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The Action Hero's Guide to Saving Lives (2009)

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Sometimes even a hero needs another chance.


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When lives are on the line... When there's danger at every turn... When cliches run amuck... Sometimes the best thing to do is call Mulligan! Ace Mulligan! No matter how villainous the madman... How numerous the henchmen... How sexy the damsel, one thing is for sure: Ace Mulligan will always come out on top. Sometimes. Starring Patrick Warburton (Seinfeld, The Tick, Men In Black II, Rules of Engagement), "The Action Hero's Guide To Saving Lives" is a laugh-out-loud action-comedy that takes you behind the scenes of Ace Mulligan's perilous and not-always-successful mission to stop the bad guys, get the girl, and save the day. It's not always easy being an action hero. Written by Justin Lutsky

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


If At First You Don't Succeed, You Must Be Ace Mulligan.


Short | Action | Comedy



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Release Date:

30 April 2009 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

Timing is everything when it comes to being an action hero
28 February 2014 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

In the action movies it seems the hero always is able to pull it out of the bag when required, whether it is being in the right place at the right time, having the right plan or even just having the right kiss-off line ready to go when needed. In this short film we see how this is done because everything takes practice to get it right first time. The plot sees traditional action hero Ace Mulligan responding to a hostage situation and for every step of his rescue, from initial breach to final pose is shown a couple of times, each time with a not so good result till he gets the things right. I have not described it particularly well but this is how it works.

The short takes this approach and uses it to play with the conventions of the action movie to show clichéd things going wrong if the hero doesn't do it right first time and it is pretty funny in the way it does it. It runs a little longer than it needed to but it does have some good laughs in here along the way and certainly fans of the action genre will get more from it as its targets are generally on the money. The whole production never quite gets the feel of a full Hollywood movie but it does not far short by very much and generally it fits the material even if the constraints do show. Otherwise it is smartly written and well delivered to the screen. Warburton (best known for Seinfeld I guess) is well cast in the role as he has the macho slowness of the old-school films and again this fits with the spoofing of the genre.

It isn't quite as good as the idea makes it sound but it is still a very enjoyable and funny short film that takes a clever structure/approach and uses it to affectionately spoof a popular and well known genre.

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