Posts By: Stewart Smith

Nowhere to Run Van Damme

Van Dammage Report: Nowhere to Run

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A movie like Nowhere to Run tests the dedication I have to this column, at least in terms of being comprehensive in my approach. I want to watch and review all of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s films, and that means taking the good with the mediocre with the bad. Nowhere to Run, unfortunately, ranks on the […]

Universal Soldier Van Damme art

Van Dammage Report: Universal Soldier

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All of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s films thus far have been smaller affairs, little soirees that often would live or die based entirely on his ability to wrest some charisma and good fight scenes out of what were often very bad scripts and even more basic scenarios. Universal Soldier, however, shifted that paradigm. For a while, […]

Van Damme Cigar

Van Dammage Report: Double Impact

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Now this is more like it. While Jean-Claude Van Damme’s earliest years on the silver screen feature a couple good entries (with Bloodsport remaining one of his best to this day), he still has more misses than hits. Those early films are also — with the exception of Cyborg‘s more garish and ridiculous qualities — […]

Van Damme GoDaddy

Van Dammage Report Special Edition:
That new GoDaddy commercial

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We interrupt our chronological examination of the works of Jean-Claude Van Damme to bring you this special edition! It was always my intent with the Report to go through JCVD’s works in the order they were released, but this is just too great to not comment on immediately. This is also a good time to […]

Death Warrant

Van Dammage Report: Death Warrant

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So. Death Warrant. It’s been about two months since I last posted a new Report, but that’s in large part because I’ve been putting off watching Death Warrant. It’s easily my least favorite of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s early films and, frankly, I just flat didn’t really feel like slogging through it. I will say that […]

Van Damme Lionheart

Van Dammage Report: Lionheart

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Lionheart is a film that many Jean-Claude Van Damme fans often cite as one of his best. I’m not so sure I agree. By now we’re starting to get a very good idea of the recurring themes that Van Damme is drawn to and will populate his films with as often as possible. Family. Justice. […]

Fast Five Vin and Rock

Ride or Die: Gauging the Fast & Furious Franchise, Part 3

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When the lights go down and Furious 6 roars to life in theaters this weekend, audiences will be watching a franchise that now only tangentially resembles its earlier incarnations. I’ll let you decide if that’s a fundamentally good thing or not, though I think it’s both fantastic and fascinating. Far too often a series will […]

tokyo drift lucas black

Ride or Die: Gauging the Fast & Furious Franchise, Part 2

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In the intro to part one of this retrospective, I stated that the Fast & Furious franchise is bizarre. The series’ third entry is why … THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS: TOKYO DRIFT (2006) This is the point where the franchise probably should have starting cranking out direct-to-DVD entries. This is where everyone expected the […]

The Fast and the Furious

Ride or Die: Gauging the Fast & Furious Franchise, Part 1

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The Fast & the Furious franchise is nothing short of bizarre. I mean, sure, it’s mostly straightforward. Fast cars. Exotic locations. Hot women. That’s about as surefire a formula as any for successful popcorn fun, but there’s something about this particular string of movies that strikes a nerve in a way that most other action […]

Kickboxer Van Damme

Van Dammage Report: Kickboxer

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Kickboxer might be the quintessential Jean-Claude Van Damme movie. He’s got other films that are more outrageous, more action packed, more filled with ridiculous one-liners and films that are bigger in scope. But few of them seem to encapsulate so fully the things that Van Damme gravitates toward and prioritizes as an actor. It has […]

Van Damme Cyborg

Van Dammage Report: Cyborg

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There are, generally speaking, two kinds of Jean-Claude Van Damme movies. The first kind being the ones that, while still not what one would consider a “quality film,” are still rightly entertaining and fun and have a certain flair to them. The second kind being those that are just flat-out bad, with almost nothing in […]