The Weekend Rent: 5 Essential Expendables

The Weekend Rent: 5 Essential Expendables

Aug 13, 2010

Sylvester Stallone assembles a dream team of big-screen action heroes in The Expendables that is a kick-ass homage to those pectoral-powered '80s action classics. The movie that features fun cameos by Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger doesn't reinvent the wheel—it's exactly what you think it is—and that's a good thing. Before you see Stallone's return to form in theaters, you might want to check out some of the films that made the principle players of The Expendables action-film icons.

Sylvester Stallone: The Oscar-nominated actor (chew on that you film snobs) is probably best known for his six Rocky and four Rambo movies, all of which are available on both DVD and Blu-ray. The Italian Stallion also muscled his way through Cobra, Cliffhanger, Demolition Man, The Specialist, Judge Dredd and Daylight, but recently returned to the two series that made him famous with 2006's Rocky Balboa and 2008's Rambo, both strong sequels in each franchise. He plays team leader Barney Ross in The Expendables, which he also directs.

Jason Statham: Compared to most of his Expendables co-stars who’ve kicked butt since the '80s, Statham is a relative newcomer to the scene. Since his debut in Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, the heir apparent to the action throne has made his mark in three Transporter movies, two Crank movies, The Bank Job and Death Race, to name a few. He plays British-American former S.A.S. soldier Lee Christmas—an expert at close-quarters knife combat—in The Expendables.

Jet Li: The wushu master has been acting in Chinese films since 1982 but has become more familiar to American audiences over the years for his acrobatic performances in films like Fearless, Kiss of the Dragon, The One, Hero, The Warlords, The Forbidden Kingdom and as the titular baddie in The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. As Ying Yang, he has two vicious fight sequences with Dolph Lundgren in The Expendables.

Mickey Rourke: Unlike his co-stars, Mickey Rourke didn't start his career as an action hero and was better known in the '80s for often sexually charged roles in Diner, Barfly, Angel Heart, 9½ Weeks and Wild Orchid—most of which played off his then-handsome looks. Recently, a more rugged Mickey has played tough badasses in movies like Sin City, Domino, Spun, The Informers, Iron Man 2 and he even earned an Oscar nomination for his brilliant performance in The Wrestler. In The Expendables he plays Tool, the troubled owner of a tattoo parlor that serves as headquarters for Stallone and company.

Dolph Lundgren: This Swedish brick house is best known as Rocky's Russian adversary Ivan Drago in Rocky IV and as Andrew Scott in Universal Soldier and Universal Soldier: Regeneration. He also played He-Man in 1987's Masters of the Universe and Frank Castle in the first film adaptation of The Punisher in 1989. He plays loose cannon Gunner Jensen in The Expendables.

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The Burning Question

Which one of these people is in the movie Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales?

  • Gal Gadot
  • Javier Bardem
  • John Wilmot
  • Amy Adams
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Javier Bardem