Invasion USA , 1985
Tis the Season! The boys are back with an all new episode of Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers! Dion and Blake are ushering in the holidays with a classic, Invasion USA, starring the great Chuck Norris and directed by the supremely underrated Joseph Zito.
Blake and Dion discuss the burning holiday questions, like does Santa shave his beard on December 26th, or has he had to up his game because of all the high-tech toys kids have nowadays? Then they get to the film: The year is 1985 and along with movies like Commando, Rambo: First Blood Part II and Missing in Action 2: The Beginning, a low-budget Studio named Cannon releases this gem, a great example of pure, unabashed 80’s Action Escapism. Chuck is Ex CIA agent Matt Hunter and is after a terrorist who plans to destroy America, at Christmas time no less! But why has this film fallen through the cracks of time and other Christmas-themed Action movies only bring Die Hard or say Lethal Weapon to mind? Does this deserve to be up there with those classics? Is this the film that helped solidify Chuck as the ultimate bad-ass? And what did Chuck really mean to say when he signed Dion’s poster?
All those questions (hopefully) will be answered in this all new holiday edition Saturday Night Movie Sleepovers!
(Dion mistakenly said Lebanon when he met Iran when speaking about he 1979-80 American hostage situation)
Check out the original trailer to Invasion USA
Have a look at a great Q & A with Chuck, as he discusses how he and Bruce Lee would fare today in MMA
Take a listen to the Jay Chattaway score to Invasion USA
Here’s Dion with the man, the myth, the legend, Chuck Norris
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What I learned from Invasion USA is, if you try to ruin Christmas, Chuck Norris will F’N kill you.
Seriously, I almost had a heart attack from laughing so hard after Dion suggested playing “Jingle Bell Rock” over the end credits after Chuck won the rocket launcher duel.
Chuck is a stiff, but he was used perfectly here. Basically, Chuck kills a ton of terrorists/mercenaries & says awesome one-liners. He doesn’t have to give big speeches where his acting limitations would be exposed. Big props to Richard Lynch who was just great as Rostov. He brings the intensity & isn’t just collecting a paycheck.
At the end of the podcast, Dion & Blake were talking about how hard it was to watch Invasion USA on any format. I got some good news. Shout! Factory announced Invasion USA will be available on Blu Ray on March 15, 2016. Gimme a Hell Yeah! on that.
Merry Christmas & death to all of Rostov’s army.
Hey Joseph! Thanks so much for listening to the show, and taking the time to write us! I completely agree with you about Norris and Lynch, both giving great performances. And that’s so sweet that Shout! Factory is putting it out on Blu Ray- We only wish it was a Director’s Cut of the film! Oh well, beggers can’t be choosers. Anyway, have a Merry Christmas, and thanks again! – Dion
Better late than never but I wanted to post one more comment on my Invasion USA love.
I finally checked out all the Blu Ray special features. There’s a fun commentary with Joseph Zito & interviews with the production cast (Tom Savini!) but the interview with the writer James Bruner was where I found out why the last hour of USA turns into a “Chuckfest” (nothing wrong with that in my book). Basically, the Melissa Prophet reporter was suppose to play a way larger role & going to be a narrator throughout it. She was going to fill in the story gaps, but her character just didn’t “work” (maybe it was a nice way of saying she gave a bad performance?) & most of her stuff got cut. They even had to rewrite the ending. As much as I liked the Blu Ray, there’s no deleted scenes so we’ll never find out what happened to the rest of the uh, “plot”. As Dion mentioned beggars can’t be choosers.
As an 80’s action movies fan, this is my 2nd favorite Chuck flick just behind Delta Force.
Yeah Joseph, it would be great one day to get a proper director’s cut with all those bits that were chopped. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for it one day. As for Norris movies go, I absolutely love this film, and it ties for me with his forgotten genre crossover, SILENT RAGE. I saw that at a young age and it scared me to death. But yeah, I was and still am a HUGE Norris fan. And he’s such a nice guy too, so God Bless him. And thank you again Joseph for taking the time to write us, and hopefully we’ll take another Norris movie on in 2017. Take care. -Dion
Actually Golan and Globus were cousins. Golan’s birth name was Globus but changed it in honor of the Golan heights, he was born in Palestine (later Israel). By the way, Golan’s first name is pronounced like the late Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin. The Punisher was released by New World not Cannon. Cobra was 1986, the first of a two film deal Stallone made with Golan and Globus. Terror in the Aisles came out in 1984. Actually the Missing in Action films came about with the screenplay James Cameron had written for Rambo: First Blood Part II, which was one of the scripts Cameron was working on when he had to wait to shoot The Terminator (thanks to Dino DeLaurentiis exerting his power as he heard Cameron’s project would be an unstoppable force at the summer box office so Schwarzenegger was back as Conan). The hostage situation was in Iran, there was a US military compound which was hit by a car or truck bomb in 1983 resulting in a sizable amount of casualties. You can’t forget Richard Lynch in Bad Dreams and The Sword and The Sorcerer. Well don’t forget Billy Drago as one of the vigilante posse in Clint Eastwood’s Pale Rider. He also appeared in a couple other Chuck Norris films: as a prison shrink in Hero and the Terror (1988) and as Norris’ narco nemesis Ramon Cota in The Delta Force 2. A couple other…well less than notable efforts Drago appears in are Cyborg 2 and Vamp. Red Scorpion was not a Cannon release. Ludgren did have an effort for Cannon under his belt: Masters of the Universe. Norris’ martial arts that he came up with is called chuk soon do. The stuntman seated at the desk I believe was injured. But there have been a number of accidents that have happened on Cannon Films. Among Norris’ pre-Cannon efforts, you can’t forget Silent Rage, Breaker Breaker, and Forced Vengeance. The Patrick Stewart film where he plays the bad guy up against skateboarders I believe is called Masterminds.
Hey Robert! Thanks for listening and thanks even more for dropping by and leaving a comment. It’s great people have an appreciation for these movies- some of which you named are huge favorites of us here at SNMS. Classics. Thanks again and take care.
I love what you guys had to say about Chuck. So much love and respect, and it really warmed my heart. So many people make fun of him, whether it’s for his hair, his acting, or his political views. It makes me sad when they can’t give him credit for how good of an action star he is and what a great guy he is. This episode gave him a perfect tribute. Thanks for a great episode fellas!
Hey Daniel! Thanks so much first for listening, and thank you so much for taking the time to write us. We’re so glad you’re love Chuck as we do, and help get the word out on the street on how great Mr. N is. People who hate him are just plain ignorant, plain and simple. And be rest assured, this will NOT be out last Norris podcast. God Bless him. And thank you so much for everything. You are the man. Be well.