Escape to the Movies: Musclepocalypse

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Not to be misogynistic but there are more (young) women around these days who spend their times getting brainwashed with cheap romantic novel material, that 15 years would not even be suited for paper...but now they do and even get the big film treatment. And they don't like (absurd) alpha-males like Arnie or Sly.

Action films are on the latter doomed if this Twillightization keeps on going on. Before you go with the verbal gung-ho with 'you are a misogynist' remarks commence, here is an example of what I mean: while I was standing with a friend of mine in the line at the theatre I heard two young couples talking behind me, discussing which film they wanted to see. Of course the guys wanted to go the Die Hard 4 film but the girls said: 'ewww we want to see Knocked Up'. Well, point in case, the women decided what to watch because guys these days don't have the cojones to stand up to them.

Well, point in case, the women decided what to watch because guys these days don't have the cojones to stand up to them.

That's because the women have already taken them


Ha cha cha!

(but really, it's not like that...)

Good video, and just for the record, it's a crying fucking shame that "the last stand" wasn't a hit. It's great fun, Arnie's...well, Arnie, and the effects are awesome.

Can't say much for Stallone's comeback film, I haven't seen it. The trailer looked...okay.

Seriously though, if you can go somewhere that's still showing it, see it. It might be too late to save it, but I hope that one day it gains a cult status on DVD.


Arnold and Jamie Lee Curtis need to get on a True Lies sequel. If Morgan Freeman, Bruce Willis and Helen Mirren can do RED, by golly those two can do a True Lies 2 (Tr2 Lies?).

2 True 2 Lies. That's gotta be it, right? =D

OT: If Die Hard 5 bombs, that will really be a surprise. R-rated action isn't drawing right now, but with an established franchise, it's different.

Die Hard worked for exactly the reasons that Bob said it did. It was a big action thriller but grounded in reality. There were diabolical plots, crazy villains, big gun fights and plenty of explosions; like any typical action film. Yet the man that saved the day was a regular Joe. A smart, tough detective to be sure, but he had flaws and was more than aware of them, whether he liked to admit it or not. Plus of course, especially at the beginning, he felt uncertainty, anxiety, even fear. John McLean was not in control of the situation, and he knew it. Yet by his wits and determination he pulled through it. Which is another thing, time and again John McLean came out on top, not through brawn, but by outwitting his adversaries. He was the one action figure that was prepared to stop and think.
I still rate the argument with his wife at the beginning of Die Hard (the original) as a superb scene. It is great in my opinion because it is believable. A rough detective, from a blue collar background finds it hard to accept that his wife can have a career. Seeing as this was 1988 and this was the time that women finally were able to achieve their potential. Three (though to a much lesser extent) and Four also dealt with similar issues.

can we have one week where you dont complain about j.j. abrams? i get you arent a fan of his but you just did an entire big picture about why you dont like him. i feel like you have complained about him for the past 3 weeks

This does sound more like a Big Picture, but who cares. On Bruce Willis versus Stallone though, I don't entirely agree. See, Stallone was good in Rocky, but that's because he wrote the script, probably with character actions and emotions already in mind. He knew it inside out before the principal shooting. When he is not directly involved in writing the script, he's ok. Willis on the other hand, is a really talented actor, and while Die Hard jettisoned his career as a good action hero, movies like Unbreakable and The Sixth Sense also proved his worth as a really good actor.

Action Hero? Bruce Willis was a TV superstar before Die Hard, as a comic actor. He was also in a couple of half decent Blake Edwards films before his run in at Nakatomi Plaza. Also jettisoned means dumped overboard, I think you meant launched.

Good point about Stallone there Bob, he can act, but you can never tell when acting Sly will turn up. When he does though he is a fine actor. I mean look at Cop Land, a good film not a great one, but he holds his own in a cast of heavy hitters.


MovieBob explains where our action heroes have gone.

Watch Video

Holy crap! Someone actually knows what an anthropologist is and respects what they do enough to defer to their knowledge!

I think another reason to factor in is that action movies on the whole haven't been doing all too well lately, and most haven't been too good, except for the ones that are also genre films, like Avengers and Dredd. Honestly, Dredd blew me away partially just because it was more faithful to the comic's themes than the Sly movie was, but also that it was a geniunely well thought out action flick with an art direction and style.

As for Bruce Willis, his action film persona never went away, but it has definitely taken a back seat in the past decade. Sure, he's in stuff like RED, but he's still more remembered for his amazing roles in films like Sixth Sense, Lucky Number Slevin, and Looper.

the thing is that idea of "masculinity" was only ever found in the 80s and 90s. If you look before, after, and even DURING that era you still had the typical Clint Eastwood, John Wayne, Charles Bronson, Steve McQueen, James Dean, Paul Newman, etc archetypes in cinema because THAT was closer to ideal masculinity (which, oddly enough, is actually closer to Japanese masculinity). The 80s basically turned the brute archetype into the hero, but unfortunately also became an archetype known for ego, arrogance, and insecurity (a.k.a., for DOUCHEBAGS). It was more of a power fantasy than anything and it quickly ran its course, bringing us back to the REAL way action heroes should be done. Stallone's efforts to try and keep his 80s lunkhead stuff alive only goes to show just how irrelevant it's become and how insignificant it was even when it was around. Stuff like Die hard and Lethal Weapon just hell up BETTER due to having actual ACTORS in them.

Actually, it could be argued that Stallone and Schwarzenegger harkened back to the pulp "masculinity" of the 1930s and 40s as embodied by Doc Savage, Howard's Conan, and even to some degree Siegel and Shuster's Superman. The living embodiment of the physical part of that ideal was Charles Atlas who supposedly was Schwarzenegger's inspiration.

However unlike Charles Atlas many of these heroes were to put it bluntly jerks.

For example, Superman was originally cast in the Sam Spade mold--"See this iron girder?" Twists it into a knot. "This is what I will do to your neck if you don't tell me what I want to know." Batman was little better, carrying and using a gun for the first few months of his literary existence. So the "douchebagness" was there it just had been supplanted for a more toned version for decades.

Pardon me for being captain obvious, but the fact those actions movies were hits and not now, might have to do with the fact the formula is 25 to 30 years old at this point. That would be like watching a movie from the late 50's in 1980, it's just a different era.

And honestly, I don't have a problem with JJ Abrams handling Portal. Think about it, JJ likes his big mysteries, Portal is a pretty good mystery since you're in the dark for most of the game. It could work. Keeping an open mind.

Good point. There was a reason the Western which use to be the main staple of movies and later TV is nearly nonexistent today.

Sometimes the formula picture gets a timelessness about itself (Them for example) but most of the time there is this disconnect.

Surprised? How the fuck is anyone "surprised" that a movie best suited as a summer action flick in a financial period where people are naturally spending less bombed? Now, if it was tax season, where people would be done with their taxes and just wanted to turn their brain off for some raw action, or if it was summer, where summer blockbusters are summer blockbusters, it'd be one thing, but how is it conceivable that people were surprised this film bombed when none of the circumstances of its release date had anything going for it?

4:02- God damn, Bob, you've done it again! Great job!
Avengers count: 3

Also, anyone else think Bob should be disqualified to review any movie he has a negative/positive bias for/against? Really, his refusal to acknowledge anything right in The Amazing Spider-Man and his constant fapping to The Avengers pretty much shows the extent of his critical integrity, self-control, and qualification when it comes to movies he has a bias on.

Umm... Bob, would it have been too much to ask for you to have given us a brief, 5-second answer to the simple question "Are The Last Stand and Bullet To The Head actually any good, or are they the kind of badly-made shallow garbage as The Expendables?" Just out of interest.

"We dont know what their place is yet"

Sure we do. Its in the friend zone, left to die, along with anything that exhibits anything even remotely suggesting a difference between men and women in a hyper sensitized politically correct world. THATS why Ahnold isnt relevant any more. You even hint on it but shirk it by explaining you are not an anthropologist.

Interesting point.
When i first heard about Arni's return to movies and his new action hit "The Last Stand" my first thought was:
When an action movie star gets to old for movies, he can become governor and when he's to old to be governor, he can still... go back to movies? Yeah, riiight XD
Also, i just call it "Die very very very very very Hard" now

Well, i thank those guys for their classical movies and for what they've achieved for the action movie genre, but i guess there would be no problem if they would "retire" now either.

Personally, I have no idea what the hell MovieBob is talking about.

Sly and Arnold's movies aren't bombing because people don't like watching muscle bound action guys, they're bombing because Arnold and Sly are too fucking old to be playing those characters.

Compare, for example, The Rock. He seems to have no problem getting work, and I would be seriously surprised if Fast and Furious 6 doesn't make money in theaters this summer. Or look at the continued success of the WWE. They keep making money just as well as they ever did. Hell, the day comes that Gears of War gets turned into a movie, you can bet that whatever ex-body builder or wrestler gets tapped to play Marcus Fenix will most certainly look more like a brick shithouse than a normal human being.

There'll always be a place for the roided up hero, but frankly there will NEVER be a place for the roided up grandpa.

Skeletor? Dr Rockso? Bruise Willis? This might be the best thing on the Escapist...

I didn't think this video would have much to it but bob usually has something worth listening to.

Daaaah Whoosh:
Since I only recently saw the first Die Hard, I can completely agree with this. I don't really want to see people who're so well-built and powerful that I can't relate to them. That's why I usually don't like anime.

But that's exactly the reason I DO like anime, and tech anime in particular. Apart from the inherent coolness of robots-that-turn-into-stuff that made Voltron and Robotech hit shows in the 80's, there's also the fact that this guy


was the biggest badass in the universe. Even more than his own squadron leader, though granted, that guy crashed just about everything he flew.

Red X:
Ha cha cha!

Did I really just see a legitimate, relevant Jimmy Durante reference? This may be the biggest mindblow I have experienced since the Orson Welles slow clap became a thing.

Part of the success of Expendables isn't being talked about and feels important.

Next to the old guard are these new guys. Jason Statham only started getting big after Snatch, a movie showing off that he could be charming and clever. He follows it up with The Transporter and Crank. One being a not great action movie which still showcases a decent action star. The other being a parody of this kind of thing showing he doesn't take himself too seriously. You also have Terry Crews, who is really riding off those crazy Old Spice commercials making fun of superhuman phisiques. These guys sitting next to the old guys made expendables all the more interesting as an event rather than a movie.

With that in mind, it was a passing of the torch kind of thing, and some action fans felt obligated to go.(I didn't, I expected it would suck due to the ability to sell off star power and was proven right by friends who did go.) Hollywood needs to do one of two things to keep it going. Up the bar with fresh talent like Terry Crews, or do movies containing BOTH one of the old guys with one of these new guys.(Yes, I know that last stand has one of the guys from 'Jackass' but that doesn't count, since he's not one of the "new guard" action stars I'm kind of pointing towards.) Either one of these things will sell on premise alone.

But whatevs. I'm not too depressed to see these over the top action pieces fall a little. Hollywood might get creative if it keeps happening.

So basically, those five other shows Bob has to talk about whatever the fuck he wants on aren't enough, and he has to talk about completely inane bullshit on his movie show about movies instead of actually talking about what movie he saw. "Escape to the Movies"? More like Bob's third orgasm of the day, first one hundred views get one of the messy hand wipes and a cameo as an annoying character (sorry to be redundant there) in the next Game Overthinker episode.

Or maybe the lesson is don't release a big budget action movie in January. Except that's not a lesson. Because that's been common sense for decades.

I too would like to see see some demographics by an anthropologist. I have absolutely no idea of the background of this (or really any) franchise's core demographic, but to compare it to my own community: Those were the movies that everyone wanted to see, but nobody really "had the chance." For me, it was because I went to college and am no longer walking distance from a movie theater. All my friends are in a similar situation. While we would probably enjoy the movie the most, theaters IN GENERAL are outdated and inconvenient to people like me. Let me give you an example: Last Saturday, a group of friends and I were bored 3:00 in the morning. "we should watch a movie" one said. Now, do you think it even crossed our minds to find someone to drive us to the movie theater? Of course not. We cycled through Netflix, HBO GO, and ultimately decided to just play Mario Party. Why in the world would we spend $20-$40 for 2 hours when we have everything we could ask for here?

I still plan on watching these movies eventually, but there's a very good chance that when I do, they will have agreed that the movie was a failure and never make another. And I bet I would WANT another movie, but the lag time between money spent and money received is so long that movie makers would have a better return rate buying lottery tickets.

It's always been like this to a degree, producers know this and have been making all the blockbusters in the summer and winter, as that's when most people are on vacation and have the most free time. The problem is that companies have propagated social stigmas in all the places that now would be beneficial. Straight-to-tv/dvd, decreasing theater time, and word-of-mouth promotion has always been seen as an instant flop, but obviously TV shows like Breaking Bad, Walking Dead, and countless others are getting the love of just about everyone in their demographic. And I believe the majority for that is ease of access. Ask anyone on campus how they liked the last episode of Breaking Bad, and they will likely have an opinion. Ask them about any movie released after The Avengers, and you won't be so lucky.

Anthropology major checking in with two things to say. WOOO PEOPLE KNOW MY FIELD OF STUDY EXISTS, and you may have something there, though that might actually be something more in the realm of sociology and psychology. While it is dealing with humans, at least as I've encountered so far, Anthropology doesn't often deal with post-industrialized cultures, except in the biological sense or in the instances in which they affect industrialized, industrializing and pre-industrial societies. What you're talking about tends to be covered in much more depth, though with much less consideration for other stages of humanity, by the aforementioned other fields.

I too would like to see see some demographics by an anthropologist.

Anthropologists don't study demographics. You're thinking of demographers. Anthropologists only touch on demographics in a glancing way when they study culture.

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