Review:”Action Jackson”(1988) – ManlyMovie

Review:”Action Jackson”(1988)

Over the course of history there have been a few individuals with the last name Jackson that have achieve greatness and in the process wealth and fame. Those include for example the seventh president of the United States of America Andrew Jackson, baseball legend Reggie Jackson, Michael Jackson & the rest of his crazy family.

But on February 12th 1988, american audiences were introduced to the manliest Jackson of all, “Action Jackson”. The 1980s were great time for manly action cinema, as a matter fact, this movie opened the same weekend as another great action thriller from the era “Shoot to Kill” starring Tom Berenger , Sidney Poitier & Clancy Brown. And a couple of weeks later the Jean Claude Van Damme classic “Bloodsport” was released in theaters. Yep, let that sink in for a moment.
Spoiled, indeed, we were.
The 1980s were a great time for manly action movies & “Action Jackson” is a great example of why we love the era so much. A time when men could be blatant, unapologetic heterosexuals, a time when men had the wit to deliver funny one-liners as they kicked someone’s ass. We love these movies because they had car chases, shootouts, explosions, fighting, great one liners, cool soundtracks and hot female nudity. “Action Jackson” delivered in all these categories.
Manly man Carl Weathers plays a tough,  badass Detroit cop named Jericho Jackson, also known as Action Jackson.
Action Jackson is no run-of-the-mill cop you see, he was a track star in high school, then he went and got a Harvard law degree and now he kicks ass in the streets of Detroit Michigan putting human trash behind bars where they belong. But the story sadly begins in a low point in Action Jackson’s life. You see he lost his Lieutenant stripes because two years prior he arrested a sexual deviant and while doing so, he gave him a taste of Action Jackson Justice & he beat his ass. Unfortunately as a result he was punished by the department and was demoted back to Sergeant. Turns out the pervert was the son of a very important man in the city, auto magnate Peter Dellaplane played by the great Graig T. Nelson. Strings were pulled, so the great Action Jackson got a demotion.
But Peter Dellaplane has plans to obtain even greater power so he starts systematically eliminating his competition. Action Jackson suspects Dellaplane of wrongdoing but nobody believes him because they think he has a vendetta against him, so against his captain wishes he sets out to investigate the evil industrialist bastard. Let the fun begin.
 One thing that should not go unnoticed is that this movie has a great cast. Lots of cool actors making appearances throughout the picture. A bunch of people from Die Hard are in this movie. Robert Davi, Dennis Hayden, De’voreaux White, Mary Ellen Trainor & henchman legend Al Leong. Plus we got a “Predator” cast reunion in Carl Weathers, Bill Duke who plays Jackson’s captain & Sonny Landham who of course plays a crazy motherfucker. And if that wasn’t enough we got Biff from “Back to the Future”  himself Thomas F. Wilson portraying a cop.
A manly action movie needs to have a great villain and indeed it has one in Graig T. Nelson whom in my opinion, committed one of the greatest acts of villainy in cinema history by shooting Hooch in “Turner & Hooch” and traumatizing yours truly as a kid. Kill Forrest Gump but not the dog…Damn you Graig T. Nelson! Damn You!
Peter Dellaplane is married to Patrice played by a young Sharon Stone and he’s cheating on her with Sydney played by 80s hottie Vanity ( Gotta give the man points for that ) and both these gorgeous ladies show skin in the movie. Action Jackson actually uses them both in his quest to bring down Peter Dellaplane ( & you also gotta give this man points for that ).
“Action Jackson” is a great 80s action movie. It was tailor-made to be a franchise but unfortunately we never got a sequel. Just like “Cobra” & just like “Tango & Cash” my need to see further adventures of these characters was never fulfilled. One curious factor is that Carl Weathers did a movie in 1990 titled “Dangerous Passion” that had absolutely nothing to do with this film but still the studio that made that movie retitled it “Action Jackson 2” in some countries just to capitalize on the success of this film.
I was channel surfing the other day and I caught Carl Weathers acting on the NBC show “Chicago Justice” and I was happy to see him. He is a regular on the show & he looked great. While so many people were praising Michael B Jordan for his performance in “Creed”, I will never take him over the real deal, the only real Creed in my book, Apollo himself, Carl Weathers.
“Action Jackson” is a kick-ass action movie from an era sadly gone by. If you like action movies from that time and have never seen this movie I highly recommend this picture and if you haven’t seen it in a while, it’s time to revisit it. It’s a fun movie.