Chances are you've completely forgotten who Dolph Lundgren is. Here at Cracked, we never forget and it's our morale responsibility to remind you.
Dolph started his life as the poster for masculinity by being born in Stockholm, Sweeden. That means he's not really Russian, although mentioning such blasphamy in a bar setting will undoubtably start a riot. We highly recomend trying it out if you have balls 1/4th the size of Dolph's.
He was born Hans Lundgren, which means he wasn't always bad ass. He worked hard (Like a true bad ass.) to get there. At an early age he had a knack for fine arts and music. He threw it all away in his first montage. He would follow in his father's footsteps as an engineer. Sweeden, like most mythical European countries, has a mandatory military service. Which Lundgren took like a man.
Sweedish Amphibious Ranger. Seriously.
After serving in the elite Amphibious Rangers outfit he was seperated from his unit because of an injury. Which didn't seem to matter because he was already winning Kyokushin Karate tournaments.
After kicking a ton of ass, he earned his masters degree in Chemical Engineering. The exact timing is unknown, but it's believed that they handed him his masters degree while simutaniously handing him his trophy for the tournament he dominated in Austrailia. Upon finding out that he was an ass kicking death machine of chemical engineering, MIT gave him a full scholarship. Probably because 80's nerds wanted to clone him using a computer the size of a 747.
"There is nothing about this scholarship that suggests we want to clone you."
After being in New York for about two weeks, he told MIT to go fuck themselves. And guess what- they couldn't do shit about it. After meeting an acting coach, he throws everything away again. (In probably one of the greatest montages never to be filmed.) to persue his real dream of acting. For reals this time.
In order to succeed in acting, a change was in order. Being named "Hans" wasn't making the balls to the wall impact he had expected. He had to change his name to be an instant bad ass. A name that would leap off his headshots. It's unclear how many jobs he applied for under the name "Adolph Lundgren" but it probably wasn't many before he recieved a distress call from his agent.
You're not making any new friends in Hollywood, baby, drop the "A"
Dolph would wind up being an instant success. He beat out 5000 hopeful aryans for the role of Ivan Drago. Whether he physically beat the shit out of 5000 other Ivan Drago wannabes, or beat them all in chess was never fully documented.
In the mother of all montages the ledgend of Dolph Lundgren was born.
1985 Rocky IV: Ivan Drago.
In Rocky IV Dolph plays one of the greatest athletes the KGB let us know about during the cold war. He would take the form of the Russian professional boxer Ivan Drago. In his first fight on US soil he kills the beloved former champion Apollo Creed. Way to win over the crowd Russia. His role in this film would wind up being a shockingly accurate exercise in reverse role-playing. At the end of his fight with Rocky (In Russia.) behind on the cards, he screams at his corner that he fights for himself, not for his country. (2004 US Basketball Team anyone?) Also, the impersonal training regime Drago suffers through in preparation for the Rocky fight, is much like one American athletes go through today. Chemical assistance and all! While Rocky, the American hero, trains with the unity of his camp in isolation, high altitude, and very low-tech. Much how Russian athletes train today. (Fedor Emelianenko.)
Famous Quote: "I must break you."
1987 Masters of the Universe: He-Man.
How do you go from one intimidating bad ass to a Mattel toy? Money and a leading gig. Or just ask Courtney Cox, she was also in this abomination. This was Dolph's first real attempt at a "Hero". We're pretty sure he landed the job just by walking into a room where the casting director was playing with a He-Man action figure. "I know how we can make this brainless children s TV show into a movie!" "Lets have the He-Man fictional world invade the real world!" Great idea Hollywood, this trick never gets old. Even in 1987 it was played out.
Famous Quote: "I have the power!"
1989 Red Scorpion: Lt. Nikolai Rachenko.
Dolph scores another leading role in Red Scorpion. This time around, there would be no mistakes. First they make him look almost like his most popular character, Ivan Drago. But he's a good guy in this one! Because deep down inside, while being a dirty commie, Drago was a good guy. As an elite Russian Spetznaz, Dolph is sent into Africa to crush a rebel uprising. Like a typical mindless Soviet murder-death-kill machine, he is swayed by the rebel cause and turns on his comrades.
Famous Quote: Actually, the following video is all we really know about this movie.
1989 The Punisher: Frank Castle.
In one of the worst comic book movies to be widely released, Dolph get's to sort of play The Punisher. We mean he would get to play the character in the first licensed version of the film; however, mobsters and enemies would go un-punished. He doesn't even have a skull on his shirt- C'mon'. The film as a stand alone is peice of awesome movie by itself. When you compare it to the other abysmal attempts at the Punisher, Dolph rocked it out.
Famous Quote: "What do you call 125 murders in five years!?" "Work in progress."
1990 "I Come in Peace" aka "Dark Angel": Det. Jack Caine
In his first role as a Southern American, Dolph delivers the goods. This would also be his first role in a movie with two different titles, a trend the straight to DVD market embraces. Det. Jack Caine is a street wise Houston cop, playing by his own rules. He battles the drug trade on the streets of Houston. Probably because it was cheaper to film there. All you really need to know is on the movie poster. Good Cop. Bad Alien. Big Trouble. That's right, forget drugs- the bad guy is a fucking Alien junky addicted to drilling human heads.
Famous Quote: "I come in peace." "You go in pieces, asshole!"
1991 Showdown in Little Tokyo: Sgt. Chris Kenner.
This film is the pinnacle of 1990's action. In this one, Dolph is Sgt. Chris Kenner, a cultured LA cop. By cultured we mean he has a Japanese house he built with his bare hands on the beach. He's that fucking committed. In the hey day of 1990's action gun-slinging (which is this movie.) cops went on vicious murdering rampages. Dolph and Brandon Lee flat out tear shit apart looking for a drug dealing, murdering, rapist Yakuza Boss. Showdown in Little Tokyo delivers the Dolph on all levels. It even takes it further than you're willing to go.
Famous Quotes: "You have the biggest dick i've ever seen on a man." " Thanks."
1992 Universal Soldier: Andrew Scott
Here was Dolph's ultimate chance to shine. What could possibly go wrong? A return to villiany and another crowd drawing co-star, non-other than JCVD. Jean Claude Van Damme. Ivan Drago was a cold Soviet athlete, deep down he just wanted to compete against the best and win. The closest thing to a villian Dolph had ever done would probably be Sgt. Chris Kenner (The "good guy" from Showdown.) In Universal Soldier he would get a first class chance to go apeshit. We're not talking about shooting up the town, bad guys apeshit. We're talking about ALL OUT apeshit. Throwing grenades at Vietnamese women as they flee in terror. Making a necklace of ears. But most of all, taking out that buzzkill JCVD. Dolph came into this one a man possesed.
Famous Quote: "They're all traitors!"
1995 Johnny Mnemonic: Street Preacher
Johnny Mnemonic must have looked good on paper. Maybe someone neglected to say that Ice-T, Henry Rollins and Udo Kier had parts in this movie. Which if you're not a film scholar you should know, is a formula for certain disaster. Did we mention Keanu Reeves? Dolph takes his villiany to new crazy levels as a mechanized religious zealot. He's hellbent on killing for hire, in the name of Jesus of course. In the futuristic depleated world, he keeps his crucifix blade in a bible. A big bible. In all of the crazy bullshit that flies around freely in this film, non is more unforgiving than the religious cyborg hell-bent death machine that is Street Preacher.
Famous Quote: "It's Jesus time!"
Johnny Mnemonic would be the last time Dolph Lundgren would grace the American box office.
Dolph's Legacy continues today on DVD, like so many of the other great action movie stars of the 1980's-1990's. Dolph's straight to DVD legacy is right up there to rival Jean Claude Van Damme and Steven Segal.
It seems that even bad movie analysts and straight to DVD pundits have forgotten Dolph Lundgren.
Many "film buffs" or "action movie buffs" will claim that Dolph Lundgren is nothing but a b-grade Arnold. To those claims, us here at Cracked say, "Bull Shit."
Dolph Lundgren is the Biggest and the Best.
Better than the rest.