Over The Top

80’s Theme Song: 10/10

80’s Premise: 10/10

Stallone Sneering: 10/10

Back in the 80’s, great bad movies were coming out left and right, and its hard, even now, to go back through all of those diamonds and find the especially shiny ones.  One of the stand-out actors back in those days was Sylvester Stallone, and all you had to do to get him to be in a movie was to present it like this:  “You are a good____.  You are competing to be the best ______.  The odds are against you, but you fight through until you are on top.”  In “Over The Top”, fill in that blank with ‘arm-wrestler’, and you’ve got an 80’s hit that still packs a hilarious punch.

Sly’s name in this one is Lincoln Hawk, a guy who is just trying to put his life together and reconnect with the son he lost touch with long ago.  Hawk is just a poor trucker, you see, and his dead wife’s rich family decided that Hawk would do his son best by staying out of the picture.  But the years have passed, and now Hawk is ready to try his hand at fathering, while he tries his arm in something else!  He takes his son across the country in his Semi, revealing along the way that he is a contender for the Arm Wrestling Championship held in Las Vegas.

The story becomes one of developing respect between a father who is seen as a low-class, no brains, loser and a son who is very much an uptight, spoiled brat(like a crappier version of the movie “Dutch”).  As they discover the bonds that only a father and son can share, the kid’s grandfather decides that he still hates Hawk, and wants to make his life hell.  He kidnaps the kid and forces Hawk to sacrifice his truck and livelihood in a brash attempt to get his son back.  Failure ensues, and it would seem the only chance that Hawk has left is to win the Championship in Las Vegas and get the grand prize of a new semi truck(for real) and a large cash sum.

He calls it "over the top", I call it cheating...

The tournament begins, and right away you can tell it’s going to be difficult.  Everyone’s arms are as thick as Stallone’s neck, and one guy even drinks oil to show that he is a real machine(he probably died right after).  Hawk has a secret manuever, however, that gives him the edge in the competition, though when you see it you will think he is cheating.  Using his “special move” and being backed by one of the greatest Sammy Hagar songs ever(“Winner Takes It All”-written for the movie), Hawk makes it to the final round and gives it everything he has, only to win it all!!!!!!!!!

With the new truck and the earned respect and love of his son, Lincoln Hawk is finally able to live his life how he wants……which means he’s going to keep on trucking, but with his kid, effectively limiting the kid’s future to a very select career path.  The soundtrack slams us with more great 80’s ballads and everyone goes home happy(except for the grandfather, who lost his only connection to his dead daughter and has only money to comfort him).

Classic movie, great addition, and wonderful suggestion.  Keep those ideas flowing guys!

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