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JPFmovie reviewer at large TV reviews the biggest box office flop in history: The Adventures of Pluto Nash (2002)

As everyone know we here at JPFmovies love our guest reviewers.  So when TV wanted to take a look at the worst financial investment Holly Wood has ever made who were we to say no?

Over continued bouts of, “where did the 100 million dollars go!” If it weren’t for the badly glued together editing job which encumbers the fact that the acting simply gets worse from one scene to the next.  One might think cameos by Alec Baldwin and John Cleese would help, but served only to further aggravate and annoy the viewer.  One thing is for sure, few movie productions cost $100,000,000.00 (one hundred million dollars) and then sit on a shelf for two years while, assuredly the Studio Castle Rock Entertainment co founders Martin Shafer and Rob Reiner must have yelled “where did the 100 million dollars go!”

“Plot”

By the end of the 21st century, mankind has established itself on the Moon and also established lunar colonies, which have expanded into large cities, such as Moon Beach and Little America. Human cloning is now common, body modification is now.  In 2080, there is a colony on the Moon called Little America. Eddie Murphy plays a retired smuggler called Pluto Nash (Eddie Murphy), who just out of prison, buys a nightclub.  Naturally there would be no “Adventures” if Pluto simply retired into that goodnight.  A plot enhancement overlooked by Director Ron Underwood.

After facing down two Moon Mobsters Gino (Burt Young) and Larry (Lillo Brancato), over his friend and previous owner.  Pluto rebuilds the club and establishes it as “Club Pluto.” In the next seven years, Club Pluto is a hit.  In 2087, Pluto is approached by a young woman named Dina Lake (Rosario Dawson), who has become stranded on the Moon and desires to earn some money by which to pay for transport back to Earth to Salt Lake City. Because her father “Nicky Sticks” was a friend of Pluto’s, she seeks help from Pluto, offering her skills as a singer. Pluto instead gives her a job as a server at his club and allows her to remain inside to sleep after closing.

 

its nightly closure to the public. During the same night, Pluto is roughed up by Mogan (Joe Pantoliano) and Kelp (Victor Varnado), soldiers of a mysterious gangster called Rex Crater. They tell Pluto that Rex wants to buy Club Pluto and convert it into a gambling casino. Pluto has none of it.

In the plot twist that “nobody saw coming” Rex Crater’s soldiers destroy the club. “Fortunately” Pluto, Dina, and Bruno escape.  Having Pluto and Dina simply die in the mob hit was another plot enhancement overlooked by Director Ron Underwood.

With the club in shambles, Pluto decides to investigate Rex Crater, and learns that Rex Crater has never seen outside of a penthouse in the city of Moon Beach, and that he was involved with a genetic engineer called Runa Pendankin, who specialized in human cloning before her mysterious death.

In what has to easily be the most atrocious scene in modern cinematography the viewing audience is subjected to Pluto and Dina’s to the Cosmetic Surgery Store.  Therein the viewing audience is tormented with “jokes” regarding Pluto and Dina’s ever shifting body sizes and looks, potentially theirs for the right price.

Pluto and Dina’s body morph scene that completely eviscerates the hope of a discernible plot.  Pluto and Dina could have had a terrible genetic mutation go wrong and then attack the Moon. That’s another plot enhancement overlooked by Director Ron Underwood.

In their continued investigation Pluto and Dina meet Pluto’s mother Flura Nash (Pam Grier), who comes there, and has robot Bruno recharged in his room. They are then ambushed by Rex Crater’s assassins, who have tracked them to their hotel.

After some suspense with Pam Grier and the introduction of Robot Bruno Pluto and Dina then hijack a limo with a holographic chauffeur named James (John Cleese).  Amazingly, John Cleese was not funny at all in what was supposed to be a zany slapstick scene, simply became another excuse to freshen my drink, this time with a heavy pour of gin.  I was beginning to understand why the British Royal Expeditionary Force issued rum rations before combat.  For Chrissake, there was another half of a movie left to watch.  After a groaned look from J.P., the snoring began and I knew I was in no man’s land alone.  Swig of Gin indeed!

Pluto takes Dina and Robot Bruno to an old refuge outside of the colonies of his from his smuggling days.

At the hideout Pluto searches online for information regarding any Earth criminal with the initials “WZW.” When this yields nothing, Dina suggests that the initials are in fact “MZM,” having been seen upside-down by Mona Zimmer. Pluto searches for “MZM” and discovers a criminal called Michael Zoroaster Marucci (Alec Baldwin). The cameo of Alec Baldwin is perhaps the only watchable minute and a half of this movie. Was this a plot enhancement not overlooked by Director Ron Underwood?

Finally, Pluto suspects that Michael Marucci and Rex Crater are one and the same.  The genius of Pluto Nash and his keen analytical mind are impressive and Pluto and Co. infiltrate Rex Crater’s casino/hotel. Robot Bruno romances a robot slot machine whose lever he accidentally breaks. When Robot Bruno is taken away by security, Pluto sends Dina to pay for the damages and get Bruno out.

Eventually Pluto makes it to the office of Rex Crater.  There Pluto Nash discovers his nemesis, himself.  Pluto Nash has been cloned.

Pluto vs. Pluto-Rex chicanery ensues.  After several painful attempts at witticisms and apparently having forfeited a plot long ago. Pluto Rex kills Mogan and Kelp for their incompetence. Pluto Rex and Pluto then fight while the others are uncertain which is which. Pluto finally defeats Pluto Rex.

The movie ends with the heroes celebrating in the rebuilt Club Pluto with Nash as the owner.

“Where did the 100 million dollars go!”

 

 

 
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Posted by on June 12, 2017 in Movie Reviews

 

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Turk 182 or “Zimmerman Flew and Tyler Knew!” Also one of the only movies Kim Cattral keeps her clothes on.

Turk 182 with an all-star cast including Timothy Hutton , Robert Urich, Kim Cattral, Robert Culp, Paul Sorvino and Peter Boyle serves as the quintessential 1980’s “fight the man” feel good movie.

The Good:  The cast, the cheezy story, empathy for the protagonist and comedy.

The Bad:  Really bad accents, cliché Irish music and the cheezy story.

So what happened?

“Terry” (Robert Urich) a New York fire fighter and his brother “Jimmy” (Timothy Hutton) live in New York City.  Terry, while off duty and drunk, heroically dashes from his smoke-filled neighborhood bar into an apartment fire and rescues a young girl.  However, he is seriously injured when firefighters inadvertently aim the fire hose at him forcing him—with the girl in his arms through a window crashing on to the top of a car 40 feet down.  The girl is uninjured, but Terry is seriously hurt.

Enduring hundreds of rejections from welfare, workers’ compensation and many others government agencies, Jimmy contacts Mayor Tyler (Robert Culp), but while pleading his case to the Mayor, moron Jimmy mentions that his brother was smashed during the accident.  Naturally the Mayor rebukes his plea, calling Terry a drunk.  As a petty torment, Jimmy sneaks into the mayor’s office and pastes hundreds of the rejection letters inside the Mayor’s office.

Responding to this insult on behalf of the Mayor is Lieutenant Ryan (Peter Boyle), a thuggish cop and chief security officer.  They arrive at the brothers’ hangout and arrest Terry who (again loaded this time on booze and pills) takes a swing at the cops and thrown in jail.  After posting Terry’s bail, Jimmy learns that his brother is in the hospital after a suicide attempt.  At the station he first meets Danielle “Danny” Boudreau (Kim Cattrall), a social worker assigned to Terry’s case.

Jimmy decides to again visit the Mayor, so he goes to Battery Park where the Mayor is giving an anti-graffiti speech but was contained by the police.  After seeing the Mayor unveil a giant apple, which slowly revolves to show handiwork by vandals saying “Zimmerman Flew, Tyler Knew”, all to the delight of protesters at the speech, Jimmy starts his own campaign of revenge and embarrassment.  Tom Zimmerman, former Public Works Commissioner, had fled the country to avoid trial for an unspecified crime. The news ran stories suggesting that Mayor Tyler not only knew of Zimmerman’s flight, but masterminded it because he ordered Zimmerman’s trial be rescheduled.  Using this scandal as leverage, Jimmy begins his battle of wits.

Jimmy consistently gets the better of the Mayor and his goons with badges staying one step ahead of them the entire movie.  Among other pranks, Jimmy manages to leave his mark on a supposedly graffiti-proof subway car about to be showcased by Mayor Tyler in an anti-vandalism campaign and hack into the scoreboard computer (with the help of a friend) at Giants Stadium during halftime of a football game.

Naturally Danny and Jimmy develop a personal relationship during the flick and she discovers that her new boyfriend is the mastermind Turk 182.  By this time Turk has become immensely popular throughout the city embarrassing the Mayor and making the news.

Turk decides his last appearance will be his masterpiece.  Turk will strike when Mayor Tyler appears at a dedication ceremony for the 75th anniversary of the Queensboro Bridge.   Tyler’s goons clamp down security while preparing for the ceremony and when the mayor throws the switch the sign reads gibberish; Jimmy is still in the process of changing the words.  The chaos begins when spotlights catch Jimmy on the bridge and the crowd goes wild.  The story goes viral with everyone covering the incident live.  Ryan tries to stop the prank in progress but the goons are unable to reach him; Jimmy greased all the lower girders on the bridge.

Turk completes his task, and connects power cables to the letters which spell “TURK 182.”  While the crowd is cheering, Tyler says to his crony “As soon as he (Jimmy) gets down we’re gonna find him and tell him we’ve been rooting for him the whole time!”

Yes this movie has many, if not every, cliché in the book.  That, however, is the secret to the film’s greatness.  Only someone with a heart of stone could not find themselves cheering for Turk by the end of the movie.  In fact, Turk 182’s moniker has its origins from another famous New York graffiti writer, TAKI 183.  TAKI 183 was a messenger and would write his nickname around the New York City streets during the late 1960’s and early 1970’s.

In May 2009, the official TAKI 183 website (http://www.taki183.net/ ) launched and includes photos of his work.

Turk 182 is a cult classic and rightfully so.

 
8 Comments

Posted by on February 16, 2011 in Movie Reviews

 

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