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Steven Seagal Movies (2003 - 2021) The Good, The Bad & The Ugly


DragonClaws
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Steven Seagal Movies (2003 - 2021)  The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Most readers/fans here at Kung Fu Fandom Forums, will be well-aware of Steven Seagal’s out-put over the last fourteen years. If you are a fan of the tall guy's movies or not, he's certainly churning them out as fast as his Aikido moves. Sadly it's been a case of quantity over quality with these productions. I was surprised to hear in a recent interview with Matthias Hues, on the KFMG pod-cast. That the only independent actioners that now really sell, are Steven Seagal and Van Damme movies.

Despite the fact many of these films are not that good, there's still clearly money to be made from them. You would think after years of making duds, you would assume the audience would no longer be there?. Just who is buying these film though?, when you hear about many long terms fans now giving up on the stars latest work. How many other actors/actress's could appear in this many duds, and still keep getting regular work and keep his fan base?. I've only caught a handful of his recent productions on T.V, and gave up buying them on DVD years ago. Here's a quote from @KUNG FU BOB, from a recent post on the forum.

Quote

I am a fan of Seagal's older movies, and continued to watch his films even after they began to be pretty bad (sometimes dreadful). In fact, I only finally gave up on watching them about 4 movies ago.

I think the above quote sums up how many people view the stars work now, sadly. It will be interesting to see if Attrition(currently in post production) will buck the trend and see Seagal's movie career take a different direction?. According to IMDB, Above The Law 2 has been announced, I'm not sure how much truth there is to this announcement on the site?. For many years, there was talk of a third Under Siege movie, but that project appears to have gone cold again.

No way was I brave enough to re-watch any of these films, to do a true in-depth look at his recent filmography. Yet,  I thought it would be interesting to hear others fans views on his recent work, are there any good ones??, or do they fall more into the bad and ugly catagory?.

 

steven_seagal-zoom.jpg?1375788558

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ShaOW!linDude

Whew! For minute there based on your thread's title, I thought Seagal had descended into ripping off Clint Eastwood for movie titles.

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I cannot say that I've watched a lot of his latter day films (or the edited together TV episode rubbish). All I can say is that for my money, Machete is probably the best film he's been involved with in the last decade or so (and it says something that it's a glorified cameo in 2010!). I've watched one or two of the straight to DVD films, he descended into self parody long ago, with any genuine martial arts prowess rendered laughable by the avid use of a body double that is somewhat different in shape than he currently is, to put it as nicely as I can!

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2 hours ago, SamSeed said:

I cannot say that I've watched a lot of his latter day films (or the edited together TV episode rubbish). All I can say is that for my money, Machete is probably the best film he's been involved with in the last decade or so (and it says something that it's a glorified cameo in 2010!).

It's sad to say the Machete role was his last decent part in a movie, and like you pointed out, it's an extended cameo really.

3 hours ago, ShaOW!linDude said:

Whew! For minute there based on your thread's title, I thought Seagal had descended into ripping off Clint Eastwood for movie titles.

There was talk of him doing a re-mak of the Sergio Leone classic, with him playing all three main roles, thanks to cutting edge CGI. Thankfully that's just a bad joke on my part, before anyone posts about it elsewhere on a Blog/Fourm/Social Media.

Wonder if there's any who can claim to have watched all his post 2003 DTV work?.

 

5f8f7c77-2e2b-40f1-bc58-ebcec9c2ce8b_1.6

 

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Fist of the Heavenly Sky

Perhaps not the best thread to ask this question, but what would be the perfect gateway movie(s) for getting into the Seagal filmography?

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3 minutes ago, lonesome space said:

Perhaps not the best thread to ask this question, but what would be the perfect gateway movie(s) for getting into the Seagal filmography?

I would say pretty much any of his 80s output, though I think Under Siege is probably the best place to start. When paired with a good action director Seagal can really deliver. It's a shame he hasn't done it recently!

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3 hours ago, lonesome space said:

Perhaps not the best thread to ask this question, but what would be the perfect gateway movie(s) for getting into the Seagal filmography?

I'd say any film he made from Nico(1988) to The Glimmer Man, though some fans say that The Glimmer Man was the start of his decline on-screen?. Exit Wounds was an entertaining come back, but he failed to appear in any stand out roles after that.

3 hours ago, SamSeed said:

When paired with a good action director Seagal can really deliver. It's a shame he hasn't done it recently!

Let's just hope the right director hanldes the Nico/Above The Law sequel, if it ever happens.

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One Armed Boxer
3 hours ago, lonesome space said:

Perhaps not the best thread to ask this question, but what would be the perfect gateway movie(s) for getting into the Seagal filmography?

Hands down it's 'Out for Justice'.  All of his Aikido skills are on display, it's ridiculously violent, and the script is a hoot.

'Under Siege' is his most commercial movie, but he does surprisingly little martial arts in it.  In terms of entertainment value, the sequel is superior.

16 hours ago, DragonClaws said:

Wonder if there's any who can claim to have watched all his post 2003 DTV work?.

If it would be anyone, then it has to be Vern.  I picked up his book 'Seagalogy: A Study of the Ass-Kicking Films of Steven Seagal' back when it hit the shelves in '08, and it was a hugely entertaining read, actually analysiing each and every one of Seagal's movies up to that point.  He released an updated version in 2012, but even since then the big man has released a further 12 movies, he's cranking them out at a rate which is too difficult to keep up with.

51bTxwruOjL._SX326_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

23 hours ago, DragonClaws said:

Yet,  I thought it would be interesting to hear others fans views on his recent work, are there any good ones??, or do they fall more into the bad and ugly catagory?.

Most definitely fall into the 'bad and ugly' category, however, there's a few diamonds in the rough.

Both 2007's 'Urban Justice' (re-titled 'Renegade Justice' in the UK) and 2008's 'Pistol Whipped' feel like genuine throw backs to Seagal's bone crunching heyday.  'Pistol Whipped' leans more towards being a thriller, however it has Lance Henriksen, and Seagal has his "I'm not taking any bullshit from anyone" attitude cranked up to 11, it's a lot of fun.  Similar deal with 'Urban Justice', but with more action.

'Out for a Kill' and 'Belly of the Beast', both from 2003, have a nice Asian flavour to them.  The latter of which in particular was directed by Ching Siu-Tung, so you a least get some of his trademark action beats in there, but with Seagal as the protagonist.  Ironically I was really looking forward to 2005's 'Into the Sun', as it was filmed on location in Seagal's old stomping ground of Tokyo, however the movie is a complete dud.

The attempted franchise that has Seagal playing the Jonathan Cold character, with 2003's 'The Foreigner' and 2005's 'Black Dawn', are also completely awful.

Not in any way a good movie, but for the sheer bizarreness of it, 2004's 'Out of Reach' is hard to beat.  Featuring Seagal as a bird loving ex covert agent who has a pen pal friendship with a Polish girl, once she gets kidnapped by a human trafficking ring, it turns out he also has a psychic connection with her.  This movie probably holds the record for the amount of times Seagal's voice is dubbed by someone trying to sound like Seagal, and he frequently has a body double even for shots in which he's just walking away from the camera.  It's weird, and something about it rendered me unable to turn it off.  
 

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19 minutes ago, One Armed Boxer said:

If it would be anyone, then it has to be Vern.  I picked up his book 'Seagalogy: A Study of the Ass-Kicking Films of Steven Seagal' back when it hit the shelves in '08, and it was a hugely entertaining read, actually analysiing each and every one of Seagal's movies up to that point.  He released an updated version in 2012, but even since then the big man has released a further 12 movies, he's cranking them out at a rate which is too difficult to keep up with.

After asking that queestion, I then realized that knowone's going to want to admit to seeking out all his DTV work.

Sounds like a fun read, regarding the Steven Seagalogy book.

19 minutes ago, One Armed Boxer said:

ot in any way a good movie, but for the sheer bizarreness of it, 2004's 'Out of Reach' is hard to beat.  Featuring Seagal as a bird loving ex covert agent who has a pen pal friendship with a Polish girl, once she gets kidnapped by a human trafficking ring, it turns out he also has a psychic connection with her.  This movie probably holds the record for the amount of times Seagal's voice is dubbed by someone trying to sound like Seagal, and he frequently has a body double even for shots in which he's just walking away from the camera.  It's weird, and something about it rendered me unable to turn it off.  

I watched this one with the girlfriend and we couldn't stop laughing at it. Just the fact he has a pen pal, and on top of that she's a young kid.

I've never understood the random body doubling, when its not even for a fight scene. He can often be billed as a star, when he's only in a movie for a small amount of time, like in the film Against The Dark for example. I sometimes wonder if he justs sit at home infront of a Green Screen at times. Then sends out multple clips to different producers, and they just insert them into a movie. I'm only joking when I say this, but when you consider movies like Out Of Reach, its not so far fetched.

 

Out Of Reach(2004)

004OOR_Steven_Seagal_064.jpg

Edited by DragonClaws
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4 hours ago, DragonClaws said:

I watched this one with the girlfriend and we couldn't stop laughing at it. Just the fact he has a pen pal, and on top of that she's a young kid.

Yep, 'Out of Reach' is 'The Room' of Seagal's filmography, hilarious from start to finish.

It's been almost a decade since I read Vern's book, but if I remember correctly, apparently in a lot of Seagal's early DTV work he was pitched a completely different type of movie from the ones that ended up being released.  So in some cases, in order to fit into the re-jigged plot that got hastily put together in post-production, the producers needed extra dialogue or shots of Seagal, hence the constant voice/body doubling that was so blatant in those early DTV efforts.  Sounds like a modern day case of Godfrey Ho/Richard Harrison shenanigans.:smile

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4 hours ago, One Armed Boxer said:

It's been almost a decade since I read Vern's book, but if I remember correctly, apparently in a lot of Seagal's early DTV work he was pitched a completely different type of movie from the ones that ended up being released.  So in some cases, in order to fit into the re-jigged plot that got hastily put together in post-production, the producers needed extra dialogue or shots of Seagal, hence the constant voice/body doubling that was so blatant in those early DTV efforts.  Sounds like a modern day case of Godfrey Ho/Richard Harrison shenanigans.:smile

Thanks for sharing that bit of information.

That explains a lot, Seagal should have teamed up with Issac Florentine a long time ago.

 

He might be taking a break from movies soon?, so he can get into fighting shape for this....

 

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maxresdefault.jpg

 

One of the few Seagal movies from the past fourteen years that I was actually curious to see, but never got round to watching.

Anyone have any thoughts on this title?.

 

Edited by DragonClaws
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1 hour ago, DragonClaws said:

 

One of the few Seagal movies from the past fourteen years that I was actually curious to see, but never got round to watching.

Anyone have any thoughts on this title?.

I haven't seen this one @DragonClaws...but interestingly at 0:52 I believe there may be one of the first sightings of what would soon become the permanently affixed orange tinted shades, so a historically significant movie in that regard.

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ShaOW!linDude

For me, Above The Law (Seagal's initial film) and Marked For Death (his 3rd with nice occult plot to it) are his best. Out For Justice just disappointed the crap out of me except for how he finishes off the villain. I think it was the beret. That just looked goofy on him. 

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21 hours ago, One Armed Boxer said:

I haven't seen this one @DragonClaws...but interestingly at 0:52 I believe there may be one of the first sightings of what would soon become the permanently affixed orange tinted shades, so a historically significant movie in that regard.

LOL if this movie is the official debut of the orange sunny G's, I might even purchase this one.

15 hours ago, ShaOW!linDude said:

For me, Above The Law (Seagal's initial film) and Marked For Death (his 3rd with nice occult plot to it) are his best. Out For Justice just disappointed the crap out of me except for how he finishes off the villain. I think it was the beret. That just looked goofy on him. 

Surprised you didnt dig Out For Jutice dude, doesnt he only wear the beret at the start of the movie?. Agree on it looking goofy though.

 

Beret and sleevelss top, now thats some unqiue look for a cop.

the-critical-guide-to-steven-seagal-out-

 

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I would start my expedition into the realm of Steven Seagal with "Out for Justice". It's a straight-forward urban action movie with great and very violent action but has already enough of those strange Seagal-moments that make his films stand out of the action crowd. Regarding his DTV-movies, I literally watched them all (including last years heap of garbage) and I consider "Belly of the Beast", "Pistol Whipped", "Urban Justice" and "A Dangerous Man" the best of them. Crazy films like "Today You Die", "Mercenary for Justice", "Submerged" or "Out For A Kill" are also highly entertaining. But best to forget everything he made since 2010, the movies get cheaper and more boring every year.

Edited by kami
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I recommend the keeper, born to raise hell, maximum conviction, absolution and end of a gun. Driven to kill was ok. Only boxing. No Aikido

Edited by LoBo
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On 12/10/2017 at 4:53 AM, ShaOW!linDude said:

Out For Justice just disappointed the crap out of me except for how he finishes off the villain. I think it was the beret. That just looked goofy on him. 

The Video Movie Guide 1997 (what some referred to as an unpretentious alternative to the Leonard Maltin Movie Guide, even though they practically dismissed Euro-horror and Eurosploitation films almost out of pure instinct) gave Out for Justice four-and-a-half out of five stars and said it was the best martial arts film out of them all. Keep in mind they gave the first POLICE STORY (well, the dubbed POLICE FORCE verson) a BOMB/Turkey rating.

23 minutes ago, LoBo said:

recommend the keeper, born to raise hell, maximum conviction, absolution and end of a gun. Driven to kill was ok. Only boxing. No Aikido

MAXIMUM CONVICTION didn't "wow" me very much, with its finale consisting of Seagal manhandling Michael Paré for 30 seconds before pushing him into a proximity mine.

DRIVEN TO KILL (aka RUSLAN) was pretty good.

KILL SWITCH had some of the longest Seagal fights, even though they were filmed in a way that it was clear he was using a double for most of the fights. It's also a spectacularly-unpleasant film.

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21 hours ago, kami said:

Regarding his DTV-movies, I literally watched them all (including last years heap of garbage) and I consider "Belly of the Beast", "Pistol Whipped", "Urban Justice" and "A Dangerous Man" the best of them. Crazy films like "Today You Die", "Mercenary for Justice", "Submerged" or "Out For A Kill" are also highly entertaining. But best to forget everything he made since 2010, the movies get cheaper and more boring every year

You deserve a special medal @kami, just for enduring all those movies man.

It's not a good sign when his more recent efforts, make the likes of Belly Of The Beast and Mercenary For Justice better than they actually are.

13 hours ago, LoBo said:

Driven to kill was ok. Only boxing. No Aikido

Is that the one where he beats the main villian to a pulp with a hammer?.

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30 minutes ago, DragonClaws said:

You deserve a special medal @kami, just for enduring all those movies man.

It's not a good sign when his more recent efforts, make the likes of Belly Of The Beast and Mercenary For Justice better than they actually are.

Is that the one where he beats the main villian to a pulp with a hammer?.

I don't remember. I wasn't so impressed by the fights, since he only did boxing punches.

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13 hours ago, DrNgor said:

The Video Movie Guide 1997 (what some referred to as an unpretentious alternative to the Leonard Maltin Movie Guide, even though they practically dismissed Euro-horror and Eurosploitation films almost out of pure instinct) gave Out for Justice four-and-a-half out of five stars and said it was the best martial arts film out of them all. Keep in mind they gave the first POLICE STORY (well, the dubbed POLICE FORCE verson) a BOMB/Turkey rating.

MAXIMUM CONVICTION didn't "wow" me very much, with its finale consisting of Seagal manhandling Michael Paré for 30 seconds before pushing him into a proximity mine.

DRIVEN TO KILL (aka RUSLAN) was pretty good.

KILL SWITCH had some of the longest Seagal fights, even though they were filmed in a way that it was clear he was using a double for most of the fights. It's also a spectacularly-unpleasant film.

At least I think maximum conviction had better and more fights than for ex out of reach, where he just threw people into walls. 

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3 hours ago, LoBo said:

I don't remember. I wasn't so impressed by the fights, since he only did boxing punches.

I might be mixing it up with another one of his films.

Check out the trailer below, to hear Seagals Russian accent, probably theonly highlight of the film.

 

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Yes. I would like it more if he did aikido. He didn't even do he usual aikido strikes in the film. I believe he also knows wing chun.  People have said he had used it in several movies like belly of the beast, out for a kill, into the sun and glimmer man and so on. 

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It's currently Steven Seagl week on Sony Movies U.K, which is pretty much most weeks they screen so many of his DTV productions.

I happened to switch onto the channel last night, when Contract To Kill(2016) had just started. I managed to endure about thirty minutes, then switched it off. Shortly after a Machine Gun carrying drone, filled some characters car full of lead. While Seagal looked as confused as I did watching it. The film featured some overly long and overly boring scenes of characters talking. I didn't see the Tall Guy throw a single punch, een his double didnt throw a single punch. I didnt stay up for the following movie Killing Salazar(2016).

Tonight the Song channel will be showing Pistol Whipped(2008).

 

Contract To Kill, proof the movie does feature some action.

Contract-to-Kill-3.jpg

 

Edited by DragonClaws
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38 minutes ago, DragonClaws said:

I happened to switch onto the channel last night, when Contract To Kill(2016) had just started. I managed to endure about thirty minutes, then switched it off. Shortly after a Machine Gun carrying drone, filled some characters car full of lead. While Seagal looked as confused as I did watching it. The film featured some overly long and overly boring scenes of characters talking. I didn't see the Tall Guy throw a single punch, een his double didnt throw a single punch.

Definitely one of Seagal's worst, this one has no redeeming features whatsoever. It ranks as one of only a couple of movies (the other being 'Kung Fu Yoga') that I've given a 1/10 score to in my time reviewing for COF. -

http://cityonfire.com/contract-to-kill-2016-review-steven-seagal-keoni-waxman/

38 minutes ago, DragonClaws said:

I didnt stay up for the following movie Killing Salazar(2016).

Interesting that this one maintained its original title for the UK, in the US it got switched to 'Cartels' for its eventual release. It's 100 times better than 'Contract to Kill', mainly due to Seagal not being the main star, & a cast comprised of martial artists & stunt guys. I gave it the full review treatment here -

http://cityonfire.com/cartels-aka-killing-salazar-2016-review-steven-seagal-georges-st-pierre-luke-goss-darren-e-scott/

38 minutes ago, DragonClaws said:

Tonight the Song channel will be showing Pistol Whipped(2008).

As I mentioned in an earlier post, for me it's a toss up between this & 'Urban Justice' as the high point of his DTV work. 'Pistol Whipped' doesn't have a high action quota, but Seagal's in full on not taking crap from anyone mode throughout, which makes it a fun watch.

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