Tom Jolliffe mans up in preparation for The Expendables 2, taking in an overdose of explosive action cinema with 'The Chuck Norris Rampage'...
Chuck Norris is brilliant. Chuck Norris doesn’t do push ups, he just pushes the Earth down! His action man persona and his on-screen invincibility have become internet legend with thousands of different Chuck Norris “facts.” It’s something that started off as a joke but spiralled into pop culture to the point that people who’ve never seen a Chuck Norris film know who the guy is.
Watching back on many of his films and there’s just something about Norris that takes the excessive action of the 80s, the unstoppable badass, one many army thing above that of even Sly and Arnold. Norris has the stoic, quiet spoken and grimacing demeanour of Clint Eastwood. He’s got the muscular figure of his action brethren and he was one of the greatest ever competing martial artists ever to boot.
Here is the Chuck Norris Rampage...
Delta Force 2: The Colombian Connection:
By the time this came out, Chuck’s box-office clout was beginning to diminish. As such, a sequel to one of his most successful films seemed a good idea. Indeed it was to a certain extent, even though it didn’t match the receipts or the quality of the first film. The impressive support cast of the first is gone, but we still have b-movie bad guy extraordinaire Billy Drago taking up villain duties.
Norris is at his bone-crunching best here and there’s plenty of action. It’s far from being one of his best, but probably ranks as one of the better collaborations with brother Aaron Norris in the director's chair. As expected from a Delta Force film, the finale is action packed.
Mano-a-mano with Drago’s chief henchman, Chuck teaches him a thing or two about fighting before kicking the guy back and impaling him on a spike.
If you watched Turner and Hooch or K-9 as a youngster and felt there weren’t enough cops partnered with pooches films, then you’re a sad, sad individual. Still, someone thought it and then had the ingenious idea to team a pooch with Chuck Norris.
This is terrible. It’s a film caught between infantile immaturity and action and subject matter too harsh for the sort of audience this reaches out to. There’s a lot of childish humour and it comes across like a bad Nickelodeon sketch show at times. Chuck spoofs his image by essentially playing things exactly as he normally would, whilst the best performance of the picture comes from a dog.
The dog’s first partner decides it’s a good idea to look inside the bad guys drugs lair, alone, at night, without seeming too worried about whether any bad guys are actually there or not. They are of course and he gets duly killed.
A Force of One:
Norris stars as a martial arts champ who must track down a martial artist assassin who’s killing narcotics officers.
Good fights and a very blond Norris gets a standout fight with fellow martial artist, Bill “Super foot” Wallace.
Norris finishes off bad guy Sparks by snapping his neck.
Read my review of A Force of One here.
Chuck must take on Ninjas and terrorists at the same time. It’s a tough job but someone has to do it. This is vintage Norris with a decent finale as he takes out a whole Ninja camp.
Chuck kills a masked ninja by kicking him into a fire. When the Ninja comes back at him, engulfed in flames, Chuck finishes the job with his trusty sword.
Read my review of The Octagon here.
This film possibly above all, embodies Norris at his tough, unbeatable, badass best. Russian terrorists plan on invading the US and taking over with a reign of terror.
What works well in this film is how ruthless the bad guys are. They’re really nasty and by the time Chuck’s finishing wiping their chins off his boots, viewers will be delighted at their demise. The recently departed Richard Lynch is a fantastically hiss-worthy villain. He’s really into the role and really demented.
Norris is great. He may well have two facial expressions and two vocal tones, but he kicks ass brilliantly. This is one of those films, like Commando, Rambo: First Blood Part II and Red Scorpion, that just has a huge finale. It’s action packed throughout, but there’s some serious carnage come the end.
Norris has a rocket launcher face off with the bad guy and blows him through a tenth storey window and into several million pieces.
Lone Wolf McQuade:
Chuck's a Western fan I’d assume. He’s well known for his TV show Walker, Texas Ranger. He loves donning a cowboy hat. He’s more at home as a Sheriff than a NY cop on the whole. This film is kind of a poor man’s Sergio Leone. Stylistically it goes for a Leone feel, and then there’s a score that’s more than a little inspired by Ennio Morricone's Western scores.
Though it’s not as good as the films it is clearly inspired by, this is still one of Chuck's best. The cast are good, the action’s very good, the film looks great and Norris gets to face off with David Carradine. A good action film needs a strong villain, and that’s provided by Carradine, who was a reliable bad guy in his time.
After a good old fashioned and brutal throwdown with David Carradine, Norris defeats him. Carradine runs off into a building with some flammable drums outside of them. Chuck lobs a grenade at the building and destroys it, Carradine with it.
Next up: The Jean-Claude Van Damme Rampage.
The Dolph Lundgren Rampage
The Jason Statham Rampage
The Sylvester Stallone Rampage
The Arnold Schwarzenegger Rampage