Jamie Kennedy's favorite movie review site
Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 

Overall Rating

Awesome: 9.09%
Worth A Look: 9.09%
Just Average: 0%
Pretty Crappy: 0%

1 review, 5 user ratings

Latest Reviews

Yummy by Jay Seaver

Clapboard Jungle by Jay Seaver

Psychomagic, a Healing Art by Rob Gonsalves

Secret Garden, The (2020) by Peter Sobczynski

Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker by Jay Seaver

Force of Nature by Rob Gonsalves

Greyhound by Rob Gonsalves

Undercover Vice: Strapped for Danger Part II by Rob Gonsalves

Painted Bird, The by Rob Gonsalves

Relativity by Jay Seaver

subscribe to this feed

Good Guys Wear Black
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by Matt Mulcahey

"Bad guys wear Chuck Norris roundhouse kicks."
1 stars

There are three rules no Chuck Norris movie should ever break. No more than seven minutes of screen time should elapse between allocations of hirsute, freckly cans of mustached whoop-ass. Never cast Chuck Norris as a liberal college professor. And never, ever, under any circumstances, end a Chuck Norris movie with a 15-minute political debate void of slow-motion roundhouse kicks. Good Guys Wear Black flagrantly disregards all three.

Norris’ second starring vehicle following 1977’s Breaker!Breaker!, Good Guys Wear Black features Chuck as an elite CIA commando turned anti-war political science professor. Norris shifted allegiances to the side of Nixon-bashing liberals following a failed mission by his Black Tiger special-ops platoon to rescue a group of POWs during the waning days of the Vietnam conflict, a mission sabotaged for the sake of political positioning.

When the shady politician (James Franciscus) responsible for that sabotage is nominated as Secretary of State several years later, Norris and the other five surviving Black Tigers end up on a hit list intended to silence them before the senate’s confirmation hearings.

And thus you have the first of many ill-conceived aspects of Good Guys Wear Black – no Chuck Norris vehicle should ever require two entire paragraphs of synopsis to explain the plot. Filmmakers behind later Norris flicks eventually figured this out, following the “Chuck avenges dead partner” or “Chuck takes on an entire commie nation” archetypes for the remainder of the former karate champion’s brief tenure as a viable box office force.

The convoluted political conspiracies of Good Guys Wear Black might be forgivable if they were tempered with roundhouse kicks. But outside of a fairly classic slow-motion leaping lunge by Norris through the windshield of a charging car, the flick is virtually void of action.

There are a few Chuck beatdowns dished out to assorted assassins, but the first major fight sequences doesn’t come until nearly an hour into the film. That initial hour is spent rehashing the same pattern – Chuck arrives to warn former Black Tiger pal about the threat on his life. Said former pal is promptly gunned down by a sniper. Chuck grits his teeth, bangs Senate investigator Anne Archer by a fireplace, and then repeats.

This monotonous cycle is finally broken not by a savage unleashing of kung-fu rage, but by Chuck sharing his feelings on the finer points of American diplomacy for the better part of the film’s final 15 minutes while the viewer prays for ninjas to break through the windows and hurl throwing stars. Those ninjas never show up, though you do get a soliloquy on political corruption from the star of Silent Rage and Forced Vengeance.

The only real point of interest (outside of laughing at the movie logic that allows college professor Norris to be a Porsche test car driver on the side) is the politics behind Good Guys Wear Black.

Released in 1978, the film marks one of the last bastions of post-Vietnam disillusionment in mainstream action fare before Hollywood began shifting its product to the gung-ho right wing conservatism of Reagan-era America.

There’s just something amusing about one of Norris’ Black Tiger compatriots delivering the line “Whatever happened to the good old days, when Randolph Scott and John Wayne were happy to have their asses blown off for the good old US of A,” considering Norris would shortly thereafter help usher in the return of that sort of jingoistic patriotism with films such as Invasion USA and Missing in Action.

link directly to this review at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=7878&reviewer=255
originally posted: 05/03/06 13:47:05
[printer] printer-friendly format  

User Comments

11/18/11 matthew thompson dalldorf Underrated political thriller 4 stars
6/09/06 JM Synth INCREDIBLY Poorly made and boring film, or at least what I could stand was (about 40 mins) 1 stars
4/27/06 Sugarfoot Good actors also don't star in this crap. 1 stars
10/25/05 Robbie best movie ever. 5 stars
6/21/03 Jack Sommersby Poorly made and directed. One of Norris' most amateurish efforts. 1 stars
Note: Duplicate, 'planted,' or other obviously improper comments
will be deleted at our discretion. So don't bother posting 'em. Thanks!
Your Name:
Your Comments:
Your Location: (state/province/country)
Your Rating:

Discuss this movie in our forum

  02-Jun-1978 (PG)



Directed by
  Ted Post

Written by
  Bruce Cohn
  Mark Medoff
  Joseph Fraley

  Chuck Norris
  Anne Archer
  James Franciscus
  Lloyd Haynes
  Dana Andrews
  Jim Backus

Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
Privacy Policy | | HBS Inc. |   
All data and site design copyright 1997-2017, HBS Entertainment, Inc.
Search for
reviews features movie title writer/director/cast