Best Action Movie 1991-2010: Final Round!

Here it is, make your choice wisely. Our contenders:

Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991): Ushered in the era of CGI special effects in a story that made The Terminator the good guy and made Linda Hamilton a badass.
Signature Action Movie Line: “Come with me if you want to live!”

True Lies (1994): Another action movie starring Ah-nuld (and also directed by James Cameron). True Lies is more of a spoof than anything, but it is also flatout awesome. Also, the only time Tom Arnold was ever cool.
Signature Action Movie Line: “Have you ever killed anyone?” “Yeah, but they were all bad.”

The Matrix (1999): One word… whoa!
Signature Action Movie Line: “Guns. Lots of guns.”

The Bourne Identity (2002): Dubbed “a thinking man’s James Bond,” the Bourne movies are less actiony than the other three on this list, but have developed quite the following. Plus, Matt Damon kills a guy with a magazine.
Signature Action Movie Line: “Who am I?” “You’re U.S. Government property. You’re a malfunctioning $30 million weapon. You’re a total goddamn catastrophe, and by God, if it kills me, you’re going to tell me how this happened.”

Er, no. “Hasta La Vista, baby!”

We’ll have to agree to disagree. “Hasta La Vista, baby!” is a cute early 90s artifact. “Come with me if you want to live!” is one of the most perfect movie lines ever.

The Matrix, for a) overall structure; b) the lobby shootout; c) the rooftop sequence with the helicopter, d) Agent Smith.

My fave line: blink “I know kung fu.”

Despite loving all the movies, I went for the “realistic” Bourne Identity. Best Mini chase since the original Italian Job.

Right there with you!

Decent job of actually getting, IMO, the four best, or at least four of the very best. Tough call between T2 and Matrix…


Yeah, but it also appeared in T1, so I see it as a signature of the franchise, and not so much this individual movie. In any case, T2 is my answer.

I don’t think it was in T1. That was “I’ll be back.”

It was in T1. Reese (Reece?) says it to Sarah Connor when the Terminator shows up at the night club on Pico. Yes, I do remember what street the club was on. I also remember it was called Tech Noir. Ha!

I own all these movies and love them all, but the Matrix would actually be fourth on my list. I guess I don’t think of it as an “action” movie, per se.

I picked Bourne, but this is a piss-poor list.

Oh, I got confused. You meant “Come with me if you want to live” was in both. I thought you meant “Hasta la vista, baby” was is both.

:confused: I don’t even know how to respond to this.

Easy choice. T2 by a mile. Mixed cutting edge f/x (liquid metal) with real stunt work (motorcycle jump) with a compelling sci-fi story to make a supreme action flick.

True Lies had some good action but was bogged down by the lame Bill Paxton side plot and the Jamie Lee Curtis dancing silliness.

The Matrix is best watched with the sound off. Beautiful f/x stuff for it’s time but the pseudo-babble is just too much for me to handle :rolleyes: x100 hurts my head.

Bourne is good stuff but there’s just so much of it out there just like it. The new Bond films, etc.

(My personal choice would be for Ronin)

See this post from the nominations thread

True Lies was a really fun movie, and I certainly enjoyed watching it. But it didn’t really seem to have much impact on the genre as a whole. So it’s my runner-up out of these choices.

The Bourne Identity I thought was a fairly standard spy-thriller-action movie. Not bad, and a good representative of the genre, but not amazingly great, either.

I’ve already mentioned that I disliked T2, and thought that it relied too heavily on computerized special effects that looked too cheesy.

But The Matrix was a defining (or re-defining) movie. It had an excellent mix of computerized and practical effects, integrated well into the movie. For years afterwards, moviemakers wanted to be the one to make “the next Matrix”. The cinematic techniques and story ideas from it showed up all over the place, and still have a significant presence in movies. It’s the clear winner out of these four, in my eyes.


T2 is a close second, but pretty much every great thing about it except perhaps the morphing CGI could be said about Aliens. Both far exceeded their first movies, but both were also undermined by their follow ups. They were superior perhaps only in their female action leads (Trinity was awesome but a bit too cold). Whereas Matrix totally redefined action and fighting sequences.

Haven’t seen Bourne.

The Matrix is cool looking, and it has some nice ideas, but I don’t think it holds up very well on repeated viewing. The main mcguffins are stupid (why would you need telephones? Why not use bacteria or even cows instead of humans if you really need a biological source of energy?) Also, the CGI stuff in the “real world” with the machines just looks silly. True Lies was OK, but I just don’t like it much and I don’t think it belongs in a top 4 of best action movies.

T2 has the most emotional impact, a strong & believable main character (Hamilton), gore, madness, deceit, a nuclear holocaust, and some awesome chase & fight scenes that really make you feel the danger. It’s all about humans/what it means to be human. Some of the CGI may feel a little dated (though I think it still looks very good) and some of the acting is a little hokey but IMO it’s easily the best of the 3.

I voted fo The Matrix.

Good list, I loved all those movies, I own 2 of them (Matrix and Bourne). However, the one I voted for was a shade more awe-inspiring for me.