Thursday, November 19, 2015

Tuff-as-Red-Nails trailers: Goddamn Extreme Prejudice

Today's movie marketing, on average, postures biblical-levels of significance, hyperbolizing whatever given trailer content with ascending choir bombast and flash-to-black editing assaults. What major studio endeavor these days isn't sold as the next cosmic event? Comparable to those life-affirming Coke ads where drinking a bottle of carbonated corn syrup aligns you with social/familial moments of Hallmark bliss's numbing.

I like movies as much as the next guy but, Hollywood, let's stop shouting every last one of them from atop Mt. Olympus, for a change. I've nothing against going nuts with a trailer. You can be exciting, yes, absolutely; intense, even grandstanding. But skim the profoundness we all know isn't there in favor of something that more openly embraces the lurid, the salty, the absurd. And without any self-mocking winks to the audience.

Enter '80s action movie trailers, and there be no better example than Walter Hill's 1987 Extreme Prejudice. Brass tacks, holy. shit. Extreme Prejudice is awesome. Extreme Prejudice just might be the manliest movie ever made. Extreme Prejudice makes The Wild Bunch look like a slightly less feminine incarnation of Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. Seriously.

Watching this movie is like spending a muggy afternoon held-up in some seedy, cigar smoke-filled, half-dilapidated hotel room in bumfuck Nicaragua, sitting in a chair with a hooker passed out on the bed and a loaded .45 on the table, drinking two-thirds a bottle of whiskey while pouring the rest over a gunshot wound to the shoulder. THAT'S Extreme Prejudice. This movie could make Men out of eunuchs!

It's very likely that Extreme Prejudice fucked your mother.

Done justice to above harsh truth are a couple of trailers -- one teaser, one official -- that get right down to the point of what makes this movie tick. Unapologetically corny, it's as if the both proceed from the very title (barrowed directly from Apocalypse Now's CIA spook when emphasizing Colonel Kurtz' termination—Milius, who also scripts here, thus closing the loop) in promising a no-bullshit narrative of corrupt Black Ops who run head-on into lone hero, Texas Ranger badassdom, as personified by a one pissed off Nick Nolte. You'll hear a Goldsmith cue pulled from Rambo: First Blood Part II, which is appropriate given that said composer likewise scored the film in question. I could go on, waxing the rest. Instead, just see for yourself... 

This next features one of Nolte's best lines, about fear: 

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