Post-Memorial Day Action

Memorial Day week provides us a great opportunity to rest and relax, to enjoy the company of friends and food, but also to ask important questions, to dig deep into the what really matters, to ask questions that matter — like, for example: What are the greatest action movies of all time? I ask because, here at a large house on the North Carolina shore, a group of people are watching Terminator 2, which I’d rank, along with Aliens and Die Hard, as one of cinema’s three greatest action pictures. All three movies combine, almost perfectly, gripping story, compelling characters, and relentless, totally jaw dropping, did-you-just-see-that?!! action sequences. They’re genre, yes, but they’re models of the form, operating at the highest possible level. I know these films — particularly T2 — have detractors, but as action movies go, can they really be beat?