Sometimes, an entire movie is worth sitting through just to see one glorious battle scene. Movies like Bloodsport, Highlander and Fist of Legend are great examples of this. And then you get the final battle scene that is so one-sided, it knows what the answer is to one hand klapping another oke.
Gladiator – Russell Crowe vs Joaquin Phoenix
One of the more epic movies made in recent history, Gladiator starred Russell Crowe as a Roman general who was tired of fighting, but then had to spend the enxt three hours fighting some more so that he could finally live a life of not having to wake and stab someone in the face every morning. Amidst all that was Joaquin Phoenix as Emperor Dick My Sister Looks Kinda Hawt, making life as crap as possible for Crowe.
Early on in the film, we already get a taste for how formidable Commodus might actually be, as he trains with several soldiers, showing mutant-level skill with a sword. Three hours later, and he’s done a perfect heel turn by shoving a knife into the ribs of Maximus, before ascending to the top of the arena for a fight for the ages between the Emperor and the renegade gladiator.
At which point Crowe forgets that he happens to have a fatal stab wound or that he’s supposed to be acting, and sword-slaps the hell out of Phoenix and gives him more backhands than a squash court in the process, before shoving a dagger down his throat and wondering if he can make it to the local pub for happy hour.
Way of the Dragon – Bruce Lee vs Chuck Norris
Bruce Lee. Chuck Norris. Two of the finest cinematic fighters in the history of Hollywood, facing one another man to man. No tricks, no disadvantages, just the hairy and smooth chests of two men locking eyes to see who the best fighter in the world is. And Bruce Lee proves who has the fastest legs of all time by knocking Norris back into his own memetic jokes with a barrage of attacks that the bearded one is still reeling from to this day.
Norris got f$%ed up by Lee, and that’s being polite. Because in one single fight scene, Lee managed to kick more ass than Chuck Norris would ever manage to in ten combined seasons of Walker Texas Ranger.
Die Hard 2 John McClane vs William Sadler
John McClane never has a great day, but the events of Die Hard 2 must rank as his worst ever Christmas. On the one hand, you’ve got a seasoned New York cop who defeated an entire skyscraper of terrorists single-handed, versus a Special Forces soldier who practises naked Karate.
Now pit those two men up against one another on the wing of a jumbo jet, throw in some testosterone and general bad attitudes towards one another and you should have a slobber-knocker on your hands. And holy hell, does McClane get several shades of bad sequels bitten out of him. In a fight more one-sided than Willis vs male pattern baldness, Sadler dominates and treats the cop like a level of Donkey Kong.
V for Vendetta – V vs Mr Creedy and co
Sometimes, your main hero needs a slight handicap before the usual climatic battle with the head villain, such as a loved one in distress, or a bullet scratch here and there. Not V though. The anarchist in the cult hit V for Vendetta faced an entire platoon of highly trained soldiers and their leader Mr Creedy, and absorbed more bullets in one go than Stalingrad during the entire Nazi offensive of World War 2.
And despite having more lead in him than an HB2 pencil, he still managed to slaughter his way through the squad of soldiers in less time than it took to reload a gun. And they say movies are unrealistic fantasy.
John Rambo – Rambo vs the entire Burmese army
As much of a badass as Rambo is, he’s still anchored in reality. Sure, we’ve seen him take on entire Russian armies and Vietnam war remnants, but it’s usually been done with careful planning, or with the entire mounted force of the Taliban behind him. In Rambo 4 however, Stallone ditches stealth in a horse-steroid infused scene of ludicrous carnage, opening up so many new holes in the advancing forces of the Burmese army that he patriotised his own film into a four minute scene of grunting and 50 caliber mounted gun endorsement deals.
And the carnage still isn’t over, as Stallone ends his killing spree by turning the sadistic commander of the Burmese army into a Slayer album cover with half a sword that was most likely stolen from the dead hands of Conner McLeod. How the hell this film never won an Oscar is beyond me.
Under Siege – Steven Seagal vs Everyone
Stephanus Seevoel is like the tooth fairy of movie fights. Evidently, he cannot be seen by fists and you’ll know he’s been around when you wake up from a bitch-slap induced coma of fast hands and kicks from his stunt doubles. This was double clear in the first Under Siege film, when Seagal spent 90 minutes karate-chopping his way through various goons, with fight scenes that were the equivalent of Mike Tyson fighting his own sanity.
All of this culminates in a fight with Tommy Lee Jones, a man that the entire movie has spent building up as an unkillable mercenary that took over an entire battleship without breaking a sweat. And in less than a minute, Seagal manages to stroll up to him, slap the acting out Jones’s mouth and scalp the bastard before throwing him into a set of controls that may have been made on the USS Enterprise.
Last Updated: November 28, 2013