Δευτέρα, 21 Σεπτεμβρίου 2009

EXTREME PREJUDICE (1987, WALTER HILL)



You know the movie. Drugs across the Southwest border, Texan desert landscapes, sweaty faces, dusty gas stations in the middle of nowhere, money exchanging hands and gone missing somewhere along the way, maybe a bank robbery. It's that distinctly American type of crime movie given character and come alive by the beautiful western setting, a modern update of sheriffs and Mexican outlaws and doublecrossing between old friends now on opposite sides of the law that goes as far back as Boetticher's films, done with a focus on high-octane no-holds-barred action cut straight from Sam Peckinpah's school of blood squibs and slow-mo gunfights. The story isn't half-bad but Walter Hill has always been an action nut first and foremost and John Milius was never Cormac McCarthy, so you'll forgive Extreme Prejudice for not quite being NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN. It's still a good movie, not very surprising plot-wise truth be told, with a WILD BUNCHesque finale and some nice dialogue exchanges along the way, a crabby Rip Torn as the old sheriff mentor and Nick Nolte looking mean and badass for most of the film, and if it's let down in the acting department every now and then when some emoting is required, that's because both Michael Ironside and Powers Boothe playing the villains were never the greatest of actors. The low 6.2 rating the movie has on IMDb as of this posting tells me the movie has suffered at the hands of sleepy viewers catching it randomly on late night TV in crappy pan-and-scan versions or indifferent video club patrons renting it on VHS for the vaguely familiar hovering heads on the cover and the promise of things exploding. This is not THAT kind of movie. It's an action film but it has character and style that will be appreciated more by that niche audience comprising of fans of action movies and 70's gritnik crime cinema, the kind of substratum Walter Hill proudly inhabited in the 70's with films like THE DRIVER. Watching the remastered widescreen copy I saw, I think that audience will have very different things to say. Hell, just take a look at that poster up there and tell me it doesn't look like it belongs to a 70's movie.

1 σχόλιο:

  1. I found this term, 'gritnik' and I cannot understand the meaning, only vaguely. It seems to me that it applies to crime movies of a special kind, but I don't know where the term comes from and the exact meaning. Could you please help me?

    Thank you in advance.

    Pierre Radulescu

    http://updateslive.blogspot.com

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