I know, I know. Majority opinion on IMDb says Son in Law is Pauley Shore's greatest movie ever. Hell, I liked all three that he did around that time: Son in Law, In the Army Now, and Jury Duty. This guy could always make me laugh. He's the worlds giant goofball and makes such terrific, stupid, fun-loving characters. It's even funnier that it is his characters that often save the day of totally idiotic situations (well, more in the latter two, anyway).
In the Amry Now has two of my favorite comedians: Pauley Shore and David Allen Grier (who delivers the most funniest moments in this movie as the excessively anxious Fred). Even Andy Dick, who seems so irritating in other things (post-'News Radio'), is even funny in this, so long as he doesn't have too many speaking lines. And Lori Petty adds to the cast as the cynical, tough-girl soldier that is sort of reminiscent (or inspiring of) her later role as 'Tank Girl' (that's a good movie).
'In the Army Now' is about two stereo salesman who's on-the-job antics and hijinks get them fired. Without any cash to pursue their goal of starting up their stereo and electronics shop, Bones (Pauley Shore) gets the brilliant idea that the quickest way to get the cash is to enlist in the army. It's clear that Bones is a total Bozo.
Though it's stupid to mention, this is the movie that marks the cease and desisting of Pauley Shore's grunge curly locks as he gets his head shaved for his role as the all-American soldier boy. His buddy, wimpy Jack (Andy Dick), also gets a makeover--as the Army issue supernerd with huge glasses, bony arms, and little head. And being in the army is not quite the picnic Bones had imagined, except for the part of getting ordered around by a screaming female drill sergeant who doesn't look grossly masculine like you seen in other movies. A couple billion push-ups later, and a whole lot of disciplinary action, Bones and Jack survive the army.
Bones figures that the army is the easiest way to the cash because they'd only have to serve the two weekends a month, six weeks a year, or whatever the standard schedule is for recruits. He's also basing his estimates on the assumption that there'll be no war to worry about, at least not before their term in hell is up. And boy was he wrong.
They signed up for water purification, and now, they're back on duty to go into the Gulf War, where they need the water boys (and girl) most. That's where Fred (Grier) and Christing (Lori) come in as their crewmates for their time in the desert. They sure make an odd assortment of characters. Bones never takes much too seriously, and certainly doesn't like the immediate responsibility of being named leader of the outfit. Jack is jealous of Bones and doubts his abilities to get anything done right (especially when they get lost in the desert and their convoy is hijacked). Christine is a pretty tough girl who, of course, will later become Bones' love interest, as well as a bit of inspiration. And Fred, my favorite character in the whole movie, is the grossly sensitive type who, aside from being a full-time dentist, joined the army on the advice of his therapist in order to "confront the things he's most afraid of" which is "uh...damn near everything." Pauley Shore may be the star, and he's a funny guy and all of that, but for me, I love this movie because David Allen Grier is simply hilarious (look at the 'scorpion on my back' scene).
Given the date of this movie's release, I assume it was typical Gulf War propaganda (it just wouldn't be an American war if there weren't propaganda), which doesn't sit well with me. But aside from that, it is an amusing little comedy with your typical, natural Pauley Shore antics. He's always so laid back and that's why his characters are so stupid, and at the same time, so funny. That's what Pauley Shore has always been great with. If that's the kind of humor you like, then you probably will enjoy a stupid-humor comedy where a bunch of idiots, who finally mold themselves into strapping, dignified young soldiers, save the day from invasion.
P.S. Look for Keith Coogan in the finally as the cyle of Bones-like expectations continues with a new set of recruits.
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