05th May2014

‘The Delta Force’ Blu-ray Review

by Paul Metcalf

Stars: Lee Marvin, Chuck Norris, Martin Balsam, Joey Bishop, Robert Forster, Lainie Kazan, George Kennedy, Hanna Schygulla, Susan Strasberg, Bo Svenson, Robert Vaughn, Shelley Winters | Written by Menahem Golan, James Bruner | Directed by Menahem Golan

Delta-Force-Blu

When you watch a Chuck Norris movie, you just feel that this is a movie built around him and the character he plays so well.  The Delta Force is a film like that, but this time he has to share the spotlight with Lee Marvin.  Now that the film has been given the Arrow Video Blu-ray treatment we not only get to watch the movie in excellent quality, but also have a peek at just why The Cannon Group were so smart at choosing the films they chose to make.

The Delta Force is based around the real life hijacking of TWA Flight 847 in 1985 where a group of Lebanese terrorists hijacked a plane and took hostages to Beirut.  Unlike the real story, in this version the titular Delta Force are called in with Colonel Alexander (Lee Marvin) and Major McCoy (Chuck Norris) taking in their elite team of commandos to take the hostages back and eliminate the terrorists.

It should come as no surprise that there is a heavy feel of patriotism to The Delta Force, this is based on the fact that The Delta Force are the elite fighters who get the job done and are the best of the best.  A point is made of showing the American flag throughout the movie, especially in the way that the flag badge is constantly applied to the uniforms so the terrorists know who are coming.  It’s typical Chuck Norris stuff, you know what to expect…even down to the cheesy action scenes where no matter how many bullets are flying he’ll never get hit, and he’ll be the biggest badass on the screen.

Although the action scenes are so cheesy one thing that is noticeable especially in the first half of the movie, although often criticised for its bias, it actually manages to show the actions of the terrorists as being an extreme action by extremists and not as an aggressive act by the country itself.  Yes, the fact that Norris and his team are fighting against Lebanese terrorists does feel somewhat overused these days, but in the eighties it was in the news and something that the public were aware of as being a real danger, if hopefully a rare occurrence.  The connection with the Jewish passengers and the Holocaust is also an interesting aspect too and creates a surprising level of emotion for a film like this, the hopelessness of the situation for the hostages and the feel that history was repeating itself because of the persecution of the Jewish men makes for more of an impact because of the connection with a history we can relate to.  However much you can argue that The Delta Force is a silly action film, the writing is done in a way to add impact to the situation the hostages are in, and just why actions like these take place.

Another aspect of The Delta Force is the noticeable star quality of the cast.  When you have actors such as Chuck Norris, Lee Marvin, Robert Foster, George Kennedy and Robert Vaughn in the cast you do get that feeling that for its time this was a fairly epic cast.  For fans of eighties movies especially action, this does feel like an event piece, which is probably why it is a movie that fans still look back on nostalgically as something to remember.

Although this Arrow Video release does feel a little light on extras, what extras there still add to the quality of the release and are well made.  With a look at the background of The Cannon Group and the making of The Delta Force you do come away feeling just how important Cannon was, and the impact of The Delta Force itself.  I’m sure fans of Chuck Norris films already have this on order or have received it already, for the rest who want to see why Chuck Norris is seen as such an action movie legend? This is an excellent place to start.

The Delta Force is available on Blu-ray now, courtesy of Arrow Video.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek
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