Ah.....the crap-tacular action films of the 80's and 90's ruled the school! But, to truly qualify as a fine slice of upper echelon era gorgonzola, certain criteria must be met without fail. Let's go over the list shall we?
1) Everybody knows that a big action story must take place around Christmas. Spoiling holiday cheer is a bonus for bad guys, and it gives some random character a chance to say "one hell of a way to spend Christmas!"
2) The villains must be either drug dealers or terrorists.
3) The main hero is usually a cop that plays by his own rules and his partner must be killed early on so that he can take revenge.
4) The captain has just about had it with his loose cannon shenanigans and requests that the hero take some vacation.
5) He must have a new partner that he initially hates, but comes to appreciate as they combine their talents to vanquish evil.
6) At some point, there must be a clever catch phrase worked in by the hero in a situation where it makes the most sense. For example, if it is an older cop, he might be running while a building explodes behind him and he would shout something like "I'm getting too old for this shit." Or even better, when the hero inevitibly defeats his nemesis he might say "yippie-kai-yay-motherfucker!" It is important that whenever the master villain's plan is foiled, the last thing he hears is a smart-ass remark by the protagonist before meeting his grisly fate.
7) Stuntman Al Leong must cameo and die as a henchman. Most notable blow the shit out of the world flicks had Al henching for the bad guys at some point. (Lethal Weapon, Die Hard, Big Trouble in Little China)
8) This is probably the most important. A major character, whether it be the good guy or one of the bad guys, must have a mullet. This shows that on top they are all nut stomping business, but in back they know how to be bad and party. Whew......now that we have that out of the way I can present to you 1990's "I Come in Peace." An action era gem with a sci-fi twist that includes everything on my commandmant list.
What makes this movie stick out in my memory is the villain. He's a drug dealer, but from outer space! On his planet, endorphins are the addicting drug of choice and he can only get his supply on Earth from human brains. So basically he goes to L.A. and kills a bunch of drug dealers to get their heroin. He then catches a person, injects them with an overdose of heroin to stimulate endorphin production, and sucks it out with a spike to the head. Whenever he approaches a victim he tells them "I come in peace" hence the title.
B-level action meister Dolph Lundgren plays cop on the edge Jack Caine. (as in he raises cain throughout) He gets involved because he was working a case against a yuppie group of drug dealers called "The White Boyz." The White Boyz killed his partner during an undercover sting (big mistake) and he wants them to pay. But many of the White Boyz were slaughtered along with his partner by an unknown third party. Now he must break in a new partner and trust an alien cop who has come to bring the endorphin dealer to justice on his home planet. Failure to do so will have the population on another world become addicts while Earth becomes a target for other would be galactic drug runners.
even alien drug dealers had mullets in the 80's
The alien drug dealer is just plain bad-ass! He's 8ft tall and has a platinum blonde mullet. He also has all kinds of nifty gadgets to help him do his dirty work. There's a remote controlled hose that he shoots into the victim's heart and fills with heroin. He's got this razor sharp CD that ricochets all over the place and is only vulnerable to stereo speakers. The dealer is also equipped with an enormous hand cannon that gives Dolph a headache and Dirty Harry a hard-on.
the whirling disc of death metal....
I've never much cared for Dolph except for when he played Drago in Rocky. In that movie he only had to say a couple of lines though. He's basically a big wooden turd with no personality or acting skills to carry a lead role. At least guys like Van Damme and the Schwartz had charisma to help them with their dramatic shortcomings, but Dolph doesn't. Despite the absence of a likeable hero, "I Come in Peace" is a worthy walk down the ole action memory lane. Check it out!