Action Movies Essay Research Paper Simply by — страница 8

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and all instruments are blaring.The action film is not only predicated almost exclusively on a masculine subjectivity (and an appeal to a masculine spectator), but is also dependent on a body of male stars who replicate their action roles as reliably as John Wayne inhabited the Western, or Katharine Hepburn significantly defined the urbane romantic comedy. If the action films of the '70s belonged primarily to male stars like Clint Eastwood and Charles Bronson (and, primarily through the James Bond series, Sean Connery and Roger Moore), the '80s belonged to Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Mel Gibson. Though they all continue to make action films with varying degrees of success, the fact that action films require a significant physical ability on the

part of any star inevitably means that aging stars are simply less convincing and sometimes simply unable to continue to perform in this genre. When they do, their roles often shift explicitly to that of a patriarch or eminence grise (e.g. Sean Connery as Harrison Ford's father in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, or Bruce Willis as Liv Tyler's father in Armageddon (Michael Bay, 1998). The '90s have seen a slightly more diverse group of performers, including former Independent film star Nicolas Cage, Jackie Chan, Will Smith, and with far less consistency, Keanu Reeves (The Matrix, 1999), take up the mantle from the previous generation. In an unusual exception (and in some ways this is typical of his career), John Travolta was never an action star until his post-Pulp Fiction

(1994) renaissance, and his image in any action film he undertakes is frequently in relation to his markedly unfit physique.However, what is true as often as not is that it doesn't take a big star to make a successful action film (Independence Day, Godzilla, Starship Troopers) as long as there are exceptional special effects, though these films often solidify the careers of their stars, as was the case with Will Smith and Independence Day, but which does not seem to have happened with the cast of Godzilla. The vast majority of the top grossing films of all time are action films, and some of the most successful series of sequel films have been action films, including the Die Hard and Lethal Weapon series. This speaks not only to a global desire to see special effects, gun battles

and car chases, but also to an attraction to the odd portrait of money that these obviously expensive films paint.