Tuesday, June 15, 2010

It takes a real man to drive a pink Cadillac

Pink Cadillac (1989)
Starring: Clint Eastwood, Bernadette Peters, and Timothy Carhart
Director: Buddy Van Horn
Rating: Three of Ten Stars

Lou Ann (Peters) gets fed up with her small-time criminal husband (Carhart) after he leaves her holding the bag for a counterfeiting scheme he was involved with--literally, as the bag was full of counterfeit money. She skips bail and takes off with their baby in his vintage pink Cadillac. Unfortunately for Lou Ann, her husband and his partners hid their real money in the Caddy, and they are soon in pursuit. Luckily for Lou Ann, a softhearted skip-tracer (Eastwood) is also on her trail, and he may prove to be the only hope for survival she has.

"Pink Cadillac" is a mostly unfunny comedy with a script that starts out mildly illogical and haphazard and ends in complete nonsensical chaos. It suffers further from having a hero who is arbitrarily goofy (Why does Clint Eastwood's skip-tracer Tommy Nowack habitually dress up in outlandish costumes to catch his prey? It's not something we ever get an answer to, and I don't think the writers knew either.). He's also badly played, something that can rarely be said about Eastwood.

What's more, leading lady Bernadette Peters is more annoying than endearing--which is what the writers were shooting for--and the romance that developes between her and Eastwood feels without any foundation whatsoever. (Yes.. naturally he helps her retreive her baby from the evil white supremist ex-cons of the Brotherhood--it's that kind of movie--but there's no sensible reason for a romance that results in them running off together to evolve.)

The film also sufffers from a distinct lack of apparent threat to the characters. The Black Widow biker gang from "Any Which Way But Loose" and "Any Which Way You Can" seemed more menacing and competent than the moronic Brotherhood, even if the latter are set up to be more vicious and deadly. (Oh... the Black Widow gang was also funnier than the members of the Brotherhood.

Frankly, Clyde the Orangutang (also from "Any Which Way But Loose" and "Any Which Way You Can") out-acted everyone who appeared in this film. It's the worst comedy that Eastwood has appeared in, and it may even be the worst movie he's been in, period. It makes "City Heat" look like a work of pure genius.)

I think even die-hard Eastwood and Peters fans can go without seeing this film. You won't miss anything worthwhile and you'll have two hours of your life to spend in a more productive fashion. (For good Eastwood comedies, check out the the "Any Which Way" films mentioned above.)

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