Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Off the top of my head:
  • Straw Dogs - 1971
  • Last House on the Left - 1972
  • Death Wish - 1974
  • Texas Chainsaw Massacre - 1974
and then
* Rambo: First Blood - 1982
I guess Rambo brought it into the mainstream. The previous ones on the list could be considered vaguely Arty.

Ruthless Reviews has some good analysis of what makes an 80s action film

Big sweaty men! Big noisy guns! Dozens of people getting beaten and slaughtered-per scene! Entire cities razed to the ground! Liberal wimps beware as simple handguns become judge, jury and executioner!

The first Rambo is arguably liberal/progressive. The rest are conservative propaganda/fantasy.

sapere aude

by Number 6 on Thu Feb 7th, 2013 at 06:38:34 AM EST
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