release. A lot of my friends saw them and all agreed they were utter junk.
 

Reggie W

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
9,293
Location
Agua Verde
Real Name
Pike Bishop
Your top 10 films are terrible, with the exception of Blade Runner, I wouldn't give any of them a second look and a lot of them, like #2, #3, and #8 I passed up on release. A lot of my friends saw them and all agreed they were utter junk.

Well, it is not my list, it is from the February 2003 issue of Premiere magazine. The list was of best action pictures available on DVD at that time. So, my guess is they were working from whatever had been released on DVD by the end of 2002. Which was kind of why I wanted to post that list this year because we are 20 years later and I feel what people consider an "action movie" has radically changed since then.

Honestly, I would not even have thought to put Blade Runner on a best "action" films list. I don't really think it is ever remembered or brought up for an action sequence in the picture. I think it is mainly remembered for the beautiful look and visuals and score and many times for Rutger Hauer's speech as he dies at the end of the film.

It really is a noir in sci-fi clothing. I do love the film, it is one of my favorites BUT I never thought of it as action. There are a couple of nice action set pieces, a chase and when Ford hunts down Hauer and Hannah at the end. However, I don't think those are what make it stand out as a film.

I waited to mention it until after I posted the list, and you are not alone in missing that I said it, but when the people at Premiere made the list they did not actually rank the 100 films. Instead, they let the reader consider how they should be ranked. The list is in alphabetical order, which I thought was a good way to do it because people never agree on what the best of any type of film is, we all have favorites. It's just the list they thought were the best action films available on DVD at that moment in time. Unranked.

The list, like all lists really, is a discussion starter and it is meant to be picked apart and argued about. So, really we don't have to agree with it and as I say in the first post, make your own additions or changes.

So, the top ten are just the top of the alphabet not actually the films they thought were the ten best on the list.

Bottom line is, I agree with you on Blade Runner, that would not make my personal list of best action pictures.
 
Last edited:

Reggie W

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
9,293
Location
Agua Verde
Real Name
Pike Bishop
I agree with the list, but feel there is one glaring omission. Star Wars.

I do think Star Wars could be included in a list of best action pictures. People do remember it for the many space battles in the picture that are wonderfully done. So, it is an odd omission, as is Raiders of the Lost Ark because that also has some wonderful action scenes in it that are very memorable. I guess the first question is were Star Wars and Raiders available on DVD by the end of 2002. If they were it is a head scratcher why they did not make that list.
 
Last edited:

JoshZ

Screenwriter
Joined
May 26, 2012
Messages
1,398
Location
Boston
Real Name
Joshua Zyber
Your top 10 films are terrible, with the exception of Blade Runner, I wouldn't give any of them a second look and a lot of them, like #2, #3, and #8 I passed up on release. A lot of my friends saw them and all agreed they were utter junk.

8 - Das Boot (1982)
3 - Battleship Potemkin (1926)
2 - Assault on Precinct 13 (1976)


Das Boot is "utter junk"? Interesting opinion, that.

If you saw Battleship Potemkin upon release, I suppose that would make you, what, 105-115 years old? No suprise you're a bit cranky.
 

Reggie W

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
9,293
Location
Agua Verde
Real Name
Pike Bishop
So, just a couple general comments I wanted to make about how action pictures have changed over the years and I think is very apparent if you read the list and consider action movies that were released over the 20 years since that list was made.

First, in previous decades when they would create an action sequence or set piece they actually staged it in front of the cameras. This means that the people and things you saw in the sequence were really there and performing those stunts and action. Sure there was some trickery and things done that were movie magic but the scenes looked like they were realistic because everything was there sort of obeying the actual laws of physics.

Someone like Peckinpah may slow a scene down but the result of that is the action and that real people are doing it is even more obvious.

One of the things that annoys me in modern action movies is now very little of the action is staged in front of the cameras. Now it is often CGI added later, sometimes with the actor being totally computer generated. The thing now is to speed scenes up and have the camera moving all over the place to give a sense of all kinds of fast motion. Fight scenes in today's pictures often come across as totally ridiculous and fake as it gets because people are moving so fast and flying all over the place with absolutely no connection to real physics at all. Never mind how they make the objects in the scenes move.

I mean I think today's action scenes are more influenced by video games than they are by anything else. When the scenes look so obviously fake, well, it drains them of any drama or emotion. You basically know you are watching an animation not a person.

I was watching the old Steve McQueen movie The Hunter the other day and there are scenes where his character is on top of a train. There really is a guy on top of the train and hanging off a moving train. It has dramatic weight and tension because you are really seeing what is happening is really happening.

Also there is a big car chase with explosions through a corn field. It is all staged right in front of the cameras. It is shot I would say from a helicopter and potentially some crane shots. The thing about the scene is that it has dramatic tension because you clearly see it is all really going on in front of the camera.

Everyone already knows the famous story of the car chase scene in The French Connection. They just went ahead and put a camera in a car and went racing down the street. It is stunning to watch because you know it is happening without CGI and that a guy is driving that car like a bat out of hell.

They may speed up or slow down things but the feel that it is real world action remains.

I'm not a fan of the make every bit of action look like nothing that can actually take place in the real world thing. I mean you can do it in a fantasy picture where you are dealing with things that are not real anyway...but as an audience member you know that is fantasy. In an action picture that is meant to be showing just a fight between two people who live on Earth and they are flying around and doing moves 10 times faster than any human can move and flying through the air like gravity is not a thing...well...that always takes me right out of a picture.
 
Last edited:

Robert Crawford

Crawdaddy
Moderator
Patron
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Dec 9, 1998
Messages
60,272
Location
Michigan
Real Name
Robert
So, just a couple general comments I wanted to make about how action pictures have changed over the years and I think is very apparent if you read the list and consider action movies that were released over the 20 years since that list was made.
You call that just a couple general comments.:laugh:
 

Alan Tully

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Feb 19, 2008
Messages
4,217
Location
London
Real Name
Alan
Well the way I see it is, all films are action films unless they're a talk fest. When I think of action movies I think of a relatively recent genre, maybe going back to the mid-eighties, films starring, Arnie, Bruce, Sly, the whole gang (not forgetting Mel & Danny), films that are all violent action & usually lacking any real logic, films I like very much.
 

Robin9

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2006
Messages
6,742
Real Name
Robin
Your top 10 films are terrible, with the exception of Blade Runner, I wouldn't give any of them a second look and a lot of them, like #2, #3, and #8 I passed up on release. A lot of my friends saw them and all agreed they were utter junk.
So, you wouldn't give the 1959 Ben Hur a second look? Do you and your friends think it's utter junk?
 

Reggie W

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
9,293
Location
Agua Verde
Real Name
Pike Bishop
Well the way I see it is, all films are action films unless they're a talk fest. When I think of action movies I think of a relatively recent genre, maybe going back to the mid-eighties, films starring, Arnie, Bruce, Sly, the whole gang (not forgetting Mel & Danny), films that are all violent action & usually lacking any real logic, films I like very much.

Well, I would say action films are pretty much always, the older ones anyway, a hybrid that is crossed with another genre. Many genres add action sequences or set pieces to their films. So, "action" as a genre on its own is not really a thing.

I do think many more recent pictures do go for being more action than anything else. Mad Max Fury Road might be just an action film because that pretty much exists to be one long chase sequence. Most of the comic book films want to be action from start to finish as well. So, they are in the superhero genre but the focus is on the action. They are wall to wall action sequences.

The last Star Trek movie with Chris Pine seemed to want to be a crazy action picture more than a Star Trek story. The opening of the film was a totally spastic action sequence where it was hard to tell what was happening.

I think you are right that due to the "boredom killer" philosophy of filmmaking today the preference is to add action set pieces to every picture. The concern seems to be less story or characters and more how do we cram in several more action sequences to our running time. You watch something like Lethal Weapon and now it might just be downgraded out of the action genre because it does not go wall to wall action.

Plus, I mean, it does not have the speed up-slow down-speed up action that is now the core of action scenes.
 

Reggie W

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
9,293
Location
Agua Verde
Real Name
Pike Bishop
So, you wouldn't give the 1959 Ben Hur a second look? Do you and your friends think it's utter junk?

People have different takes. I don't agree with the idea the top ten pictures on the list are terrible BUT Ben-Hur is one of those pictures that a lot of people will probably say is not an action picture.

It does have a stunning and very memorable action sequence that everybody that sees the film remembers though and so because that is there, you can call it an action movie. This is part of what I mean when I talk about how older action pictures could be called action movies even if they had one great scene.

I do question Blade Runner being on the list because I don't recall anybody ever raving about the action in the film.
 

David Weicker

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Feb 26, 2005
Messages
4,429
Real Name
David
People have different takes. I don't agree with the idea the top ten pictures on the list are terrible BUT Ben-Hur is one of those pictures that a lot of people will probably say is not an action picture.

It does have a stunning and very memorable action sequence that everybody that sees the film remembers though and so because that is there, you can call it an action movie. This is part of what I mean when I talk about how older action pictures could be called action movies even if they had one great scene.

I do question Blade Runner being on the list because I don't recall anybody ever raving about the action in the film.
I'm sorry, Ben-Hur is definitely an action picture. Any film that contains one of the greatest (IMO, The Greatest) action sequences is an action picture. If the main thing people remember about a film is the action sequence, then it belongs.

(as great as the rest of The French Connection or Ben-Hur are, if you ask someone to describe it, the first thing that comes to mind are 'the car chase' or 'the chariot race')
 

Reggie W

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
9,293
Location
Agua Verde
Real Name
Pike Bishop
I'm sorry, Ben-Hur is definitely an action picture. Any film that contains one of the greatest (IMO, The Greatest) action sequences is an action picture. If the main thing people remember about a film is the action sequence, then it belongs.

(as great as the rest of The French Connection or Ben-Hur are, if you ask someone to describe it, the first thing that comes to mind are 'the car chase' or 'the chariot race')

Yes, I agree Ben-Hur belongs on a list of great action pictures. Plus the chariot race or the sequence in The French Connection are scenes, that still are very hard to top, particularly today when those scenes would morph into something much more...well...lets just say not bound by any sort of reality.

I think, odd as it is, both of those pictures would not at all be thought of as action films by younger viewers because the pictures are not at all wall to wall action. Probably today, something like Fury Road is the test for whether a film is an action movie.
 

Alan Tully

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Feb 19, 2008
Messages
4,217
Location
London
Real Name
Alan
Ah, I don't see Bad Boys 2 on the list! The film may be ridiculous, but by god does it have some action in it. The whole scene near the beginning, the shoot-out that turns into a car chase, which really ramps up as they're on the bridge, finishing up in that old house with the camera rotating around as they're shooting each other...phew!

Bad Boys 1 doesn't really do it for me, & Bad Boys 3 is okay, but 2 really is the charm.

Oh, & how's this to set the cat among the pigeons...The Lone Ranger (2013), a box office bomb that the critics hated, & I love it (funny, as I hate those Pirates movies), it's full of the most amazing action!
 
Last edited:

TravisR

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2004
Messages
40,506
Location
The basement of the FBI building
Ah, I don't see Bad Boys 2 on the list! The film may be ridiculous, but by god does it have some action in it. The whole scene near the beginning, the shoot-out that turns into a car chase, which really ramps up as they're on the bridge, finishing up in that old house with the camera rotating around as they're shooting each other...phew!
I always like to say that with all the ludicrous action and offensive stuff in the movie, Bad Boys II is a $150 million dollar exploitation movie.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Forum Sponsors

Latest Articles

Forum statistics

Threads
351,903
Messages
4,969,094
Members
143,140
Latest member
kadefitz
Recent bookmarks
0
Top