Sunday, February 1, 2009

Movie Guns XXXIII - Super Post!!

I had no intentions of this being a Super Post, but after I got started in what I thought was going to be a short post, I realized that I had taken almost forty pictures in the first twenty minutes of film. Overall I captured seventy seven frames, but all of them will not be in this post. You'll just have to go browsing through the Photobucket folder.

This post is full of old meets new in terms of the guns involved. There's a little something for everyone; if you're a revolver guy, it's there. ARs? Got them in spades. Mall ninja gear? Oh yeah.

The movie, of course, is 3,000 Miles to Graceland. I've been trying to find this movie for about six months, to no avail. My wife found it bought it for me for Christmas. Since I've seen the movie several times already, I'd figured that that was less time needed to do this post, but considering that I don't get more than ten minutes of uninterrupted time alone, that hope was short lived.

With so many pictures to cover, I'm gonna leave the storyline to your imagination. For the start of the movie we have our main character, Murphy (Kevin Costner) and friends - Zane (Kurt Russell), Hanson (Christian Slater), Franklin (Bokeem Woodbine), and Gus (David Arquette) - dressed up as Elvis in order to get inside of a Vegas casino and steal the money, which they do. Murphy is carrying a Franchi SPAS12 shotgun, which he uses to fire the first shot at the guards who are following them out of the casino, and when he hits the first guard, he goes flying six feet backwards:
Franchi SPAS12
No Freakin Way Award
Yeah, there's plenty of that in this movie too.

This is when all hell breaks loose. Hanson is firing a modified AR type carbine - it's pieced together from a bunch of different parts - one handed at the guards:
Franken AR 2

We get to see the awesome power of the mighty .223 Remington as the poor guards closest to Hanson get knocked clean off their feet by the little 50 grain bullets:
Behold, The Power of The 223 Remington

Murphy reloads his SPAS12 with birdshot before firing it empty again:
Oh Snap! I Bought Birdshot!!

Murphy then pulls two nickel plated pearl handled 1911s and starts blasting people in slow motion, because that's how he rolls:
Murphy Firing 1911s
Murphy Aiming 1911s
Murphys Nickel 1911s
Slide Lock

He does a reload from cover before blowing another guard off his feet and into a slot machine:
Murphy Firing 1911
Hit With .45

To be fair, I think that it does look cool when the victim gets the snot knocked out of him, despite the lack of realism. How cheezy would it be if the victim just crumpled from the bullet hitting something vital? No fun, huh?

All of this gunfighting is going on to the backdrop of an Elvis impersonator singing amongst half naked dancing woman:
Elvis Backdrop

Back in the fight, one of the guards is firing none other than a Beretta 92F from behind a good deal of cover while another is firing a Remington 870 without cover. Guess who lives:
Guards Beretta 92F
Remington 870

None of them seem to have ever held a weapon in their lives:
WTF Grip

To add to the cool factor, Gus is blazing away with a Smith & Wesson Model 29. and even does a reload for your viewing pleasure:
S&W Model 29
S&W 29 Fireball
Revolver Reload
He would have been better off if he hadn't broke cover before his reload, but we won't knock him too hard.

Franklin and Gus start getting their work done with short barreled (Short Barreled Rifle - SBR)ARs of unknown make. I've seen a similar model as these are, with the high top upper receiver, but can't remember who makes it:
SBR FrankenAR Firing
Mini FrankenAR
SBR FrankenAR

Notice that they're using the 100 round Beta C-Mag magazines in the SBRs, and none of them are wearing hearing protection. I don't have any personal experience with rifles with barrels less than 14.5", but I'm sure that those little 8 1/2" barrels are LOUD!! If they would just put the gun up to their shoulder and use the sights they would be much more successful at taking out the opposition.

Anyways, Gus switches to a Beretta 93R which he fires dry, and is then seen reloading a Walther P99:
Beretta 93R
Walther P99

This whole time Zane is in an elevator that he's rewiring in order to make it go to the roof. He pulls a piecemeal AR from a guitar case - notice it has the A1 sight and no forward assist or shell deflector:
Franken AR
That's a strange looking pistol grip as well.

When the elevator door opens next to the raging gunbattle, Zane smashes a guard in the face with the buttstock. Look close and you can see the buttstock is made of rubber:
I Breaks Buttstocka Ovah Your Faceah

For some odd reason, he spends an entire magazine shooting the glass out of a ceiling to make it drop on three guards instead of just shooting them:
Franken AR 3

Murphy, Zane, Hanson, Gus, and Franklin jump into the elevator just as a plain clothes Vegas PD officer comes running around the corner with his Sig P228 in full song. The Sig changed to a Sig from a 1911 for just a moment. He manages to hit Franklin before getting a slug from Murphy's 1911 in the forhead:
Vegas PD Sig P228

The rhinestone cowboys make their way to the roof where they're supposed to get picked up by a helicopter. Murphy kneels down and gets ready to ambush the guards when they come through the door, and he actually puts the gun up to his shoulder and looks down the sights, which enables him to get two kills with four shots:
Rooftop Fight
Shoulder Fire

The guards have upgraded to Ruger Mini 14s, but they don't get any more hits on the robbers, nor do they manage to hit the helicopter that's right in front of them:
Ruger Mini14

After the gunfight, the guys take shelter inside of a motel to count their cash. Hanson and Murphy have a disagreement on how the cash is split up, and Hanson pulls a nickel plated S&W Model 27 out and points it at Murphy, who has both of his 1911s in a custom double shoulder holster, as well as an unknown make pistol in a small of the back holster:
Nickel S&W Model 27
SOB Holster
Custom Double Holster

Murphy draws one of his now suppressed 1911s and kills Hanson, after which we get a glimpse of Gus' S&W Model 29 in it's vertical shoulder holster:
Suppressed 1911
Vertical Shoulder Holster

Moving right along, Murphy kills Gus, and thinks he kills Zane, but Zane was wearing a kevlar vest and survives. Zane goes back to the motel and finds out that a girl who he's been sleeping with, Cybil (Courtney Cox Arquette), her son has taken the money and stashed it. Zane is seen here pointing a S&W Model 5946 at her:
S&W Model 5946

Soemwhere along the line I caught a glimpse of Murphy's Cold Steel Voyager:
Cold Steel Voyager

There's a big gap in the shooting to make way for a plot, so later on in the film we have Murphy getting pulled over by Idaho Highway Patrol, who is itching for a gunfight with the notorious criminal. The cop has a nickel plated Colt Single Action Army (do you even need to ask the caliber?), which for some reason he decides to open the loading gate, spin the cylinder, and then thumb the hammer back until the cylinder stops. I'm no expert on single action guns, but I do think that that's a good way to ruin the lock:
Idaho HP
Colt SAA Spinning Cylinder
Colt SAA
Do note the lack of a front sight. I've read that old time gunfighters would file the sight off to make for a smoother draw, as they generally didn't use the sights anyways.

As the two fire rounds at each other the rounds pass by one another mid flight, and the scene shows this to the viewer:
Passing Bullets

I'll let you watch to see how the fight went down, but the victor is obviously Murphy, or we wouldn't have the rest of the movie to bother with.

Before I skip to the end gunbattle, I thought I'd show this unknown police officer's S&W Model 27 in blued steel as he points it at Zane:
S&W Model 27

Now for more shooting action.

Murphy meets with a friend named Jack to get guns and gear for the final showdown. Murphy gets another 1911, as well as a modified Mossberg 500:
Ivory Gripped 1911
Modified Mossberg 500

Jack has hired the help of Hamilton (Ice-T) who is supposed to be as good as "a couple of guys." Hamilton walks up while playing with a Microtech Halo:
Microtech Halo
That's a kick ass knife, but a little spendy.

Zane shows up and gets the drop on Jack who is fondling a S&W Model 686:
S&W Model 686

What happens next is blah blah, blah blah blah blah blah blah, blah blah, starts shooting it out with the Seattle SWAT team and Federal Marshals, who are all armed with H&K MP5s of some shape or form.

Murphy starts it out with his Mossberg, but Hamilton hands him a SBR type AR with one of those Beta C-Mags, which he starts hammering away with:
Murphy Firing SBR
Murphy Fires SBR

Jack is using a Sig P228, and this Ruger MP9 to shoot the cops:
Ruger MP9

SWAT answers back with the MP5Ns:
Marshals With MP5Ns

Hamilton decides to get his hand-to-hand on by skewering a cop with this big ass knife:
Hamiltons Big Ass Knife
You can see the Microtech Halo in a kydex holster on his left shoulder.

And then. . . . .and then. . . .Hamilton, in an act of incredible ludicrousness, went above and beyond the call of stupidity by chaining himself upside down and flying out away from cover while spinning wildly in the air with a FN P90 firing in each hand:
Uhh, Tactically Unsound

Naturally, all of the cops find him to be easy pickings and promtly shoot him full of holes for his troubles:
Brace of FN P90s

Murphy picks up a FN M249 Minimi SAW and starts going buck wild; blowing up cars, fuel tanks, buildings; all the while he's killing SWAT cops like crazy:
FN Para M249 SAW
Aledgedly, he's the son of Elvis. I don't recall reading anything about Elvis being a gunfighter or a badass, so I don't see the point.

At one point he appears to use the sights, and decides that the weapon is way more controllable with the fold out stock planted in his shoulder:
Murphy Firing SAW
Murphy Shooting SAW

Sadly, he becomes SWAT fodder as they have H&Ks, which trump FNs no matter how many rounds they hold:
Niinja With H&K Lasers

Plus, they all have lasers, and Murphy doesn't. So sad.

Well that about wraps it up. Check this movie out if you like action flicks, or if you like sparky bullets; there's lot's of those in this movie. With all of the money spent on ammo, it's no wonder why the actors didn't get any training and fired every weapon from the hip. Also note that this is the second movie that I've covered with Christian Slater trying to be like Elvis. I find that odd.


Update: MT2008 points out in comments that the Sig used by the Vegas PD officer to whack Franklin is actually a P226, not a P228. Good catch!

Update: Hell in a Handbasket dropped me some valuable information that is worth your time:
"You mentioned a state trooper in the film who tries to use his Colt Single Action Army in a Western holster to outdraw Kevin Costner, who is using a 1911 in a shoulder holster. That guy was a famed stunt man named Alex Green, one of the oldest performers that still are willing to take a fall. He is also one of the few people still around who know how to use a whip, and he teaches fancy Western style gun handling tricks." "Check out his profile. It seems that he has been in just about every TV show or movie that called for an action sequence since 1970."

Cool stuff. Green has played in a ton of films and shows, and yet I never noticed. These days the shows that we see on TV are full of gun ignorance (CSI comes to mind). We need more people like him to keep things right for correctness, otherwise people will keep being influanced by erroneous gun handling. Also cool is that he's a knife and tomahawk thrower!

Thanks James!


Anonymous said...

The SBR AR-type rifles appear are a mix of parts. The upper receivers/barrels are from Rocky Mountain Arms Patriot Pistols, the lower/receivers stocks are from full-size AR carbines (probably XM177s). Then they slapped M4-type carry handles on top of the Patriot Pistol uppers and added the Beta-C mags, and voila! Cool-looking weapon, BTW.

Also, the SIG pistol used by the Vegas PD cop in the elevator is not a P228. It has a squared trigger guard and longer barrel, so it's definitely a P226.

Unknown said...

Indeed, you are right about the SIG. Good eye.

I figured the ARs were Franken guns; it seem slike they all are nowadays. I don't think they'll be getting a contract with DPMS any time soon.

Anonymous said...

Eh, a lot of movie guns have always been like that. If you go IMFDB, you can see some pictures of some of the movie Franken guns that our armorer photographed for us (like putting SR9 parts on an HK91 to simulate SR9Ts and TCs).

Also, thanks for the acknowledgment. I'm a very big fan of SIGs, and the P226 in particular (I own one).

James R. Rummel said...

Good post.


JPG said...

Ctone - -
Fantastic research you did there, and it must have taken many hours to pull out all those screen images.

I can’t help but point out a couple of interesting errors, though.

There are about three interesting things about the image series when the Idaho Trooper confronts Murphy, even aside from the totally non-standard gear he uses.
1. You mention, “The cop has a nickel plated Colt Single Action Army . . . .” Really, it is a Peacemaker STYLE single action, but a Colt SAA it is not. Note the lack of firing pin on the hammer and the serial number on the right side of the frame. The Colt SAA s/n is on the bottom of the frame, not visible from this perspective, and there should be a big, conical-shaped firing pin on the hammer. I think the basic revolver was an old model Ruger Vaquero. The trigger guard appears to be non-standard, too - - grotesquely large and squared-off.

2. The leather rig worn by the trooper is strange. The cartridge belt clearly has a drop loop for Hollywood “buccaneer” style suspension of the holster. This holster, though, is worn with the belt threaded through the loop.

3. The “bullets passing in flight” are entire cartridges. Enlarge the image and even through the blur, you can see that the front end looks like typical bullet jacket metal, while the rear is cartridge case brass. Also, the fast draw cop has lead bullet loads in his cartridge loops, while both of the cartridges in flight have jacketed bullets.

The next sequence shows the “unknown police officer's S&W Model 27 in blued steel as he points it at Zane,” sitting in the car - - The later Model 27s indeed had four-inch barrels rather than the 3-½ classic tubes, but the finish appears to be flatter than the typical high polish blue of the -27. I’d assess the cop’s revolver as a Model 28 Highway Patrolman.

Hey, I realize that my comments are nit-pickey in the extreme, and I mean no offense to you or your efforts in this Super Post. It’s all in fun, right?

Best regards,

Anonymous said...

Plus, they all have lasers, and Murphy doesn't. So sad.

Awesome line.


Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure that's not a 5946, it lacks the double stack buldges on the frame. I think a 1086 in 10mm fits the bill better.

MT2008 beat me to the SIG correction, the SAA is a Ruger Vaquero MOS DEF.

I'm pretty sure Kostner is a shooter, he knows how to aim and depicts recoil in films.

MT2008 said...

Not sure you'll ever read this, but over on IMFDB, we figured out something else: Costner's LMG is not an M249 Para. It's actually the similar Daewoo K3, mocked up to look more like an M249.

Anonymous said...

actually elvis is very well known for being a bad ass...he was in the army and was well known for blowign the shit out of teevision sets when commercias came on and came pretty close to killing a few people with his rage. he always kept the first chamber in his wheelguns empty just so to give him a second to calm the temper

Anonymous said...

i lol'd reading this. makes me want to buy the movie

Anonymous said...

Mp5s r also very accurate, lmgs, not so much