1 item from 1991
In ''Prime Target, '' writer-director-producer-actor David Heavener runs the gauntlet, or rather, drives it in this clunky rip-off-homage to the Clint Eastwood starrer. While Heavener wears virtually every hat in this movie, the only one he truly fills is the dusty cowboy hat his pea-brained character wears.
While coon hunters and those whose pickups can make it as far as the far end of that rundown multiplex off the trunk road may find this dusty roader almost as satisfying as a bar fight, it pales in comparison to higher forms of entertainment -- female mud wrestling, for instance. ''Target's'' best shot may be as a video, a suitable backdrop for those sleeping one off or whose rifle rack is empty.
While Heavener is to be commended for having the good sense to copy Eastwood rather than one of the current ponytailed dweebs, his big toe barely reaches the middle of Eastwood's boots: chomping on a cigar, delivering monotonic dialogue, toting psychological baggage, snarling at higher-ups and carrying a Magnum do not necessarily add up to a high-plains hero.
Essentially, there is only one major difference between ''Target'' and ''The Gauntlet'' -- quality -- and one minor variation: Tony Curtis plays the Sondra Locke role.
In this shooter, Heavener plays John Bloodstone, a boozy, boondock lawman who's assigned by his chief and the FBI to transport a big-time Mafioso (Curtis) to the courthouse to give testimony.
Since everyone who's read this far undoubtedly remembers ''The Gauntlet, '' we'll Knock Off the plot prattle and jump ahead to the discouraging words: Haevener's dialogue is flatheaded; the gropy, panny camerawork is sub-film school and the cuts are choppy. The plot itself has more holes than all the trendy jeans on Melrose Avenue.
Chalk one up for Curtis, who not only manages to emerge unscathed from this lowroader but spiffs up the production with his dapper, John Gotti-like delivery. Heavener, when not bushwacked by his dialogue and direction, packs some macho charisma into his parched part, while Jenilee Harrison pumps some sympathetic shots into her stock role as the hero's neglected, devoted wife.
Tech contributions are opposite of the first word in the title.
Hero Films Inc.
Writer-director-producer David Heavener
Executive producer Gerald Milton
Executives in charge of production Leon Bluestone, Sheldon A. Rosenthal
Director of photography Peter Wolf
Editor Christoper Roth
Music Robert Garrett
Associate producer Karen Kelly
John Bloodstone David Heavener
Thompkins Isaac Hayes
Cappella Tony Curtis
Kathy Bloodstone Jenilee Harrison
Harrington Robert Reed
Running time -- 85 minutes
MPAA Rating: R
(c) The Hollywood Reporter
1 item from 1991
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