Blogs

December 7, 2017
 

Forgotten Gem: Hit List (1989)

Plot: A family man (Jan-Michael Vincent) and a mob witness (Leo Rossi) hunt a mob hit man (Lance Henriksen) who has mistakenly kidnapped the family man’s son.

Hit List isn’t an all-time great but there is still plenty to enjoy, mostly from the supporting cast. Jan-Michael Vincent is sadly quite miscast as the action hero lead and he comes across as wooden and unconvincing at times but where this movie shines is the villains. Lance Henriksen is wonderfully sadistic as a brutal assassin called Chris Caleek; by day he sells shoes but his real job is taking out the trash… and he’s really good at it. This guy is even nastier than Fouchon from Hard Target and he doesn’t even have a problem with hurting kids.

You’ve also got Rip Torn as a mafia boss who is at his shouty/crazy best and Leo Rossi as a mobster who the FBI want to become a witness to take down Rip Torn’s Vic Lucas. Charles Napier just felt natural in these kinds of movies and in this he is a terminally ill FBI agent who wants to take down Vic as one last good deed before he dies. 

It’s essentially a chase movie with Vincent and Rossi teaming up to find Vincent’s missing kid and it’s never short on action. Directed by William Lustig we’ve got some rather impressive car chases, stunts galore and a few brutal fights thrown in for good measure.

It sadly goes a bit ridiculous at the end as Henriksen’s assassin seems to be invincible, surviving being shot like 10 times and still gets up (no wonder he was nearly a Terminator) but it’s never less than entertaining. 

It has a wonderfully 80’s music score with some saxophone and electric guitars as all the best movies should.

Hit List is a thoroughly satisfying actioner so I’m surprised that it has never really had an official DVD or Blu-ray release. I picked it up on VHS a few weeks back so it’s definitely time for someone to rescue it from oblivion. 



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.





 
 

 

Forgotten Sequel: The Base 2 (2000)

I don’t know if this is necessarily forgotten but I’ll admit I had never seen The Base 2: Guilty as Charged until I picked it up on trusty VHS a few weeks ago. My expectations were minimal as Mark Dacascos wasn’t retu...
by Eoin Friel
 

 
 

Most Anticipated Actioners of 2018

2017 is nearly over so now seems like the perfect time to look ahead at what we can expect from the action genre in 2018. It looks like we’ll not see The Expendables 4 any time soon which is a shame but there are plenty o...
by Eoin Friel
 

 
 

Re-Entering Fortress 1 & 2

I remember seeing the first Fortress in the theatre with my brother Greg way back in 1992; ah to grow up in the golden age of action cinema was something special. These days a movie like Fortress would go straight to DVD or VOD...
by Eoin Friel