Nothing stings like experiencing a bad movie. But as bad as some films are, there are usually one or two scenes that give back some redeeming value. In sci-fi and fantasy, some are fight scenes, showcasing effects and choreography far better than the surrounding film deserves. For instance, if you catch one of these awful films on cable TV, the fight is good enough that you'd sit through the buildup just to reach that one scene. Other times, it might be enough to keep you pumped to the see the rest. At least you got to see that fight scene again, though.
Sticking with Blastr's Versus theme of the month, we're taking a trip down memory lane and listing the best movie fights that have been cemented in a bad film. We have battles of all kinds, including fist fights, sword fights and even riddles. See if your favorite made our list, and let us know your favorite fight scenes stuck in bad films.
Superman III: Clark vs. Superman
Before films featuring ill-advised big budget superhero battles, Superman had a history of missteps on the big screen. Superman III led a generation of bad superhero films filled with forced jokes and yes, Richard Pryor. But the one saving grace is this junkyard battle, compelling stuff all on its own. Superman splits into two beings thanks to Synthetic Kryptonite and cheap liquor, and ends up in battle with his mild-mannered alter ego. Kudos to the late Christopher Reeve for selling it so well on both sides.
Die Another Day - Bond vs. Graves
Die Another Day is proof that you can slap "007" on anything and it will make lots of money. The writers forgot to write a story to string together all of the endless action sequences. It forever set up Rosamund Pike as a cinematic accessory until Gone Girl, and began a string of terrible films for Halle Berry after she won an Academy Award. It was so bad that Moonraker is appealing by comparison. But despite some terrible CG work, one of the few things that did work amidst all of the explosions was an old-fashioned sword duel between Pierce Brosnan's James Bond and Toby Stephens' Gustav Graves, both of whom appeared to do their own stunts. The sword work was well done and there's even a moment in the fight in which Brosnan fumbles a bit, making it look more authentic. Those things aren't easy to swing around.
Elysium: Kruger vs. Max
This one is fueled by Sharlto Copley playing an excellent bad guy. He's just all levels of filthy in this film as Kruger, a mercenary bounty hunter of sorts that rises to the top of the heap of evil in Neil Blomkamp's second feature. In the end, Elysium was another post-apocalyptic film lost in a crowd in 2013, but Kruger was the best thing about the film and this fight with main character Max (Matt Damon) is both funny and over-the-top violent.
Aliens vs. Predator
Hollywood must have thought this crossover grudge match between alien species would sell itself, because it didn't show much creativity over the course of two films. The first attempt had plenty of problems, including no explanation for why these two species would use Earth, of all places in the universe, as their arena. Both aliens were treated poorly, disregarding the previous films in each respected franchise. For example, the Predators looked clunky and top heavy, and not like the lean, mean Jungle Hunter that took on Dutch and his commandos. Then there were the wild inconsistencies in the sped-up lifecycle of a Facehugger to Chestburster to adult Xenomorph. However, if you were more a fan of the Alien films, then you might have enjoyed the final fight of the first film, in which a single Xenomorph eliminates two Predators.
The Matrix Reloaded: Neo vs. Army of Agent Smiths
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - Gollum vs. Bilbo Baggins Riddles in the Dark
They Live: Nada vs. Frank
Star Wars: The Phantom Menace: Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi vs. Darth Maul
Star Wars: Attack of the Clones: Yoda vs. Count Dooko
Spider-Man 3: Spider-Man vs. Sandman
The One: Gabriel vs. Gabe
King Kong: King Kong vs. Three Venatosauras-Rexs
This is the second Peter Jackson film on this list, and another piece of evidence that his marathons can drag when there's not enough compelling story. King Kong was generally liked by critics, but audiences ended up split. The remake of the 1933 classic brought the effects to today's state-of-the-art standards but at over three hours, it's not a film many desire to passionately revisit. One thing everyone can agree on, though, is that the six-minute fight in which King Kong saves Ann (Naomi Watts) from the snapping jaws of three Venatosauras Rexes as big as he is stands out. The most memorable slaying is at the scene's climax, in which Kong pries the final V-Rex's jaw open and cracks it backward like a major league slugger breaking a baseball bat over his thigh.
Deep Blue Sea: Sam Jackson vs. Shark
The Punisher: Frank vs. The Russian
Freddy vs. Jason: Freddy vs. Jason
What happens when you've squeezed all the blood from a turnip? You squeeze and squeeze some more. Like the Aliens vs. Predator crossover, the Nightmare on Elm Street slasher franchise ran head-long into Friday the 13th in this cross-over effort. Unfortunately, the two never-die antagonists squared off in what was a forgettable film that did little to reinvent the genre or be very creative. Still, there's a bit of glee seeing these two hack and slash away at each other and, because of both characters' legacy of cheating death again and again, you never get the feeling that one was the heavy favorite. Both characters shine and, in a battle as epic as this, that's all you can hope for, because there's nothing else worth watching here.