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The Best Ageing Action Star

 
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The Best Ageing Action Star - 16/2/2013 3:09:12 PM   
Castor Troy


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Over the past few years several older franchises have been have seen new instalments which has meant their famous characters and in turn their actors have come back to our screens with a few more wrinkles and with slightly saggier skin. Lets take a look at a few...

Harrison Ford (Indiana Jones & The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull)
Bruce Willis (Die Hard 4 & 5)
Sylvester Stallone (Rocky Balboa, Rambo 4)

You've also got people like Arnie, Van Damme and Norris getting back in the game.

My question is, who is succeeding the best at this? I don't want to judge the films themselves, rather the actors ability to convince as an action star and their character.

For me it's a tie between Ford and Stallone. Ford was by far the most convincing thing about Indy 4. I think he still had the character down to a tee (despite the last third of the film barely featuring him). He was in great shape and none of his stunts or fights seemed too far from the realms of possibility.

I think in the the two films I've mentioned Stallone uses his age to his advantage by giving the characters some real depth through wisdom. His physique in Rocky Balboa is pretty impressive and you never feel embarrassed for him. It gets a little bit silly in things like The Expendables because he still thinks its the 80s.

Which ageing action hero do you think is the most successful?

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 16/2/2013 3:29:09 PM   
Super Hans


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I haven't seen all of the films, but based on what I have seen (Rambo IV, Expendables, Die Hard 4, bits of Crystal Skull) I'd probably say Stallone. I think the new Rocky and Rambo films were fairly well received and played well to their audiences.

He also played a blinder with The Expendables films. It's highly debatable how good they are really but they certainly capitalise on the love of folks of a certain age for the 80s/early 90s era of action films and the mash up of old-school action stars is a great selling point. You only have to look at all the criticism of Die Hards 4 & 5 to see there's a big audience for that kind of violent, hard-man actioner.

I think Bruce Willis probably could be much more of a contender in this category if the films had been better. I know Looper was very well regarded (haven't seen it myself yet), but in terms of the old school action revival, I'm not sure the new Die Hards have been handled with much care or respect for the series roots. Shame because Willis is still cool enough and has probably proven his acting chops more than Stallone or Arnie over the years.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 16/2/2013 4:50:14 PM   
Shifty Bench

 

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Yeah, I think Stallone is doing it better at the moment. He stumbled a bit with Bullet To The Head but his upcoming prison escape thriller The Tomb, co-starring Arnie is pretty much one I am looking forward to. Arnie needs to stay in supporting roles from now on, in my opinion and despite the scary bags under his eyes in Expendables 2, Van Damme could do well playing a bad guy again. Although, they may actually help.

Dolph Lundgren is doing it right too although in straight to dvd films. His latest is a dark comedy starring Matt Lucas called Small Apartments. Dolph knows his limits and despite most of his films not making it to cinemas, he takes it in his stride and still promotes the hell out of them. His Facebook page is nothing but him promoting new low budget films he's in or bu ray releases of older films he mad. He promoted the hell out of Red Scorpion getting a release in both the UK and the US, at separate times. He also answers fan questions will posting photos of himself on various film sets. If you're a fan, he's pretty successful in that regard.

Outside of cameos he's done, I think I have only ever watched three Chuck Norris films in my life......

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 16/2/2013 4:56:33 PM   
directorscut


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Based on the trailer for Chinese Zodiac - Jackie Chan.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 16/2/2013 5:11:47 PM   
ElephantBoy

 

Posts: 8410
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Castor Troy

Over the past few years several older franchises have been have seen new instalments which has meant their famous characters and in turn their actors have come back to our screens with a few more wrinkles and with slightly saggier skin. Lets take a look at a few...

Harrison Ford (Indiana Jones & The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull)
Bruce Willis (Die Hard 4 & 5)
Sylvester Stallone (Rocky Balboa, Rambo 4)

You've also got people like Arnie, Van Damme and Norris getting back in the game.

My question is, who is succeeding the best at this? I don't want to judge the films themselves, rather the actors ability to convince as an action star and their character.

For me it's a tie between Ford and Stallone. Ford was by far the most convincing thing about Indy 4. I think he still had the character down to a tee (despite the last third of the film barely featuring him). He was in great shape and none of his stunts or fights seemed too far from the realms of possibility.

I think in the the two films I've mentioned Stallone uses his age to his advantage by giving the characters some real depth through wisdom. His physique in Rocky Balboa is pretty impressive and you never feel embarrassed for him. It gets a little bit silly in things like The Expendables because he still thinks its the 80s.

Which ageing action hero do you think is the most successful?

Does Ford count as an action star? I see the Indy films as more family adventures, and to be fair he has done a fair range of things over his career.

I was going to suggest Liam Neeson, but I don't know if he is quite old enough to be put in that catagory also it is more recently he has become known for his action films, he is good in them through, even if the films arn't the best.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 16/2/2013 8:39:01 PM   
rich


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Honestly I haven't seen any of the old school guys in something I would call a success...

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 17/2/2013 9:29:02 AM   
Willy Wood

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: rich

Honestly I haven't seen any of the old school guys in something I would call a success...


Me neither, they should retire gracefully or change tact (eg Willis in the sixth sense), that said there are no real action stars around who have the 'package' with which to take over.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 17/2/2013 4:34:46 PM   
Whistler


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Well based on the three ageing star action movies out this month, I'd have to say Schwarzenegger. The Last Stand was ace, Bullet To The Head and Die Hard 5 sucked.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 17/2/2013 4:38:29 PM   
Shifty Bench

 

Posts: 15398
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Land of the Scots
quote:

ORIGINAL: rich

Honestly I haven't seen any of the old school guys in something I would call a success...


Depends on how you are using the word. If it is financial success (which is how I used it), it's Stallone (I think). If its a personal opinion,'I think that film is shit' type deal then its up to you.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 17/2/2013 7:31:34 PM   
rich


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The latter. Haven't seen The Last Stand yet but not getting my hopes up.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 17/2/2013 8:42:41 PM   
Cloud Cuckoo


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From: Mind your own
Interesting topic. I remember my dad taking me to see Clear and Present Danger at the cinema when I was a child. As Harrison Ford dangled from a helicopter, I turned to my 52-year-old dad and said, helpfully, "You know, you're the same age as him. Could you do that?" He laughed and replied, "No, no I couldn't."


quote:

ORIGINAL: directorscut

Based on the trailer for Chinese Zodiac - Jackie Chan.


Yup. He is the only one I genuinely believe could kick a much younger bloke's arse.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Willy Wood

...they should retire gracefully or change tact (eg Willis in the sixth sense), that said there are no real action stars around who have the 'package' with which to take over.


I agree with this partly. I am not ageist, but it's in the interest of the plot and its events to be plausible. Older people are just physically weaker, unfortunately

I say "partly" because I disagree that there are no action stars around able to inherit the mantle. Jet Li is excellent, as is our very own Jason Statham.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 17/2/2013 8:58:32 PM   
Shifty Bench

 

Posts: 15398
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Land of the Scots
quote:

ORIGINAL: rich

The latter.


And I wasn't. (I didn't mean 'you' as in you personally, I just meant you could use it both ways)

Like Directorscut says, it's probably Jackie Chan. Kid's films aside.


< Message edited by Shifty Bench -- 17/2/2013 9:00:02 PM >


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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 18/2/2013 3:46:06 PM   
adambatman82

 

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I've not seen any of this wave of OAP action flicks, but Bruce Willis had a good year in 2013, with Moonrise Kingdom and Looper.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 18/2/2013 3:48:27 PM   
horribleives

 

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Joined: 12/6/2009
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quote:

ORIGINAL: adambatman82

I've not seen any of this wave of OAP action flicks, but Bruce Willis had a good year in 2013, with Moonrise Kingdom and Looper.


I assumer you mean 2012? This year hasn't been the greatest so far for Brucey

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 18/2/2013 5:32:54 PM   
Shifty Bench

 

Posts: 15398
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Land of the Scots

quote:

ORIGINAL: horribleives
This year hasn't been the greatest so far for Brucey



It is a sad day when you realise that the sequel to GI Joe is probably going to be a better Bruce Willis film than a Die Hard one

(he'll do ok with Red 2, I reckon)

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 20/2/2013 1:37:31 AM   
Darth Marenghi

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: adambatman82

I've not seen any of this wave of OAP action flicks, but Bruce Willis had a good year in 2012, with Moonrise Kingdom and Looper.


Absolutely - 'tis great when he gets to be in good films again. His awesome rampage sequence in the latter film showed he can still cut it as an action star (quite easily in fact), it's just the films themselves that aren't good enough.

< Message edited by Darth Marenghi -- 20/2/2013 1:38:21 AM >


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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 20/2/2013 9:00:45 PM   
Dirk Miggler


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Liam Neeson, doing the ageing hardman a lot better than those three at the moment albeit with far less wisecracking.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 21/2/2013 1:51:46 PM   
Timon


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Clint Eastwood, simply because films like In The Line of Fire and Gran Torino address his age and don't have him doing things completely beyond the realms of possibility.



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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 21/2/2013 2:13:18 PM   
Russ Whitfield

 

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I'd have to go with Dolph. I think he's an under-rated actor, he always turns in a quality performance, And still looks like he can have it - he was the best thing in the Expendables - the first one especially.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 22/2/2013 11:13:51 AM   
Don_a_van


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This is a subject dear to my heart. I grew up with a lot of these guys as my action heroes and was saddened as each seemed to quietly slip off into aninomaty or leave to go into politics! (an unforgiveable error for Arnie IMO). When I started to hear rumours of comebacks I was so excited at the prospect it was unreal, my heroes were coming back! Unfortunately the idea sounded a lot better on paper then reality as it hasn't lived up to the visions I had in my head at all.

All the stars are far too old now to be convincing as action stars, wrinkles, saggy bodies and Stallone's case badly faded tat's don't make good viewing I'm afraid. The fact that it's plainly obvious that most are struggling to keep pace with the action demands placed upon them is and it's almost painful to watch at times. Expendables wasn't nearly as fun as I thought it was going to be, the last scenes in Expendables 2 were better but that was purely due to the rose tinted spectacles. The only person who still seems to be able to deliver the goods is Bruce Willis, it's just a shame that he has been put in 2 bad Die Hard movies.

The problem is though that no one has stepped up to really take the mantle of these larger than life characters. Yes Statham and Jet Li are OK but I see them more as B listers and not really in the same league as Sly, Arnie or Willis. I had high hopes for Dwayne "The Rock Jonson and even Vin Diesel showed a lot of promise in their earlier careers but they just haven't blossomed as well as their first forays into action stardom suggested. Surprisingly the only person who still seems to "have it" in terms of being able to convincingly do action is a bit left field but I'd say Tom Cruise. He might not be as old as the others but he is over 50 now and most of his movies are action based so I'll nominate him as the only person who is still carrying the action torch from that generation.

The problem is I just can't see any of the newer crop of actors filling in the large action hole that has been left by these giants of film.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 24/2/2013 10:20:48 AM   
Cloud Cuckoo


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From: Mind your own
quote:

ORIGINAL: Don_a_van

Yes Statham and Jet Li are OK but I see them more as B listers and not really in the same league as Sly, Arnie or Willis.


I find this quite interesting as in terms of actual action both Statham and Li do a hell of a lot more than any of the 'greats' you are mourning ever did.

Did you by any chance watch Arnie, Sly and Bruce at an impressionable age? I ask because I know this has had an impact on my own cinematic preferences (Indiana Jones will always be my ultimate action hero and I don't think anyone today can come anywhere close to the mighty Harrison Ford!). Heroes of childhood and adolescence are pretty impossible to live up to.

Also, the films these guys were in are acknowledged classics of the adult action flick genre. The 80s was the golden age of this kind of film and the last was probably Terminator 2 (imho). Statham and Li have certainly never had a Rambo, Commando or Die Hard with which to cement their greatness. Couldn't it be that the film maketh the man rather than the other way round?

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 24/2/2013 11:12:58 AM   
Whistler


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Cloud Cuckoo

quote:

ORIGINAL: Don_a_van

Yes Statham and Jet Li are OK but I see them more as B listers and not really in the same league as Sly, Arnie or Willis.


I find this quite interesting as in terms of actual action both Statham and Li do a hell of a lot more than any of the 'greats' you are mourning ever did.

Did you by any chance watch Arnie, Sly and Bruce at an impressionable age? I ask because I know this has had an impact on my own cinematic preferences (Indiana Jones will always be my ultimate action hero and I don't think anyone today can come anywhere close to the mighty Harrison Ford!). Heroes of childhood and adolescence are pretty impossible to live up to.

Also, the films these guys were in are acknowledged classics of the adult action flick genre. The 80s was the golden age of this kind of film and the last was probably Terminator 2 (imho). Statham and Li have certainly never had a Rambo, Commando or Die Hard with which to cement their greatness. Couldn't it be that the film maketh the man rather than the other way round?


Well, possibly, but think about Jackie Chan. He's had some great films, sure, and plenty that I love to death, but has he ever really had a Die Hard or a Terminator? I wouldn't say so, yet he's still one of the most awesome and revered action movie stars today.

< Message edited by Whistler -- 24/2/2013 11:15:02 AM >

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 24/2/2013 11:36:45 AM   
Cloud Cuckoo


Posts: 408
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From: Mind your own

quote:

ORIGINAL: Whistler

Well, possibly, but think about Jackie Chan. He's had some great films, sure, and plenty that I love to death, but has he ever really had a Die Hard or a Terminator? I wouldn't say so, yet he's still one of the most awesome and revered action movie stars today.


Well, in this thread about the greatest ageing action stars, Chan has not been doing that great. I agree he's fantastic but he has never hit the same heights of success as the three Don_a_van mentioned.

Maybe it's just the style of action. Schwarzenegger, Stallone and Willis do massive guns and explosions. Chan, Statham and Li do physical combat. The west seems to favour the former, by-and-large.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 24/2/2013 1:02:36 PM   
rich


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From: Neo Kobe
quote:

ORIGINAL: Whistler

Well, possibly, but think about Jackie Chan. He's had some great films, sure, and plenty that I love to death, but has he ever really had a Die Hard or a Terminator? I wouldn't say so, yet he's still one of the most awesome and revered action movie stars today.


Well no, since as soon as he started pandering to the American audiences his movies turned to utter crap. Police Story remains a total classic in the action genre, and it got made because he was annoyed at trying to get noticed in the US making The Protector back in the 80s. Pop culture in the west has unfortunately left him known as that guy from Shanghai Noon and Rush Hour. Blargh.

< Message edited by rich -- 24/2/2013 1:03:25 PM >


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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 25/2/2013 3:00:33 PM   
Cool Breeze


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I think Arnie, Sly, and Bruce are great for getting back into action movies in a big way.The sight of them all opening up on JCVD's goons in the airport finale of EX2 was a joy to behold and i couldnt stop grinning that all my favourite action heroes were in a scene like that.Never thought id live to see it.

I really enjoyed Arnies leading man return in The Last Stand.It was a great action film.Missed Bullet In the Head but Sly looks cool in it.As for Die Hard 5, it was slightly disappointing, but i may like it better when the inevitable '' harder cut '' comes out.



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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 26/2/2013 2:27:46 PM   
ebrown

 

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 4/3/2013 4:40:07 PM   
Don_a_van


Posts: 98
Joined: 30/1/2007

quote:

ORIGINAL: Cloud Cuckoo

quote:

ORIGINAL: Don_a_van

Yes Statham and Jet Li are OK but I see them more as B listers and not really in the same league as Sly, Arnie or Willis.


I find this quite interesting as in terms of actual action both Statham and Li do a hell of a lot more than any of the 'greats' you are mourning ever did.

Did you by any chance watch Arnie, Sly and Bruce at an impressionable age? I ask because I know this has had an impact on my own cinematic preferences (Indiana Jones will always be my ultimate action hero and I don't think anyone today can come anywhere close to the mighty Harrison Ford!). Heroes of childhood and adolescence are pretty impossible to live up to.

Also, the films these guys were in are acknowledged classics of the adult action flick genre. The 80s was the golden age of this kind of film and the last was probably Terminator 2 (imho). Statham and Li have certainly never had a Rambo, Commando or Die Hard with which to cement their greatness. Couldn't it be that the film maketh the man rather than the other way round?


It may well have a lot to do with the fact that I grew up watching these guys but as you've said, they have all made movies which are genre defining highlights. While I think both Statham and especially Jet Li give awesome action, they just haven't been in any career defining movies for me. Li is usually relegated to supporting role or bad guy duties and Stathams films always have a slight wiff of straight to DVD affairs for me. The problem is I just don't think he has the charisma\star power to carry a 100m+ summer blockbuster on his own.

Unfortunately it might just be that we've past the time when we can have larger than life characters on screen, that kind of movie seems to have been relegated to earlier decades and now we either have "realistic" action stars or superhero movies where the CGI is more of star than the actual actor.

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Post #: 27
RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 4/3/2013 7:02:51 PM   
ladybooger

 

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bruce willis isnt an OAP yet. born in 1955 he's nearly a whole ten years younger than sly and arnie who were born circa '46.

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RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 8/3/2013 6:47:15 PM   
Professor Dent

 

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Bruce could look way better, if he got a bit more tanned and leaner, he overdoes the muscle thing.

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Post #: 29
RE: The Best Ageing Action Star - 21/3/2013 9:07:56 PM   
Spiked


Posts: 257
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Stallone in terms of still being in Shape, by far.

Also, The Rock is bigger now even than he was when he was a full time wrestler.

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