Monstervision's Joe Bob Briggs Looks At

Commando (1985)

(From Joe Bob's Ultimate B Movie Guide)

Schwarzenegger can
a) give in to terrorist demands, or
b) lose his daughter.
When the choice is up to Arnold, you know the solution is going to be
c) stage a single-handed assault on the bad guys.


I knew Arnold had it in him. I knew, after he made Terminator, it was only a matter of time till he made the ultimate Rambo ripoff. Arnold has the kind of deltoids Sly Stallone can only drool over and then say, "Oh, sorry, would you like me to wipe that wad of spit off your extremely muscular self, your Sirship?" We're talking Commando, where Arnold the Barbarian gets a burr haircut, rubs some dirt on his face, steals a shoulder-mounted rocket-launcher, 18 machine guns and 34,000 rounds of ammo, and kills a whole Meskin Army. Arnold plays a retired commando spy who's called back into service when President Poncho starts killing all Arnold's operatives by posing as garbagemen and then waiting for em to haul their Hefty Bags out to the street, or by running em down with Cadillacs ON THE SHOWROOM FLOOR. Arnold finally abandons his woodsy life, chopping down Sequoias with a Black-and-Decker, when the President grabs Arnold's daughter, machine-guns a few Marines, and tells Arnold if he doesn't go down to Guateragua and kill President Jose for him, then "I will mail your daughter to you in pieces." Arnold tells him this is a violation of U.S. postal laws, jumps off the plane that's flying him to Nicamala, and figures he's got 11 hours before they find out and turn his daughter into ballerina salad.

So what does Arnold do? He picks up a stewardess, steals her Porsche, and tells her she has to help him, and pretty soon they're zipping into the Galleria, where Arnold kung-fus 37 security guards. Then they go to a motel and ram a coffee-table leg through a Green Beret, and then Arnold gets bored and so they have to go down to the army surplus and ram a bulldozer through the front of it and steal some assault rifles and foot flippers. Finally, they jump in a seaplane to fly to a secret island and kill six or seven hundred people so Arnold can settle his differences in a civilized manner with a gay heavy-metal soldier of fortune who likes to wear bracelets and say things like, "I will just love to kill you."

We're talking serious body count: 92. (Okay, okay, it's not Invasion USA, but they're quality agonizing deaths).
Two breasts.
Two gallons blood.
Three motor vehicle chases.
Six car crashes, including four crash-and-burns.
Fifteen exploding buildings.
Two exploding jeeps.
Exploding boat.
Five gratuitous farm-implement deaths.
Knives thrown into 17 different body parts.
Arm rolls.
Kung Fu.
Cadillac Fu.
Coffee Table Fu.

Arnold's best scene comes when he picks up a phone booth, gives the occupant some directory assistance, chases him up a mountain, dangles him over a cliff by one leg, and goes "Whoops!"
With Rae Dawn Chong as the stewardess, Vernon Wells as the gay-leather-bar Marine.
Mark Lester, Mr. Class of 1984 himself, directed this sucker. Four stars. Joe Bob says check it out. I give it 4 stars

2000 Joe Bob Briggs. All Rights Reserved. Not an AOL Time-Warner Company in this lifetime.

For this and other movie reviews by the artist formerly known as the host of MonsterVision, go to Joe Bob Briggs.com

Victory Over Communism!

"Washington (AP) -- The Consumer Products Safety Commission voted yesterday to end 8 years of efforts to regulate chain saws, after receiving a staff report that more than 90% of the saws on the market already meet voluntary safety guidelines. The commission praised the chain saw industry, noting that manufacturers have spent $10 million on research and testing to improve safety." We're talking more meat, less bone.

Joe Bob's Mailbag

JOE BOB:
Thought you might like to know that, despite heavy flak from feminists and Communist censors, you are being taught at one of the nation's leading universities. (Mostly we just lead our students around by the nose):
"Comparative Lit 1B, Section 10 (TTH 2-2:30), From Obsession to Art (Joe Bob Goes To College); The pen is mightier than the sword, but has it succumbed to the chainsaw? Are Tobe Hooper, John Carpenter, and Brian de Palma the legitimate offspring of Seneca, Ovid, and Shakespeare? If Shakespeare were alive today, would he be writing scripts for America's only indigenous theater--the Drive-In? These questions, though facetious, contain a challenge: can we define the difference between Medea, Titus Andronicus, and the latest slasher flick?"
Keep up the good work.
ERIC RUTLEDGE
DEPT. OF COMPARATIVE LITERATURE
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY

Dear Professor Eric:
Harken! Methinks yonder breast ripens into plenty. Thither runs a bloody river, ebbing from his dangling head. Behold! Midterm Fu.


Victory Over Communism and Joe Bob's Mailbag from "Joe Bob Goes Back To The Drive-In" review of "Commando"
1990 Joe Bob Briggs. All Rights Reserved. Buy the book as soon as it's back in print.

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