You read that right; It’s a triple feature, bitch! I’ve got to step it up a notch, because from the looks of it Robin Hood ain’t gonna be in the theater for too long. Plus, one of these is kind of a non-review, as you will see.
THE LAST BOY SCOUT (1991)
Easily one of the most mean-spirited, violent, misogynistic, foul-mouthed, illogical, testosterone-ridden, child-endangering, idiotic action movies of all time. And that’s gotta count for something, right?
If you remember, or have heard of, any part of this film, it’s most likely the “Ain’t life a bitch” scene, right at the beginning. If you don’t know it, I wouldn’t want to ruin it for you, but it is the essence of this film in microcosm; It’s completely nonsensical, extremely violent, has no direct connection to the overall plot, and is pretty much just in here to be cool. You could easily say that about most of the scenes in this film.
Shane Black, the Shakespeare of dumb eighties action films, peppers his script with enough explosions and shootings that you’re not left without one for longer than ten minutes. In fact, the script is so ridiculous, so over the top, that it veers into Paul Verhoeven territory: Are we really supposed to take this seriously? Or is this an attempt at borderline parody?
Definitely worth a watch, but only for the nihilistic at heart.
8 out of 10
1492: CONQUEST OF PARADISE (1992)
Full disclosure: I wasn’t able to watch this for the marathon, and haven’t seen it since it came out. The DVD is out of print, Netflix and my local video stores don’t carry it, and I’m not a fan of piracy. I could’ve tracked down a VHS copy, most likely, but I think it’s a little unfair to compare the work of a highly visual director’s work on VHS to DVD or Blu Ray. So, here we are. A review, completely from memory.
Um. . . Well, I remember Gerard Depardieu dropping to his knees on America’s sandy beach in slow motion. Presumably with Vangelis music playing in the background. Er. . . Sigourney Weaver played the Queen, and understandably wasn’t in very much of it. Michael Wincott growls a lot. Somebody falls down scaffolding at some point. . . I’m also just now remembering the other Columbus movie that came out around that time, starring Georges Corraface, who later went on to play Cuervo Jones in Escape From L.A.
That’s all I got.
? out of 10
TRUE ROMANCE (1993)
Y’know, I’ve never really been in love with this movie. Mostly because the main characters are unlikeable and have no arc. That being said, this film is a collection of great little character moments.
Let me count the ways. Gary Oldman, clearly. One of Brad Pitt’s greatest performances, as Floyd. Christopher Walken and Dennis Hopper in a transcendental scene, which is my favorite thing that Quentin Tarantino has ever been involved with.
Tarantino’s script feels like a “first script”; The protagonist is clearly him, and the whole “story” is an excuse to jump from one tough talking cliche to the next. I like Tony’s work here; He’s playing it as borderline farce, much like his work on Last Boy Scout. But, while being farce, it’s also filmed in a very grim and gritty fashion. If Tarantino were to direct a shootout scene between bodyguards, mobsters and cops, I’m sure that he would incorporate multiple soundl cues from kung fu films, and music samples from Ennio Morricone. Tony, however, takes this scene and just plays it straight, which actually makes it even weirder than if he were to add a visual “commentary” to what’s happening onscreen.
It’s probably best to see this when you’re fifteen, but it still holds up pretty well. If Tony has made a masterpiece yet, this is probably it.
8 out of 10