David Lean's The Bridge on the River Kwai came out on Blu-ray a few weeks ago, the latest in a series of classic movies recently given the HD upgrade. Film snobs know that this is one of the greatest action/adventure movies ever made - and since I'm feeling generous, here are seven classic action films that can satisfy both the boring-film snob and the action-craving frat boy in all of us.

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The Bridge on the River Kwai

In addition to being a classic action film featuring one of the all-time great screen 'splosions, The Bridge on the River Kwai has many things a true film snobs will appreciate: immaculate compositions, a refined sense of tension and suspense, great performances from William Holden, Alec Guinness, and Sessue Hayakawa, and a classic and unforgettable score. On the other hand, action fans will appreciate the exciting plot and the famous railroad explosion at the climax of the movie.

The Seven Samurai

Akira Kurosawa's pioneering action movie has the battle scenes that both film snobs and their less-evolved brethren will appreciate, albeit for possibly different reasons. They're exciting, dramatic, and technically impressive. But they're also highly influential among later action movies. Just one example of this is Kurosawa's use of slow-motion, now a familiar device in action movies to make something look extra badass.

The Adventures of Robin Hood

One of the things even film snobs love about action movies is the wise-cracking hero, who even when in great danger uses his quick wit to infuriate the bad guys. So if you're interested in seeing one of the original examples of the form, check out The Adventures of Robin Hood, starring a particularly smart-assed Errol Flynn. You've also got Claude Rains and Basil Rathbone playing bad guys. As if that weren't enough for film snobs, there are lots of expertly choreographed swor fighting scenes and stunts.

Das Boot

Wolfgang Petersen's Das Boot does something different with the action movie by confining it to an almost claustrophobic space on boad a WWII Germa submarine. The crew members aren't zealous members of the Nazi Party, just hardened and scared kids in the German Navy, trying desperately to survive. Film snobs will really appreciate the way Petersen's camera zips through the submarine restlessly, capturing the claustrophobia of spending months on board a submarine.

The Guns of Navarone

Film snobs are always saying action movies are mindless explosion-fests, but this action classic takes the opposite approach, going for grim tension and suspense in favor of explosions and kung fu. The result is as much Hitchcockian thriller as action movie. Particularly memorable is a tense set piece involving a ready-to-explode bomb.

The Dirty Dozen

Robert Aldrich is loved by film snobs for his versatility in a variety of genres. Here he tackles the "men on a mission" movie, in which a bunch of guys (in this case, 12) carry out an assault on a Nazi compound. Lest you think this is some kind of artistic exercise in snobbery, the assault is pretty hardcore: They're going to incinerate a bunch of Nazis at a dinner party, INCLUDING the Nazi's wives. It's one of the chief inspirations for Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds, and it's also friggen awesome.

The Wild Bunch

This is probably the definitive action movie for film snobs. There are more buckets of blood in this than in most modern-day action movies, and director Sam Peckinpah's radical cinematic and editing techniques are still unforgettable. Plus, there are boobs. Even film snobs love boobs.

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