It may be one of the most popular genres for casual moviegoers, but action films are still some of the most despised films among hardcore cinephiles and critics alike. The thin stories, bland characters, sub-par acting, and over-reliance on explosions have watered down these movies to the point of satire over the years. But despite the genre’s recent struggles, there's no doubting that these flicks ruled the box office during the ‘80s and ‘90s.

Celluloid tough guys like Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Chuck Norris made some serious bank during this time by putting out movies with plenty of broken bones, explosions, and bullet-ridden bad guys. As with any genre, some of these movies were better than others, but they all managed to tap into the cultural zeitgeist of the times. Now these action pioneers are looking to make a comeback in The Expendables 2.

With stars like Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, and Bruce Willis teaming up with Stallone, Schwarzenegger, and Norris, the extremely macho sequel will undoubtedly jam so much testosterone into our eye sockets that our pupils probably won’t be able to pass NCAA drug testing afterwards. To celebrate the movie’s release this Friday, we’re taking a look back at The Must-See Action Movies from the Stars of The Expendables 2.

RELATED: The 50 Greatest Action Movies of All Time

Written by Jason Serafino (@serafinoj1)

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