My Top Twenty Action Films: #2 and #1
2. The Matrix
A very deep and perplexing storyline, with possible real life applications or anthologies? probably just the pre-comma part, maybe the second half.
I can remember seeing The Matrix for the first time. A friend knocked on my door and in his hand he had the film. For some reason I had never heard of it. I guess I wasn't really watching what was coming out at the time.
Anyway, I watched the film with and my friend and loved all of it. The casting was good (spotted a few people from 90s era Home & Away/Heartbreak High, for my sins) the script enticing, effects were spot on and of course, to this day mimicked/copied (Equilibrium, to name just one) and the stunts and camera techniques parodied to infinity.
Thomas Anderson (Keanu Reeves) works for a reputable software company and he helps he landlady carry out her garbage. Anderson is also a Hacker and he has adopted the name or alias "Neo". Which means, 'New'.
Neo/Anderson is obsessed with something called the Matrix. He doesn't know what it is but he knows he wants to grasp or understand what he does not know.
Neo is totally and completely hooked on finding out what the Matrix and one night, in a seemingly half asleep half awake state a famous hacker called Trinity (Carrie-Anne Moss) takes over his computer and messages him with the message that, "The Matrix has you" & also he should "Follow the rabbit.."
Minutes later Neo is awoken by a knock on his door. He talks to the visitors and they invite him out, Neo, mulls it for a moment, most likely think he will stay in as it is raining quite hard.. but then, he spots a rabbit on his associates, Troy's girlfriend's arm. And say "Sure", instantly.
At a club Neo is approached by Trinity and is told that he can meet someone called Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) and he can explain completely what the Matrix is..
Neo is at work the next day and then along comes a delivery guy with a small package for him. Upon opening the package, Neo finds a phone and it instantly starts to ring. It is Morpheus. He has some news, the police are coming to get him and he, doesn't know what there going to do..
Morpheus tries to guide Neo out of the building but Neo, not fully understanding the situation and understandably worried does not follow all of Morpheus's instructions and is caught and taken into custody by Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) and intimidated and mildly integrated..
The pieces have been set and a battle is, inevitable.
The film also features one of my favorite actors, Joe Pantoliano, who play Cypher.. or rather the craftily named, Mr Reagan.
1. Raiders of the Lost Ark
An amazingly paced film, from start to finish. Just the right amount of humor and the right kind of humor too. The special effects at the end are now pretty dated but still the whole film is breath taking and has you on the edge of your seat.
So, here we are at number one.. I am sure a lot of people will disagree with me on my number one choice and my other choices, and that I have left this and that film out.. And that I have put this and that in and they are not even action films!! - oh well.
It is 1936 and Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) has just lost a golden idol, after dodging and out smarting danger, to a fly muncher called Belloq (Paul Freeman), who is somewhat of Jones's nemesis. Jones manages to escape on a plane but does not get the idol he suffered life and limb to get.
After arriving back in the US and while at work, two army intelligence officers bend Jones ear on what a decoded Nazi message could mean.
It turns out that an old, and now dead, friend of Jones's, Ravenwood, has a piece of a puzzle (the top of a staff) which will help lead to the lost ark of the covenant. Which is basically a holy weapon that can not be spotted. Hence why the Nazis are looking to get their swine fleisch hands on it.
Due to Jones's obvious knowledge and personal connections, the army intelligence guys fund Jones's trip to locate and find one of the missing pieces of the puzzle.
Upon turning up in Nepal to find the staff top, Jones meets with Ravenwood's daughter, Marion (Karen Allen). A slight hitch in the plan is that Jones had a relationship with her many years back and she is still angry with him. After telling him to come back tomorrow a group of Nazi hired hands try to get the staff top, lead by a cliched gestapo guy.
Jones returns and saves the day/night and take Marion and the staff top with him to Egypt where there adventure continues...
I loved the film when I was 13 and I love it now.