Shit man I really can’t believe nobody told me about this movie! I’m out of the picture for most of the ’90s and all the sudden Bruce is in a classic film that is NOT a Die Hard!
This is the story of Butch Coolidge, a boxer who gets mixed up with a crime boss named Marcellus Wallace. Marcellus pays Bruce to throw a fight. Word spreads that the fix is on and the odds get out of control. Butch and his buddy in Tennessee make huge bets on the fight and then instead of throwing it, he beats the other dude to death.
He flees to a hotel to hook up with his lady friend Fabian who is French I believe. This scene is a study in contrasts because we see that this bad motherfucker who beats a man to death comes home to his lady and gets all cute on us. They’re all baby talking, rolling around on the bed snuggling and talking about “give me oral pleasure,” “will you kiss it,” etc., It’s so true to life it’s embarrassing to watch.
Well needless to say Marcellus is not happy about the whole not throwing the fight thing, and Bruce knows he’s gotta get out of town. One problem though: when Fabian got his things out of the apartment she forgot the antique watch that his dad gave him after hiding it in his ass for five years while in a POW camp. I think he wants it for sentimental value because the ass smell probaly makes it not worth that much financially.
There is a real subtle touch I noticed where these two lovebirds are goofing around in the shower, calling each other mongoloid and Bruce starts teaching her spanish phrases like “What time is it?” Fabian gets this look on her face and says “Bootch?” (that’s how she says it, she is French) but he’s falling asleep and she says “Never mind.” I think she knew she forgot to get the ass watch.
Anyway Bootch goes back for the ass watch and runs into trouble, even crossing paths with Marcellus in a scene lifted from AL HItchcock’s picture “Psycho.” They have a chaotic shootout scuffle down the street and run into a pawn shop where a MAJOR out of the blue twist takes place. I won’t give it away but let’s just say these redneck S&M perverts tie them up and start doing Marcellus up the ass. (If you’ve seen the movie you know what I’m talking about)
This picture is about morals and redemption and what would you do if your worst enemy was getting raped up the cornhole and you had a chance to save him.
There is also some subplots about two hitmen and in a clever touch, one is played by Die Hard With a Vengeance’s Samuel L. Jackson. You keep expecting he and Bruce to meet up but it never happens.
This picture has a very unique and at the same time familiar feel. It harkens back to the ’70s with its fashions and photography and music and at the same time is nostalgic for the ’50s which come to think of it was popular in the ’70s so I guess this is just nostalgic for the ’50s nostalgia of the ’70s and not for the ’50s themselves. What I like is that this film shows you the parts that would be cut out of the usual crime movies, like the part where the two hitmen get to their place of intimidation a few minutes early so they hang back and have a debate. These are some funny motherfuckers and they are kind of like little kids, they have to clean up the body before mom gets home. If anyone knows any other movies like this please let me know this is some good shit in my opinion.
It also has kind of an epic feel even though the stories are small. It is a long movie but never gets boring. The direction allows room to breathe and get to know these characters even though they are archetype type characters. There is great music but it is not wall to wall and there is no scoring or what not to interfere either. And the cast is great with many great performances: obviously Bruce and Sam, but also Johnny Travolta (who took a fall with the baby movies just as Bruce did), Chris Walken, Harvey Keitel the pimp from Taxi Driver, etc.
The young cinematist behind this particular picture is Mr. Quentin Tarantino who in my opinion is one to look out for. I will be discussing his other works in the coming weeks and I hope some of you will take my word for it and go check them out. This guy is good although I have reason to believe he reads spiderman comic books.
VERN has a new action-horror novel out called WORM ON A HOOK! He has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the film criticism books Seagalogy: A Study of the Ass-Kicking Films of Steven Seagal and Yippee Ki-Yay Moviegoer!: Writings on Bruce Willis, Badass Cinema and Other Important Topics as well as the crime novel Niketown.