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April 19, 2017

Revisiting Fifty/Fifty (1992)

I remember watching this movie when it first came out way back in 1992; it starred Peter Weller (RoboCop) and Robert Hays (Airplane) as two bickering mercenaries that are hired by the CIA to overthrow a South East Asian dictator.

It’s from Cannon films and was actually a genuinely entertaining action comedy and our two leads are a really likable team.

The script isn’t quite as funny as I remember but it still provides a few laughs and the action scenes are well done. This was the good old days too so there were real explosions, shoot-outs and a suitably high bodycount.

The story (although predictable in parts) had a few surprises, namely killing off the love interest half way through which was a daring move but helped make the story believable.

Director Charles Martin Smith also had a major role as the CIA spook known as Martin Sprue who hires the two men to do their dirty work. I really liked the character of Sprue as you could tell that he had a good heart and wasn’t the usual CIA asshole we see in movies.

In an interesting tidbit Sylvester Stallone and Kurt Russell were in talks for this film with Stallone set to play Wyer, the Weller role, and Russell would have played Frenchy. Of course this didn’t happen but the two action legends did team up on Tango & Cash and although I loved it I can’t help thinking what they would have brought to this story.

Tango & Cash has the better script and is the movie I watch more often so I guess in the end they made the right choice.

It’s amazing what you find out on IMDB but apparently Chuck Norris and Michael Dudikoff were the first choices for this movie but Chuck Norris declined the lead role because he had made several action films in the jungle and wasn’t keen on spending months in another one to shoot this film. Understandable I guess and to be honest I really liked Weller and Hays.

This never got a major theatrical release so we rented out the VHS when it came out and it’s funny how I hadn’t watched it for over 20 years but I still remembered so much about it; when I watched it last night it felt like I just saw it yesterday so it obviously made an impression.

If you haven’t seen this movie I would try and track it down as it’s really entertaining with some cool action scenes and a fun duo in Weller and Hays.



About the Author

Eoin Friel
Eoin Friel
I grew up watching JCVD, Sly and Arnold destroy bad guys, blow things up and spew one-liners like it's a fashion statement. Action is everything I go to the movies for and the reason I came up with this site is to share my love for the genre with everyone. We also want to help promote new talent whether you're making blockbusters, low-budget Indie movies or fan films; if it's action, it's awesome.




 
 

 

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  • Eoin Friel

    Yeah the one sequel we should have got.

  • Came across this gem when I was covering Woods and Weller for my show. I loved it and thought it had a real A Team on a bigger budget vibe. Some of the jokes are suitably weird and the plot takes some interesting turns. I definitely need to re-watch it. I loved that they went Norris and Dudikoff, Stallone and Russell to Weller and Hays… Brilliant…

  • Mike Leeder

    its one of those movies that a little bit of a bigger budget could have been handy, do like the chemistry between Peter Weller and Robert Hayes in this…Hayes channelling Chuck Norris with his look, and some nice moments of comedy, when he’s up on the hill with the sheep….
    i think Chuck and Dudikoff were meant to be up for it, can’t see Stallone or Russell being involved on it, do love Tango and Cash always wished we’d got the sequel for that

  • Tuts33

    Just watched it few day ago. Great movie.

  • David Barber

    I agree. It would have been nice if Nancy Allen had done a cameo in it too seeing she played Murphy’s partner Lewis. She starred in an action film herself for Roger Corman : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZpN_DJcUU08

  • Mucho Macho

    I bought this movie at a Walmart. Well worth the 5 dollars!😎👍
    Back in the day these movies were made on a regular basis and we took them for granted. Awesome flick that used to air on cable all the time.
    Good times😀

  • Eoin Friel

    Yeah it’s a fun little flick and nice to see Murphy have a bit of a laugh too.

  • David Barber

    When I used to work at Asda supermarket, we had a lounge and I remember watching a few minutes of this. Looked enjoyable and always good to see Alex Murphy kick ass.

  • gungfugilman

    Wow this is an oldie but a goody. I remember watching this on HBO or Cinemax back in the nineties. A good example of why you don’t always need “action guys” to make good action movie. Weller was good as the serious one, and Hayes used his comedy chops to create a likable badass with a sense of humor.