from the blog.

15 Fun Facts About Filipino Action Movies

A few fun facts about old Filipino action movies. Nowadays we don’t get many local action films. When the local movie industry died down around the 2000’s, action films died down with it. Now that local films are back, its sad to think that action films are not making a come back.

Here are a few fun facts I’ve seen on local action films around the 80’s and 90’s. Yes, I am a 90’s kid.

1. The single unarmed leading man will always be tougher and stronger than a group of armed villains. He can beat up a group of five or more people who are big enough to be bouncers or body builders.

2. The “final battle” will always occur in some sort of abandoned warehouse.

3. The leading man should have his wife/kid/brother/random friend or family member killed/imprisoned or injured early in the movie to justify his rage and all throughout the film.

4. Mistresses are acceptable but only for the leading man.

5. The enemy leader is either another tough actor that can almost switch roles with the leading man or an elderly actor playing a rich politician and/or business man.

6. No matter how rich the enemy group is, they always ride in old, beat down cars. But the very poor leading man can afford a very decent owner-type jeep or even a car.

7. Cops will always come at the end of the gunfight or fist fight between the leading man and enemy leader. All the cops will do is arrest the villains, its like they brought the big guns for no reason – no fighting for them.

7.1 Even if there is a group of heroes walking amongst the enemies when the cops come, the police will know exactly who to arrest without any help from anyone.

8. The movie should end either with the leading man and leading lady kissing or walking away, the leading man saying some catchy tag line or possibly the movie title or a hint for a sequel.

9. Any police investigation or any investigation for that matter should always include a scene in a night club.

10. Enemy guns have an angled barrel pointed to the ground, even the high-powered ones. Majority of their shots will hit the ground around the leading man. While the leading man’s gun, no matter how low-caliber, small or cheap-looking it is, seem to have heat-seeking bullets that always hit the enemies.

11. All enemy henchmen are inutil.

12. No matter how old or old-looking the protagonist is, he will have the hottest leading lady. That is even if their physical features and age gap are enough to consider them father-and-daughter in real life.

13. The leading man is either a cop, a former cop, NBI, an ex-con or a former member of the enemy organization.

14. Before the “final battle,” the villain and the leading man will say more lines of threat, stroytelling, anger and pain in a few minutes than normal people do in a lifetime. They will choose to do this even if they have their guns pointed at each other’s heads.

15. Women will always use a gun of a fallen henchmen or a stick of 2 by 2 always conveniently placed beside her when she needs one, no matter where she is.

Update: Thanks to Anon commenter at April 27, 2010 9:38 PM, I finally recalled where I first read about this topic. Revisit that book by Bob Ong, I think its Bakit Baliktad Magbasa… (the yellow one) Some of the items on here are from that book.

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  1. #9 shold – should

    This is actually our version of the wild wild west movies. Or what the Americans refer to as the Western movies. This was popular almost a decade after those black and white movies were popular in America.

    The target market, in my opinion, are of course the very masculine, very macho members of the population. This is also the times when the women in the society attached their version of Prince Charming to the reformed bad boy characters that are played on TV and foreign films.

    In movies, as much as any form of entertainment, changes as their market’s perception of the world changes. When women began to move up in the workplace leading ladies became less damsels in distresses and more bitchy nagging go-getters. (This is of course more in the action comedy movies not the old school action movies.)

    Nevertheless, these things listed are a part of a formula. When a certain formula works and people tend to “buy” into it, the industry would keep using what is trendy. Once it gets “overexposed” or “overused” then, something else would replace it.

    Still, in the defense of the police not mixing people up thing, in the story, if you notice, since the character was a former police personnel, he has this GOOD COP friend or contact who either heads the team deployed so they know which guys to arrest. ^_^ Policemen do consolidate with each other to limit the chances of hurting people who are on their side. But then again, it’s still weird. ^_^