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No Holds Barred (1989)
No Holds Barred (1989) poster
Directed by Thomas J. Wright
Produced by Michael Rachmil
Vince McMahon (executive)
Hulk Hogan (executive)
Written by Dennis Hackin
Starring Hulk Hogan
Kurt Fuller
Joan Severance
Tiny Lister
Music by Jim Johnston
Cinematography Frank Beascoechea
Editing by Tom Pryor
Distributed by New Line Cinema
Release June 2, 1989
Running time 93 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $8,000,000 (estimated)
Gross revenue $16,093,651 (USA)

No Holds Barred is a 1989 action film produced by Michael Rachmil, directed by Thomas J. Wright, written by Dennis Hackin and starring professional wrestler Hulk Hogan (who is billed as executive producer alongside Vince McMahon). The film is produced by the World Wrestling Federation under a "Shane Distribution Company" copyright and was released by New Line Cinema on June 2, 1989. It was launched as an attempt to boost Hulk Hogan's acting career several years after his appearance in Rocky III.

Plot

Rip Thomas is the World Wrestling Federation Heavyweight Champion, and his appearances on network television have been a thorn on the side of Brell, the head of the struggling World Television Network. The day after Rip's most recent title match, Brell attempts to bribe the champion into joining his network, but Rip declines the offer. After Rip disposes of Brell's thugs on his way home, Brell visits the No Count Bar, where he comes up with his own wrestling program called Battle of the Tough Guys. The show is successful due to the introduction of Zeus, an ex-convict and former protege of Rip's trainer Charlie. Zeus wins the $100,000 tournament and becomes Brell's prized fighter.

Samantha, a beautiful corporate spy, is sent by Brell to seduce Rip. However, Rip's good nature and dedication to charity wins her over, and she confesses her identity to the wrestler and turns to his side. After this fails, Brell attempts to have Samantha raped; Rip foils the plot and dispatches the would-be rapist into a tree trunk. Meanwhile, Brell and Zeus crash an outdoor charity event Rip is appearing at, demanding that Rip prove his honor by fighting Zeus live on Brell's new show. Once again, Rip avoids violent conflict, not wanting to set a bad example for the children present and attempts to reason with Brell, who leaves in anger. Rip's younger brother Randy and a friend decide to check out Zeus for themselves, attending an illegal fight being held in a warehouse. After watching Zeus defeat the monstrous Lugwrench Perkins, Randy foolishly identifies himself as Rip's brother to Brell and his associates. Randy attempts to defend himself, but Zeus brutally beats him, sending him to the hospital. Enraged, Rip accepts Zeus' challenge to avenge his brother.

On the night of the match, Brell has Samantha kidnapped and orders Rip to lose the fight to save her life. As the battle begins, Samantha manages to escape, but just as Brell's goons corner her, Charlie rescues her by knocking them out with a fire extinguisher. Zeus has the upper hand at the start of the fight, ruthlessly pummeling Rip, even trying to kill him by ripping out one of the steel posts and trying to run Rip through. Randy cheers to urge his brother to fight back. Rip is re-energized by Randy's words and once he sees Samantha is safe, gains a second wind and starts to turn the tides on Zeus. The fight destroys the ring, with Rip and Zeus continuing the battle up the through the stands as a disbelieving Brell watches from the control room. Rip finally puts an end to the match by knocking Zeus off a catwalk, which causes him to fall through the ring and lose. A frustrated Brell begins destroying electrical equipment, in total disbelief over Zeus' loss. Rip angrily goes after Brell intending to repay him for his misdeeds. In fear, Brell retreats, but accidentally touches live wires he exposed in his tirade and is electrocuted to death. With his enemies now vanquished, Rip celebrates his victory with Randy and his friends.

Cast

  • Hulk Hogan as Rip Thomas
  • Joan Severance as Samantha Moore
  • Kurt Fuller as Brell
  • Tom Lister, Jr. as Zeus
  • Mark Pellegrino as Randy Thomas
  • Bill Henderson as Charlie
  • Charles Levin as Ordway
  • David Paymer as Unger
  • Patrick O'Bryan as Craig
  • Jeep Swenson as Lugwrench Perkins
  • Bill Eadie as Jake Bullet
  • Stan Hansen as Neanderthal
  • Rebecca Wackler as Ms. Tidings
  • Bruce Taylor as Mr. Johnson
  • Gene Okerlund as Himself
  • Jesse Ventura as Himself
  • Howard Finkel as Himself
  • Joey Marella as Himself

External links

Hulk Hogan films

Rocky III (1982)  · No Holds Barred (1989)  · Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)  · Suburban Commando (1991)  · Mr. Nanny (1993)  ·

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