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Monthly Archives: December 2018

JPFmovies teams up with long time contributor Tom V to look at Roadhouse (1989) starring the late Patrick Swazey and Sam Elliot. In the words of Tom V it was a slow decent into sheer B movie hell.

Talk about jumping off the ledge!  After reviewing Rake, watching Roadhouse was worse than a trip to the dentist.  While looking at Roadhouse, Tom V mentioned something very interesting; that is, the film while enjoying some major acclaim from other critics went from an average B rated 80’s movie to a degeneration and waste of celluloid on an awe-inspiring scale.  They very notion of watching this movie sober is a cause of action for the intentional infliction of emotional distress.  The script, acting and other than a brief song from Conway Twitty, this moving end up with a zero-star rating.  Fortunately for Roadhouse Tango and Cash beat it out of every category at the Raspberry Awards where the film was nominated for (but did not win) five Golden Raspberry Awards: Worst Picture, Worst Actor (Patrick Swayze), Worst Supporting Actor (Ben Gazzara), Worst Director, and Worst Screenplay. So, take comfort in the fact that only lounge in the frying pan and burned asunder in the fire.  Tom V wonders if the make-up director was receiving kickbacks from the hair spray industry.  Throughout the film the JPFmovies staff and Tom V was waiting for someone’s hair to shatter due to the excessive use of hair spray.

While performing their research, the JPFmovies research department was shocked by the number of Roadhouse fans and how vocal they were.  For instance, some idiot fan of Roadhouse wrote:

“If Dalton didn’t exist, we’d have to invent him, because we need him. I’m not a man given to hyperbole — in fact, you might say I’m the person least given to hyperbole in the history of the entire universe— but Road House is, without a doubt, the single greatest thing the human race has done from the creation of the world up until the present moment, and I include vaccines and the idea of the talking horse in that list.”

Why? Because of some moronic, simplistic quasi-Buddhist lines like “pain don’t hurt” and “no one wins a fight” that clearly came out of a fortune cookie.  God help us all if he was serious.

Forgive us for jumping in before telling you the reader about the film.  Roadhouse is about a bouncer—yes a bouncer—who is incredibly famous well famous in bouncer circles at least.  So famous in fact that when Dalton a/k/a Swazey strolls into his new place of employment (the “Double Deuce”) people do double takes, whisper and point at him like he was an all-star athlete or rock star.  Oh, did we forget to tell you that he also has a PhD., in philosophy from NYU?

Dalton is hired by the owner of a small dive in some jerk-water-berg Missouri town to clean up the place.  Apparently, the owner came into some money and wants to hire “the best” to turn the business around.  Okay so far that’s a not bad start.  Then it really goes bad the minute Dalton walks into the place.  The bar is nothing short of a chaotic melee along the lines of the most obnoxious WWF wrestling match.

After his initial assessment, Dalton makes some personnel changes only to find out that there is a totally hot doctor working at the emergency room as well as a cartoonish villain that controls this jerk water town as he continually profits off the backs of the average citizen. [21:05-26:35].

Well this can not stand according to the code of the righteous bouncer!  This villain must be stopped, and the hot doctor must be seduced.  Luckily for western civilization Dalton is up to the task!  The villain sees himself as the town’s father telling Dalton that “Christ, J.C. Penny is coming here because of me. Ask anybody, they’ll tell you the same thing!”  J.C. Penny!  Hold the phone this guy is a humanitarian how can someone so generous be so evil?  Our resident villain also employs a platoon of henchmen from a really fat guy who wears suspenders ostensibly to keep his pants up to some criminal that Dalton has to kill using his secret eagle claw technique to literally rip his throat out.  Moreover the fat guy gets taken out by a stuffed polar bear that Dalton pushes on him.

There is so much more to discuss—it would take pages upon pages to completely hammer this movie appropriately.  If you either need a good laugh about something so bad it becomes “good” or are forced to waste 2 hours of your life, then Roadhouse is the film for you.  Remember that at the Golden Raspberry Awards it was nominated in 5 categories but for Tango and Cash it would have swept the prestigious ceremony!

 
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Posted by on December 17, 2018 in Movie Reviews

 

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JPFmovies goes to the land down under for our next review: Rake (2010-2018)

Rake is about love, madness, addiction, and the law–in short, it is about modern life.  How can you go wrong with series premises like that?  You can’t!  Rake is an Australian television program.  It stars Richard Roxburgh as rake Cleaver Greene, a dazzling but self-destructive Sydney criminal law barrister, defending typically guilty clients.  Outside of the courtroom, Cleaver Greene is immature, reckless and self-destructive.  Inside of the courtroom, he is pretty much the same, but his reckless courtroom antics help his indefensible clients escape justice.  During his free time, Cleaver wastes away the hours at a local brothel with his favorite girl, Melissa Patridge, if that is her real name as well as doing a cornucopia of drugs from cocaine to booze to marijuana.  Although his trouble with the opposite sex is fairly evident, his gambling addiction is far worse and usually ends with him being beaten by Col Mancusi a petty criminal.

Due to his gambling, Cleaver faces his own day in court, as he pairs off against his rival, Harry, Sorry, David Potter (Matt Day). The pair not only fight over Cleaver’s tax records, but also Melissa. Cleaver relies on his ex-wife, Wendy Greene (Carline Brazier), for advice from time to time, which also leads to complications. Things get a little crazy, when they discover their son, Fuzz Greene (Keegan Joyce), is having a questionable affair.

 

Of course, Cleaver gets into relationship trouble of his own, when he slips up and winds up in bed with Barney’s wife, Scarlet (Danielle Cormack). Despite attempts to keep the affair secret, it eventually emerges and could potentially ruin things between Cleaver and Barney.  Rake also straddles the high/low cultural divide.  Cleaver frequently quotes Yeats, is a fan of Balzac, but remains distinctly Australian, with sayings like “Christ on a bike” or “Fuck me Sideways.” And in one Cleaver even tells a priest: “I could out-Nietzsche you at five paces.”

With his many flaws, and blunt, dismissive outlook, Cleaver Greene joins a long list of charismatic television anti-heroes likes Tony Soprano or Saul Goodman.

Although his morals are questionable, close friends and colleagues still rely on Cleaver. Underneath it all, he seems to generally try to do the right thing, although it usually ends badly.

Rake is definitely a hilarious show that is packed with plenty of drama and a tad bit emotion every once in a while. Throughout the entire first season, all of the performances were excellent and each of the characters, despite all of their flaws, are somewhat likable. Still, it is Richard Roxburgh, who leads the way and manages to keep everything funny, but realistic, inside and outside of the courtroom.

All of the supporting characters help to enhance the show significantly. Russell Dykstra and Matt Day do an excellent job helping to balance out Cleaver’s crazy antics. While the show is meant to be funny, it takes a fun approach to exposing some of the hypocrisies of society. Don’t be surprised, if you find yourself nodding in agreement, with some of the political statements in Rake.  All in all, the show is tremendously clever, sufficiently hilarious and definitely worth the watch.

If you have access to Netflix, watch the Australian version of the series the JPFmovies staff was uniform in its admiration for this original series.

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2018 in cheesy television, Movie Reviews

 

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