The Lazy Muses Podcast is a weekly discussion about Beer, TV, and Film.
What you looking at? You want a piece of this ‘cast? Huh? This week we talk about the Best Movie Fistfights. No feet, no head butting, just fists.
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I got pretty far into my list and realized there were no picks that involved CGI, so I decided to not allow fistfights with special effects, excluding The Matrix and Terminator 2. I’m fine with that.
Fistfights List Rules
No martial arts. None. These are fistfights. Exception for semi-martial arts. No Van Damme or Karate Kid or Segal or Bruce Lee. Swayze is accepted. Other exceptions case-by-case.
- Extra points for realism. Ugliness is rewarded.
- Fists over feet. Too much feet is too few fists.
- No James Bond.
Other Muses picks.
Ted Welch: Bloodsport, Lionheart, Best of the Best-Eric Roberts, James Earl Jones, Sally Kirkland. This movie has one of the most overwrought, my best-friend is dead, so cue inspirational I’m going to dish up some comeuppance montage. There are Eric Roberts tears and his patented, I’m sad voice. Its awesome. Its also NOT on my list.
James Weber “They Live” with Rowdy Roddy Piper and Keith David. Epic. Longest fight ever, that is both absurd and fantastic!
Gregory Harris–The Rundown (2003) A Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson joint with Seann William Scott and Christopher Walken. Would You Green light This? A tough aspiring chef is hired to bring home a mobster’s son from the Amazon but becomes involved in the fight against an oppressive town operator and the search for a legendary treasure.
Bryn Boice Road House has ballet fistfights of doom–
Anthony Howe Any fight scene in Ip Man
Mike Cobb Left turn, Clyde.
Benjamin Pulanco Every which way but loose.
Chris Collision: They Live. Second place: Hooper. Third place: everything else.
Dan Schultz TV, but Dan’s fight with the Colonel in Deadwood. Eye-gougingly perfect.
Rich Fromm It’s not much of a fistfight but more of a beating. Goodfellas. Pesce’s foot to Billy Batt’s face.I agree with the Harrison Ford comment above. He had some good ones. Especially against the Nazis. I would say that the Truck Sequence in Raiders counts as a fistfight and I would put that in the top 3. Easily.
- Road House: For a good BUICK…
- They Live: Everyone’s favorite. For good reason.
- Every Which Way But Loose: Butt loose?
- Any Which Way You Can: Second best Orangutan movie on the list.
- Nothing to Lose: I used this movie to teach a class. At a college. I was an educator.
- The Big Country: Maybe my favorite.
- Shane: Wouldn’t be the movie it is without this fight.
- A Soldier’s Story: Adolph Caesar and Denzel Washington, wow.
- Lethal Weapon: Best front-lawn Christmas-time Busey brawl in film history.
- Popeye: Matthew Hancock points out the Bluto fight. Classic. Baaaad movie, though.
- Batman: Hancock rightly suggests the final bell-tower battle.
One-punch classics-Erik Gratton
- Crocodile Dundee: In the restaurant. Will Mick ever get the hang of city living?!
- Back to the Future: “Hey you, get your damn hands off h–oh, Biff.”
- Groundhog Day: “Phil?” “NED?!”
- Die Hard: Bonnie Bedelia does what we all wanted to do to William Atherton in the 80s.
- Snatch: Brad Pitt’s shrug is priceless.
- The French Connection: “Where do you want it?”
Grab Bag: Erik Gratton
- Raiders of the Lost Ark: The fight under the airplane.
- Bourne Ultimatum: Better than the magazine fight from Supremacy, the chase leading into the fight is also special.
- Raising Arizona: Tons of good low-budget action, here. The fight I’m highlighting is in the double-wide.
- Romancing the Stone: The climactic fight on the parapet. Joan Wilder using her hands and a cigar to great effect.
- Vision Quest: The final wrestling match is the best among many.
- Elf: “He’s an angry elf.” Brilliant.
- Fight Club: Best fight among many is Ed Norton by himself.
- Transporter 3: Only slightly joking, here. In the garage, Statham vs 10 or so interchangeable henchmen. Fun.
Brawls: Erik Gratton
- West Side Story: Dancy, brilliant, racially tinged and more suspenseful than should be possible in a Big Hollywood Musical.
- Slap Shot: Don’t look sideways at a Hanson brother. Seriously.
- Trainspotting: Begby is no joke.
- Hooper (h/t collision): Funny, strange, weirdly slow bar brawl. Fantastic.
- Cannonball Run: Definitely not on Hooper’s level. Feels like a huge cream pie brawl without any pastries.
Jimmie’s Boring List
1. Bourne Ultimatumn
The fight in Tangiers. Beautifully violent and brilliantly choreographed. This is one of the best fight scenes in an action movie. There is almost no dialogue during the fight which actually makes the choreography more violent. Often times fight scenes can diminish the ugliness of violence with pithy dialogue, making it less dangerous. The grunts, the focus and difficulty of beating another person to death is gruesome. Matt Damon choking Édgar Ramírez brings you as close as you’re going to get murder outside of a snuff film.
2. The Karate Kid
The Fight- ”Sweep the leg scene” this introduced us to the crane kick, “you begniner luck” and this song http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mMH_P2oVzDI John Esposito’s ‘You’re the best around’.
3. Fight Club
The Fight: “I wanted to destroy something beautiful scene” Ed Norton takes on Oscar winner Jared Ledo. Jared was a pretty boy in this flick but not after Ed destroys it. Toothless, swollen and bloody mouthed, Angel Face is too far gone to even tap out.
4. Rocky I & II
The Fights: Apollo Creed final fights. Both fight scenes are intense and thrilling. I have seen both fights a dozen times and yet each time I get caught up in cheering out loud “Go Rock, go”. Also, we continue to find ways of sneaking in Sly.
5. Enter the Dragon
The Fight: Every fight in this movie is great but number one is Bruce Lee taking down Bolo Yueng, who would later gain fame as JVD’s nemesis in Blood Sport. Bruce finishing Bolo off by jumping on his chest and turning right and then left. You don’t see Bolo’s chest splattered on the ground but you get the point. You kill a friend of Dragon and you get dead.
6. True Romance
The Fight: Alabama vs. Virgil. Patricia Arquette and James Gandolfini in the hotel room. Virgil beats the shit out of Alabama and then monologues, which we all know will cost the villain everything. Alabama gets her guy with a corkscrew.
7. Road House (1989)
The FIght: The Swayze (Dalton) vs Marshall Teague (Jimmy) we just talked about this movies last week, and in other episodes. The scene begins with the Swayze saving his bff from a burning home then flying through the air to knock the bad guy off of a dirt bike. This scene also gives us the eminently quotable “I use to fuck guys like you in prison”. Also when Baddie McBaderson takes out the gun and threatens to kill the Swayze “the old fashion way” the Swayze kicks the gun out of his hand, rips out his throat and roundhouses hum into the lake. This is the fight equivalent of dropping the mic and walking away.
8. Lethal Weapon (1987)
The Fight: Mel vs Busey in loco y loco beatdown.
9. Bloodsport (1988)
The Fight: JVD had to make the list, and in every fight movie he does there is something awesome, but this is the one that started it all. This film introduced us to the herculean hammies that allow this man to suspend via splits between two moving trucks. The fight against none other than Bolo Yeung for Enter the Dragon. Bolo, afraid of losing, blinds JVD with some kind of powder, the blind JVD reaches deep and gives us some of the best pain faces in movie history.
10. They Live (1988)
The Fight: Roddy Piper vs Keith David all because Keith’s character won’t put on the special sun glasses that will allow him to see the aliens.
The Fight: Brad Pitt is suppose to throw one last fight…he doesn’t.
12. Ip Man (2008)
The Fight: The ten black belts fight. Simultaneous but plausible due to beautiful, ballet like fight choreography.
13. Grosse Pointe Blank
The Fight: Ballpoint pen to the neck in the high school hallway.
14. Way of the Dragon (1972)
The Fight: This is all about the names on the fight card. Bruce Lee vs furry, Ewok on the shoulders Chuck Norris.
Boxing: Erik Gratton
- Rocky: Not pretty or realistic, but great storytelling.
- Tough Enough: Dennis Quaid in the fight that inspired the King Hippo character in Mike Tyson’s Punch Out.
- Bad Santa: Everyone gets punched in the bards.
- The Hammer: Adam Carolla in a really good boxing movie.
- Diggstown: All of the Louis Gosstt, Jr, please.
- Snatch: The boxing stuff is all really well-done.
- Blood Sport: Donald Gibb/Bolo Yeung featuring way too much gloating by a good guy before the bell rings.
- Triumph of the Spirit: Your basic Auschwitz Boxing Movie. Willem Dafoe and Edward James Olmos.
Erik’s Bag of Crap List
- Far and Away: “Toe the Line, Gentlemen!!”
- Godfather: Oh, the trashcan.
Thats the list. Next up is Best Restaurant or Kitchen Scene.
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Until then…We’ll type at you later.