BLUE THUNDER
1983, Sony Repertory, 109 min, USA, Dir: John Badham

Déjà vu 1983! The government has unleashed its newest weapon: a heavily armed helicopter that can spy on civilians from 1,000 feet and incinerate entire city blocks. The only ones who can stop Big Brother (in the form of Malcolm McDowell’s fascist cop) from using it against us are Vietnam vet-turned-police chopper pilot Roy Scheider and his tech-savvy partner, Daniel Stern. Director John Badham's paranoid actioner flies high with stunning cinematography by John Alonzo and dazzling dogfights over downtown L.A.


ON HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE
1969, Park Circus/MGM, 140 min, UK, Dir: Peter Hunt

When Sean Connery decided to take a hiatus from the role of Bond, producers Albert Broccoli and Harry Saltzman turned to former male model George Lazenby to play Ian Fleming’s super-spy - and wound up with one of the most satisfying (and underrated) of the 1960s Bond films. Lovely Diana Rigg proves more than Bond’s match as the two team up to topple scar-faced Ernst Blofeld (Telly Savalas) in the Swiss Alps.


THE LIMEY
1999, Lionsgate, 89 min, USA, Dir: Steven Soderbergh

This complex crime thriller features a tour-de-force performance by Terence Stamp as Wilson, a British ex-con who travels to Los Angeles to investigate the death of his daughter. As her friends Eduardo (Luis Guzman) and Elaine (Lesley Ann Warren) help Wilson fill in the blanks about his beloved Jenny - whom he hadn’t seen since she was a child - the trail leads to the girl’s former boyfriend, Terry Valentine. A record producer/drug dealer played by a superb Peter Fonda, Valentine dodges Wilson and sends a hit man after him, but neither the assassin, a team of bodyguards nor the DEA can prevent “the limey” from confronting his child’s killer. Masterfully directed by Steven Soderbergh, the film employs footage from a 1967 film, starring Stamp, to cut back and forth between the present day and Wilson’s back-story.


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