Thursday, April 14, 2016

Mad Dog and Glory (1993)

Director: John McNaughton

Writer: Richard Price

Composer: Elmer Bernstein

Starring: Robert De Niro, Uma Thurman, Bill Murray, David Caruso, Mike Starr, Tom Towles, Kathy Baker, Derek Anunciation, Richard Belzer

More info: IMDb

Tagline: A cop who'd rather be an artist. A mobster who'd rather be a comic. And a woman who'd rather be anywhere but between them.

Plot: After his life is saved by a lonely cop, a mobster who moonlights as a stand-up comedian provides the cop with a beautiful young companion.

My rating: 7/10

Will I watch it again?  No.

Directed by the guy who made HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER (1986), THE best serial killer movie bar none, this unusual picture is worth watching for a number of reasons.  De Niro is a meek cop, Uma gets naked, Caruso is funny and Murray plays a ruthless gangster.  Is that encouragement enough to see this?  It's a pretty good flick that's watchable for all of the above.  The story is good but it feels like there's a little something extra missing.  I liked the idea of Frank (Murray) wanting to befriend Wayne (De Niro) but I would have liked maybe one or two more scenes of these two spending time together, enjoying each other, before Wayne decides to walk away from the all too brief relationship.  That would've strengthened everything else that followed.  Yet at the same time, I liked how Wayne realized the predicament he was about to get himself into an tried to get out early on.  I'm conflicted.  The performances are fun and it really is great seeing Bill Murray play against type.  It's also great seeing David Caruso lighten up.  He's still a badass in this but he's also got a sense of humor which I really dug.  Don't let the trailer or anything else try to convince you this is a comedy because it's not.  It's a light crime drama.  It's just really hard to look at Murray and NOT laugh for a change.  The Universal DVD presents the film in anamorphic widescreen with the only extra being the theatrical trailer in fullscreen.

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