During the 80’s action films starring Arnold Schwarznegger were hot property.
The Austrian was on a golden streak when he signed on for Red Heat, where he played Russian cop Ivan Danko. Coming off the multiple successes of The Terminator, The Running Man, Commando and Predator.
Red Heat, is everything you expect of an 80’s action films; outlandish set pieces and one liners galore. What the film does capitalise upon is the political tension between America and Russia in the years out from the ‘Cold War’.
The plot is loose at times, but the on-screen chemistry between Schwarznegger and Jim Belushi as wise cracking Art Ridzik, the American cop tasked with looking after Danko is his quest to find Viktor a Russian drug trafficker who killed his partner in the force.
They’re hardly Riggs and Murtaugh, but the chalk and cheese duo certainly set the bar for future international buddy cops such as Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan in the Rush Hour series.
The arc becomes a doubled edged sword as Danko also killed Viktor’s brother within the opening reels of the film; it’s a full blown revenge plot all round.
The finale is action packed, with wise cracks galore and a bus chase scene to boot; what more could you ask for.
Red Heat won’t win any retrospective awards any time soon, but it certainly harks back to a time when cinema was simply fun and action packed; and Arnie was king of the castle.