Class of 1999 (1990)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 3 out of 10

4-Word Review: The teachers are robots.

The year is 1999 and American high schools are running rampant with drugs and gang warfare. In an attempt to try to regain some control administrators have hired on a company run by Dr. Bob Forrest (Stacy Keach) who has created teachers who look human, but are actually robots capable of exerting extreme punishment on those students who get out-of-line. A Seattle high school is chosen as a venue to test these robots out with Miles Langford (Malcolm McDowell) being the only human instructor made aware of these other teacher’s identities. At first things go well and civil behavior from the unruly teens is attained, but then the teachers get out-of-control where even their creators are unable to rein them in, so it is up to some rebel teen students lead by Cody (Cody Culp) to fight them off and stop them.

This is a sort-of sequel to writer/director Mark L. Lester’s earlier Class of 1984 and in many ways on a low budget scale it’s alright. I watched this film with my Cinema Terrible group here in Austin where we get together each month to watch two really bad movies. Usually everyone spends the time making fun at what they are watching, but this film surprisingly kept them quiet and captivated, which no one had initially expected. Lester has directed 33 of these types of films since 1971 and he knows how to deliver. His product certainly isn’t on an Academy Award winning level, but for those looking for some cheap non-think entertainment with a fast pace and decent effects then this ain’t too bad.

The best element of the film is John P. Ryan, Pam Grier and Patrick Kilpatrick as the three teacher robots. Ryan especially owns the screen during all of his scenes and the part where he takes some difficult students one-by-one over his knee and gives them a nice long, hard spanking is without question the best moment of the whole movie. Grier though is good too and during the climatic sequence she runs around essentially topless with her chest ripped open and her computer parts exposed, which I found to be well done. McDowell is the only one of the familiar names who is wasted and apparently only worked 2 days on the production.

The film’s biggest issue is that it has no sense of humor despite its over-the-top campy premise. The teen cast show minimal acting ability and their characters come off like walking, talking clichés. In a lot of ways this film would have been better had the evil teacher robots been portrayed as ‘the good guys’ and instead of being annihilated at the end by the students they were the ones who eradicated all of the mouthy, crude and disrespectful teens, which some would consider to be much more of a ‘happy ending’.

My Rating: 3 out of 10

Released: May 11, 1990

Runtime: 1Hour 33Minutes

Rated R

Director: Mark L. Lester

Studio: Vestron Pictures

Available: DVD, Amazon Instant Video, YouTube

The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension (1984)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 5 out of 10

4-Word Review: This thing is weird.

Buckaroo Banzai (Peter Weller) is part-time rock band singer who has invented a mechanism that he calls the oscillation overthruster that allows him to travel through rocks and other solid matter. He is somehow able to do this by tapping into the realms of the 8th dimension, but upon doing so he also attracts the attention of some aliens lead by Lord John Whorfin (Jon Lithgow) who wants to steal the device and use it for their own nefarious needs. Buckaroo, who is able to recognize these aliens who otherwise look human to everyone else after being zapped by some electronic component through a telephone receiver by a group of other aliens, gets a group of fellow geeks together to help fight the evil Whorfin and his men before it is too late.

In a lot of ways this film is a refreshing change-of-pace and it is not surprising that it has attained such a strong cult following. Most films with such an offbeat concept end up selling out and becoming quite formulaic and conventional with only a few odd elements thrown in for good measure, but this movie is completely weird in all facets and truly lives up to its campy over-the-top title. I loved the off-the-wall banter, ridiculously silly, but still quite entertaining special effects and characters that are uniformly warped. The comic book look is great and the story gets increasingly more absurd as it goes along. You have to tune out your logic and conventional movie mode to get into this and enjoy it, but the humor and chuckles are there if you let it.

Unfortunately the pace as well as the beginning become a bit too off. I found things to be completely confusing at the start that I really couldn’t understand what was going on for the whole first half-hour. The film seemed to jump from one outlandish scene and character to the next without any cohesion and the result was quite off-putting. It wasn’t until about 45 minutes in that I was able to finally get into the groove with it, but more of a background to the characters and a set-up would have helped greatly. There are still enough memorably unique moments to make it worth it including my favorite the Banzai Team March, which was filmed at the Sepulveda Dam in the San Fernando Valley and shown over the closing credits.

Weller is in fine form in the lead and seems much more at ease with this role than he was in Robocop where he came off as being miscast. Lithgow is a hoot as an over-the-top villain speaking with a heavy Russian/German accent. I also enjoyed Matt Clark as the Secretary of Defense who acts as if he is above all rules of protocol until finally being put into his place by a little kid with a rifle.

The closing credits listed a follow-up title that was supposedly going to be a sequel that unfortunately was never made due to the film’s production company going out of business, which is a shame as this thing had strong potential of becoming a major franchise. W.D. Richter who has an impressive screenwriting resume does well in his directorial debut and it’s an equal shame that he only helmed one other movie at this point as he shows potential to being uniquely talented in that position.

My Rating: 5 out of 10

Released: August 10, 1984

Runtime: 1Hour 43Minutes

Rated PG

Director: W.D. Richter

Studio: 20th Century Fox

Available: VHS, DVD, Amazon Instant Video

The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds (1972)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 8 out of 10

4-Word Review: My heart is full.

Beatrice Hunsdorfer (Joanne Woodward) is a single-mother raising two girls while living in the poor side of Staten Island. She is an extremely self-centered, emotionally frail woman who’s bitter about life and alienates everyone that she meets. Ruth (Roberta Wallach) is her rebellious teenage daughter who recognizes her mother’s flawed personality and tries to distance herself from her. Matilda (Nell Potts) is the quiet, introspective daughter who takes in all the chaos while escaping by concentrating on her school science projects particularly the one involving marigolds, but as things progress Beatrice’s mental state becomes more erratic and threatens to tear their lives completely apart.

Actor Paul Newman directs on a tour-de-force level. Absolutely everything comes together while still keeping it on a subtle, visual level. The opening sequences gives the viewer a clear picture of the family’s strife and divergent personalities without ever having to go into any type of verbal backstory, which is great filmmaking at its finest. Although filmed in Bridgeport, Connecticut one still gets a good feeling of a poor inner-city neighborhood with the house that was chosen for the setting looking authentically cluttered without appearing staged. The variety of settings has a cinema verite feel while also remaining true to Paul Zindel’s script. Yet Newman’s greatest achievement is the fact that he creates a wholly unlikable main character that the viewer ends still feeling quite sorry and the climactic scene inside the school’s auditorium becomes emotionally wrenching.

Woodward excels in a difficult role and creates a character that becomes permanently etched in the viewer’s mind. Her brilliance comes through from the very beginning with the way she chews her gum while trying on some wigs and her never ending stream of caustic remarks runs the gamut of being rude and insensitive to darkly humorous. Although she was nominated for best actress with the Golden Globes and won the award at the Cannes for her work here she really should have been given the Academy Award as well.

Wallach, who is the daughter of Eli Wallach and Anne Jackson, is terrific in her film debut and has some memorable moments not only when she has a seizure, but also later when she plays a caricature of her mother for a school play. Potts, who is Newman’s and Woodward’s daughter, is quite good too especially with her stunning clear blue eyes and facial expressions.

Judith Lowry, who made a name for herself in her later years playing cantankerous old ladies, is outstanding as an old woman who rents a room from Beatrice. Although she frustratingly never says a word her moments are still unforgettable especially with the way Newman focuses on her wrinkled face and toothless mouth as she sips drinks or even hobbles her way to the bathroom.

Zindel’s story was originally a stage play and in fact Carolyn Coates who is cast as Mrs. McKay here played the Beatrice role in one of the stage versions. Most teenagers from the 70’s and 80’s will recognize Paul Zindel’s name as the author of ‘Pigman’, which was required reading in many high schools during that era. Yet I liked this story, which is based loosely on his experiences while growing up, even better and it’s a real shock that it has never been released on an American DVD as it definitely should be!

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My Rating: 8 out of 10

Released: December 20, 1972

Runtime: 1Hour 40Minutes

Rated PG

Director: Paul Newman

Studio: 20th Century Fox

Available: DVD (Region 2)

Who is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me? (1971)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 4 out of 10

4-Word Review: Paranoid songwriter self-destructs.

Georgie Soloway (Dustin Hoffman) is a successful songwriter who has written dozens of chart topping songs for different bands and yet feels alone and guilt ridden. He lives in his swanky Manhattan penthouse feeling paranoid after a man by the name of Harry Kellerman starts calling his friends and saying malicious things about him, which risks jeopardizing his career and reputation. He tells his problems to his psychiatrist (Jack Warden) while also searching for Kellerman, but makes no headway.

Story-wise the film is a misfire as Herb Gardner’s script has no discernable plot and a main character that doesn’t grow or evolve. Even if taken as a collection of vignettes it doesn’t work and it becomes more like a pointless one-man soliloquy instead. The final revelation of the mysterious Kellerman is not all that surprising or worth sitting through. Why the filmmakers thought viewers would be interested in watching a man essentially self-destruct for two hours is a mystery and it is as boring as it sounds. Besides it is hard for the average person to feel sorry for someone who seems to have it all and loaded with money and thus makes the character’s problems and issues seem quite minute and his perpetual whining overly monotonous.

The only thing that saves it is Ulu Grosbard’s creative direction. I enjoyed some of the surreal elements particularly those done during his sessions with his psychiatrist as well as a scene showing Georgie running through a long lighted tunnel that seems to have no end. The final segment done on a single-jet airplane is captivating especially as it flies through the clouds and watching two skiers’ glide through the snow from a bird’s-eye perspective has an equally mesmerizing effect. I also loved the way the film captures the New York skyline during a visual taken from the plane as it swoops over the city and a scene done in the early morning hours in downtown Manhattan without seemingly a single car driving on the street gives off a strangely unique feeling.

Barbara Harris, who doesn’t come on until the second half, is a scene stealer as an insecure actress who bombs at her audition, but then refuses to leave the stage. It was good enough to get her nominated for the Academy Award that year, but she lost out to Cloris Leachman and as much as I love Cloris Barb really should have won it as she is the one thing the enlivens this otherwise flat film and had her character been in it more this would have been a far better movie. David Burns, who died from a sudden heart attack while performing in a play three months before this film’s release, is touching as Georgie’s father.

Grosbard and Hoffman teamed up again seven years later for Straight Time, which is far superior and more worth your time to watch.

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My Rating: 4 out of 10

Released: June 15, 1971

Runtime: 1Hour 48Minutes

Rated R

Director: Ulu Grosbard

Studio: National General Pictures

Available: VHS, DVD

Cruising (1980)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 4 out of 10

4-Word Review: Cop infiltrates gay underground.

A serial killer is attacking gay men who frequent New York’s S&M bars and young cop Steve Burns (Al Pacino) is chosen to go undercover as a gay and infiltrate these ‘leather clubs’ in order to bring out the killer. However, the job requirements demand that he must be completely isolated from the rest of the force and not carry a gun, which eventually causes a strain on his personal life particularly in his relationship with his girlfriend Nancy (Karen Allen).

The film, which is loosely based on actual events that occurred during the late 70’s and captured in Gerald Walker’s novel of the same name, was considered quite controversial at the time of its production. Protestors who felt the film accentuated the gay stereotype tried to create loud noises during filming and even shine reflective lights on the actors in an attempt to mess up the scenes. In retrospect it is hard to imagine that director William Friedkin is in anyway homophobic as just ten years earlier he did the brilliant adaptation of The Boys in the Band, which remains to this day one of the better films dealing with gay issues. The story certainly does wallow in ugly elements, but also makes the point to describe this as an extreme subculture and  not reflective of the gay lifestyle as a whole, which in my opinion made the film seem more enlightening to New York’s gay underground of a bygone era and less propaganda as its critics ascertained.

To some degree I liked the explicit uncompromising approach, but after a while it became one-dimensional and predictable. The scenes of the killings are unnecessarily prolonged and some of the segments showing large groups of men having sex at a bar come off as overly-stylized and looking reminiscent of a homoerotic scene from a Fassbinder film.

Friedkin does manage to add a few unique touches including having a well-built black man wearing nothing but a jock strap enter the room during police interrogations and violently slap suspects who he felt weren’t telling the truth, which according to one of the film’s advisors was an actual technique used by police at the time.  The way the movie captures the monotony and frustrations of investigating a complex case such as this and leaving open that there may have been more than one killer is also well done and helps elevate this a bit from the usual formulaic cop thriller.

Pacino gives a gutsy performance including one scene showing him tied up in bed naked during some kinky S&M play, but the characters motivations are confusing particularly the way he so quickly accepts this difficult assignment that most others would be very reluctant to do. The fact that his experiences ends up affecting him psychologically isn’t compelling since that becomes a foregone conclusion right from the start.

Paul Sorvino is perfect as the police captain. His gray hair dye was a little overdone, but his limp was great. Allen has a good moment at the end when she tries on Pacino’s leather hat and coat that he brought home with him and Joe Spinell makes the most of his small role as a corrupt cop who harasses gays only to end up patronizing gay bars on his off hours. You can also spot Powers Boothe in an early role as a hankie salesman and Ed O’Neil as a police detective.

The idea of exposing the dark side of police life is no longer original or interesting and the film’s shock value has lessened through the years and thus failing to leave any type of lasting impression or message.

My Rating: 4 out of 10

Released: February 15, 1980

Runtime: 1Hour 42Minutes

Rated R

Director: William Friedkin

Studio: United Artists

Available: VHS, DVD, Amazon Instant Video

Scream for Help (1984)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 6 out of 10

4-Word Review: Her Stepfather plots murder.

Christie (Rachael Kelly) is a teen convinced that her new stepfather (Paul Fox) is out to kill her mother (Marie Masters). The problem is that no one believes her. Eventually she is able to take a picture of him having sex with another woman, which is enough to get her mother to throw him out of their house, but then he returns with two of his cohorts and traps Christie and her mother in the basement were they plan to kill them and make it look like a robbery.

This film, which was written by Tom Holland, might have been better received had it not been put into the hands of sub-par director Michael Winner. Winner who is probably best known for his close association to Charles Bronson of which he directed 7 films with him and then later when his film career waned became a famous restaurant critic, shows no feeling for the material and directs with such a sloppy style that it almost seemed like he was intentionally trying to make a bad movie. The sweeping orchestral score would have been better suited for a romance or epic adventure and is completely out of place here. The dialogue is corny and the overall acting by the supporting cast is wooden. The pace is awkward and at times becomes unintentionally funny.

However, the second half improves greatly particularly when the two find themselves trapped in the cellar and must use their ingenuity to get out. The twists are clever and unpredictable and the atmosphere becomes genuinely taut and exciting. The musical score also improves becoming much more intense and darker. I actually started to get really into it and afterwards felt like I had watched two different movies with the second part being good enough to overshadow its otherwise many flaws.

Brooks as the bad guy has a male model face, but his performance is as generic as the film’s title and it would have been better had a veteran character actor been cast in the part instead. The mother character with the way she refuses to believe the obvious until it is much too late seems unreasonably and annoyingly stupid. I did though like Kelly in the lead. Not only is she cute, but her acting is good enough to compel the viewer to keep watching when they otherwise might have turned it off and I was surprised to see that this was her only film as she showed enough promise to have had a solid career.

Filmed on-location in New Rochelle, New York this is the type of low budget flick that proves how a good script can sometimes overcome other production inadequacies. Had it been better directed this could have been a snappy thriller and it’s a shame that Hitchcock disciple Richard Franklin who was the original choice as director hadn’t helmed it although a film school dropout or even your local garbage man could have done a better job than Winner or certainly no worse.

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My Rating: 6 out of 10

Released: July 16, 1984

Runtime: 1Hour 29Minutes

Rated R

Director: Michael Winner

Studio: Lorimar

Available: VHS, DVD (Region 2)

Partners (1982)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 2 out of 10

4-Word Review: Pretending to be gay.

A serial killer targeting gay men is on the prowl. When one of his victims turns out to be the son of an influential politician pressure is put on the police force to find the culprit. The police chief (Kenneth McMillan) feels he has no choice but to pair Sgt. Benson (Ryan O’Neal) a straight cop with Kerwin (John Hurt) who is a gay desk clerk at the station. They are to masquerade as a gay couple in hopes of infiltrating the gay underground and find clues to the elusive killer, but their contrasting personalities and lifestyles threaten to blow their cover before they can make headway.

This film was controversial at the time of its release for its overuse of gay stereotypes and there are indeed some especially at the beginning, but the film’s biggest offense is that it is just plain boring. The idea that two cops could be forced to pretend to be a gay couple or have one of them pose naked for the cover of a gay men’s magazine as part of their investigation is dubious enough, but had it been funny I might have forgiven it. Unfortunately this thing can’t even elicit a few chuckles.

The idea that Kerwin would automatically fall in love with Benson while working together simply because he is another man is absurd and makes about as much sense as a heterosexual male falling for every woman that he meets, which of course doesn’t happen. The Benson character is also quite callous and disrespectful to Kerwin while showing blatant homophobic tendencies and being a confirmed ladies’ man, so I didn’t see what there was about him that Kerwin would have fallen in love with anyways.

Benson’s transformation to being more sensitive to gays and their issues during the course of the story might have been more compelling had it been better written. However, his liberal use of the word ‘faggot’ makes the film seem quite dated and wouldn’t be heard in a movie today especially from a character that is supposedly a protagonist.

Hurt plays the gay caricature well, but the idea of placing someone on such a dangerous mission without having any undercover experience of even knowing how to use a gun seemed stupid and unrealistic. Out of all the characters McMillan’s comes off best and he even manages to be slightly amusing, but unfortunately isn’t seen enough. Character actors Jay Robinson and Sydney Lassick can be spotted very briefly.

This was intended to be a parody of Cruising, which was released 2 years earlier and was a much more serious and graphic look at a true life killer of gay men. That film starred Al Pacino and will be reviewed next Monday.

My Rating: 2 out of 10

Released: April 30, 1982

Runtime: 1Hour 32Minutes

Rated R

Director: James Burrows

Studio: Paramount

Available: VHS, DVD

The Heartbreak Kid (1972)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 5 out of 10

4-Word Review: Newlywed cheats during honeymoon.

Lenny (Charles Grodin) meets Lila (Jeannie Berlin) at a bar and after a brief courtship decides to take the plunge. However, while traveling to Florida for their honeymoon he becomes aware of all of her annoying habits and quickly realizes he’s made a terrible mistake especially after coming into contact with Kelly (Cybill Shepherd) a statuesque blonde college girl who appears to have the hots for him.

It’s hard to tell what the moral of the story is supposed to be whether its date someone for an extended period of time before jumping into marriage or the idea that being with someone for ’40 or 50 years’ as the Lila character says constantly throughout is just not a sexy or romantic notion for some. Either way it’s a funny concept and the Lenny character with his self-serving needs is highly relatable. Grodin is perfect for the part and one of the main reasons the film succeeds. His facial expressions are great and his running excuse about visiting an ‘old army buddy’ every time he wants to see Kelly is hilarious.

Shepherd is good as well playing a snarky character that seems to closely resemble her persona. However, the motivations of her character seem all wrong. Had Lenny initially approached her I might have bought into it, but instead she is the one who makes the first move, which seemed hard to believe that this beautiful young woman would be attracted to such an average looking guy or why he even caught her attention out of the hundreds of other men already on the beach. Her character also comes off as a bona fide cocktease, someone who enjoys leading a guy on for the attention it gets her, but will quickly bail once it gets serious, which makes their eventual dreamy relationship seem all the more farfetched.

Eddie Albert gets one of his best latter career roles here and was even nominated for the Academy Award in the part as Kelly’s stubborn father who takes an intense dislike to Lenny. However, I wished their confrontations had been played up a bit more and felt cheated when Albert tells Grodin he will never agree to him marrying his daughter only to have the film immediately cut to showing him giving Kelly away to him at their wedding, but what exactly did Grodin do to win Albert over? We are never shown what it is and this in the process makes the viewer feel frustrated and confused and the film seem incomplete.

This same story was remade in 2007 by the Farrelly brothers with Ben Stiller playing the Grodin role and although that movie was overlong, poorly paced and filled with a lot of running jokes that weren’t funny it at least was a little more plausible especially with the way Stiller meets the other woman.

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My Rating: 5 out of 10

Released: December 17, 1972

Runtime: 1Hour 45Minutes

Rated PG

Director: Elaine May

Studio: 20th Century Fox

Available: VHS

Blood Freak (1972)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 0 out of 10

4-Word Review: Man becomes a turkey.

Herschell (Steve Hawkes) attends a hippie drug party where he meets two sisters whose father owns a turkey farm that is run by two scientists who do experiments there. Since he is short on cash he decides to take part in some of these experiments for extra money. However, he is unaware of just how dangerous these tests are and when he eats a turkey he suddenly goes into convulsions before growing a giant turkey head. He then roams the city streets looking for unsuspecting victims who he then takes back to a warehouse and kills while drinking their blood in hopes that it will somehow turn him back into human form.

Even with the massively low budget that was financed mainly by the director and star this is still a big mess with a story that seems to have no focus. It starts out as a drama on the evils of drug use then works into a romance only to shift into a gory slasher film and then end again on a romantic note. In between director Brad F. Grinter, who apparently likens himself to Rod Serling, comes on screen for some pseudo philosophical bibble-babble as well as preaching against the evils of drugs all while smoking a cigarette and in one funny moment going through a bout of smoker’s cough.

The special effects are surprisingly not too bad. The part where a man gets his leg cut off with a table saw is genuinely gory and explicit and watching the blood spray out of the victims like water from a hose is freaky . It even has a nasty scene of showing a live turkey getting beheaded while its headless body flutters around.

The acting is uniformly atrocious and quite possibly the worst I’ve ever seen. The turkey head worn by Hawkes looks dumber than a tacky Halloween mask and it does pose the question as to why just his head changes while the rest of his body remains human. This is most likely because the budget didn’t allow for a turkey body suit, but it still creates a logic loophole in a film that is already full of them.

Watch only if you are with a group of friends who will then spend the whole time making fun of it as that is the only entertainment value you’ll get from viewing it.

My Rating: 0 out of 10

Released: February 13, 1972

Runtime: 1Hour 21Minutes

Rated X

Director: Brad F. Grinter

Studio: Variety Films

Available: DVD

Foolin’ Around (1980)

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By Richard Winters

My Rating: 4 out of 10

4-Word Review: Redneck falls for hottie.

Wes (Gary Busey) is a college student who has moved from Oklahoma to Minnesota to attend the university. Desperate for some extra cash he takes part in a program run by the student science department where he gets strapped to a chair and given an electrical shock every time he gives a ‘right’ answer. The procedure is facilitated by Susan (Annette O’Toole) who’s an attractive coed there. Wes is immediately smitten, but finds himself in an uphill battle as she is already engaged to Whitley (John Calvin) an obnoxious stuck-up social climbing man whose equally arrogant mother (Cloris Leachman) wants her to have nothing to do with Wes and tries to completely shut him out of her life.

Although far from a critic darling this obscurity still manages to have a few funny scenes. The best are Wes’s encounters with Whitley particularly when Whitley tries parking his car in wet cement or trying to subdue an out-of-control carpet cleaner in his office. Wes’s conversation with Susan’s grandfather (Eddie Albert) high up on the edge of a skyscraper under construction is nerve-wracking particularly when Albert walks out to the end of a beam hundreds of feet up and then challenges Busey to do the same. The film also has a unique car chase that features an automobile made to look like a giant hot dog as well as a hang gliding segment through the Minneapolis skyline that is downright exhilarating.

Busey does well as an amiable doofus in a part that seems best suited for his acting ability. O’Toole is at the peak of her beauty and Leachman manages to get a few choice moments as the meddling mother. Tony Randall is fun as a snooty butler with a French accent and it’s great to see William H. Macy in an early, but brief part near the beginning.

The on-location shooting done in the state of Minnesota adds some verve particularly the segment done on the sidelines of an actual Vikings-Rams football game. Unfortunately the script is threadbare with certain gags that become labored and lame and a romantic angle that is sappy and contrived. It is also hard to believe that Susan would for even a remote second consider marrying the Whitley character who is a one-dimensional arrogant asshole to the extreme. It is even more absurd that she would fall in-love with Wes as she is clearly out of his league both physically and intellectually and it’s about as farfetched as Busey ever one day winning the Academy Award.

My Rating: 4 out of 10

Released: October 17, 1980

Runtime: 1Hour 40Minutes

Rated PG

Director: Richard T. Heffron

Studio: 20th Century Fox

Available: VHS