In the interest of spreading the semi-sophisticated life to as many people as possible, I've teamed up this week with the fine folks at CinemaSips. Each week, they watch a film, and concoct a beverage to accompany it. But this week, they chose one of my favorite movies, and asked me to write about it. So here we go!
Let me tell you some of the things I love about The Running Man.
This movie really knows how to get the party started. Arnold Schwarzenegger refuses to blow up some rioters, which leads to a military-grade fistfight in a flying helicopter with no doors! It’s insane. And it only gets better. Arnold (The Butcher of Bakersfield) is sent to prison for a crime he didn’t commit. But nobody’s ever built a prison that can hold the Governator. He stays almost long enough for the opening credits, but there aren’t enough faces to punch. So he leaves prison, meets the love of his life, goes to the airport, and somehow ends up on a TV game show. (I know, it sounds too good to be true.) As it turns out, the game show is the perfect vehicle for Arnold to show off his unparalleled mastery of the one-liner.
Here are some other things I love about The Running Man:
- Dystopian Hawaiian shirt (Arnold’s second worst look ever)
- A Danish strongman named Sven plays a strong Danish man named Sven
- The original host of Family Feud watches an old lady drop the F bomb on live TV
- Professor Tanaka (AKA the butler from PeeWee’s Big Adventure) plays hockey
- Cigar-chomping Schwarzenegger in a beard and suspenders (his best look ever)
- Frank Zappa’s son and the drummer from Fleetwood Mac make a great team
- A Venezuelan singer squares off against an electrified stalker in tighty whities
Here are some fun facts that you DON'T get from CinemaSips:
- The actor who plays Dynamo was an Olympic Wrestler, opera singer, and MIT-trained computer scientist.
- The music was composed by the guy who wrote "Axel F" for Beverly Hills Cop.
- The climax of the movie includes a fight between two guys who would later become the Governors of Minnesota and California.
- Those same two guys were also in Predator, which was released the same year, but wasn't as good. (Also Sven was in Predator.)
- "Fireball" was played by a famous football player.
- The announcer for the game show would later become the voice of Squidward.
- The prison guard who accidentally allowed the escape to happen was played by a former bank robber (who later became Mr Blue from Reservoir Dogs).
- Paula Abdul did all the choreography.
- Arnold's cool little hard hat is called a "bump cap".
- This movie was based on a short story by Stephen King.
- The Running Man would later be blatantly ripped off in the creation of American Gladiators as well as The Hunger Games.
Now that you know all about the movie, let's talk about the drink. Because this movie will get you thirsty as hell. In honor of Professor Toru Tanaka, try a Plain Zero!
The Plain Zero
2 oz silver tequila
1 oz Maraschino Liqueur
1 oz lime juice
Luxardo Maraschino cherries, in syrup
Fill a glass with crushed ice. Dump the tequila, liqueur, and lime juice in about halfway. Pour cherry syrup on top. Look into the nearest camera and yell “NOW PLAIN ZERO!”
Now, buy this stuff, and when you're ready for more movie/cocktail pairings, head over to CinemaSips and get your drank on!