208. Wanted: Dead or Alive (1987)

wanted

*The Warlock and Mr. America are on a snack raid at Seven-Eleven to gear up for the Superbowl between the Atlanta Falcons and the New England Patriots. Warlock is wearing a black leather jacket, HELL’S HIGHWAY t-shirt, blue jeans, white sneakers and gargoyle shades. Mr. America is wearing white cammo fatigues, vest and hat along with black combat boots and aviator shades. America is at the counter paying for his stuff while Warlock stops short of the counter to notice the DVD section. He stops, picks one up and walks behind America. Later on inside the lair America is sitting in the recliner*

America: So what abomination from the DVD section are you going to make us watch this time?

Warlock: Oh no, what I bought was for me. I have something else in mind for tonight.

America: What would that be?

Warlock: Tonight is a special IT CAME FROM YOUTUBE.

America: Oh no, not this shit again.

Warlock: Relax, this is going to be a little bit different.

America: How so?

Warlock: Because it stars a few familiar faces that will make it more interesting.

America: Why do I still not believe you?

Warlock: In any case, tonight’s movie is the 1987 movie Wanted: Dead or Alive. Steve McQueen starred in the TV show in the 50’s and it was about an old west bounty hunter. This movie stars Rutger Hauer as the descendant of Steve McQueen in a modern day setting. He has to fight a terrorist you and I are familiar with.

America: Mr. Wallstreet?

*Warlock takes his seat in the middle of the couch*

Warlock: So let’s get started with Wanted: Dead or Alive.

 

*Warlock reads the tag-line*

Warlock: “The former CIA operative in the Middle East Nick Randall is presently a bounty hunter in Los Angeles. He chases most wanted guys to get the reward and is saving money for repairing a vessel”

America: Is he related to Steven Seagal?

 

Directed by Gary Sherman

Written by Brian Taggert, Michael Patrick Goodman and Gary Sherman

 

*New World Pictures*

Warlock: This is the worst movie I’ve ever seen.

America: You haven’t even gotten past the first production credit.

 

*Opening credits to a harmonica theme*

Warlock: Are they really going to tortue us like this?

 

*Credits change from harmonica to 80’s blues rock Live Bait by Delaney Bramlett*

Warlock: That’s more like it.

 

*Nick Randall (Rutger Hauer) bellies up to the bar as a brawl occur behind him. The three bullies walk out of the bar with Nick tailing close behind*

Warlock: The song’s still catchy.

 

*A plane lands with creepy music*

Warlock: ITS GONNA BLOW!

America: Its a 747.

 

*Malak Al Rahim (Gene Simmons) is disguised as a Jewish rabbi.

Warlock: And THERE’S the person we’re all familiar with.

America: Wowwwww.

Warlock: The best part is he really is Jewish, born in Israel.

America: I know.

 

*Malak’s friend greets him at the airport and drives off with him in a van. Somebody tails the van in a station wagon. Malak and his friend speak Hebrew with the wagon tailing. The van pulls over and Malak cuts the throat of the man. The dude in the station wagon pulls up behind and Malak gets in the passenger seat as another crony drives off in the van*

Warlock: That’s what he gets for leaving the Synagogue a mess.

 

*Malik cuts his beard with scissors*

Warlock: Should have kept it for the 1988 KISS tour.

 

*The three bullies rob a liquor store with a six shooter. Nick pulls out a handcannon*

Warlock: Look at that gun.

 

*The second bully is wiped out by Nick. He then walks in the store and blasts away to scare Charlie (Tyler Tyhurst) the head bully*

Warlock: Hahaha he’s causing more damage than he’s potentially saving.

America: Let me just start blasting.

 

*Nick arrests Charlie, gives the owner a 100 dollar bill, picks up a newspaper and whacks Charlie with it out the door*

Warlock: Haha the newspaper was the best part.

America: He was giving him the latest headlines

 

*Nick calls Detective Danny Quintz (William Russ) and says he’s got cop killer Charlie Higgins with him. He wants to meet outside because he doesn’t like cops and they don’t like him. Danny walks outside*

Warlock: Its the dad from Boy Meets World.

 

*Charlie says he wasn’t read his rights so he’ll walk. Nick then reveals he’s not a cop, he’s a bounty hunter. Danny bashes his head with the trunk*

America: Haha that shut him up.

 

*Danny says to get the piece of shit out of there. Nick says to meet in 5 minutes to discuss payment*

Warlock: A lost art these days.

 

*Nick makes it to a warehouse where he lives. He’s got weight benches, motorcycles, targets, etc. Nick puts on the radio to some new wave song and throws a basketball against the wall*

Warlock: You got Gene Simmons in the cast, you couldn’t have picked better songs?

 

*Nick pulls the wanted poster of Charlie off the board and puts back his handcannon on the wall with about 10 other handcannons*

America: That is a lot of fire power.

 

*Malak speaks with Robert Aziz (Eli Danker)*

Warlock: Good god, he’s in all those god awful American Heroes movies.

 

*Nick tells Danny he wants 40 grand. Danny says his wife Louise (Susan MacDonald) washes his back. Nick needs to find a nice lady. Nick says he’s dating a stewardess named Terry (Mel Harris) while playing the harmonica. Danny says “3 months? That’s like a silver anniversary for you.” Danny continues to rant*

America: He’d answer but he’s too distracted by his harmonica. If 3 months is a miracle for this guy, why doesn’t he just break out into a damn blues song?

 

*Nick signs the paperwork and says he didn’t tell Terry what he does, but what he used to do. He and Danny mug around*

America: That’ll change.

 

*Danny tries to tell Nick that he could come back. Nick says he’ll bring in a few more bad guys then retire with his boat. Danny says Nick misses being on combat. Meanwhile Malak’s gang prepares a job*

Warlock: He’s having some Crazy Nights isn’t he?

America: All I know is he’s heading to see Rambo and plans on having a blast.

 

*Malak leaves his date to the movies and enters through the employees only entrance*

Warlock: I’ve heard of sneaking into the movies but sneaking into the employee lounge?

 

*Malak sets a bomb and leaves with his date. He uses a payphone to call Morrison (RJ Miller) and says its Malak Al Rahim. He claims others will take credit for what he’s about to do and Morrison says Malak is supposed to be in South Yemen. Malak says “You’ll know it was me” and he blows the movie theater*

Warlock: C’mon, Rambo wasn’t THAT bad.

 

*Nick goes down to the docks on the HMS Bounty*

Warlock: Ha-ha-ha…..

 

*Nick gets there and Terry is there. They share romantic bonding*

Warlock: We’re not wasting any time are we?

America: They did establish they’ve been in a relationship for 3 months.

Warlock: I meant they went right to the sex scene.

America: It hasn’t been much of a scene yet.

Warlock: Yeah because he landed on the book she was reading.

 

*Nick says his grandfather used to tell him stories of his father Joshua in the old west*

Warlock: That was Steve McQueen in the Wanted show.

 

*Nick plays harmonica. Terry “That’s terrible.”

Warlock: She’s right.

 

*Nick wears a Chicago Bears t-shirt while preparing breakfast for Terry on the boat. Terry watches on TV how the bombing killed 138 people. The newscaster says Malak Al Rahim took credit. Philmore Walker (Robert Guilluame) walks in and says hi to both of them. He wants to speak with Nick alone and they walk along the dock*

Warlock: Heh, its Rafiki from Lion King.

 

*Phil wants Nick to take down to Malak Al Rahim. Nick laughs at Phil and says they got 4,000 guys to choose from. Phil says they need the best. Nick says it was 3 years ago and he’s got his own scams now*

America: Yeah really, of all the law enforcement people, HE is better than all of them?

 

*Phil says if Nick takes the job, he’ll watch his back. Nick says who would know? Phil says John Lipton (Jerry Hardin). Nick says he gets 50 grand for killing him, 100 grand alive. Phil says don’t worry about Terry, she just got called back to work*

Warlock: Sneaky bastards.

 

*Phil and Nick check out the theater. Nick finds a doll on the ground*

Warlock: The doll won best supporting actor.

America: What???

 

*Malak and Jamilla (Suzanne Wouk) look at the pictures of Nick. Malak says he’s been wanting to kill him for a long time*

Warlock: There’s your one on one at the end.

 

*A car pulls up to the dock where Nick is*

America: Either the CIA are tailing him or Gene’s crew are scouting him.

 

*Phil calls Nick he’s being bugged but not by him. Phil tells Nick about the detonator they found and who it belongs to. 8 are unaccounted for*

Warlock: 8 bombs unaccounted for.

 

*Nick bags the detonator*

Warlock: Why doesn’t he put a peanut butter and jelly sandwhich in there too?

America: Why???

Warlock: He may get hungry later.

America: Oyyyyyy.

 

*Nick spots the guy tailing him and threatens him with a knife to go away. The dude says Nick is under protective surveillance*

Warlock: He’s the one that needs protection.

 

*Danny rides up on his motorcycle. Danny says they got the guy who stole the 8 detonators who’s named Luis Sanchez (Jesse Aragon). Nick wants to talk to the Luis. Danny asks what this is about. Nick says make the call. Danny says the bullseye is back on Nick’s head. We cut to the interrogation room. Danny and Nick grill Luis. Nick tells Danny to get the coffee*

Warlock: We’re about to see a asswhopping.

 

*Danny watches the door as Nick browbeats Luis. Sanchez says he sold the detonators to a guy named Farnsworth (Dennis Burkley). Farnsworth complains that wrestling is on and his wife (Dee Dee Rescher) is a lousy cook*

Warlock: That’s not WWF or WCW.

 

*Farnsworth’s bell rings and Nick just walks in. He starts going through the guy’s stuff with Farnsworth complaining the whole way. Nick grills him about Luis. Farnsworth admits the scam that’s going on. Nick strangles him and asks who he sold the detonators to. Farnsworth’s wife says the guns and shit are in the garage. Nick grabs a picture and says “You survived Nam didn’t you?” Farnsworth “Yeah.”  Nick “That’s a shame, a lot of good guys didn’t.”

Warlock: That’s gonna make him feel like complete shit, good.

 

*Nick says Farnsworth gave up the contact, Abdul Renza (Gerald Papasian). He’s a student at UCLA and Nick says to tell Lipton to pull surveillance*

Warlock: That won’t work.

 

*Malak goes over the battle plans with Aziz and more men. He says if it works, 30,000 people will be dead*

Warlock: He’d be the greatest terrorist of all time.

 

*Nick gets a call from Phil. Phil tells him where to find Nick. Phil then calls another line and says “All clear huh?”

Warlock: Something’s wrong.

 

*Lipton meets with Dave Henderson (Robert Harper), Patrick Donoby (Hugh Gillin). Henderson was the guy that Nick made earlier. Phil tells Lipton that he’s zeroed in on Abdul. Lipton wants to send backup, Phil catches him lying and leaves*

Warlock: Let’s play “Who can ya trust?”

 

*Henderson calls a pizza shop and a series of goons walk out with detonators*

Warlock: Oh great.

 

*Nick gets a call from Phil and says “Watch your back” and right on cue, Nick is detained. Back at Malak’s place, he gets a note then crumples it up*

Warlock: Somebody is working with Malak.

 

*Henderson tells the beat cops to let Nick go. The beat cop says Nick needs to be more careful*

America: Condescending douche.

 

*Renza is being tailed by his own men and Nick. The goons plug Renza and Nick hightails it out of there with Renza in the car, tailing the assassins. Malak reveals it was part of the plan. Nick grills Renza about who sent him. He doesn’t answer, we get a chase scene*

Warlock: Oh boy, a chase scene.

 

*Renza says he’s working for Robert Aziz. Nick caps a terrorist and runs him over*

Warlock: Ohahahaha yeah!

 

*Nick caps the second guy who runs out with a bomb. He suicide bombs himself and takes out a few cops. Nick grabs Lipton and throws him around. He holds a knife to him but Philmore stops him. Lipton “Get that out of my face or you’re a deadman.” Nick wants the truth why he was the bait. Lipton says Beruit, 1978. Nick killed 4 of 5 guys he was supposed to kill. Malak was the 5th who got away. Lipton taunts Nick about Malak being alive and Nick cuts his tie off. Lipton continues to taunt Nick as Nick drives off*

Warlock: You get all that?

America: Yeah.

 

*Lipton tells Henderson to screw, Donoby says this has gone far enough. Phil “Next time you decide to fuck me Lipton, kiss me first.”

Warlock: Heh.

America: Pfft.

 

*Nick figures out he’s being tailed again as he drives with Abdul still in the car. Meanwhile Henderson enters the pizza shop. Amir (Nick Faltas) tells Henderson that everything’s going to be ok. In the back, Amir and Ahmad knock him out and throw him in a dumpster*

Warlock: In the garbage right where he belongs.

 

*Nick loses the tail but figures out Abdul is dead*

Warlock: Now you got a carcass.

 

*Nick escapes though the sewer*

Warlock: He can shack up with the Ninja Turtles.

 

*Next day Lipton is informed Nick gave them the slip*

Warlock: The dude’s gonna get the pink slip now.

 

*Nick makes it back to the surface*

Warlock: He’s gonna need a shower.

 

*Back at the pizza shop, Amir turns out the lights. An agent reports to Lipton that Henderson went in but never came out. Donoby is pissed at Lipton. Donoby hands him a list of shit Farnsworth sold to Abdul. Donoby says something big is going down. Next frame is Henderson spilling his guts to Hasson (Joseph Nasser) and Malak. Malak shoots him in the foot and thigh*

America: Ow.

 

*Malak hands a knife to Hasson and we cut to the boat. Nick grabs Terry and tells her she has to leave. He says he’s being followed and its only business*

Warlock: He’s spending more time evading police than he is trying to catch Malak.

 

*Nick tells Terry he loves her, romance scene*

America: *Fakes falling asleep*

Warlock: *Really does fall asleep*

 

*Terry hands Nick a harmonica*

America: Hey wake up, we got another harmonica.

Warlock: *Wakes up* I’m gonna stomp on it.

 

*Guy sits at the docks*

Warlock: “Strange weather we’re havin…rain…drought…snow…and all in the same dang week.”

 

*Phil meets the dude who says Terry’s on the boat. Phil drives off. Danny gets a call in bed from Nick and Louise is miffed. He says his raincoat is waiting for him in a garbage can. Nick tells Danny to pretend to be him for a bit so he can work, if he fails, Nick will tell Louise about the motorcycle. Danny grabs a blonde wig and kisses Louise goodbye*

Warlock: Hahahahahaha

 

*Phil watches as Danny drives up disguised as Nick. Phil watches from the car but smells a rat. Danny jumps in the boat and kisses Terry, introducing himself. He says if they don’t get out of there soon, they won’t know he’s not Nick. Danny hits the ignition and KABOOOOOOOM!*

Warlock and America: Woahhhhhh

 

*Phil is distraught. He has to be restrained from going after the boat. Aziz in scuba gear smiles and swims away. Phil calls Lipton and says Nick is dead. Phil has to report back for reassignment. Nick hiding in the backseat puts a gun to Phil’s head. Nick wants to know the truth and who is involved. Nick says it hurts because he just lost his best friend. Phil “15 years Nick, 15 goddamn years.” Nick “I want Malak, help me.” Phil says whatever he wants. Nick wants Robert Aziz and hugs Phil*

Warlock: If Phil is in on it, that’s a hell of an acting performance.

 

*Nick watches on the news that he’s pronounced dead. They show a photograph of Malak on the news and Nick blows away the TV with a handcannon*

Warlock: Great, now you gotta buy a new tv.

 

*Nick gets a call from Phil. He gives Nick the address to Aziz*

Warlock: Half hour left, time for some payback.

 

*Sendrax barrels are being loaded at the warehouse. All of them are being loaded with plastic explosives by Aziz. Meanwhile Malak says he’s taking responsibility for what’s about to happen. Meanwhile Nick rides Danny’s motorcycle to the warehouse*

Warlock: Ready for some asswhooping?

America: Uh uh.

 

*Nick breaks into Aziz’ known address. He sniffs some milk*

Warlock: And he throws up….

 

*Nick finds shaving cream*

Warlock: Gillette….bastards.

 

*Nick finds crates of dynamite and more explosives*

Warlock: Recognize any of that shit?

 

*Nick clears space as Aziz returns to his lair with a switchblade flicked*

Warlock: They know he’s coming.

 

*Nick finds the scuba gear and gets enraged*

Warlock: Oh this is gonna get UGLY.

 

*Aziz sneaks up the stairs with his knife*

America: The dude left his motorcycle at the front door.

 

*Nick beats up Aziz, throws him in a locker and cocks his handcannon. Aziz refuses to give him the address. Nick starts unloading into the locker and Aziz gives up the base of operations. Nick throws the locker down some stairs. Donoby then gets a tip that Aziz has been apprehended as the news says more car bombings have taken place*

Warlock: Ready for the big finale?

America: A motorcycle isn’t exactly quiet, so why would you use it to drive up to the warehouse?

 

*Nick climbs the wall*

Warlock: What’s he doing?

America: He’s infiltrating.

 

*Lipton, Phil and Donoby pull up to Aziz place. Phil recognizes the gunfire as Nick’s work. They browbeat Aziz*

Warlock: Well their hearts are in the right place even if Nick beat them to it.

 

*Lipton finds Malak’s address on a piece of paper and asks if it means anything. Aziz takes Phil’s gun and shoots himself in the mouth. Lipton “I guess it does mean something”

Warlock: Hahaha, one less goon to worry about.

 

*The terrorists drive a truck of explosives to a power plant. Phil, Lipton, Donoby and the police surround Malak’s penthouse. We get a shootout that ends after a few shots with an agent dead but also a terrorist while the rest surrender. Phil finds the battle plans and Lipton browbeats a random goon for the location of the power plant. Nick is already there*

Warlock: Nick is 3 steps ahead of them.

 

*Lipton, Donoby and Phil figure out the explosives are headed to Sendrax Chemicals. Nick beats up the guards as Jamilla and Malak plow through the gates and start shooting. Malak spots Nick chasing the van with a mack truck. Nick continuously rams into the van*

Warlock: My dad would love this.

 

*Lipton, Donoby and Phil are caught in traffic*

Warlock: How do you get caught in traffic at 3 in the morning?

America: I love how if this was an emergency, why did they wait that long to start the sirens?

 

*The police pull up to Sendrax and start investigating. Random goons pop out of barrels and Nick continues to run them all over*

Warlock: Hahahaha

 

*Jamilla disobeys Malak and he shoots her in the head*

Warlock: I HATE “take out your own guy”

 

*Malak then commandeers the van as Nick plows into it. Terrorists jump out the back of the van and Nick blows them away. Nick grabs a machine gun as he spots Malak running for it*

Warlock: One on one.

 

*Donoby, Phil and Lipton show up to Sendrax and the beat cops tell them Nick was chasing Malak*

Warlock: He went thataway! *Points left?

America: No no no he went thisaway *points right*

 

*Malak and Nick play cat and mouse*

Warlock: Oh boy, cat and mouse, exciting isn’t it?

America: Mmmhmmm.

 

*Malak tosses a grenade and heaves it at Nick. He thinks he’s got him so he runs over to investigate. All he finds is a gun and a knife. Nick kicks him in the head*

Warlock: Now we get to see if Gene can fight.

 

*Nick beats the shit out of Malak while screaming “Kill me or I’ll kill you.” Nick continues to beat him up. Malak “You sonovabitch.” Nick knees him in the ribs a few times then cuffs him. Malak “Kill me, I’m not a criminal. I’m a soldier and I deserve to die like a soldier.” Nick “You’re no soldier.” He puts a grenade in Malak’s mouth “You’re not a soldier, you’re a fly on a pile of shit.” Nick brings out Malak with the grenade still in and Lipton says Phil has some explaining to do. Nick confronts Lipton and says “Less than a week, still alive. You owe me some money.” Nick then forces Lipton to pay 250 grand to Louise, Danny’s widow. He’ll pick up the bonus himself. Nick grabs Malak and says “Fuck the bonus” before pulling the pin. Everyone clears out and Malak’s head blows*

Warlock: That was cool.

 

*Nick sits on a pile of rocks and plays the harmonica*

Warlock: His girl is dead, his best friend is dead, he just blew 250 grand…..now what?

 

*End credits*

Warlock: Its over.

America: *Yawns*

 

Mr. America’s Assesment: I give it a 4.5

The Warlock’s Assessment: I give it a 6.5. I really liked it and for a cheesy 80’s action movie, it did very well. Easy to follow plot and a satisfying ending.

Final Grade: 5.5 out of 10 – Above Average.

 

*Warlock rises from the couch*

Warlock: That was better than I expected. Gene Simmons playing a terrorist was surreal considering he’s a real life Israeli Jew. Maybe somewhere down the line he’ll do a movie where he’s apart of the Mossad. As for the movie itself, typical 80’s action cheese but done well. Definitely an homage to the original Wanted: Dead or Alive with Steve McQueen. That about wraps up another adventure….

*Warlock pulls out a harmonica and starts playing*

America: Oh god no, Warlock, please.

*Warlock keeps playing*

America: Fuck this.

*America gets up and leaves. Warlock stops playing*

Warlock: Have a pleasant evening.

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