Rotten Tomatoes' Total Recall: The 25 Best Action Heroines of All Time
Who’s the toughest of them all? We count down to the best rock ‘em, sock ‘em lady of all time.
I like lists like these when they're not compiled by idiots and serve some purpose. Which studio head was it again who swore off female leads in action movies based on the failure of that Jodie Foster vigilante movie (nevermind Kevin Bacon's fared as bad the same year?) Too often though, the online magazines spread their lists over a ridiculous number of pages to make sure you view as many ads as possible )just click the link.) Here's the short version...
25. Famke Janssen (X-Men 1-3; GoldenEye)
24. Demi Moore (G.I. Jane; Charlie's Angels 2: Full Throttle)
23. Linda Hamilton (Terminator 1-2)
22. Natasha Henstridge (Species 1-2; John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars; She Spies)
21. Lucy Liu (Payback; Charlie's Angels 1-2; Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever; Kill Bill: Vol. I )
20. Jennifer Garner (Alias; Daredevil; Elektra; The Kingdom)
19. Anne Parillaud (Innocent Blood; Shattered Image; La Femme Nikita)
18. Angela Mao (Enter the Dragon; Stoner)
17. Hilary Swank (The Next Karate Kid; Million Dollar Baby)
16. Brigitte Nielsen (Red Sonja; Beverly Hills Cop 2)
15. Carrie-Anne Moss (The Matrix Trilogy)
14. Kara Hui (8 Diagram Pole Fighter; New Tales of the Flying Fox; My Young Auntie)
13. Tura Satana (Faster Pussycat! Kill! Kill!)
12. Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Rush Hour 2; Hero; House of Flying Daggers)
11. Cynthia Rothrock (Martial Law; China O'Brien)
10. Kate Beckinsale (Underworld 1-2; Van Helsing)
09. Michelle Rodriguez (S.W.A.T.; Resident Evil; Girlfight)
08. Zoe Bell (Death Proof; lead stuntwoman on Kill Bill & Xena)
07. Sigourney Weaver (Aliens Tetralogy*)
06. Grace Jones (Vamp; Conan the Destroyer; A View to a Kill)
05. Milla Jovovich (Resident Evil Trilogy; Ultraviolet; The Fifth Element)
04. Uma Thurman (Kill Bill; The Avengers; Batman and Robin)
03. Angelina Jolie (Tomb Raider 1-2; Mr. and Mrs. Smith; Wanted)
02. Pam Grier (Coffy; Foxy Brown; John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars)
01. Michelle Yeoh (Tomorrow Never Dies; Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Yes, Madam)
My own thoughts? Linda Hamilton should have been in the top ten, and possibly even the top five. Her transformation of Sarah Conner in "Terminator 2: Judgement Day," proved finally to American audience that women could be hard as a coffin nail. There were many heroines before her, and some did very well, but all tended to be a bit soft, either through mothering or sexuality or some other thing. Hamilton was the first to my mind to prove her gender need not have a "but..." when badassery** is being considered.
I've seen Natasha Henstridge play tough a number of times, and never bought it once. Might as well throw Halle Berry or Keira Knightly in there as well. Kate Beckinsale? Get the fuck out of here! Only goths bought into that boring-ass Underworld wire-fu bullshit!
Speaking of Berry, shouldn't anyone who ever played Catwoman be on this list? Michelle Pfeiffer especially?
We get the stuntwoman who doubled for Xena, but not Lucy Lawless? What part of "Warrior Princess" did you miss?
Not a single Whedonverse entry? Buffy? Chloe? Bueller?
Hillary Swank is way too high. Jennifer Garner could take her, and she weighs about 120 lbs. wet. Brigitte Nielsen is also too high, considering how much of her qualification comes from "Red Sonja?" Shouldn't Sybil Danning be on here, by that measure?
Considering who made the list, where is Geena Davis for "The Long Kiss Goodnight" and even "Cutthroat Island?" Rene Russo? Rosario Dawson?
I acknowledge Hong Kong and Japan were way ahead of the curve in ass-kicking chicks, which explains the heavy Asian presence. Still, they're so tiny! I only count two black girls and one Latina on the whole list. In my experience, you place your money on either against any other race in a girlfight. Represent!
Where are the big girls? Since when does extreme dieting help in a fight?
I'm glad Milla made the top five, but I see her taking Jolie, Grier, and giving the Bride a run.
*Attention 20th Century Fox: I am aware from your news division that you both make shit up as it suits you and are on a active campaign to make Americans more ignorant than third world nations. Fuck you very much for introducing to stupid Americans the non-word "quadrilogy. Bastards.
**Also not a word, but you know what is? "Pedantic."
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