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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Tactical Blog from Cactus Tactical

Halloween Edition- Masked Murderers

Gunfights and Films - Halloween Edition- Masked Murderers

We're getting even closer to my favorite time of year. Today we'll take a look at two films that are psychologically terrifying and completely unnerving. Both films involve nefarious characters in masks and extreme violence. Saw went on to become it's own franchise while The Purge has since had a sequel. I still can't watch either one of these movies alone, at night. The Purge speaks of a world that retains order by having yearly chaos and Saw makes victims of his games embrace their lives anew, if they live that long. When I'm looking for a good scare that will give me at least a dozen panic attacks I definitely put either one of these on. Let's take a look at these thrillers today.

Released in 2004, this film begins with photographer Adam Faulkner waking up in a bathtub filled with water. In his instinctive flailing, his foot catches and removes its plug; as the water drains a glowing blue object can be briefly seen to be washed away with it. After a few cries for help it is revealed that he is not, in fact, alone. Surgeon Dr. Lawrence Gordon  is on the other side of the same room, and soon finds the switch to turn on the lights.

Both men are inside a grimy, dilapidated industrial bathroom, chained to pipes at opposite corners of the room. Between them, out of their reach, is a body lying in a pool of blood, holding a revolver and a microcassette recorder. Both men discover envelopes in their pockets which contain microtapes; Gordon also holds a bullet and a key that does not unlock their shackles. Adam, with Lawrence's help, manages to snag the player from the body with which they play their tapes. Both tapes have the same voice, distorted by a pitch modulator. Adam's tape refers to him as a voyeur and asks him ominously, "Are you going to watch yourself die, or do something about it?" Gordon's tape reveals he must kill Adam before six o'clock which is within seven hours, as is evident by a clock on the wall, or his wife and daughter will die and he will be left in the bathroom. The tapes conclude with the eerie goodbye of "Let the games begin..." Hacksaws are later discovered in the toilet tank but  neither is sufficiently sharp to cut chain, and Adam snaps his in frustration. Dr. Gordon realizes that the saws are meant instead for their own ankles, which, if sawed through, would free them from their shackles.

The film then presents flashbacks of their captor's previous victims: Paul and Mark. Both men failed to escape, and hence had pieces of skin cut from them in the shape of a jigsaw puzzle piece; thus the reasoning behind  referring to him as the "Jigsaw Killer" by the detectives Tapp, Sing and Kerry who investigate the murders. Back in the bathroom, Dr. Gordon comments that they are dealing with a misnomer, as the killer never directly murders his victims nor places them in situations where death is unavoidable. In yet another flashback we are shown the police interrogation (with Dr. Gordon witnessing behind a window) of Jigsaw's only known survivor, a highly traumatized heroin addict named Amanda Young, who believes that her experience in the test has made her a better person in the end.

After a brief sequence where Adam and Dr. Gordon discover a hidden camera, another flashback sequence shows Gordon's last moments with his family, and their subsequent abduction. Another flashback shows an attempt by Tapp and Sing to illegally break and enter into what turns out to be one of Jigsaw's lairs. The two discover a man tied to a chair with two drills mounted on each side. Before the Detectives can secure Jigsaw's arrest, he starts the drills. While Tapp subdues Jigsaw, Sing attempts to save Jeff. Though Jigsaw helpfully points out a box that contains the key to release Jeff, the box in question is seemingly endlessly filled with keys; Sing shoots the drills instead, but the gunshots distract Tapp long enough for Jigsaw to escape, who slashes and permanently scars Tapp's throat in the process. While Tapp recovers from his deep knife wound, Sing pursues Jigsaw and is killed by multiple shotguns set on a tripwire.

His partner's death has a permanent effect on Tapp, and what was already an unhealthy fascination with the case deepens into an obsession that leads to him being discharged from the police force. Convinced from a piece of evidence from earlier in the film that Dr. Gordon is the Jigsaw killer, Tapp moves into a house across the street from Gordon's and monitors it with video surveillance.

Back in the bathroom, Gordon and Adam discover a box holding cigarettes, a lighter and a note suggesting he dip a cigarette in poisoned blood from the body and uses it to kill Adam. Gordon and Adam attempt to fool the camera by faking Adam's death with the un-poisoned cigarette, but a strong electric shock is sent through Adam's chain, proving Adam to still be alive. The box also contains a cell phone which cannot make calls, but receives one from his wife Alison, who tells Gordon that Adam knows more than he is revealing. Adam explains that he had been paid by Detective Tapp to spy on Gordon, and has witnessed him going to a hotel with the intention of cheating on his wife. In fact, Gordon left the hotel before doing anything, but this is between Gordon and the other woman, Carla, and no mention is made of possible previous encounters. In the pile of Adam's photographs which he hid from view of Gordon when found with the hacksaws, the two find a photograph of an orderly at Gordon's hospital named Zep, seen through Gordon's window after he left the house. Just as this realization is made, however, the hour of six PM strikes.

Alison manages to free herself and take control of Zep's handgun, however she is soon overpowered. Shots are fired, which attract the attention of Tapp, who wounds Zep. He is unable to keep him from leaving the house, however, intent on killing Gordon; who is only aware of the sounds of screaming and gunshots. Flung into a state of desperate temporary insanity, he follows his instructions by sawing off his foot and shooting Adam with the revolver held by the body in the middle of the room and the bullet found in his envelope.

Zep arrives, pursued by Tapp, however Zep manages to shoot Tapp fatally. He then enters the bathroom but tells Gordon he's "too late," because "it's the rules." Adam recovers from his gunshot wound, which was in fact non-fatal, and kills Zep with the toilet tank lid. Gordon crawls away to seek medical attention, promising to return with help.

Adam searches Zep for a key to his chain and instead finds another micro-cassette player. As the climatic theme of the series, "Hello Zep", begins, the tape informs Adam, that Zep was also following instructions under pain of death. As soon as Jigsaw's familiar voice ceases, the body lying in the center of the bathroom lets out a long breath. As Adam watches, his face frozen in horror, the dead man peels off the latex that gave the appearance of his head wound and then slowly rises to his feet. He is John Kramer, a terminal brain cancer patient of Gordon's; he is seen, briefly, in the same flashback where Zep is introduced. Jigsaw/John Kramer, whose voice is in fact quite weak, informs Adam that the key to his chain was in the bathtub all along; a quick flashback replays the opening scene of the movie, where an object is seen to disappear down the drain with the water.

Adam reaches for a gun to shoot John, but is stunned with electricity, triggering an extended flashback sequence that runs through the vital shots of the movie in roughly 30 seconds. Just before he flicks off the lights in the bathroom for the last time, John repeats a line he said to Amanda immediately after she escaped: "Most people are so ungrateful to be alive. But not you. Not anymore." John then shouts: "Game Over!" before slamming the door shut, sealing Adam in the bathroom forever, screaming his despair over the end credits.

Saw went onto become a major horror franchise but what's always been iconic is the mask the killer wears. An evil puppet face of sorts, it loomed in my nightmares for two days when I first saw it. The premise of fighting for your life seemed all to real. Masks tend to send a frightening and allusive message as you never know what lies underneath. But, let's take a look at some of the weapons used in this searing thriller. 

A Smith & Wesson Model 686 is found lying on the floor next to the dead body (Tobin Bell) in the room, Dr. Lawrence Gordon (Cary Elwes) is given one bullet and is told he has to kill Adam if he wants to see his family again, he ultimately ends up wounding Adam in the shoulder with the revolver.

Smith & Wesson Model 686 4" Barrel - .357 Magnum.

The 686 lies in the corpse's left hand.

Lawrence holds the 686 on Adam.

To watch the sequence titled "Revenge" you can do so here: 

A two-tone Wilson Combat "Protector" is used by Zep Hindle (Michael Emerson) in the gunfight with Detective Tapp, it is also briefly used by Alison Gordon (Monica Potter) when she obtains it after being held hostage by Zep, Adam (Leigh Whannell) also briefly picks it up after killing Zep and aims it at Jigsaw but gets shocked by remote and drops it.

Wilson Combat "Protector" - .45ACP (The gun used in the film has the mag well removed to allow the use of standard magazines for 1911).

Zep and Allison struggle over the "Protector".

Zep fires the "Protector" at Tapp.

During the warehouse flashback, an Ithaca 37 is used by both Detective Tapp (Danny Glover) and then by Detective Sing (Ken Leung) who both hold it on Jigsaw (Tobin Bell) before he escapes. After Tapp is wounded, Sing pursues Jigsaw with the Ithaca, and manages to shoot him in the back with it, before he is killed by a shotgun trip-wire trap.

Ithaca Model 37 Deer Slayer Police Special - 12 gauge

Sing aims the Ithaca at Jigsaw.

Tapp aims the Ithaca at Jigsaw.

To see the scene titled "Booby Trap", which these stills are  from,  you can watch it here: 

Get your pre-Halloween weekend horror fix in by watching all the films we've featured this month. Don't forget to visit our website for scary good deals on great tactical gear:   Cactus Tactical's shell carriers.   

And, just in case you want to know what the list looks like, here are the Top 10 Traps in the Saw franchise: 

To view the list of weapons you can go here:

The Purge

 is a 2013 horror/thriller set in a future United States where the government has granted one 12 hour period during the year where all crimes are legal. Ethan Hawke stars as a security systems salesman whose family is put in danger when their home is threatened by those participating in the Purge. The sequel, The Purge: Anarchy, was released in 2014.

It's 2022 and the United States is a nation reborn ruled by the "New Founding Fathers of America." To maintain low crime and unemployment rates throughout the year, the government has instituted an annual 12-hour period called "The Purge" during which all criminal activity, including murder, becomes legal. The only rules during The Purge are that "Level 10" government officials must remain unharmed and usage of weaponry above "Class 4" is forbidden. The Purge is designed to act as a catharsis for the American people, seen as a way they may vent all negative emotions however they desire for one night with no consequences.

James Sandin  is a wealthy salesman who has made a fortune selling home security systems comprising security cameras and metallic walls preventing any possible entrance that are specifically designed for The Purge. One of the neighbors, Grace, tells James's wife Mary the neighbors have been gossiping that the extension on the Sandins' house was financed by the security systems James sold them.

At their heavily-fortified house, Mary struggles with their two children, Zoey and Charlie. Zoey is dating an older boy named Henry whom Zoey's father doesn't approve of. Zoey goes to her bedroom, where she finds Henry, who snuck into the house before the lockdown. Henry explains to Zoey he wants to convince James to bless their relationship and figured he could not be thrown out of the house during The Purge.

The Purge commences after an emergency broadcast on television. James and his family watch the events of The Purge unfold via the video monitors in the lounge. After a while, Charlie is left alone in the lounge and notices a bloody stranger, outside the house pleading for help. Charlie deactivates the security system and lets him in. James intercepts the stranger and holds him at gunpoint.

Henry appears and opens fire on James, attempting to eliminate the obstacle preventing his relationship with Zoey. James fatally shoots Henry, and in the confusion the stranger escapes to hide within the house. Zoey runs off with the fatally-wounded Henry and watches him die. James then goes off in search of his daughter and the stranger.

Later, a group of masked "Purgers" led by a character known as "Polite Leader" arrives at their home, having found where the bloody stranger is hiding. The leader suggests that the family give them the stranger or else they'll kill everyone inside. James admits that the security system was designed to act as a deterrent, but not to withstand an abundance of types of aggressive assaults.

Charlie finds the stranger and leads him to a secret hiding place. Zoey, seeking to also hide there, inadvertently stumbles into the stranger, who holds her at gunpoint but James pounds a vase on the stranger's head. James and Mary tie up the stranger and, to subdue him, aggravate his wounds, in preparation to deliver him to the attackers.

After seeing James with Zoey, the Bloody Stranger defeatedly tells James to take him outside. However, the Sandins have a change of heart after realizing they are becoming essentially no different than the purgers outside. The purgers successfully break into the household and the Sandins are forced to defend themselves. One by one, James kills the purgers, but James is stabbed by the leader. Zoey, standing on the staircase, shoots and kills the leader.

Suddenly, the Sandins' neighbors arrive and finish off the remaining purgers. Mary thanks them, but the neighbors reveal that they have come to kill the Sandins: since the opportunity presented itself, they decided it was their patriotic duty to kill the Sandins in order to vent their hatred for the family's new-found wealth. Just as the neighbors are about to kill the family, the Bloody Stranger comes to the Sandins' aid. He kills Mr. Cali with his handgun and threatens to kill the remaining neighbors if they don't let the Sandins go, which they do.

Mary decides to spare her neighbors, as too many people have died during the night and to not allow them the pleasure of not having to live with the Sandins. Grace tries to grab Mary's gun to shoot her, but Mary deflects the attack and hits Grace with the butt of her gun and smashes her face into a glass table. The surviving neighbors and the stranger leave the house and walk away as sirens outside start blaring again, signaling the end of the Purge. The Sandin family watches the emergency services arrive outside their home.

During the credits, there is audio from television broadcasts stating that this Purge was the most successful due to the record high number of murders. The broadcast also features analysis and interviews that show growing discontent and shock by the American public at the increasing level of depravity with each subsequent Purge. Despite this, the Purge will recur as normal next year.

This movie is scary in the fact that in the general direction society moves a purge isn't necessarily a far cry. The psychological thriller seems as though it could hit a little too close to home. This film made me want to prep, have tighter security measures and in general want to make sure in any type of situation I could and would be able to protect myself. So, let's take a look at the different weapons we saw in The Purge. Also, the added factor of the purgers being in masks ups the horror film anty.

James Sandin has a nice collection of weaponry but let's highlight a couple favorites.

To view the scene where they lock down and we see the gun collection you can watch it here:

James  keeps a snub-nosed Taurus Raging Bull in his safe and keeps it on him until he gives it to his son Charlie when he sends him to hide in the basement.

                                                 Snub nosed Taurus Raging Bull - .454 Casull

                                       James takes the Taurus Raging Bull out of the safe.

                                James searches for Henry with his Taurus Raging Bull ready

After giving his Raging Bull to his son, James Sandin (Ethan Hawke) switches his sidearm to a Kimber Warrior.

                                                                  Kimber Warrior - .45 ACP

James Sandin (Ethan Hawke) takes cover with his Kimber Warrior as the Purgers tear down the doors.

To watch the scene titled "Home Invasion" you can do so here:

Henry (Tony Oller) uses a IJ-70 when he tries to kill James. The "Bloody Stranger" later uses it to defend himself from the Purgers breaking into the house.

                                             IJ-70 - 9x18mm Makarov

Henry (Tony Oller) tries to kill James with his IJ-70.

The "Bloody Stranger" keeps James at bay by holding his Daughter hostage with an IJ-70. Note the adjustable sights and what appears to be a compensator on the barrel.

To watch the scene with the Stranger you can do so here:

A Ruger KP95 with a stainless slide is also seen in James's safe. Mary Sandin (Lena Headey) later takes it when she goes to look for her daughter.

                                                                             Ruger KP95 - 9x19mm

                          Mary Sandin (Lena Headey) searches the house with her Ruger in hand.

The Purge is a reminder that havoc can break out at any opportunity and we should all be prepared if the SHTF. I think that's what seems the scariest, not knowing what strangers are capable of, much less your neighbor. Stay safe out there this Halloween holiday and leaving the frightening stuff to the film makers.

To see the other weapons used in this film go to:

Let Cactus Tactical help keep you safe in times of danger by checking out what we carry here:
Sig Sauer Adaptive Carbine Platform

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Shawn in the Korengal Valley, Kunar Province, Afghanistan.

For more info on these and other weapons
Technical specs compiled from:

"The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement."

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Tactical Blog from Cactus Tactical

90's Serial Killers

Gunfights and Films - Halloween Edition - 90's Serial Killers

In staying with our Halloween theme, today we take a look at two iconic early 90's serial killer films. Both films filled with eerie, gritty detail and are still parodied and quoted in current times. Let's delve into the minds of some serial killers, shall we?

The Silence of the Lambs is the 1991 thriller that was the feature film adaptation of the novel of the same name by Thomas Harris and marked the first appearance of Anthony Hopkins as Dr. Hannibal Lecter. In the film, FBI recruit Clarice Starling  is asked by the Bureau to elicit Lecter's help in tracking down a notorious serial killer who has kidnapped a US Senator's daughter. Directed by Jonathan Demme, the film would receive five Academy Awards, including Best Picture. The film would open the door for the reprise of Anthony Hopkins in his roll as Hannibal Lecter in two more films: Hannibal (2001) and Red Dragon (2002).

As the film opens we follow the promising FBI Academy student Clarice Starling. She is being pulled from her training at the FBI facility at Quantico, Virginia. The gentleman looking for her is Jack Crawford of the FBI's Behavioral Science Unit, who tasks her with presenting a VICAP questionnaire to the notorious Dr. Hannibal Lecter. Lecter is  a brilliant forensic psychiatrist and incarcerated cannibalistic serial murderer. After learning the assignment relates to the pursuit of vicious serial killer Buffalo Bill, Starling travels to the Baltimore State Hospital for the Criminally Insane and is led by Dr. Frederick Chilton to Hannibal Lecter, a sophisticated, cultured man restrained behind thick glass panels and windowless stone walls. Although initially pleasant and courteous, Lecter grows impatient with Starling's attempts at trying to figure  him out and viciously rebuffs her. It is the beginning of the strange and somehow touching relationship between the two. All the books and movies continue the complex relationship of Lecter & Starling. As Starling departs, another patient flings semen onto her face, enraging Lecter. As if to somehow make up the atrocity of that Lecter calls Starling back and offers a riddle containing information about a former patient. Miggs, the gentleman that had disrepected Starling was talked into taking his own life by Lecter. After some time Starling finally solves the riddle. This then leads her  to a rent-a-storage lot where the severed head of Benjamin Raspail is found. Starling returns to Lecter, who links Raspail to Buffalo Bill and who offers to help profile Buffalo Bill if he is transferred to a facility far from the venomous, careerist Dr. Chilton.

Hours and miles away, Buffalo Bill abducts Catherine Martin, the daughter of United States Senator Ruth Martin. Starling is pulled from Quantico and accompanies Crawford to West Virginia, where the body of Bill's recently-discovered victim resides, and where Starling helps perform the autopsy and extracts the chrysalis of a Death's-head Hawkmoth from the victim's throat. At Quantico, as news of Catherine Martin's abduction sweeps the country, Crawford authorizes Starling to offer Hannibal Lecter a fake deal promising a prison transfer if he provides information that helps profile Buffalo Bill and rescue Catherine Martin. Instead, Lecter begins a game of quid pro quo with Starling, offering comprehensive clues and insights about Buffalo Bill in exchange for events from Starling's own traumatic childhood. Unaware to both Starling and Lecter, Dr. Frederick Chilton tapes the conversation and after revealing Starling's deal as a sham, offers to transfer Lecter in exchange for a deal of his own making. Lecter agrees and following a flight to Tennessee reveals Buffalo Bill's real name, physical description and past address to Senator Martin and her entourage of FBI agents and Justice Department officials.

As the manhunt begins, Starling travels to Lecter's special cell in a local Tennessee courthouse, where she confronts him about the false information he gave the Senator. Lecter refuses Starling's pleas and demands she finish her story surrounding her worst childhood memory. After recounting her arrival at a relative's farm, the horror of discovering their lamb slaughterhouse and her fruitless attempts at rescuing the lambs, Lecter rebuffs her, leaving her with her case file before she is escorted out of the building by security guards. Later that evening, Lecter escapes from his cell. The local police storm the floor, discovering one guard barely alive and the other disemboweled and strung up on the walls. Paramedics transport the survivor to an ambulance and speed off while a SWAT team searches the building for Lecter. As the team discover a body in the elevator shaft, the survivor in the ambulance peels off his own face, revealing Lecter in disguise, who kills the paramedics and escapes to the airport.

After being notified of Lecter's escape, Starling pores over her case file, analyzing Lecter's annotations before realizing that the first victim, Frederica Bimmel, knew Bill in real life before he killed her. Starling travels to Bimmel's hometown and discovers that Bimmel was a tailor and has dresses with templates identical to the patches of skin removed from Buffalo Bill's victims. Realizing that Buffalo Bill is a tailor fashioning a "woman suit" of real skin, she telephones Crawford, who is already on the way to make an arrest, having cross-referenced Lecter's notes with Johns Hopkins Hospital and finding a man named Jame Gumb. Crawford instructs Starling to continue interviewing Bimmel's friends while he leads a SWAT team to Gumb's business address in Calumet City, Illinois. Starling's interviews lead to the house of "Jack Gordon", who Starling soon realizes is actually Gumb, and draws her weapon just as Gumb disappears into his basement. Starling pursues him, discovering a screaming Catherine Martin in the dry well just before the lights in the basement go out, leaving her in complete darkness. Gumb stalks Starling in the dark with night vision goggles and prepares to shoot her when Starling, hearing the machinations of his revolver, swivels around shoots Gumb dead.

Days later at the FBI Academy graduation party, Starling receives a phone call from Hannibal Lecter, now in the Bahamas. As Lecter assures Starling he has no plans to pursue her, he excuses himself from the phone call and speaks of having an old friend for dinner before hanging up and we see the camera following Chilton through the streets of the village.

Chilling on many pyschlogical levels this movie has become famous for so many scenes. From overly quotable dialogue to creepy scenes of Hannibal's escape, Silence Of The Lambs is a movie that is always watchable. Let's take a look at some of the weapons used in this film.

FBI recruit Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster) carries the then-standard FBI-issue Smith & Wesson Model 13. This .357 Magnum, 3" barrel revolver was the last revolver issued by the FBI (usually loaded with .38 Special +P .158 gr lead LHP ammo). Starling is shown being issued her Model 13 and training with it on the range in several deleted scenes. She is also seen doing a quick reload of her revolver with a speedloader after she opens fire on a suspect and expends all 6 rounds. When Starling fires her weapon at the suspect, there is noticeable recoil and she flinches. However, when she fires it on the range in the deleted scenes, there is absolutely no recoil, and she keeps her eyes open. This could indicate multiple weapons were used on the set.

Smith & Wesson Model 13 - .357 Magnum

FBI recruit Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster) checks in her S&W Model 13 with Sergeant Tate when visiting Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Anthony Hopkins) in Memphis. She draws the revolver, then opens the cylinder, but does not unload it before handing it to Tate.

                      Clarice opens fire on a suspect in the dark with her S&W Model 13.

                                                                     "FBI, You're safe!"

      Clarice with her S&W Model 13 drawn at the ready as she shouts to Gumb's hostage, Catherine Martin, in Gumb's basement.

Cactus Tactical also sells accessories and gear including those for Smith & Wesson. You can see what we carry here: Smith and Wesson accessories

Jame Gumb a.k.a "Buffalo Bill" (Ted Levine) is seen holding what appears to be a 6" barreled, stainless steel Colt Python with Pachmyr Presentation grips. In the book, it is said that Gumb loads the gun with .38 Special lead wadcutters.

                               Colt Python Stainless Steel variant with 6" Barrel - .357 Magnum

               Buffalo Bill leaves his Colt Python on the stove as he answers Clarice at the door.

To watch the scene where Starling enters the house, you can watch it here:

With his night vision goggles on as Clarice stumbles in the dark, Buffalo Bill raises his revolver.

To watch the scene with the gunfight in the dark you can watch it here: 

Several variants of the Ithaca 37 shotguns are carried by the Memphis P.D. SWAT officers that respond to Hannibal's prison break. An FBI agent is also seen wielding an Ithaca when Hannibal Lecter arrives in Memphis.

Ithaca Model 37 riot version - 12 Gauge

The agent on the left guarding Lecter (Anthony Hopkins) is armed with the Ithaca.

To see the scene from where the photo is from you can do so here: 

To see the other weapons used in this film you can go here:,_The

Grab yourself a nice Chianti and settle in for some serial skin suit psychosis while watching Silence Of The Lambs some weekend soon., 

Se7en (aka, Seven) 

is a 1995 police crime thriller directed by David Fincher that stars Brad Pitt as David Mills, a young detective new to working downtown homicide who is partnered with Lt. William Somerset, a veteran detective who's seen too much and only has a few days to retirement. Together, they try to crack the case of a serial killer who uses the Seven Deadly Sins (Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Lust, Pride, Envy, and Wrath) as his inspiration. The film's dirty, violent, dreary and large metropolitan setting is intentionally never told, as "the city" is supposed to be a fictional,darker version of New York City. Police Technical Advisers were on the set at all times to correct the actors, which explains the exceptional gun handling seen throughout the film.

In an unidentified city of constant rain and urban decay, Detective William Somerset is preparing to retire and leave the horrors of the city. Before he retires, he is partnered with Detective David Mills, a cocky, young and short-tempered cop from Springfield, a comparatively small town. The two investigate the murder of a highly obese man  who was fed all manner of food until a kick to his stomach burst him open. Somerset investigates the murder while Mills is given the murder case of Defense Attorney Eli Gould, with GREED written in Gould's blood on the floor. Gould was forced to carve a pound of flesh off of his body, and subsequently bled to death. The police captain gives Somerset an evidence container with three slivers of a plastic-like material found in the stomach of the obese man, which he was forced to consume along with some spaghetti. Going to the victim's house, Somerset finds three groove marks in front of the refrigerator and finds that the plastic-like slivers fit into them perfectly. Knowing the slivers resulted from the refrigerator being moved, Somerset looks behind it. He finds the word GLUTTONY written behind the fridge in grease, along with a note containing a quote from Milton's Paradise Lost. Somerset theorizes that a serial killer is basing his crimes on the Seven Deadly Sins, with five more to go.

To give Mills and Somerset a chance to get along with each other, Mills's wife, Tracy Mills  invites Somerset over for dinner. While they are eating, a train passes by on the track nearby, making the building and all its contents and inhabitants tremble: the couple mention that that's why the realtor was so nervous for them to see the apartment quickly. After Tracy goes to bed, Mills and Somerset examine case evidence from the two scenes. They find a picture of Gould's wife with blood painted around the eyes. Realizing that this means she is supposed to spot something about the murder scene that nobody else would, the detectives have a distraught Mrs. Gould look at the pictures in a safe house and she notices an abstract painting that is upside down. Brushing powder on the wall behind the painting, Somerset finds fingerprints outlining the words "Help Me."

After running the fingerprints through AFIS, the prints are traced a day later to a pedophile named Victor, who escaped conviction for the rape of a minor due to the efforts of his lawyer, Eli Gould, the GREED victim. SWAT and the detectives raid his apartment and find Victor to be the SLOTH victim, having been bound to his bed for one year to the day, as evidenced by pictures at the scene; one taken every day from the day he is discovered. Remarkably, he is still alive but suffering from severe physical and mental deterioration. His hand was cut off and pushed onto the wall behind the painting to leave the prints. Mills and Somerset ask to interrogate Victor in the hospital, but the doctor says that he's chewed off his tongue and that his mind had suffered too much trauma from the ordeal.

That evening, Tracy calls Somerset and requests that he meet with her. The next morning, Somerset meets Tracy in a diner where she tells him how miserable she is living the big city life. At Somerset's urging, Tracy reveals the truth of her request to meet: she is pregnant, afraid of raising a child where they now live and afraid of telling David. Somerset advises her to tell her husband only if she decides to have it, and he sets himself as an example: he insisted his partner have an abortion, that he finally convinced her, and now he is remorseful.

Later that day, using a contact in the FBI, Somerset gets a library list of people who have borrowed books related to the Seven Deadly Sins. The list leads the detectives to a man named John Doe, whose apartment they visit soon after. Doe, his face hidden, sees them as he comes home, pulls out a gun and begins shooting. After a short chase, Doe hits Mills with a tire iron, keeps him subdued at gunpoint, but lets him live and suddenly flees.

While examining Doe's apartment  they find notebooks of his thoughts, trophies of the crimes and a picture of Mills fighting off Doe, who, at the time, was posing as a press photographer. John Doe calls the apartment and congratulates the detectives on them finding him and apologizes for hitting Mills, also telling the young detective that he has a great admiration for him. Their actions, he says, have caused him to change his plans, and he hangs up. They also find a photo of a young woman, a prostitute, who they believe may be the next victim. A receipt leads them to a S&M leather shop where Doe placed an order for a sexual device. The girl is soon found dead in a room with LUST written on the door. Also found in the room is a visibly shaken man forced by Doe at gunpoint to wear and use the device, a large strap-on dildo with a blade attachment, to rape and kill the girl. The owner of the place, Wild Billy can give no clue to the physical aspect or the briefcase John Doe used, as every customer used to carry special clothes or equipment into the place.

The next morning, a model is found dead with PRIDE written on the crime scene. Her nose has been cut off "to spite her face",  upon which Doe gave her the choice of suicide by sleeping pills or calling for help and living scarred. She chose the former, and swallowed the pills. As the detectives return to the police headquarters, John Doe walks up to them, his hands bleeding (he shaved the skin from his fingertips to avoid identification) and gives himself up. He talks to his lawyer and agrees that if he can take Somerset and Mills to two more bodies, he will confess to all the murders. Wanting a confession, the detectives agree. Somerset and Mills both have microphones taped to their chests so the rest of the task force can monitor their conversation with Doe. During the prep, Mills tries to tell Somerset about some concerns with Tracy , but can't bring himself to talk fully about it.

As the three travel to the desert outskirts of the city in a car, they are trailed by a police helicopter for security. Doe explains his rationale behind the murders as a way of showing people the truly evil nature of the world, as well as his desire to punish the wicked. He goes on to say he will be remembered and admired for what he has done, having been specially chosen to do so. As Doe speaks, the disgusted Mills is driven to rage, and screams at Doe while Somerset remains calmly worried.

Once they reach the outskirts, Doe directs them to a specific spot near some power cable towers. The detectives walk Doe out to an open spot. After a few moments, a van appears and Somerset stops it several hundred yards away, leaving Mills behind to cover Doe. The driver claims someone paid him $500 to deliver a box to Mills at this place at exactly 7 o'clock. As Somerset opens the box, he recoils in horror from what he sees inside. As he races back to Mills and desperately yells for him to throw his gun away, Doe states to Mills that he admires Mills's life, to the point of being envious of his wife and the love they share. He states that he tried to pretend to be a husband with Tracy that day but it didn't work out and he took a souvenir instead: "her pretty head." It was Doe's plan that Mills will kill him, as Doe himself was guilty of ENVY, as he became jealous of Mills's simpler life. He also reveals to Mills that Tracy was pregnant, and that she begged to be kept alive for the child's sake. Mills, despite the pleading of Somerset, is so devastated by his wife's death and the knowledge that she was pregnant, that he empties his gun into Doe. In killing Doe in vengeance, Mills comes to embody the sin of WRATH, completing Doe's twisted masterpiece.

After a catatonic Mills is taken away, their captain tells Somerset that they'll take care of him, knowing the jury will condemn him. Somerset tells his captain that he will be "around;" implying that he will be staying on the force. As the camera pans out from the desert, the movie ends with Somerset quoting Ernest Hemingway: "'The world is a fine place, and worth fighting for.' I agree with the second part."

This film was filled with a dark flair of a serial killer with a theme and a delusion of divine purpose. The films ending was and is still iconic. But let's take a look at the guns used in this thriller.

Detective Lieutenant William Somerset (Morgan Freeman) carries a Smith & Wesson Model 15 as his sidearm throughout the film.

                                         Smith & Wesson Model 15 - .38 Special

                       Somerset with his Smith & Wesson Model 15 drawn in John Doe's apartment.

To watch the John Doe chase scene you can do so here:

Somerset (Morgan Freeman) draws and fires a shot into the air with his Smith & Wesson Model 15 to get the delivery man to stop his van. According to Somerset's history provided in the film, this is the first shot he ever fired in the line of duty. Note how he draws the gun with his finger off the trigger, which Freeman was told to do by the police technical advisors on the set after he drew his gun with his finger on the trigger originally.

To see "John Doe" turn himself in you can watch here:

Detective David Mills (Brad Pitt) uses a customized Springfield Armory M1911-A1 with adjustable sights, mag-na-ported/bushingless bull barrel, beavertail grip safety, ring hammer, extended slide stop safety, extended slide release, light-weight 3-hole target trigger, square trigger guard, and stag horn grips as his sidearm throughout the film, notably during the climax.

An airsoft reproduction of the Springfield Armory M1911-A1 made by J-Armoury (Western Arms) used in the film.

Mills searches for John Doe in the apartment building while keeping an excellent grip and good trigger discipline on his Springfield Armory M1911-A1.

Mills drops prone with his Springfield Armory M1911-A1 after John Doe opens fire on he and Somerset outside his apartment.

                                 Mills (Brad Pitt) holds his M1911-A1 at the end of the film.

Some of the SWAT officers, notably California (John C. McGinley), wield Mossberg 590 shotguns with tactical flashlights when breaching the apartment of the third victim. One is fitted with ghost-ring sights.

                                       Mossberg 590 with ghost-ring sights - 12 Gauge

                            A SWAT officer with a Mossberg 590 with ghost-ring sights.

We here at Cactus Tactical carry parts for your Mossberg, you can check us out here:
Mossberg sling attachments

To watch a brief glimpse at all 7 deadly sins you can watch here:

To see the other weapons used in this film you can go here:

Se7en was scary and exciting to watch when I was in high school and although I'm older now it's still an  eerily entertaining film. It's got tons of action and twits and turns. I highly recommend it in the dark. Just don't eat too much spaghetti...

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Shawn in the Korengal Valley, Kunar Province, Afghanistan.

For more info on these and other weapons
Technical specs compiled from:

"The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement."

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Tactical Blog from Cactus Tactical

Fright and Fantasy

Gunfights and Films: Fright and Fantasy

In keeping with our Halloween theme, today we'll look at two films rooted in fantasy and filled with monsters of all variety. While Hellboy was a comic book prior to being a movie, Underworld did things in reverse but you can find them both at your local comic book store. Both stories appeal as a modern take on occult favorites, let's take a look at them.

Underworld is the 2003 action horror film directed by Len Wiseman and starring Kate Beckinsale as Selene, a vampire who is known as a "Death Dealer", an assassin tasked with eliminating the Lycans, those who are also known as werewolves. The film would launch a series of films, which includes 2006's Underworld: Evolution, 2009's Underworld: Rise of the Lycans, and 2012's Underworld: Awakening.

Fourteen hundred years ago, Vampires had decided that the best way to ensure the survival of their species was for three Elders--Viktor, Marcus, and Amelia--to 'leap frog' through time, one ruling while the other two slept, each being awakened at their appointed time according to the sacred covenant. A thousand years ago, during the reign of Viktor, the oldest and strongest of the Elders, the Vampire-Lycan War began. 600 years ago, Kraven set the fire which killed Lucian, the leader of the Lycans. Kraven brought back a brand cut from Lucian's arm as proof of his death, a deed which earned Kraven high favor with Viktor, who put Kraven in charge of their coven. The great blaze caused the Lycans to scatter. Vampire Death Dealers, armed with silver bullets and shuriken, have been picking Lycans off one by one until very few remain.

We watch as  three Death Dealers--Selene, Rigel, and Nathaniel -- follow two Lycans into a subway station in an unnamed European city. A firey gun battle ensues in which Rigel is killed, one of the Lycans gets away, and Nathaniel comes up missing. In the chaos, Selene discovers that the Lycans have devised an ultraviolet bullet that can kill vampires, and that there appears to be a large band of Lycans amassing under the subway.

Selene hurries back to alert the Vampires at Kraven's luxurious mansion but they blow her off as they are more interested in the clothes they are going to wear at tonight's formal party with the coven from over seas in celebration of the upcoming awakening of Marcus by Amelia, the current reigning Elder. Not interested in their gaieties, Selene views some digital photos Rigel took of the Lycans and notices that they appear to have been following a human. A computer search reveals the human is Michael Corvin, an intern at a local hospital.

Selene pays Michael Corvin's apartment a visit. While snooping, she overhears a phone message about his involvement in some type of  shoot out. She is now convinced that she is correct about the Lycans stalking Michael. Selene attempts to interrogate him just as his apartment is raided by a pack of Lycans. While Selene holds them off, Michael escapes in the elevator, but the doors open to a face-to-face confrontation with Lucian, the current leader of the Lycans. Selene attempts to shoot Lucian, but he is intent on biting Michael and spitting the blood into a vial which he takes to Singe, the Lycan doctor who has been researching humans with the last name of Corvin, so far with negative results. He analyzes Michael's blood and pronounces it "positive."

Selene and Michael make a getaway together in her car, but Selene has lost a lot of blood in her fight with the Lycans. She passes out and the car leaps into a river. Michael saves her, binds her wound, then passes out himself. When Selene awakens, she takes the unconscious Michael back to the Vampire's mansion, incurring the wrath of Kraven, who wants Selene  to be his future queen and is jealous that she seems smitten with Michael. When Michael finally wakes up he finds himself face-to-face with fellow vampire Erika , who realizes that Michael has been bitten and is becoming Lycan. Erika leaps to the ceiling and starts hissing at him. Terrified and confused, Michael jumps out a window and escapes the Vampire's mansion.

Although it is forbidden to delve into the past, Selene decides to do a little reading about the history of the Vampire-Lycan War, particularly the chapter on the Fall of Lucian. She notices that the Lucian in one of the pictures is wearing the same medallion that she noticed the current Lucian wearing during the fight at Michael's apartment. Could he and the Lucian that Kraven supposedly killed 600 years ago be one and the same? Could Kraven and Lucian be conspiring together? Could the fact that the Lycans are amassing near the Vampire coven portend an attack on the Vampires? When Erika informs Selene that Michael has been bitten and is turning Lycan, Selene has heard enough. Against the covenant rules, Selene decides to awaken Viktor and ask for his guidance.

Michael has begun having hallucinations and wants to know what is happening to him. Selene takes him to their Lycan interrogation room in the city so that he can hide for the night. She informs him he has been bitten by a Lycan. She also tells him that the next night, during full moon , he will turn into one. The hallucinations, she tells him, are memories passed to him from Lucian. When Michael asks Selene why she cares about what's happening to him, Selene explains that the lycan virus and the vampire virus are incompatible and no one has ever survived a bite by both species. When Michael asks her why she hates Lycans so much, she tells him how Lycans slaughtered her entire family and how Viktor arrived just in time to save her from the same fate. Viktor made her vampire and then raised her like his own daughter. Selene then handcuffs Michael to a chair, gives him a gun with silver bullets, and advises him to use it on himself if she isn't back by tomorrow night.

After Selene arrives back at the mansion, Viktor has fully awakened and is being briefed by Kraven. When Viktor learns that he's been awakened full century ahead of schedule, he is livid. Not even Selene's attempts to explain her findings appease him. In fact, Viktor basically tells Selene to let Kraven handle this and that she will be judged by the council for breaking the covenant. Kraven locks Selene in her room. None of these results were the ones she was looking for.

The next night, it is the night of the full moon. It is time for Amelia's train to arrive, and Kraven has ordered Soren  and his team to fetch her and the council members. Erika, who has wanted to be Kraven's mate for a long time, cuts the power to the main gate, allowing Selene to run to Michael. Selene releases Michael, but they are attacked by Lycans. Selene stays to fight while Michael jumps out a window. When Michael lands on his feet some five or six stories below, he is immediately captured by Lycans posing as cops. On the way to the Lycan den, Michael begins the change. The Lycans pull over, and they dose Michael with an enzyme to stop the change.

Selene has captured Singe and brings him to Viktor where Singe is forced to explain how, for years, the Lycans have been trying to combine the blood lines. They've been testing descendents of Alexander Corvinus, a 5th century Hungarian warlord who was the sole survivor of a plague that ravaged his village and turned him into the first immortal. From Corvinus's offspring, one became the Vampire line, one became the Lycan line, and one remained human but carried the imprint of the original immortality virus hidden in its genetic code in dormant form and passed down through the ages to Michael Corvin. Lucian plans to inject himself with blood taken from Michael and from a powerful Vampire elder, creating a hybrid--both Lycan and Vampire--but stronger than both. The ultimate immortal.

Meanwhile the train transporting the most important of Vampires is attacked by Lycans and left in ruins. When Kraven's brood arrive on the scene they find that  Amelia's blood has been totally drained. When Viktor finds out, he orders Selene to kill Michael.

As all this is occuring Michael is being held at the Lycan den, where his visions have suddenly become clear and he now knows what started the Vampire-Lycan war. Many years ago, Lycans were the Renfields for Vampires, but it was forbidden for Vampires and Lycans to fraternize. Lucian and Viktor's daughter Sonja fell in love and mated, creating a hybrid child that Viktor would not allow, so Viktor placed his own daughter in the sun where she burnt to a crisp while Lucian was made to watch. Viktor had spent the last 600 years exterminating the Lycan species so the bloodlines would never blend.

Kraven knows he's been found out. He was indeed in league with Lucian. Together, they planned Lucian's 'death' 600 years ago so that Lucian could lay low. Now the agreement is for Kraven to gain control of both covens by obtaining an ironclad peace treaty with the Lycans, while Lucian gets revenge on Viktor.

By now it's the beginning of an all out war.  The Vampires, along with Selene, Kahn, and Viktor storm the Lycan den in a climatic battle. Kraven shoots Lucian with a silver nitrate bullet (The silver is in liquid form so that it will go directly into the Lycans' bloodstreams and cannot be dug out). When Michael tries to escape, he is also shot by Kraven. As Michael lays oozing silver nitrate from his wounds, Kraven tells Selene the true story about her 'dark father,' Viktor. Her family wasn't killed by Lycans but by Viktor himself. Seems he didn't like the taste of livestock very much, so once in awhile he would engorge himself on human blood. Since Selene reminded him of Sonja, he spared her and raised her as his own. Selene is stunned by this new and surprising information.

When Kraven demands that Selene go with him, she refuses. As he's about to shoot Michael again, the dying Lucian runs a sword through Kraven's leg and tells Selene to bite Michael. "Half vampire, half lycan -- they're stronger than both." Selene does it. Kraven finishes off Lucian. Michael turns into a hybrid and, after Michael and Viktor tussle a bit, Selene cuts off Viktor's head. Selene flees the scene of the battle, and is now to become the hunted by both her people and the Lycans.

This movie is great, dark and gritty and gives a unique history to werewolf and vampire origin stories. Let's take a look at some of the weapons used in this film.

The signature weapons of Selene (Kate Beckinsale) are two Beretta 92FS handguns modified to fire on full auto with barrel weights attached, possibly standing in for compensators.

                                 The Beretta 92FS pistols used in the movie - 9x19mm.

            Selene fires her pair of full auto Beretta 92FS pistols at Lycans in the train station.

             Selene drops to one knee and kills several Lycans with one long burst from her Beretta.

                   When she realizes the Lycans cannot be stopped, she turns her Berettas to the floor.

To watch the scene with Selene in the apartment you can do so here:

A Heckler & Koch USP Match makes its first appearance when it is given to Selene (Kate Beckinsale) by Kahn (Robbie Gee) to test out. When she fires it, silver liquid comes out of the target, and we learn that the gun is loaded with Silver Nitrate bullets which were copied from the Lycan's ultraviolet ammunition, and are very lethal to the werewolves as it allows silver to flow into their blood stream. Towards the end of the film, Kraven (Shane Brolly) also uses a USP Match loaded with the same ammunition. It should be noted that silver nitrate is actually clear in liquid form, but the liquid used resembles mercury.

                                                 Heckler & Koch USP Match - 9x19mm.

                                       Closeup of the magazine loaded with Silver Nitrate rounds.

Both the Vampires and Lycans can be seen using Heckler & Koch MP5A3s on several occasions. And the way to tell the two side's MP5A3s apart is that the Lycan's guns usually have tactical flashlights on the foregrip.

         Heckler & Koch MP5A3 with Surefire 628 dedicated forend weaponlight - 9x19mm

                              A death dealer fires his MP5A3 at attacking Lycans on the train.

To watch the train scene you can do so here:

In addition to her Beretta 92FS handguns mentioned above, Selene (Kate Beckinsale) also uses a pair of two tone Walther P99s fitted with Kemmer Tech BA-5 laser sights at the bottom of the barrels. The guns have been modified to lessen the weight required on the trigger to fire, allowing Kate Beckinsale's character to fire them almost as if they were fully automatic, which the sound editors for the film must have decided they were, since the weapons report like submachine guns. You can see Selene pulling the trigger for every shot, but you hear fully automatic fire.(Best notable in the subway shootout, when Selene fires on the fleeing Werewolf in the train.)

                                One of the Walther P99s used in the movie - 9x19mm.

  Selene firing her Walthers at Lycans. Fully-automatic fire is heard when she fires them here.

          Publicity image of Selene (Kate Beckinsale) holding a pair of two tone Walther P99 pistols.

To watch Selene rescue Michael you can do so here: 

The Underworld franchise is a fun way to get in the Halloween spirit. So grab some popcorn and some friends and spend the weekend with Kate Beckinsale.

To see a full listing of the weapons used in this film go here:


 is a 2004 American supernatural superhero film, starring Ron Perlman and directed by Guillermo del Toro. The film is loosely based on the Dark Horse Comics graphic novel Hellboy: Seed of Destruction by Mike Mignola. It was produced by Revolution Studios, and distributed by Columbia Pictures. The film is about a demonic beast, known as Hellboy, who secretly works to keep the world safe from paranormal threats with his team, the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense. It did spawn a sequel, Hellboy II: The Golden Army, was released on July 11, 2008.

The movie opens with the voice of Professor Broom asking a question that will shadow the rest of the film: "What is it that makes a man a man'? Is it his origins- the way things start"? The voiceover goes on to give itself some backstory: it is 1944, nearing the end of World War 2, and Hitler has been  resorting to the occult in a strange and desperate attempt to turn the tide of war in his favor.

We are taken to an  island off the coast of Scotland, where young Professor Broom requests that the military personnel be given rosary beads before continuing on the assignment. But the sergeant in charge just laughs at Broom, condescending him and his belief in the paranormal. The American troops arrive at a set of ruins and find a group of Nazi scientists led by Rasputin and his mistress, IIsa. They are protected by a mysterious figure in a gas mask named Kroenen, reportedly Hitler's top assassin. Rasputin attaches himself to a mysterious device designed to open a portal to another dimension and awaken forces known as "The Seven Gods of Chaos." Just as the portal opens, the American troops launch grenades into the site, killing some scientists and causing a rift in Rasputin's plans. Chaos ensues.

Kroenen attacks the Americans, killing several and wounding Professor Broom in the leg. Broom crawls over to a fallen soldier and picks up a grenade, hurling it just beneath the portal. Kroenen breaks off his attack and tries to remove the grenade, but cannot get to it in time. The grenade explodes, destroying the portal and Kroenan's right hand. Kroenen is then impaled by a fragment from the portal and is presumed dead. Rasputin is unexpectedly sucked into the portal, closing it.

Professor Broom has his leg bandaged while instructing the remaining soldiers to search the island because he is  fearful that something may have come through the portal before they could close it. Broom and another soldier suddenly encounter a strange red ape-like creature with a massive stone hand. The soldiers are fearful, but Broom manages to attract the creature with a Baby Ruth candy bar. They realize that this creature, whatever it may be, is just an infant and is essentially harmless to them. They deem as friendly and this is the beginning of the story of Hellboy, as it was the soldiers that gave the creature a name based on its demonic appearance. As the movie's credits roll through we then see a montage of  Hellboy's position in modern-day society, effectively as an "urban legend" like Bigfoot or other such creatures.

Fast-forward sixty years and a much older Professor Broom is being examined by doctors. The findings are not good; he has cancer and not much can be done about it. On his way home, Broom sees his friend Tom Manning on TV, answering questions about a recent photograph supposedly taken of Hellboy. Manning denies Hellboy's existence and the existence of  the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense.

Meanwhile, a lone figure on a motor scooter arrives at a waste management plant. He activates the speaker-phone and identifies himself as John Meyers, a recent graduate of FBI training reporting for his first assignment. He is taken downstairs by a secret elevator and ends up in a gigantic library with a water tank in the middle of the room. A strange voice asks Meyers to turn the pages on some books, and a strange fish-like humanoid reveals itself inside the tank. Professor Broom arrives and introduces the fish-man as Abe Sapien. Meyers is about to introduce himself, but Abe interrupts by reciting a number of facts about Meyers seemingly out of nowhere. Broom explains that Abe has a unique brain, allowing him certain telepathic abilities. Broom feeds Abe a few rotten eggs, a strange delicacy that Abe has acquired a taste for. Professor Broom explains that this is the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense (BPRD), and Meyers is their newest ally.

The scene shifts to snowy mountains far away. We are following three figures. It is IIsa, Kroenen and a guide and they are hiking to a sacred location. They kill their guide and use his blood to resurrect Rasputin. Beginning their plan of destruction once again, this time using Hellboy as the key.

Meyers is given a brief history of the BPRD and its activities, and is then introduced to his superior, Agent Clay. Broom gives Meyers 2 Baby Ruth bars and wishes him well. Clay brings Meyers into a huge vault like room and introduces the BPRD's pride and joy: Hellboy. We are introduced to an adult version of the creature. Hellboy is less than eager about Meyer's arrival, seeing him as just another of the endless security measures he must live under. Midway through their introduction, an alarm sounds and Hellboy joyfully sets out to go on their latest assignment.

A newscaster remarks that an alarm was triggered at a local museum, and that there has been no response from the guards inside. Clay brings Hellboy and Abe Sapien reporting that there is a large monster of some type inside the museum. Professor Broom explains that a statue was destroyed and something trapped inside was freed. Hellboy loads up his trademark weapon, the Samaritan, and goes inside to investigate while Abe tries to research what the creature could be and how they can stop it.

Abe comes up with the name "Sammael" for this creature and tells Hellboy about it just as Hellboy encounters the creature. Hellboy shoots the monster a few times and walks away, just as Abe informs him that Sammael is also known as "the Hound of Resurrection." Hellboy turns around and is attacked, eventually thrown out a window. Hellboy encounters Rasputin, finding his voice familiar. Rasputin gives an ominous warning about Hellboy's future before Sammael attacks again. Meyers shows up and shoots Sammael, much to Hellboy's disdain as he likes to maintain his lone wolf stance.

Hellboy attempts to reload his weapon when Meyers notices a strange seed-like creature on Hellboy's arm. Hellboy rips it off and gives it to Meyers, instructing him to save it for study. Hellboy shoots Sammael with a tracking bullet that leaks green fluid, making an easily traceable trail. Hellboy follows Sammael through a crowd and across several lanes of traffic. Meyers tries to keep up but is injured by a passing car and faces death just before Hellboy returns to block the oncoming car and allowing Meyers to get across.

Hellboy follows Sammael into a subway system, briefly losing contact when a passing train goes over his head. Fed up with the fight, Hellboy grabs the train track and electrocutes Sammael. Hellboy is unharmed by the attack because he has a resistance to fire. Wanting some freedom, Hellboy turns off his radio and goes to see his old friend and love interest Liz Sherman. Liz has been in and out of BPRD but had recently  committed herself to a mental hospital. Meyers and some other agents finally arrive to take Hellboy back. Meyers looks up Liz Sherman's file and finds that she is a pyrokinetic (having the ability to start fire by thought) and that in her childhood she accidentally caused a huge blaze that cost dozens of lives.

Tom Manning and Professor Broom are discussing Hellboy's latest activities. Manning is less than happy with Hellboy or any of the people at BPRD, whom he refers to them as freaks. Abe Sapien uses his telepathy to show Professor Broom what happened at the museum: Kroenen killed the guards while Rasputin freed Sammael, enchanting the beast with a type of magic that will make 2 new creatures arise for every one that dies. Abe also learns through the telepathic exchange that the Professor is very sick, and the professor begs Abe to keep this secret from Hellboy.

Hellboy is being examined by Abe and Broom back at the base. They find a cluster of eggs in Hellboy's arm where the spore-like object was attached. Broom decides that Hellboy will go back to the subway the next day and look for any more eggs.

That night, Rasputin secretly visits Liz  at the mental hospital. He uses his powers to unlock her worst memory and activating her fire-starting abilities which destroys the hospital.

Hellboy and Broom discuss this the next morning while Hellboy files his horns. Meyers offers to speak with Liz and hopefully recruit her into the BPRD once more. Meyers is successful in getting Liz to come back to what she feels is the closest to home.

Hellboy, Clay, Abe and two other agents return to the sewers to find the Eggs. Abe jumps into a cistern to capture a cluster of eggs, but is attacked and badly injured by another Sammael. The two agents are attacked and killed by yet another Sammeal, which Hellboy chases after. Clay is left behind and winds up getting stabbed by Kroenen, who then makes it appear as though Kroenen was killed in a fight between the two. Hellboy chases Sammael into a subway station, finally killing him again by smashing the monster into an oncoming train. Hellboy returns, shocked to find his friends wounded.

Back at BPRD, Manning reveals that Abe will recover but Clay is too badly wounded and most likely will not survive the night. Manning and Hellboy clash, both angry about what has happened.

Hellboy is in his room, struggling to write a letter for Liz that describes his feelings for her when Liz comes in and reveals that she is going on a date with Meyers. Hellboy is angry. He decides to covertly spy on them while they are out and about.

Broom is doing an autopsy of sorts on Kroenen, where he learns that Kroenen is over 100 years old and his body is badly mutilated due to a medical form of  masochism. When the professor leaves, Kroenen uses a type of clockwork mechanism to restart his heart and allows Rasputin into the BPRD. Rasputin confronts the professor, taunting him for not knowing Hellboy's true purpose or name. Broom responds that-as far as he is concerned- Hellboy's proper title is "Son." Rasputin grants Broom a glimpse into the future, where Hellboy is responsible for Armageddon. Kroenen then executes Professor Broom.

Meyers and Liz are still on their date when they are told what has happened. Hellboy was still watching the date when he figures out that something is wrong. Upon hearing the news of his father Hellboy is devastated by the loss, refusing to eat or speak for days. Manning takes over the BPRD and announces that he will lead a team to Russia to find the source of Sammael's eggs and put a stop to all this paranormal evil.

In Russia, Hellboy re-animates a corpse with magic and gets directions to Rasputin's Mausoleum. The group is divided inside, with Liz and  Meyers in one direction and Hellboy and Manning in another. Hellboy and Manning find Kroenen's hiding place, and Hellboy saves Manning's life by attacking Kroenen with his stone fist. Kroenen attempts to lure Hellboy into a spiked pit, but Manning throws a gear at Kroenen, blocking his attack. Hellboy knocks Kroenen into the pit and kills him with a gigantic gear. Hellboy and Manning thank each other for their endeavors, having formed a type of mutual respect despite their usual banter and general distaste for one another.

Liz and Meyers find the egg chamber. Hellboy joins them, but he is overwhelmed by Sammael duplicates. Liz begs Meyers to attack her, hoping that it will trigger her fire-powers. It works, and Sammael (eggs and doubles) are destroyed for good. But Rasputin and IIsa use the opportunity to capture Hellboy and his friends.

Rasputin wants Hellboy to use his "Right Hand of Doom" to finally free the Seven Gods of Chaos. Hellboy refuses, but learns that Liz is critically injured and may not survive. He agrees to Rasputin's terms and speaks his true name- "Anung-Un-Rama." Hellboy's horns suddenly grow to full length and he begins to breathe smoke, having embraced his Demonic heritage.

Meyers is able to free himself before Hellboy opens the final seal of the Gods. Meyers begs Hellboy to remember who he is, and throws the prayer-beads that once belonged to Professor Broom. Hellboy remembers that he does not have to be evil; he has a choice- and his father died so he could make that choice. Hellboy rips off his horns and stabs Rasputin with them, stating that he doesn't' need Rasputin to tell him who he is. Rasputin's death unleashes a monster who is the last envoy of the Seven Gods, called Behemoth, and it quickly grows in size.

Hellboy gets Meyers and Liz out of the room, and Meyers gives him a weapon- a cluster of grenades intended for use on Sammael's eggs. Hellboy has a long fight with the Behemoth before finally getting the huge monster to swallow the grenades, destroying it.

Hellboy returns only for Meyers to say that Liz has no pulse. Hellboy kneels down and speaks some words of apparent prayer, and Liz opens her eyes. She asks what he said. Hellboy responds that he was talking to those "on the other side," imploring them to give up Liz because he would gladly cross over himself to try and save her. Moved by his sentiments and by the events of the last few days, the two kiss passionately. Liz's fire engulfs them both in moments, but Hellboy, being fireproof, is unharmed.

Meyers stands on and concludes Professor Broom's earlier thoughts: "What is it that makes a man a man?' It's the choices he makes. Not how he starts things- but how he decides to end them."

Hellboy is a fantastic comic book and the characters are all intriguing in their own way. Let's take a look at some of the weapons used in this dark world of fantasy and modern day reality.

We can't take a look at the weapons and not talk about this one. Hellboy's (Ron Perlman) personal sidearm, the Samaritan, of which he acquired in the '50s, he named it the "Samaritan" because it puts monsters out of their misery. The metal of the gun is forged from a combination of Irish church bells, cold iron from crucifixes, blessed silver, and other mystic metals. The grips have the BPRD insignia on each side and the wood of the grips is believed to be that of the cross of which Jesus Christ was crucified on. The gun has immense muzzle energy and is believed capable of breaking a normal mans arm due to great recoil. The gun holds 4 shots (although in the film he fires 8) and fires bullets HB makes himself as a hobby. He puts Holy water, Garlic cloves, and white oak shavings in his special rounds. As he calls them, "The Works." The gun uses a tip-open action similar to a Webley or Schofield action revolver. It fires double action and single action. When out of bullets, HB likes to use it as a hammer as this cannon weighs around 10 pounds!

                                                  Hellboy holds up the Samaritan.

A speed loader for the Samaritan with four glass case bullets filled with holy water, garlic cloves and white oak shavings.

                                            Samaritan replica pistol on display with 4 bullets

To watch Hellboy battle Sammeal the first time you can watch it here:

                            One of the guards in the museum uses a Glock 17 shoot Kroenen

                                                                                Glock 17 9mm

                                          An officer aims his Glock 17 at Kroenen.

To watch this scene you can do so here:

Sgt. Whitman (Angus MacInnes) and several other soldiers use M1 Garands during the opening sequence

                                                          M1 Garand .30-06

                                 Sgt. Whitman (Angus MacInnes) with his M1 Garand.

To watch the opening sequence in WW2 to can watch it here:

Hellboy 1 & 2 are a couple of my favorite movies. I like to watch them on rainy days with my dog and some snacks. The plotlines are awesome and the visuals are stunning.

To find out more about the weapons used in this film you can go here:

To find great accessories to go with Glocks as well as several other types of guns make sure to check us out online at: Glock magazine accessories

What are your favorite movies to watch for Halloween???

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Shawn in the Korengal Valley, Kunar Province, Afghanistan.

For more info on these and other weapons
Technical specs compiled from:

"The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement."