As it happens often with cinephiles, conversations about fictional movies and fictional movie characters are attributed to real world geopolitical events and news stories. Recently a conversation with a co-worker snowballed into a hypothetical scenario that I found interesting.
One actor or actress and five of his/her characters vs every member of ISIS
Quickly myself and my co-worker realized we were just picking comic book characters to destroy ISIS. That wasn't very fun because obviously Superman, The Hulk, The Flash, Thor and Wonder Woman would destroy ISIS pretty quick. Not to mention this was a movie debate not a comic book debate. So we eliminated comic book characters and superheros from this hypothetical contest.
The debate raged on and we found that several actors and actresses had 5 characters that could give ISIS a pretty good fight and maybe even take down the terrorist regime if they worked in solidarity. I had several great candidates myself and one turned out to be my favorite, not the most logical but to me the most entertaining.
Below is my list of Mel Gibson characters I'd would use as a team to take down ISIS
- BENJAMIN MARTIN - The Patriot
Benajmin Martin was reluctant to join the American Revolution. A widower with seven children, he desired to live his life peacefully on his South Carolina farm and try despite his best efforts to become a carpenter. Martin was a veteran of the French and Indian war and has a dark past of brutal savagery highlighted by the mutilation of his enemies during the wilderness campaign. These events give him tremendous guilt and he goes to great length to hide his children from the knowledge of his violent past. After a long train of abuses and usurpations on his family including the death of a son, Benjamin Martin takes arms against the British Empire unleashing a reign of terror and "un-civilized" guerrilla warfare that leads to several great victories in the American Revolution. Despite his initial reluctance Benjamin has strong beliefs that the colonies can govern themselves and the long list of tyrannous crimes against the colonies, King George needs to be stopped. His love of country and family could be proper motivation to take on ISIS. Benjamin is highly skilled in hand to hand combat especially with a hatchet. A deadly aim with colonial weaponry, Benjamin Martin would annihilate ISIS with modern sniper rifles and can be just as ruthless with a sharp object. His intimate knowledge of our founding fathers beliefs would give us new direction in this complicated era.
- WILLIAM WALLACE - Braveheart
FREEDOM!!!! William Wallace was a Scottish knight of lesser nobility born in Scotland and raised during the treacherous reign of King Edward "The Longshanks". In 1280 "Longshanks" invades Scotland and young William Wallace witnesses the death of his father and brother after a battle against King Edwards forces. Young William Wallace is adopted by his paternal uncle who takes him on a pilgrimage throughout Europe, educating him along the way teaching him to use his wits and his will. He returns to his native Scotland as an adult and reunites with childhood friends. Among those is a young lady named Murron MacClannough who Wallace falls in love with and intends to marry. However King Edwards in an attempt to assert his authority reinstates Prima Nocte (the right of the lord to have sex with female subjects on their wedding nights). William and Murron marry in secret to prevent her from the lust of the nobleman but English Soldiers attempt to rape her anyway. Wallace is able to rescue her from the rape but a later second attempt leads to Murron's public execution. This sends Wallace into a rage and he begins his campaign of freedom with an attack on an English garrison in his hometown aided by his clan who he has emboldened with liberty. Despite the best efforts of King Edwards the legend of William Wallace spreads throughout Scotland. Wallace unites other Scottish Clans under his worthy cause with his battle cry "they may take our lives, but they'll never take our freedom!" Wallace is hopelessly outmatched by the English but his cry of freedom and his reluctance to submit to the Kings authority during his gruesome death or even to cry for mercy strengthens his legend and the Scots eventually wins their freedom. William Wallace like Benjamin Martin is highly skilled in hand to hand combat but would have to be taught modern weaponry in a fight against ISIS. However their mutual love for freedom and fights against the British will strengthen their bond. Both are great military strategist and can be ruthless when needed. William Wallace would be able to embolden citizens living under the harsh rule of ISIS and encourage them to take up arms and fight for their Independence. Thus making it very hard for ISIS to control the region.
- MAX ROCKATANSKY - Mad Max (1-3)
"Mad Max" Rockatansky is from an alternate reality where global warfare and economic crisis has lead to a dystopic Australia. As society slowly dwindles away the stoic Max is gaining a reputation as the leading pursuit officer of the Main Force Patrol (MFP). He is awarded by his friend Goose and the MFP mechanic with a all black pursuit vehicle with a V8 supercharger engine, the fastest car on the road now belongs to the road's best driver. This convinces Max to stay with the MFP although he was entertaining the idea of leaving for the possibility of a better life with his family. During this time a motorcycle gang called the Acolytes are running roughshod across the countryside raping, pillaging, and terrorizing citizens. After an encounter with the Acolytes in a particular brutal event Max's friend Goose is burned alive. Max becomes disillusioned with MFP and while on holiday with his young family they are attacked by Acolytes leading to his wife and young child's death. Max goes AWOL from the MFP but keeps the all black pursuit vehicle. He eventually defeats the Acolytes and goes on to lead a solitary nomadic lifestyle only interacting with humans when necessary and sometimes liberating tribes from nefarious cartels. Max's skills as a driver would be a huge asset to a group with already two members who have never seen a motor vehicle. He's calm, very resourceful and a great mechanic. Max's origins gives him vital experience in a harsh desert climate and with violent highly weaponized tribes. Mad Max always finds a way to gain an upper hand on his enemy usually by acquiring their resources and giving them to the people.
- MARTIN RIGGS - Lethal Weapon Series
Martin Riggs is an ex-U.S Army special forces soldier that became a L.A.P.D narcotics officer. At age 19 he joined the Army and he eventually became a member of Special Forces and specialized in weaponry and hand to hand combat. Martin spent most of his Special Forces career in Vietnam participating in C.I.A's operation Phoenix where he was an assassin. His first kill was in Laos where he killed a man at long distance with a sniper rifle. His career of killing would plague his fragile conscience but managed. Somehow Martin managed to gain a somewhat normal life after his Army career by training in several forms of martial arts including Kali, tai-chi, Shotokan Karate, Tae Kwon Do, Wing Chun, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Judo, Capoeira, Boxing, and Muay Thai. Riggs joins the L.A.P.D eventually getting a job with the homicide division where he can use his skills that he gained in the Army and martial arts in a constructive manner. Later, Martin also falls in love and marries the love of his life in Victoria Lynn. However Lynn dies in a horrible car accident sending Riggs into a deep depression bordering on suicidal. Riggs now working for the homicide division is letting his depression fuel his psychotic rage and with nothing to lose Martin Riggs is extremely dangerous. Instead of teaming him up with Roger Murtaugh who is too old or all this shit anyways, I'll intercept Riggs story here and team him up with the other Gibson freedom fighters. His specialized skills in modern warfare and martial arts combined with his training in the military and law enforcement compounded with his blind rage makes Martin Riggs a "Lethal Weapon".
- LT. GEN. HAROLD G. MOORE - We Were Soldiers
Harold Gregory "Hal" Moore, Jr was a United States Army lieutenant general, West Point graduate and recipient of the Distinguished Service Cross. Moore lead the 1st Battalion, 7th Calvary regiment at the Battle of la Drang during the conflict in Vietnam and was also a veteran of the Korean War. Moore persevered despite overwhelming odds at the Battle of la Drang but his mantra "there is always one more thing you can do to increase your odds of success" emboldened his battalion and with great courage they obtained victory. All this despite the fact a sister company was completely slaughtered in a massacre less than two miles away. Moore's training and leadership gave the 7th Batallion the edge it needed for victory. His leadership would be tremendous asset to the Gibson Freedom Fighters and his knowledge he obtained in Vietnam would give the team a psychological edge. Hal Moore could be the glue this team needs.
GIBSON FREEDOM FIGHTERS VS ISIS.
Granted five guys vs all of ISIS in one big Armageddon style battle is a mismatch in favor of ISIS. However with proper military strategy and guerrilla warfare ISIS could be isolated into manageable pockets that can be defeated. If William Wallace can unite the besieged citizens of the region against ISIS than the Gibson team has a solid chance.
WHO WOULD YOU PICK?
Like I said above there were other actors and actresses that have 5 non-superhero characters that could wage war on ISIS. While I found Mel Gibson the most entertaining possibility to me it certainly wasn't a easy choice. I kow after reading this you have other actors and characters that you would like to put in a fight vs the Islamic State. Below you can name off who and why, let the debate begin.