Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Great Assbeatings In Movie History: They Live (1988)

I am not sure about what it is about a good fight scene that makes me smile.

I used to watch old Shaw Brothers kung fu films on late night television with my grandfather when I was a kid, and perhaps it is that sense of familial comraderie and nostalgia that carries through to this very day and causes me to enjoy the act of another man kicking another man's teeth out more than I should.

Or maybe it is just my Petersburg mean streak showing? Who knows.

Arguably the best movie brawl ever captured on film is the nigh-legendary exchange of violence between George Nada and Frank Armitage in the 1988 John Carpenter sci-horror epic, They Live.

I think this is my favorite movie brawl because there is nothing fancy about it. It is a mean-spirited fistfight of the highest order of magnitude. This is all about one guy trying to smash another guy into pieces. It is as simple as that.

This fight isn't tremendous because of the action itself; it is tremendous because it begins due to Frank's blatant refusal to wear the enhanced sunglasses required to view the alien invaders in their true form.

Therefore, Nada concludes that the only way to enlighten his friend about the cosmic threat to humanity is to beat the dog water out of Frank and force him to put on the magic Ray Bans.

This, folks, is the most awesome expression of tough love you will ever find anywhere.

Egg Shen was right. All great things start off as something very small.

To add insult to injury, despite trying to beat the living bejesus out of Frank, the only thing Nada really apologizes for is the accidental breakage of the window on Frank's car.

I suppose the notion that the intended target of Nada's two-by-four was probably Frank's spinal cord or the fact that Nada punches Frank full in the junk a scant few seconds prior was totally irrelevant, but such details sometime go by the wayside when you are in the heat of battle.

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