A Very Particular Set of Skills

I fell in love (actually lust) with “Taken” starring Liam Neeson after the first time I saw the trailer. The calm in Neeson’s voice just sells the character/plot so hard. SO HARD! I didn’t expect an Oscar caliber movie. I expected Liam Neeson to be a fucking bad ass and kill every mother fucker that took his daughter until there were no mother fuckers left to kill.

According to Josh and Eli, that is EXACTLY what you get… in the Rated-R European version of the film. WTF Hollywood? Since when are we cutting out the violence for U.S. movies? I wouldn’t take a kid to see this film even if you replaced all the blood with rainbow unicorn vomit, so what gives? It’s obviously intended for adults.

So once again, H-Wood has forced my hand. I will wait for the Unrated DVD (which I will get from Netflix). So instead of $20 worth of tickets and $20 worth of concessions they’ll get whatever percentage of $8.99/ month Netflix gives them.

I won’t say how Josh and Eli saw the international version, but it rhymes with Bit Torrent.

I don’t know how you guys feel, but for me sometimes a movie like “Taken” is all you need. It has just enough story to keep the action going and a cool-headed badassmith like Liam Neeson to carry it and keep you focused.

What are your favorite “I’m A Badass and I Must Kill Everyone Until I Am The Last One Standing!!!” (IABIMKEUIATLOS!!! for short) movies?

What other movies have had awesome Eurpean cuts and beefed it on the US release?

Posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , .


  1. Heh, I can't decide which frame I like more: the first frame with Josh pissing himself in glee, or the last frame of Liam Neeson simultaneously force-feeding and tickling some dude.

  2. Arnie in Commando. Not just for the number of merc motherfuckers he takes out but for the number of rounds he pumps into each of them.

    "I lied John, I'm not gonna shoot you between the eyes. I'm gonna shoot you between the balls!"

    "Let off some steam Bennet!"

  3. Man, I feel so much better after reading this. I just got back from seeing the U.S. version and was like, "Really? Who the f*ck compared this to the Bourne series." Now to consult my rhyming dictionary for "bit torrent."

  4. Not really the way to knife a sentry.

    I suspect the location of the most likely tickling target governed the poor knife target. Anyway, I thought the proper defense against someone with a banana was to drop a 1 ton weight on them.

  5. While not a IABIMKEUIATLOS film like Taken, Kingdom of Heaven's US theatrical release was a complete faceplant in comparison to the director's cut released on DVD. With more and better fights, more and better plot, and more and better characters, Kingdom Heaven is a gem of a film that was ruined by its theatrical release.

  6. For me, the 1st 2 DIE HARD's fit the straight forward IABIMKEUIATLOS bill, w/ John McClane single-handedly picking off professional thugs & mercs 1-by-1. Yippie-Ki-Yay, Mothafuckaz!!!
    Also, James Bond in the Pierce Brosnan era. Maybe 300, maybe not.

  7. Great comic this week, and to think I was seriously thinking about going to see "Taken" in the theaters. I'll have to ask someone to help me because I'm terrible at rhyming and have no idea what rhymes with bit torrent. Personally my top 3 IABIMKEUIATLOS are:
    3. 300
    2. Commando
    1. Die Hard
    What I like about Die Hard is he uses every bullet he has and is barefoot killing the bad guys.

  8. The single greatest over the top IABIMKEUIATLOS movie is Shoot 'em up. It's just Clive Owen exercising his right to murder everyone in America.

  9. Everytime I saw that trailer, I expected Maggie Grace to yell, "BOOONNE", or "Craphole Island". But I will give her Kristen Bell points for having the ability to play 17 when she's really 25.

  10. Mad Max was a decent IABIMKEUIATLOS movie. Also, Once Upon A Time In The West. I'd also throw in Blue Thunder, even though he didn't kill every bad guy, but that movie had wicked helicopter stunts.

    • It's funny really – Last Man Standing on its own is much of a muchness really, but if you watch it back-to-back with Yojimbo and Fistful of Dollars it's actually very very good, certainly it's a better remake of Yojimbo than Fistful of Dollars is (although Fistful is unofficially a remake, whereas Standing is officially a rework).

  11. But can you make out what Sully screams as Matrix lets him go? I'm not sure it's supposed to be anything but it sounds like "You Da Man!"

    And did you spot the filming continuity mistake shortly after? Matrix pushes the Porche over and the whole left side is wrecked, however as they drive away they make a little left jink in the road and proudly seen is a pristine left side glinting under the lights!

  12. Leon, or in yank-land it was called The Professional. Not quite a simple IABIMKEUIATLOS movie, but they heavily edited it for the American market and cut out one of the key sub-plots; that of Natalie Portman's character's love for Leon.

  13. Stole my answer! The tail end part is a little bit of IAMBIMKEUIATLOS, and the quick police station scene…and the ring trick… But between the moments of 'kill 'em all till there's no one left to kill!' is really wonderful story.

  14. Damn, first the podcast and now this brilliant strip make me want to watch Taken, even I've read nothing positive about it. Then again I have been reading movie mags that focus on plot, acting and other fancy things, not general badassery and tickling people to death.
    At least I don't have to worry about the US cut, though it might be interesting to compare the two.


  15. Just finished watching …. I now know how Josh feels in panel 1.

    Liam you are such a badass.

    As for IAMBIMKEUIATLOS's, I can't think of any that haven't been mentioned yet.

    Maybe The Crow a little bit?

  16. I was going to see Taken this weekend..in the movie theater. But maybe I'll stay home and watch it….somehow 😉

    My #1 IAMBIMKEUIATLOS is def Mr. Smith from Shoot 'em Up.

  17. Do I really have to be the one to say what everyone is thinking?
    IAMBIMKEUIATLOS describes the entire oeuvre of Steven Seagal.

    • I'd hate to give him that much credit. Granted, he is always supposed to be the unstoppable killing machine, but he has never actually pulled it off. You have to suspend disbelief just to watch his movies and none of them have ever been satisfying.

    • !!!!SPOILER!!!!! SORT OF!!!!

      Easiest way to figure it out is the torture scene. In the PG-13 its just an electric chair, in the Rated R version he stabs two nails into the guys legs' to make the electrodes.

      • Oh fuck them…I hate it when they show scenes in trailers and then cut them out of the movie. I don't know how many times I've seen him bringing down those nails….and then they cut it out? Thats bullshit!

  18. For what it's worth, my wife & I saw it last night in the theater… and while it may be PG-13, the main reason for that is the lack of blood. (I don't remember any)> I thought it WAS an R-flick, and while he didn't stab the guy in the legs with nails, the torture scene was still pretty badass. I would definitely go see it in the theater, rather than on a TV.

      • Go see it. I just skipped through the European version. The nails are the biggest change, but practically there's less than a minute's difference, all told – a few more gunshots, a few more knife slashes, pound him in the face once or twice more , a bone or two extra broken… but nothing substantial. The part the strip is referring to must be the fight in the sub-basement; in the European version, you see him kill the guy, instead of simply understanding that he killed the guy.

        The extra little bit of blood doesn't make a whit of difference, and I still say you'll have more fun seeing in the theater without the extra bits, than at home with them.

  19. What about Wanted? When he goes through the textile factory it seems that everyone in the place catches more then a few bullets.

  20. Wow, never knew the US had a PG13 'Pussy' version of Taken. My girlfriend loves the movie more than me but i'm pretty sure shes mentally replacing Neeson with Aslan the Lion.
    Any way, my top IABIMKEUIATLOS!! movie has to be Marv's section of Sin City, 😀

  21. I submit Smokin' Aces. Certainly not a good movie, but incredibly watchable. It's like taking most of the more outlandish IAMBIMKEUIATLOS characters and throwing them all in the same movie.

  22. This should make you laugh- my favorite IAMBIMKEUIATLOS is………..wait for it………………The Long Kiss Goodnight. I know, I know. It's sad but that's my go to movie when I need to see death. The runner up is Azumi- the live action movie taken from the manga. Good stuff. Female ninja assassins are always calming.

  23. Dammit – someone nicked in and used Ong Bak before I got here 🙁 It's a great movie (from an action point of view – plot and acting….. not so much). Taken was great fun (I saw the UK version which was rated 18), and Shoot 'Em Up was hilarious.

  24. There' s a lot of exposition before the payoff, so I'm not sure it really qualifies. But I'll throw it out there anyway and go with Unforgiven. That final scene is epic badassery of the highest order.

  25. Fletcher just beat me to it. The Long Kiss Goodnight is awesome (but then I have a weakness for Geena Davis and Samuel Jackson). I also agree with the Mariachi movies and Sin City (love me some Richard Rodriguez). But the title has to go to Kill Bill. When I saw Vol 1, even I thought: "Too much gore, not enough story". But then Vol 2 made all the gore not only justified, but essential. Awesome.

  26. Does anyone think they need to be more consistent in application of movie ratings? Seems like there are a lot of movies that should be R and aren't or should be PG 13 and aren't. Then there was Zach and Mirri make a Porno…..they wanted to rate that NC 17??! Seems like a little sex gets an R and you can have ORGIES of violence before you'll get an R rating.

    • The MPAA has always been touchy with the rating system, especially since there is not set system. It is just a bunch of parents put into a room and asked to give a movie a rating. With our culture the way it currently is, you can have oceans of blood, but one nipple is the downfall of society. I don't get it and I don't like it, the only way i can see it changing is teaching the new generation of society, that nipples are not fo the devil.

  27. My favorite pissed off coming to get you no mercy movie…
    Big Jake.
    I know, I'm rocking it hard school, but when you kidnap John Wayne's grandson, you are fucked. If you want to see a good movie, rent this…. plenty of violence, bad bad men, and my favorite John Wayne scene.
    ::John Wayne is in a shower house. Some random Bad Guy comes up the shower and calls him out, and as he is about to shoot the Duke says:: "Nothing personal".
    ::All the sudden the guy flys back as the shower door burst open to a loud bang, and you see the Duke standing there in a towel with a shotgun, and he says,:: "The Hell it Ain't"
    The first time I saw that scene, I became a man! Well… in the non-sexual way…that was later… much much later…sigh….

  28. I also think its funny that gads of violence is ok as long as there is no blood. Star Wars Episode 3 is a good example someone literally losing limbs in a sword fight and being burned to a crisp and they get away with a PG 13? But I guess when you have the clout of Lucas you can get away with anything. He probably could have had some topless aliens in there and still gotten PG 13 lol

  29. My favorite IABIMKEUIATLOS!!! movie is Boondock Saints. There's one scene in particular where two guys get the drop on a room full of Russian Mafia guys and take them all out BY ACCIDENT!

  30. My favorite IABIMKEUIATLOS was the movie Equilibrium, you know, that one with Christian Bale Kicking everyone's ass with his double wielding of machine-guns-the-size-of-a-pistol in a future where the is a drug that kills your emotions, and the tetragramm…shit and everything? that movie was incredibly good.

  31. Going to the other topic, as in not IABIMKEUIATLOS!! movies, but cool movies completely fucked over at the US release, I must mention a low budget Australian film called 'The Interview'. Hugo Weaving is dragged from his bed in the middle of the night and shoved into a police interview room. Then starts a psychological mind game, wondering who's playing who, what they think he did, if the cops are above board… with a kick arse ending. For the American release they had to shoot an extra scene at the end, which totally guts the whole thing. Watch the Australian version.

  32. Boondocks is a great IABIMKEUIATLOS… funny guy… funny guy. Having Ron Jeremy get whacked in the peep show booth is just a classic touch. The other movie I have to add is 'Way of the Gun' with Bennico Del Toro. The car chase scene through the alleyways is incredibly real. And I cringe everytime I see Phillipee jump into that pit and the broken bottle jams into his arm.

  33. The gory stuff was taken out, almost assuredly, because at a test screening of the movie a large percentage of people wrote that they were turned off by the violence and that it would prevent them from watching the movie. That is almost completely how those decisions are made. The decisions are made by a "cross-section of average Americans." Extremely lame way to do things, but it is the way it is done.

    Hollywood doesn't own the theaters, therefore they get nothing from the concessions. The studio gets less than 50% of the money from the tickets. The ticket price is set by the theatre/chain and most of the money goes there. There is actually a fight between the theaters and Hollywood as they Hollywood believes that the theaters are charging too much.

    About 80% of the money that goes to the studios come from DVD sales. Many movies don't make a profit, if ever, until after the American release is completely done and the overseas sales start coming in.

    I agree with the point in the post that the violence should have been left in and that it would had made for a more interesting film, but I think it is important to get the facts straight of the surrounding information.

  34. I know it’s a classic example of a botched US release (and doesn’t have much/anything to do with the genre at hand) but Terry Gilliam’s Brazil had a great real version that was “too sad an ending” for american audiences and was changed for the US release

  35. Best movie with an awesome European (original cut) that is ALSO a "kill em all and let god sort em out" flick, The Professional staring Jean Reno (the title of the international version is just Leon)

  36. smoking aces (shoot 'em up is tame by comparison), die hard 1, 2 and 4, the crow, death warrant (awesome – should have been the third crow movie), the brave one, taken (obviously) and equilibrium (corny as hell, but the gun-fighting style they developed for the movie was uber-rad).

    I'm sure there's more but i can't think of them just now.

Leave a Reply