The Running Man
Arnie is the man running, fighting and shouting some cheesy puns.
The Running Man is less well known than the likes of The Green Mile and Shawshank, but nonetheless another Stephen King adaptation got the big screen treatment. With so many film adaptaions now out there and still more to come it must be very hard to find a cinema goer who has not seen a Stephen King film. I for one have seen a decent amount to date, the two former mentioned Frank Darabont films are perhaps two of my favorite films (personally I actually prefer The Green Mile) and I will even say I have a soft spot for that crazy clown IT.
Now lets talk about that man Arnold Schwarzenegger. He was surely one of (if not the) action hero of the 80’s with The Terminator and Predator being released, perhaps his main challenge came from his Expendables chum Sly who was busy Rocking and Rambling. (Rocky and Rambo) I have always struggled to enjoy the action hero, I mainly feel it leads to the actor being very one dimensional and any attempts to get rid of the stereotype leaves one cringing (Twins)
However rather remarkably one of my favorite actors is Denzel Washington who can easily be placed in the action hero category. For me what makes him better than the rest is simply down to a greater screen presence and acting for that matter. Alright he tried comedy with Heart condition, which funny enough also featured Danny DeVito from the aforementioned Twins. In fact thinking about it we should be blaming Mr DeVito for action hero comedy crossovers, for he also starred in the comedy Junior for which the IMDB synopsis makes one laugh for all the wrong reasons:
I actually quite like Danny DeVito. In fact I even found Denzel’s Heart Condition quite amusing (the film, I’m not quite that bad a person) I guess Arnie fans must have felt the same with Twins, though in this case Denzel was that annoyed he sacked his agent after the film was complete.
Now after that quick introduction lets move onto the film itself, Arnie! Denzo! DeVito! no sorry I meant The Running Man. Were in the year 2017 in a society ruled by the state, Ben Richards (Arnie) is wrongly convicted of causing the massacre of unarmed civilians. Sent to prison for his crime he escapes and then is forced to go on the game show The Running Man where contestants must run for their freedom against the deadly stalkers.
With similar plots and ideas to such films like Death Race 2000 and Rollerball its not a film that gets many prizes in originality. One of the major positives for me was it went further to explaining that Arnie really does suit this kind of role because despite not have a dynamic range of acting skills no-one can deny his ‘badassness’ (right click add to dictionary) This is further highlighted when its barely worth mentioning the other actors and characters for Arnie steals the show. Maria Conchita Alonso plays the ‘damsel in distress’ and that’s exactly what she is, not much character development and depth leads her towards a predictable story arch.
The Running Man is full of Arnie,… Cheesiness? The retorts are scattered throughout, further creating a feeling that this really is just a laid back Arnie flick.
(I apologize for this particularly messy review, blame Danny DeVito)