|Title:||Code of Silence|
Other Movies Seen By This Director (1)
- The Guardian
|09.01.06||Alamo Downtown|| So a small group of us had tickets for both shows. We got to stay in the lobby and seat before they let the line of sold-out crowd in for the second show. Hey, it's chuck norris on a friday night. Both shows sold out pretty easily.|
After talking with Ant some more in the lobby (no surprise he knew about Jeff Speakman in The Perfect Weapon and Kill or Be Killed), the crowd filed in. Pierson, who recognized me from our little talk a month or so ago, asked me how it was going and we talked for a very short time. Once everyone was in the the alamo adreel ran, a spotlight came on and this time Pierson got time for his introduction. He spoke mainly of his experience running a theater in Fiji and how everybody on that island loved Chuck Norris... for his 80s action movies but even moreso for Walker Texas Ranger. The new crowd, much more like a typical Alamo crowd (the first show had tons of kids and old people in it), listened well enough but burst into cheer when Chuck finally walked in and got under the spotlight.
They took more questions this time around... no story about how he got into the business or anything like that although he did start off with his whole kickstart/WCL thing... It's really funny because he has these figures... 38,000 kids graduated from kickstart, 5,000 currently enrolled (but he wants it to be 500,000)... and whenever Walker came up he'd be quick to spit out 8 and a half years, 203 episodes... hearing it pounded into my brain was very salesmanlike... but hey, he's chuck norris. He has a very specific image to project... And his wife has that horse tightly reined, man... She was a total nascar wife: blonde, hot, surgically enhanced, skinny, peppy, and very opinionated. I would totally not be surprised if she's his business manager as well as wife.
So this time around, I sort of kept noticing that he's looking at me. At first I think this must be just one of those things. Me with my green shirt is one of the spots in the audience that he's picked in the rotation as he tells these stories... you know the whole public speaking thing about shifting eye contact around the room and whatnot... but he seems to keep coming back to me. I'm sort of getting a little creeped out by it, and make a conscious decision to nod just a tad more and smile just a tad larger when i'm supposed to... and then midway through his bruce lee story (synopsis: they meet, they work out together, bruce invites him to be in his movie so he can kick his ass), he looks at me and says "some of you who were here for the first show have heard this already, you'll have to bear with me" and makes this little motion thing toward me! Like i'm now the representative for all 30 of us who've stayed... even though the two people sitting next to me were also there for the first show... so I yell back "it's worth it!" and he says "ok good" and keeps going... so fast forward to after the movie when the lights go up. The friends that I was sitting with look over at me and say "he kept looking at you!" like.. kind of a bit jealous even... "he SPOKE to you! he waved at you!!! Chuck Norris talked to you!" so we joked that I should wear the same shirt and show up at his WCL thing... i was kind of creeped out and intimidated to be sharing some Chuck Norris eye contact though. he's old but... who am I kidding... I was sure to enjoy his anecdotes just as much the second time.
So the guy in the front of the line for this second Q&A was Lars. He gets the mic and says "Hello, Mr. Norris. I'm Lars and I work for the Alamo Drafthouse and I just wanted to know, if someone was talking on their cellphone during the movie would you punch them or kick them?" and the crowd started laughing. We died down and Norris answered with some very Christian drivel about avoiding a lawsuit and how most times when he gets angry he pictures further down the road and the eventual outcome that would happen and that always calms him down quick, so he'd probably just let the guy talk on the phone. Lars: "What if you HAD to choose." more laughter. Chuck thinks about it a second, then says "well, in the theater I'd probably use my hands. I'd probably choke him unconsciouss." Thunderous applause. The whole theater goes nuts.
Expect that to be an Alamo no-talk spot like tomorrow.
Other questions were pretty similar.. more Walker Texas Ranger stuff... What's your favorite Chuck Norris fact, who was your toughest adversary ("Guys from Texas were tougher")... that kind of thing. It went on for a decent time... didn't feel rushed but ended when it should've... and once again the bodyguards rushed him out the back door like a rockstar. Chuck had left the building.
So then we had to watch this crappy movie.
It actually wasn't 100% completely crappy. It was directed by Andrew Davis who'd later go on to direct The Fugitive with Harrison Ford, and since it was set in Chicago had a few familiar faces (including Dennis Farina) peppering the supporting cop cast as well as giving a little bit of a glimpse at the roots of what would eventually be done better in The Fugitive. Really the only other thing that makes this notable from any other 80s cop action movie is that Henry Silva plays the gang kingpin... even though I think he's supposed to be puerto rican or columbian or something which is pretty funny. He's just Henry Silva though... no accents or make-up or anything like that.
It's also really evident to see the whole Steve McQueen influence on Norris' performance. he doesn't say a lot unless it's important... but still gets a few good lines like "if i want your opinion I'll beat it out of ya." Most of the movie however is pretty paint by numbers stuff. At the end he kills a lot of people.
So that was Chuck Norris at the Alamo! awesome, right?