In honor of Friday's release of The Expendables, we're taking a week-long look at the action films of Sir Sylvester Stallone -- which is to say we're skipping his comedies. Out of respect.
Setting: 1993's idea of 1996 Los Angeles (burning Hollywood sign? check), followed by 1993's idea of 2032 "San Angeles," where Taco Bell reigns supreme, jingle-loving citizens get fined for foul language, and seashells have become a critical component of bathroom use
Our hero: John Spartan (Sylvester Stallone), sentenced to 70 years in cryogenic lock-up for the incidental deaths of thirty hostages when attempting to arrest...
Our villain/s: ...Simon Phoenix (Wesley Snipes doing his best Dennis Rodman), Spartan's overall-wearing arch-nemesis, similarly incarcerated and soon let loose to wreak havoc in the future with his violent tendencies and penchant for "Simon says" jokes
The stakes: The introduction of crime into a society that hasn't had a recorded murder since 2010 (the same year that, according to the film, the Big One hits - heads up, California!)
How long until our first confrontation? A mere two minutes pass before Spartan starts blowing away bad guys.
Line of dialogue that nails it: "Send a maniac to catch a maniac."
Coolest display of might: I'll go with a moment that couldn't be cooler, literally, when Spartan kicks off Phoenix's freshly frozen head and it shatters quite nicely.
Is that...? Yes, that's really Denis Leary as the leader of the underground resistance that Phoenix has been tapped to kill
Did they...? Yep, another Rambo reference, this time when Spartan's helping himself to guns on display in the museum: "Excuse me, Rambo, I need to borrow this."
And that's not to mention... "Hold it! The Schwarzenegger Library?" "Yes, the Schwarzenegger Presidential Library."
Acting legacy: Stallone would later re-unite with Rob Schneider in Judge Dredd, while Benjamin Bratt and Sandra Bullock would once again play cops in Miss Congeniality
Moral of the story: The rampant exchange of bodily fluids will be a major cause in society's downfall.
Stallone Action Scale: 7.5 out of 10.