Tag Archives: action

Exit Speed

Title: Exit Speed
Year: 2008
Got It For: $2.50 ($9.99 four movie set)

Whew, it’s been a while. Since I now have some time to marathon some movies, I thought I’d dust off the ‘ol blog and write some more clearance bin reviews. So let’s jump right back into it.

Exit Speed came on the same DVD 4-pack that includes The Octagon and another Chuck Norris flick, A Force of One, which may see a review here eventually for it’s amazing plot about karate serial killers and the champion who trains the police to fight karate and- oh right, Exit Speed.

motorcyclegang

This film is actually a nice little low budget action thriller. A group of ten people get on a coach headed straight through the heart of Texas (and as movies have taught us, any road trip through Texas is a terrible idea). But instead of a chainsaw weilding maniac, our heroes are harassed by a motorcycle gang straight out of Mad Max. Things heat up when the gang comes after the group after the bus driver accidentally runs over a few of their members. Barricading themselves in an abandoned junk yard, these folks from all walks of life have to band together and use their skills to try to survive the night.

busplosion

There’s a lot to like about Exit Speed. The action starts with a tense chase scene and rarely lets up from there. The characters are likeable and dynamic, and even the ones who start out as annoying stereotypes eventually grow into their own as they learn to stay alive. There’s an army deserter on the run from her seargent, a divorced dad and single mom, a high school sports coach with temper issues, and even a LARPer (Live Action Role Player) who turns out to be a crack archer.

molotov

The action is fun and makes you root for the good guys and despise the bad guys, but there’s still a dash of humanity. We know that most of these people are just everyday folks thrust into a kill or be killed situation. While the film has a good share of action violence, there are a few grisly scenes that are pretty effective. The heroes are often sickened by what they have to do, and the villains are made out to be sadistic and disgusting people.

Overall, I say this movie is worth a watch for action fans.

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The Octagon

Title: The Octagon

Year: 1980

Got It For: $2.50 ($9.99 four movie set)

 

Watching The Octagon really shows how far action movies have devolved over the years. Oh, it’s a silly movie with cheesy acting and ludicrous characters, but it’s a look back at a time when something could be considered an action movie even if five minutes went by without something exploding. Even with its problems, it’s more gritty and graphic than much of today’s PG-13 (or 14A as we call it here) fare.

Chuck Norris plays Scott, a former martial arts competitor who was trained as a ninja throughout his childhood. When people around him start dying, Scott suspects his former “brother” may be training an army of terrorists as ninja assassins. When his best friend goes off like an idiot to take down the camp by himself, Scott finally decides he has to fight one more time to protect the people he cares about.

In spite of the hilarious plot and sub-par acting (which can’t be placed on Norris alone), the story mangages to create some suspense, as we really begin to wonder whether Scott can kill the man he considered his brother for the entirety of his formative years. However, certain elements of this film just put it too far over the top. We’re treated to Scott’s inner monologue (we know this because the voice is all echo-ey) throughout the movie, and the interspersed ninja training sequences are just too goofy to put any stock in. Oh, and no less than three women have the hots for Norris’s character over the course of the picture. There’s literally one for each act of the movie!  As one love interest is killed off, another immedietly takes her place.

The Octagon may feel a bit slow to today’s action movie audience, but if you want an early example of what made ‘80’s action movies awesome, this is a perfect example.

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