Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996)

Wowzah: this one is a zinger. I've been stuck in the 21st century lately, so it always feels good and energizing to hit up the better times with a strategically placed 90's action film. And Renny Harlin, director of Nightmare on Elm Street 4 (widely considered to be a huge success), the ever looked over Die Hard 2: Die Harder (no, not with a vengeance) and Cliffhanger certainly knows how to make a film sizzle. Even better, the most successful Finnish director in Hollywood history met and married Geena Davis while on the set of Cutthroat Island (thanks to Eddie Murphy, no longer the biggest box office disaster ever created) and that means he's not afraid to show off what he's doing at night. And I do mean doing. There are so many gaggalicious shots of Mrs. Davis in white undergarments while being tortured, I almost had an urge to go out and screw a 40 year old. Almost. She's pretty freaking hot. The film, in which Davis plays a spy with amnesia, is pretty much packed to the peak with punch and libido. And don't forget a working class Sammy J., who, although not the hero in this particular piece (he needs saving more often than not), adds in the grit and grime of a necessary sidekick. Davis' past life comes back to haunt her when her portrayal of Mrs. Clause (yes, as in Santy) during a bumpkin parade brings past evils, all of whom thought she was dead, swinging back into action. A nasty head wound and Geena is back to her old self, snapping deer and people necks galore. Think split personality (one homemaker [can she move on and abandon her kid? oh wait, the agency is trying to kill her and her family], one slut), knife throwing, slick chick with a serious vendetta against the boys. There's no girl on girl action in this one. Just Geena Davis kicking ass and splitting dicks left and right. Damn, that's hot. And just when you thought it couldn't get any more ridiculous, Renny Lauri Mauritz Harjola (man, that's a mouth full...and hopefully in more ways than one!) throws in a few automatic weapons and a bunch of explosions to keep up the pace. At one point, it's actually raining smoldering cars (as Spencer says, "they should have a flashing subtitle that says 'this actually happened!'"); trust, $65 million has never been so worth it. Imdb trivia says it best with their comment that: "The ice skating scene was scripted to end with Samantha performing a double-axel flip and simultaneously firing over her upside-down head. After two aerial-rig configurations (in sub-zero conditions) and several attempts at green-screening failed to hold any convincing fluency to the action, it was dropped from the final cut of the film." Oh Renny, at least you know when too much is too much....or do you? The sexified soundtrack certainly says something (what I don't know; Marvin Gaye, Santana, Jimmy Cliff, Elvis Presley, George Clinton, etc.). Craig Bierko, of The Thirteenth Floor (a totally bizarro sci-fi/alternate reality but still the same reality/computer technology/is this even real? movie) fame also stars in this flashy film with a 2.9 second average shot length. To top it off, the script, the first ever sold for 3 million dollars, is written by Shane Black whose infinitely awesome writing credits include all four Lethal Weapon's, The Last Boyscout (Willis) and Last (what's with all this ending of ages? morbid much?) Action Hero (Schwarzenegger). Now that's a legacy.

I deem it: "Salivatingly serious action"

Mmm, that's good.

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