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Top 10 Action Movies of All Time – Part 1


We’ve genre dived down the multi colored
walls of sci-fi, horror, crime, and least controversially, Westerns. But this week it’s time to get crazy. Coming at you in two parts,
these are our pics for the ten best action films of all time. (Music) For the first half of this, we wanted to
look at some of the larger sub genres inside of the high adrenaline umbrella
that is the cinematic world of action. Sorry, great action, horrors action
romances, and action faith films. You’re going to have to find
homes inside other category. These are only for the biggies. And speaking of other things we aren’t
looking at today, superhero movies, we’re saving them for a later list. But in terms of what we are looking at,
first up is the action comedy. And my God is it a feast
of a category here. From Sherlock Junior to 21 Jump Street. From Starship Troopers,
to Attack the Block. From Men in Black, Tropic Thunder,
The Good The bad and the Weird to Why Don’t You Play in Hell? There’s an entire buddy comedy sub
sub genre in here with movies like Leathal Weapon 2, Bad Boys,
48 hours and The Nice Guys. We freaking love the work of Stephen Chao
especially his Kung Fu Hustle and Journey to the West. Of Edgar Wright, especially in his never
bested action parody Hot Fuzz, and all of Jackie Chan’s lighter work. And we went back and forth on a number of films from all
three of these action comedy artisans. But at the end of the day, there was
just an irrepressible special place in our hearts for
the Legend of the Drunken Master. (Noise)>>What the hell was that?>>What does it mean when
there’s a picture of a scar?>>Good stuff. (Music)>>Drunken master two is
about as brilliant and action comedy as there ever could be and
we’ve talked about it before. Notably it’s final fights scene, but
almost every single moment of combat, and there are lots,
puts most other action comedies to shame. And that’s because it manages to sit
astride both of its high definite sub genre components,
as an action movie and a comedy. Such that one side strengthens the other. The action makes the comedy better and
vice versa. It isn’t a good action film at
the expense of being a good comedy, and it isn’t alternately funny and
full throttle. It is both together at the same time,
driven by the exact same engine. This average martial artist gets
better the more drunk he gets, and the more drunk he gets
the better the action becomes. The more absurd the whole thing is,
the more we’re laughing. It’s an action comedy perfect storm which
is why its the true gem of the sub genre. Let’s turn now to the science
fictionalized world of action, where the best examples will be those that
use the peculiarities of future tech to expand the creativity of their carnage. Here we find Snowpiercer and Ecape from
New York, alongside Edge of Tomorrow, and Inception and Minority Report and Upgrade. And look, it wasn’t a perfect movie but recently a leader had some
pretty awesome action. But standing atop the sub genre,
we find three clear stand outs that we spent an uncomfortable amount of
time going back and forth between. There are Aliens, The Matrix and our
number 9 pick, Terminator 2, Judgment Day. (Sound)>>Get down. (Sound)
Much like Drunken Master, T2 straddles both its sub genre elements
in a way that maximizes their synergy. It sets up its story
premise with time travel, develops its combat with
robot-on-robot badassery. And even fleshes out its human moments
through the improbable pairing of boy and AI guardian. And every single one of these
elements works perfectly. Terminator was already
a fantastic action film, but in T2 the set pieces are second to none. Arnie has never had a better role,
and god, is the T-1000 a perfectly
engineered villain. T2 was earth shattering in an era
of action movies breaking ground. Combining ingenious practical effects with
ILM’s latest wizardry with an endless watchability that endures to this day. (Sound)
Next up, we look to the best of the war films. We had to mostly skate past
incredible non-starters that aren’t quite action-y enough, like Apocalypse
Now, The Deer Hunter and Paisan. And on to films like Battle of Britain,
Platoon, Lone Survivor and Cross of Iron. We find excellent half actions
in the form of Zero Dark Thirty. The Hurt Locker and especially Saving
Private Ryan, in different times and places we find excellent more
action in Braveheart, 300, and Ran. But for our third pick on this list and by
action movie criteria alone, we actually think no one has done it better than
Ridley Scott in Black Hawk Down. (Noise)
>>Juliet 25, hostiles advancing,
parallel west to your position. The advice, women and
children among them, over. (Noise)
>>Incoming.>>Let’s just set aside what are some
legitimate questions about representation, so we can focus on what Black Hawk Down
does right, the action. And fortunately for us,
there’s about two solid hours of it. It is essentially a mere
constant cascade of battles and skirmishes punctuated by
the occasional brief dialogue. And each successive set piece is as
awesome as it is Scott Brothers color. Scott manages the rare feat of engaging
you at the level of the strategic in the command tent watching the map
change from the height of the helicopter, of the tactical. Seeing how various chars work
together to address challenges and tackle obstacles in
creative team-driven ways, and in the individual, feeling for each
exchange of bullets and soldier injury. It is an astonishingly complicated balance
in outfit only very occasionally manages not to juggle all three balls at
once across its entire length, sustaining a constant
nerve-wrecking tension and rhythm of serious
adrenaline all the while. Next we turn to action adventure, but
first, what really is action adventure? It’s honestly hard to say and
we’re not entirely sure. But you know it when you see it,
it’s going to take you somewhere exciting. It’s going to be a little funny
along the way and most of the time, it’s not rated R. It’s The Mummy, and
Pirates of the Caribbean. It’s The Adventures of Robin Hood and
The Great Escape and definitely North by Northwest
in its earliest forms. It’s Star Wars and Jurassic Park,
and maybe the Fugitive and definitely Raiders of the Lost Ark, but
we think you can find adventurous action at its absolute best in
the recent Mad Max Fury Road. (Music) Who hears even one bad thing to say
about George Miller’s high octane crowning jewel? Conceived visually from go
with panels rather than words, cutting edge CGI well hidden
amidst real practical mayhem that harkens back to the best parts of
an earlier era of film making. Vast in its creativity and world
building that suggests back story and consequences extending far
beyond the run time and frame. The latest Mad Max truly
is a masterpiece of action. There’s such unbelievable attention
to detail in its rhythm and to eye trace that Miller seems to
magically guide your attention to just the right things for just the right
amount of time for maximum coherence. There are about 10,000 things happening
at once, yet you never once lose track. There is a mastery of craft on
display here that is rare indeed. And it doesn’t hurt either that
the character and the story that craft is being employed to illustrate happen
to be certifiably bat shit awesome. (Music) Rounding out the first half of our list,
we want to take our intermission only after a fitting first act climax at
the epic action film, with the size and scale and volume all turned up to 11. Combining the vastness of the adventure
film with the conflict size of the war film, and there aren’t a ton of
films that can pull this off, but the ones that do are those like
Alexander Nevsky, the Sea Hawk. Ben-Hur Lawrence of Arabia,
The Lord of the Rings, and Gladiator. The Gangs of Wasseypur absolutely belongs
in this part of the conversation as the Bollywood action film
answer to the Godfather, as does Love Exposure for
its length and tonal scope alone. However, to cap things off for today,
we don’t think there’s a better made more exciting and forever enduring
action film in the Seven Samurai. (Noise)>>Here they come. (Noise)>>There’s a reason we keep talking about Kurosawa’s Seminal samurai film
here on CineFix movie list. It does just about everything you’d
ever want an epic to do and how. It’s got comedy, drama, romance,
action, adventure, pathos, heartbreak, team building, plan making, entire
village training, (Inaudible) bare buns, show stopping skirmishes, and a rain-soaked final battle sequence
that’s shot simply and clearly. And without VFX, and yet still manages
some all time great levels of excitement. It’s all the complex whole team
action dramatics of the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe
in one single movie. It’s got one of cinema’s
best heroic journeys and its power pick on one of the best
action films of all time, part one. (Sound)
So what do you think? Disagree with any of our picks. Do we leave out any of your
favorite action films. Let us know in the comments below so
we can steal all your ideas and claim them as our own in part two. And be sure to subscribe for
more CineFix movies. (Music) We were just kidding about stealing
your ideas, we already wrote it.

100 Comments

  1. Joe German Author

    I'm curious why Braveheart didn't receive the top spot for epic action! So what that Mel Gibson is crazy and that the movie isn't historically accurate. Braveheart Perfectly blends action, comedy, and Romance. It also has a killer soundtrack.

    Reply
  2. The Sobs Author

    Aliens would never be a good movie (Especially when you are a fan of Giger's work and the first one) and, tbh, anything by cameron sucks (Yes T2 too for me). For a elitist movie fan channel, i'm dissapointed there, but your others choice are solid tho

    Reply
  3. Gustavo Krieger Author

    Hey, guys! How about a video about the top 10 uses of tonal shift? I think it's an interesting topic that no other channel could dive in quite like you. Moments like Tarantino suddenly turning Kill Bill into pseudo-anime, or any Goodfellas with the "funny how" scene, which turns a comedic moment into a tense moment and back to comedic again.

    Reply
  4. CaliforniaHP Author

    Raiders of the Lost Ark not on here. Blasphemy and I watched Fury Road in theaters twice because I loved it so much. At least you got T2 and Seven Samurai though

    Reply
  5. CaseNumber00 Author

    I wonder if there is going to be a best action for animation. Cowboy Bebop: Knocking on Heavens Door, albeit an insert to the series, is a great movie that has a compelling story, world class animation, and fight choreography that is better than most live action movies.

    Reply
  6. MR JARVIS Author

    Note it down , never ever even in the future …….. Their will ever be a list of best action movies without #MadMax : Fury Road ……. #ToVelhella 🎆

    Reply
  7. GeoNeo Hill Author

    Terminator 2…. god damn what a film. I grew up with that as a kid, and ha e probably watched it about 50 times, and it would still be in my top 5. Incredible film. Even the special fx still hold up today. The new one will not even come close after watching the new trailer.

    Reply
  8. E O'Brien Author

    Black Hawk Down? Seriously? You can’t just “set aside” representation issues when the film is unquestionably racist. Really poor choice.

    Reply
  9. SnickeringGirl Author

    I really love these lists, even if I haven't seen the top pick movie, I understand the reason better because of the examples given. Such a great channel to watch! I am hooked.

    Reply
  10. tiffsaver Author

    FIRST OF ALL, YOU CANNOT POSSIBLY COMPARE MOVIES USING DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY WITH FILMS THAT DIDN'T. So you should create two categories, one pre-CGI, and one post. But of all the films I've seen (and in 71-years, that's a lot), I would have to say that Mel Gibson's original "Road Warrior" must reign supreme for ushering in an entirely new and different form of film entertainment. All of the stunts were practical, done in real time, with real people, not like the cartoons and "super hero" garbage and unending sequels only made only for video games, prepubescent little boys, and making rich producers even richer. In my opinion, Road Warrior changed the way actions films are shot and made for all time, and certainly the first to use automobiles as the stars. There wouldn't even BE a "Fast and Furious" or "Mad Max: Thunder Road" without Mel's groundbreaking opus.
    That said, my favorite single stunt sequence (pre-CGI) was the chariot race in 1959's "Ben Hur," where all of the stars learned to drive their own teams of horses, all brilliantly choreographed by the great Yakima Kanutt. It didn't use any loud music or mind-numbing special effects, just pure cinematic genius and pounding hooves. No single action sequence in movie history was ever performed or filmed better. Catch it.

    Reply
  11. Chad Robinson Author

    I have a bad thing to say about George Miller’s masterpiece: the narrative is trash. The acting is great, the set pieces are excellent, the action is brutal, but I am bothered by its bullshit plot. “We need to get away from Immortan Joe! … I mean, Immortan Joe is away so we can takeover his fiefdom! That was the point all along!” Huh?

    Reply
  12. Thomas Ryan Author

    "legitimate questions about representation" what does this mean?! Are we supposed to be shocked that all the Somali rebels as shown in the film are black Africans? And that they do horrible things? Well they were blacks and they did dreadful things – shocking isn't it, but I guess facts and the real world can be upsetting for those of a particular ideological bent

    Reply
  13. Yurek Hunt Author

    Doesn't mention The Princess Bride in either Action Comedy or Action Adventure. Why do I keep watching these completely idiotic videos, made by ignorant imbeciles?

    Reply
  14. Anton Luyt Author

    For T2 you are showing quite a few deleted scenes I wish were in the movie. The brilliance of the movie is that although James Cameron already introduced us the the Skynet universe he walks us very slowly into the evolved and updated technology of the T1000. Plus Robert Patrick never gets enough credit for bringing to life the methodical and calculating robot assassin.

    Reply
  15. Riccardo Alcaro Author

    Aliens is infinitely better than T2. Plot is original, tension is real, characters are compelling. These lists of top 10 manage to make you believe there are good reasons for very weird choices

    Reply
  16. Ginamaria Author

    +CineFix
    Hi there. New subscriber here. I often agree with you, but not always. Here's what I think of this one, other than the sheer frustration of it all for me personally:
    #9 wasn't "ILM"
    #7 NO "CGI" (glad you like it so much, though…)
    #6 How come nobody ever questions stuff like weather??? Do you actually think that "they" got a rain machine to "make it rain" during the filming of that huge action sequence? Did "they" plan for that amount of REAL rain, conversely? It's raining all OVER the damn place, not just in one little spot. And….that is an absolute FUCKTON of rain. Rain machines?? Just, please. WHY, WHY, WHY does nobody EVER question stuff like that??? It makes me want to slit my fucking wrists. (glad you like it so much, though…)

    Reply
  17. David Anthony Atienza Author

    I dont think Mad Max fury road is an action adventure film in my opinion since you have a protagonist chasing after a goal (which is something they need to get) while the antagonist is the obstacle or has the same goal as the hero.
    In Mad Max everyone was trying to get away from Immortan Joe.

    Reply

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