Combats, encounters, car chases, gunshots, explosions, punches, kicks, blood and sweat with some good guys and their foes thrown in; the geriaction (action from old dudes) subgenre has exploded on the silver screen and it has exploded big time.
Ever since The Expendables came out in 2010 and earned $274m worldwide, geriaction movies have been on the rise, giving a fresh lease of life to the action icons of the 80’s and 90’s like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sylvester Stallone and Liam Neeson, who were slowly being side-lined by younger action stars like Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham.
And what do these trigger-happy old timers do? They go on and do more movies and make more money. Now who would have thought how serious Arnold was when he said, ‘I’ll be back’ in his cyborg avatar in The Terminator back in 1984. Now almost 30 years later, Arnie is set to star in Terminator 5 and other action films like The Expendables 3 and King Conan.
The best thing of all – just like Arnold, there are many other sexagenarians who are giving him company and kicking some ass. Here’s a look at some of them:
Liam Neeson – 61
Neeson, a late bloomer in action, has often been credited for creating the geriaction subgenre with his movie Taken in 2008. He was 56 then. In Taken 2, released in 2012, a much older Neeson is seen extricating himself from a set of chains before taking down an army of AK-47-wielding baddies. Last seen in The A-Team and Clash Of The Titans, Neeson will soon be seen in Taken 3 and Non-Stop.
What makes him tick – Neeson looks smart and slick even while doing chokeholds. What’s more, even his hair plugs stay intact.
Sylvester Stallone – 67
Rocky, Rambo, Carter, Robert Rath, Judge Dredd and Savage – the man needs zero introduction. We could go on and on, yet chances are you’ve seen Sly in more films than you can remember. Even after all this, The Italian Stallion is far from being done with action. Showing his action prowess in projects like The Expendables 1 & 2, Bullet To The Head and Escape Plan in 2012 and 2013, the 67-year-old star is ready to pummel baddies in the upcoming Expendables 3.
What makes him tick – Less talk, more action, that’s Sly for you.
Harrison Ford – 71
Indy Jones, Han Solo, Jack Ryan – yes, we are referring to Harrison Ford and his best action avatars. While Ford was last seen kicking some alien butt alongside a much younger counterpart (Daniel Craig) three years back in 2011 release Cowboys & Aliens, he is totally up for doing the 5th installment of his hit franchise – Indiana Jones. He too will be part of Stallone’s Expendables 3 releasing this year.
What makes him tick – Just look at him. Yeah, ok, let’s see how tough you look when you are 71.
Arnold Schwarzenegger – 66
The most active actor, apart from Stallone, in this group of sexagenarians is undoubtedly our Last Action Hero, Arnold Schwarzenegger. Seen in adrenaline pumping movies like The Expendables 1 & 2, The Last Stand and The Escape Plan, this year Arnie will be seen in Terminator 5, The Expendables 3 and King Conan.
What makes him tick – Can you even imagine any other actor instead of Arnie as a cyborg in the Terminator series? He is living proof that body builders can act too.
Soon to become a part of this elite group are action stars like Bruce Willis and Jackie Chan. At the age of 58, Willis gave us two major action hits in 2013, Red 2 and Die Hard 5. Having managed to play the part of daredevil John McClane for 25 years straight in the Die Hard franchise, Willis now wants to do “one final Die Hard movie – Die Hard 6 – before finally hanging that white vest up for good.”
Fifty-nine-year-old Jackie Chan, who was last seen in CS12, is gearing up for two more action thrillers – Police Story 2013 and Skiptrace. Did anyone say Jackie was retiring from action films?
With all these actors looking fit as a fiddle, showcasing their toned bodies and pumped up muscles in more and more action films, guess there is still time before they hang up their boots and say, ‘Hasta la vista, baby.’
Who is your favorite action hero of all time?