Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Indiana Jones and the Sands of Time

Are my heroes getting older or is Hollywood running out of action stars? It’s a question I’ve been pondering a while, but really got me thinking when the latest Indiana Jones film came out. It’s hard to believe that Harrison Ford was able to do a lot of his own stunt work at the age of 65. Heck I’ve got some time before I hit that age and there are a lot of things I wish I could do I’m just not physically capable of.

Maybe I really started thinking about the question in the past year when I picked up a copy of Rocky Balboa. It was supposedly Sylvester Stallone’s last Rocky film. Time will tell it was a modest success and was meant to wrap up lingering questions about the character and give fans something satisfying to end with. I had a bit of a problem before seeing the film with a 60-year-old boxer, but the scenario Stallone came up with wasn’t too far of a stretch. Now a 60-something Rambo on the other hand is not something I’m dying to see.

I remember during the last decade Bruce Willis doing an interview prior to the release of the third Die Hard film saying he was getting too old to do the stunts he has to for his character in the series. That would have been a fitting epithet for what was supposed to be the last film in a trilogy. Yet last year we were treated to a new Die Hard film and I must admit something fans would enjoy.

Before he became the Governator, Arnold Schwarzenegger was still doing action films and I have no doubt would still be doing them if politics had not intervened. Chuck Norris, don’t get me started. He was still kicking butt in his TV series into his 60s.

Personally I don’t believe Hollywood is running out of action stars. I think actors just like to diversify a little in their roles and there’s an up and coming crop of new heroes. Still maybe it’s not such a bad thing that we can hold on to some of our older champions a little longer.

For Hollywood leading men doing action roles into their 50s, 60s and beyond is nothing new. Some of John Wayne’s most popular films running on television these days were done when he was in his late 50s and 60s. So if Indy wants to crack that whip for another film, I’m game.

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