Wonderfully Horrible Netflix Instant Films: Arnold Schwarzenegger’s ‘Commando’

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Go Commando

Our continuing search through the unwatchable crap on Netflix instant for the awesome caca continues with Commando starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. In 1985 Schwarzenegger was quickly becoming one of the biggest stars in Hollywood. In spite of the fact that he could barely speak English and only became famous because he was a ‘roided out body builder. Arnie was coming off the phenomenal successes of The Terminator and Conan the Barbarian, which made a buttload of deutschmarks. So, naturally when a movie about an ex-black ops soldier going after the men who kidnapped his daughter came down the Hollywood poop shoot, Arnie was a natural choice for this wonderful turd full of explosions.

They say the first image in a movie establishes the tone and story of the whole film. This movie starts with Arnold carrying an entire tree trunk through the forest. He’s building a log cabin for he and his daughter, played by Who’s the Boss star and future hottie Allyssa Milano. Arnie is a badass retired black ops green beret named John Matrix, (yes, really), even though he is obviously a recent immigrant from Austria. For reasons that are not entirely clear, a bunch of baddies kidnap Alyssa to blackmail Arnie into assassinate a Latin American dictator or something. It doesn’t really matter. He teams up with pot emperor Tommy Chong’s daughter Rae Dawn Chong also for reasons that are never exchanged. The rest of the movie is mainly explosions, shooting guys with machine guns, and Arnie snapping people’s necks like they are fistfulls of spaghetti.

What’s great about Commando is it’s total lack of pretension. It’s a horrible action movie with a thin plot strung together as a framework to hang images of stuff blowing up. Arnold doesn’t even try to play a character or deliver the dialogue in any kind of believable way. What does he care? He’s collecting a fat paycheck for just running around and fake shooting people. At least in The Terminator he had to act emotionless and as Conan he had to pretend his fur underwear wasn’t itchy. Commando is the kind of movie where your brain can just shut off for 90 minutes while stuff goes boom. That explains why it made a decent box office gross, is on the USA network every week, and always pops up on my Netflix Instant “Top 10 for Jack” list.

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