T5F – Action Thrillers in a Confined Space

It’s time for The Nickel Screen’s first

Top 5 Friday! (T5F)


There’s so many movies out there that fall into so many genres; they’re just dying to be grouped in oddly specific ways for your comparison-based pleasure. Plus, list-making is one of my favorite activities, so I figured I might as well do it with every Hollywood related thing I can think of.

And then if you and your friends ever get into a weirdly particular argument about some made-up subgenre, now you’ll be able to look to The Nickel Screen for all your answers. Heck, look to us for all your answers anyway, no matter what the problem is. I’m sure I can help.

This week’s T5F is all about Action Thrillers in a Confined Space (thus the title of the post).

Ranking in at one cent, we have



Die Hard 2: Die Harder

Set in an airport on Christmas Eve, this movie makes us ask, “How can the same thing happen twice to the same guy?” In fact, it even makes John McClane (Bruce Willis), most badass character in the history of film, ask the same thing. But who cares really? It can happen twice because it’s the movies and it’s fun to watch. We get to see ejection seats, snowmobile battles, betrayal, and a fight in a baggage sorting area.

Since this kind of movie is a breeding ground for dialogue gold, I figure I should pick the best line from each.

Best Line: John McClane: Hey, Colonel. Blow me!



Con Air

Nicolas Cage is great at picking over-the-top projects, and Con Air is no exception. Toss in Johns Cusack and Malkovich and you’ve got yourself one hell of a fun cast. Cage plays the criminal with a heart of gold who decides to help the feds when his fellow convicts take over the plane. Giant explosions, a plane crash-landing on the Vegas strip, and post-kill one-liners like “Why couldn’t you put the bunny back in the box” (about a stuffed pink bunny, for real) make this an excellent (using the term loosely) film.

Best Line: I guess I sort of already said it.



The Negotiator

This is the part in the list when things start to really get good. Starring Samuel L. Jackson and my personal favorite actor Kevin Spacey, this movie takes place almost entirely in a single room. Well, there’s cutaways to what’s going on elsewhere I guess, but all the action is an office. When Samuel L. Jackson, a negotiator who talks people out of killing hostages, is accused of embezzlement, he’s forced to take hostages of his own. During the film he must try to buy himself the time he needs to prove his innocence, if he really is innocent…

Best Line: Samuel L. Jackson: I am talking! Now did you or did you not ever dress up like a schoolgirl and get ya ass spanked?!



Air Force One

Harrison Ford is the president. Automatically the best thing ever. When the Russians hijack Air Force One, badass Mr. Ford stays behind to single-handedly dish out some justice to the terrorist bastards, doing his best to keep his wife and daughter safe in the process. The movie is high intensity throughout, there are some great setpieces, and some moments will even choke you up. And did I already mention it’s about the president? Movies are always more awesome when POTUS is involved.

Best Line: Harrison Ford: Get off my plane!



Die Hard

Of course! I mean, this is a no-brainer. It started the entire convention. After Die Hard, everybody in Hollywood tried to come up with the next small space thriller. Die Hard on a plane, Die Hard on a Boat (Speed 2). You name it. According to urban legend, someone even tried to pitch Die Hard in an office building, which sounds like a great idea. You know, probably because Die Hard was set in an office building. Like I said, John McClane is the most badass, tough-as-nails character since ever, and Bruce Willis is the man to play him. Plus, he still had a nice, intimidating full head of hair back then. Alan Rickman is a masterful actor and nails the terrorist role, Willis walks barefoot on broken glass in one of the most memorable scenes of film, and in general awesomeness ensues.

Best Line: John McClane: Yippee-ki-yay, motherfucker.

Dead on? Do I have no idea what I’m talking about? Feel free to let me know in the comments!


Filed under Feature

3 responses to “T5F – Action Thrillers in a Confined Space

  1. I’ve actually never seen any of these movies. Shame on me.

  2. Die Hard is a great choice to head this list. I would suggest for your consideration Alien.

    I don’t suggest adding Snakes on a Plane.

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