5 Mismatched Movie Fights
Everyone loves a good fight, especially movie fights. When watching one-on-one throwdowns on film, you at least expect both combatants to be evenly matched, giving them a chance to show off their moves. Sometimes, however, logic takes a walk and you end up with some pretty bizarre face-offs, which wouldn’t work if it wasn’t for the fact that it is written into the script.
Here are five (and more) fight scenes, which, regardless of the end result, involve fighters so mismatched they’re pretty difficult to take seriously. This is only scratching the surface though – we still haven’t gotten to Jean Claude Van Damme fighting a giant penguin.
This is the fight that gave me the idea for this list. We know the Ponytailed One barely even gets a hair out of place in his movies, but this one is really pushing it. Forsythe plays fat psychotic Goombah Richie Madano, and when cornered by Seagal’s tough, emotionless cop (AKA every single role he’s ever played) he decides he likes pain rather than shoot himself.
What follows is one of the most humiliating one-sided beatdowns ever seen; Richie doesn’t get a single blow in as Seagal slaps him around an apartment in a makeshift demolition derby. The Human Punching Bag gets mercilessly beaten with a pepper shaker and a frying pan (among other things), and then he is put out of his misery with a corkscrew and a shitty one-liner. You should have taken the bullet, Rich.
Jones’ Easy Rider look didn’t hide the fact that he was way out his league here as William “Paycheck Role” Strannix; Casey Ryback hurls him headfirst into a monitor in a matter of seconds. Have you noticed that Seagal’s movies rarely give him worthy opponents? Eric Bogosian, Michael Caine, and Rastafari twins in snazzy suits; the guy really got off easy.
By the time of their fourth adventure, the dream team of Martin Riggs and Roger Murtaugh was contemplating settling down and living out ordinary suburban lives. Until the Chinese Triads led by Jet Li came to give them grief, culminating in a two-on-one battle on a crumbling pier.
Sure, movie logic dictated that the heroes had to win this one, but pitting these two against a guy who’s so damn fast he’s been called the heir apparent to Bruce Lee was just absurd; Roger WAS too old for this shit. It ends with a seriously banged up Riggs and Murtaugh in crutches, but common sense says that Li should have killed them both in two seconds flat.
Everyone’s favorite deformed hockey-masked Mamma’s Boy makes his way to the Big Apple to slice and dice horny teens, and the only one standing in his way is Apollo Creed wannabe Julius. By this point in the series, Jason had been killed and resurrected, and was now a hulking, rotting undead zombie who could magically teleport wherever he wanted. You just knew poor Julius was toast.
The kid gives it his all, though. After exhausting himself with a flurry of blows to the killer’s face (he could have at least broken the hockey mask), Jason punches his head off and calls it a day. Looks like nothing short of a guided nuclear missile was going to stop Voorhees.
For extra fun, watch this scene with the Rocky theme playing in the background. It truly is an epic match for the ages.
Released in the middle of the Y2K scare, this movie cast the Governator as burned-out ex-cop Jericho Cane, facing off against Satan at the end of the millennium (Sadly, Chuck Norris had beaten him to it in 1994’s Hellbound, where the Dark Lord was no match for the Almighty Roundhouse Kick).
Arnie gives serious acting a fair shot and gets to talk smack to the Devil (played with suave cool by Gabriel Byrne), making this a fun yet utterly ridiculous experience. In a film filled with nonsensical moments – if you didn’t know 1999 was “666” backwards, you do now – it doesn’t get more absurd than Arnie getting slapped around by a sweet old lady (powered by Satan, but still). After you’re done laughing, Ahnuld remembers he’s supposed to be the hero and smashes the kindly grandmother through a table.
This was even more of a mismatch than pitting the Austrian Oak against an overweight Freddie Mercury lookalike in an S&M chainmail costume in Commando; at least that one gave us an epic one-liner.
Also known as Rogues Gallery, this little-seen 2010 actioner has two opposing teams of government assassins named after Tarot cards waging war on each other in an underground bunker. With their weapons confiscated, they have to rely on office supplies and their fists.
The novelty is that half the cast is made up of comedic actors, or at least people you wouldn’t expect could throw a punch. So we get some pretty bizarre matchups: badass Ving Rhames gets taken out by one of the blonde girls from Lost and sexy asskicker Maggie Q is killed by Alpa Chino from Tropic Thunder in full “nerdy preppie” getup.
Elsewhere, Adam Scott, Bob Odenkirk and Rob Corddry also get to show off some flashy martial arts moves, with Corddry’s alcoholic burnout stealing the show and giving a master class in how to insult people like you mean it (“I hope you die of testicular cancer”). Finally, to make things even more weird, Zach Galifianakis plays a borderline insane killer everyone’s afraid of, even though he’s just doing his annoying man-child schtick; he shows up long enough to stab someone with a pair of scissors and get shot in the crotch. Endgame isn’t all it could have been, but it’s weird enough to be watchable.