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Harry Dean Stanton,
Susan wants her reprehensible ex-husband dead and, in several bungled attempts by henchmen, tries to accomplish the deed. First her boyfriend hires two dim-witted hitmen. Then she hires a former biker boyfriend to smother him in the hospital where he is recuperating from the first attempt. Then Zane's former wife figures out what is going on and wants a part of the action. Written by
John Sacksteder <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Often funny and entertaining, but increasingly exhausting towards the end
Not John Landis's proudest moment. I'm not sure what his last movie was before directing (and writing!) this forgettable dark comedy, but it seems as if he took a long break from the business. You would think he'd make a big revival, after his many successes with such hit comedies as "Animal House," "Trading Places" and "Coming to America." Wrong.
I'm not going to be entirely negative. I was laughing a lot during the first and second acts. The film never quite hits the comic bull's eye, but it starts out on a positive note with many funny and entertaining moments. The characters are never well-developed, and it's obvious that Landis was leaning towards a dark farce, but I let that slide at first. Towards the end, the one-joke premise is stretched to the point where we're watching a series of violent dream sequences, which get quite repetitive. The film loses all focus, and the audience is given the run-around.
The cast is promising. Rob Schneider has a few funny sequences. Dan Aykroyd looks cool as a snide, tough-guy biker dude. The women are sexy, led by Natassja Kinski. However, I will give a warning. I'm a man and I'm not offended by female nudity; in fact, I enjoy it. But for all women who are offended by the "degrading of females" in countless motion pictures will probably croak on this one. Those who saw Landis's landmark comedy "Animal House" know his tendency to insert gratuitous nudity to catch the attention of his male viewers, but in that film it better fit the tone. In this case, I think he was pushing it. I don't know if it was exactly necessary to show Thomas Haden-Church doing Lara Flynn Boyle doggystyle. As I said, I'm not offended, but prudish women probably will be.
The soundtrack is awfully one-note. It's as if Landis was running way, way underbudget and could only fit one theme song into the soundtrack. Though I was laughing most of the way, I couldn't help but feel this film was way under par--especially for a man of Landis's talent. The last thirty minutes is all over the map, and Landis seemed to have written those final scenes in his sleep.
Altogether not bad, but not too good either.
My score: 5 (out of 10)
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