Growing up in the UK’s equivalent of The Shire meant that access to the escapism of video rentals was something as distant as The Misty Mountains. The arrival of a man who looked like Stanley Uris from Stephen King’s It, driving a van that was filled to the rafters with VHS, and which glowed like the Pulp Fiction briefcase when opened, introduced me to a roll-call of the 80s Action Heroes. Monosyllabic men, who quipped their way through bullets and bodies. The first plastic case to cross my sweaty palms featured a muscular fellow, holding a gun, against a colourful heatmap backdrop. It was Predator, and that was a long time ago.
About where things began to change for the real expendables is hard to pinpoint. Why did these one-time box-office giants; Schwarzenegger, Stallone, Van-Damme, and to a lesser degree Lundgren, suddenly find their powers diminishing?