A retired elite Black Ops Commando launches a one man war against a group of South American criminals who have kidnapped his daughter to blackmail him into starting a revolution and getting an exiled dictator back into power.
Mark L. Lester
Rae Dawn Chong,
Arnold Schwarzenegger plays a Russian policeman sent after a Georgian drug dealer who has escaped to the United States and is awaiting extradition in Chicago. Jim Belushi plays his temporary partner on the Chicago police. When the drug dealer escapes, the two police must overcome their differences in order to recapture him. Written by
John Vogel <email@example.com>
Walter Hill is a director known for his tough guy action movies (The Warriors, Extreme Prejudice, Southern Comfort) and in the early 80s he scored big with 48 Hours, a story of mis-matched partners working together to catch the bad guys. He repeated that formula again in 1988 with Red Heat, though it had become a regular cliché by this point.
Ivan Danko is a no-nonsense Soviet cop sent to Chicago to extradite a notorious Russian criminal back to Communist soil. While in America he is teamed-up with easy-going Detective Art Ridzik as they jump over new hurdles and suffer multiple setbacks. As an action comedy it offers a fare amount (but just not enough) of laughs and thrills. Big Arn is amusing a the brick-faced Danko and Belushi (in his first of three appearances in Arnie movies) is likable enough. Peter Boyle and a young Laurence Fishburne help appear in smaller roles as Ridzik's cynical superiors, but are not given much else to do. Gina Gershon (yum yum) shows up as a damsel in distress, but extends the plot without deepening it. Even James Horner's score is kind of middle-ground, neither good nor terrible.
There's no real problem or fault with Red Heat except that is just doesn't offer an exhilarating amount of what it sets up. It's so straight-forward and lacking in mystery and intrigue when it could so easily have written in. A bit of a missed-opportunity, but certainly worth watching and owning for action and Arnie fans.
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