The Direct to Video Connoisseur

I'm a huge fan of action, horror, sci-fi, and comedy, especially of the Direct to Video variety. In this blog I review some of my favorites and not so favorites, and encourage people to comment and add to the discussion. If you click on an image, it will take you to that post's image page, which includes many more pics from the film and other goodies I couldn't fit in the actual review. For announcements and updates, don't forget to Follow us on Twitter and Like our Facebook page. If you're the director, producer, distributor, etc. of a low-budget feature length film and you'd like to send me a copy to review, you can contact me at dtvconnoisseur[at]yahoo.com. I'd love to check out what you got.

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--Matt

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Bail Out aka W.B., Blue, and the Bean (1989)

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My friends and I found this film in one of those 50 movies for whatever low price kind of deals. It said it had Hasselhoff in it, so we figured it'd at least be entertaining for that. The reason my buddy bought this collection originally was its inclusion of a Joe Don Baker classic, Mitchell. If you're as big a MSTie as I am, you must watch Mitchell at least one time in the non-MST3K version. It's a trip. Not only that, but you learn what happened to John Saxon.

Bail Out is about some bounty hunters, headed by Hasselhoff, who work for a shady bail bondsman played by the guy who played Capt. Lipschitz on Silk Stalkings. They're hired for a big score, which is making sure an heiress, played by Linda Blair, gets to her court date on Monday on a huge drug trafficking charge. The fly in the ointment is that the Colombians want her because they need compensation for the $5 million in coke they lost and they think her rich dad should reimburse them. She's kidnapped, and it's up to Hasselhoff and his boys to save the day. Danny Trejo's in this for a moment near the end.

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One of the striking things about this film is how dated it seems. I don't mean because it was made in 1989 and we saw it in the new millennium. I mean for 1989 it seemed like it was much older. The film quality was like that in a Charlie's Angels or Rockford Files episode from the 70s. Then there's the use of racial stereotypes: the white guy who leads the show and gets the girl, his black friend who's a smooth talker and knows the streets, his Latino friend who does all the dirty jobs, and their stingy, penny-pinching Jewish boss. This was embarrassing to watch.

The Hasselhoff-age was pretty decent. He had this mullet that I would probably rate a 7.2 in mulletude. I've never been quite sure how I'm supposed to take Hasselhoff. As a young kid, watching Knight Rider, I still didn't know just how much Hollywood expected me to take him seriously, and then I was in first grade for God's sake. Just the same, I remember an episode of Baywatch Nights where he was playing pool in the last five minutes, and he hit this shot that I still refer to as The Hasselhoff, and have only hit it myself a couple times. The 9 ball was just off the rail in the middle of the table, and cue ball was down further, not quite in line with it. He shot the cue so it hit directly next to the 9, slamming it against the rail and back out into the side pocket on the other side of the table. It was hot.

Linda Blair is in this as the damsel in distress slash Hasselhoff romantic interest. I felt she was sufficiently attractive in that role, but I have the sinking suspicion that the movie makers would have gotten someone hotter if they thought they could. It's just the kind of movie this was. In 1989, though, you could do a lot worse than Linda Blair, and for me she was one of the few bright spots in an otherwise crappy film.

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I recently had a conversation with a group of people about Saved by the Bell. Some of them had actually made it through their 25-plus years on the planet without having seen this television tour-de-force. The conversation started when I mentioned Zack Morris' cell phone. Anyone who's seen the show enough would know exactly what I'm talking about. Anyway, Hasselhoff has a nice Zack Morris phone in this, and it's held up as some kind of status symbol, which I guess in 1989 it would have been. Now it just looks silly.

There was one memorable scene. Near the end, Hasselhoff needs to shoot a helicopter with a grenade launcher or something. He takes his sweet-ass time waiting for a clean shot while his friends are sprayed with gunfire from the baddies flying it. Finally he blows it up, and then does this great celebration. We had to watch it a few times, one, because it was so funny, and two, because we had so little to be pleased about in this horrible movie.

If you see this by itself in the store, avoid it at all costs. It's such a waste. On the other hand, if you have a friend like we did with one of these 50 movies for whatever price collections, and see this in it, and you need to kill an hour and a half, it might not hurt to give it a try. Out of the 50 movies, this'll probably be one of the best, which isn't saying much, but it's kind of how these things work.

For more info: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0098614/

4 comments:

  1. Bail Out is absolutely hilarious!

    Hasselhoff is great as White Bread (W.B.) and it was cool to see Danny Trejo in an early role.

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  2. Yeah, I think it was a fun time overall, I'd just be wary of spending too much on it. Still, gotta love the Hoff.

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  3. Thankfully i found the VHS for a dollar.

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  4. There you go, it's well worth a scant investment like that!

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