In Search Of The Last Action Heroes is a brand new documentary about the classic era action movies for the most part and features various acting/directing legends from the genre along with other key people from the era (Basil Pouledouri, Stan Bush etc). Oliver Harper clearly loves the ‘old school’ action movies of the 80s and 90s. To be honest for anyone growing up in that era, who doesn’t?
In Search Of The Last Action Heroes is clearly his labour of love and this new documentary comes in at a hefty 2hours and 20 minutes. That’s a lot of talking. And it features an excellent lineup from high kicking queen Cynthia Rothrock, Eric Roberts, Michael Jai White, Bill Duke, Vernon Wells, Philip Rhee, Scott Adkins and Directors Paul Verhoeven, Mark L. Lester, Mario Kassar and a whole host of others.
While ISOFTLAH is clearly in depth and brings you a whole host of topics throughout that covers just about everything from the Stallone/Schwarzenegger rivalry, the rise of Jean Claude Van Damme, the Cannon era, how VHS catapulted the genre and how todays action movies and stars measure up. If your a fan of the genre, outside of some of the talking heads anecdotes, there’s not really anything new that you wouldn’t already know about.
It is still insightful however, despite the marathon run time and hugely enjoyable. Matthiaus Hues (The Bad guy in Dark Angel/I Come In Peace) appears a few times and is delightful. As is Vernon Wells (Mad Max 2, Commando) who clearly still appreciate what these movies gave to them. What is sadly missing is the top line stars such as Arnie, Sly, JCVD, Chuck Norris, Jackie Chan and Dolph Lungdren. Not that it hurts the overall documentary, but it would have felt a bit more complete with them in.
If you are a fan of the genre it’s definitely worth a couple hours of your time, just don’t expect anything groundbreaking. If however you just want to find out a bit more about these heady days of the guns, muscles and explosions then In Search Of The Last Action Heroes is definitely the place to begin. It would also make for a great double bill with Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films.
And if you like old school action movies make sure you check out Screen One’s YouTube Series ‘Get To The Chedda’ HERE