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] I'd love to check out what you got.



Hi everyone, it's been a while since I checked the page, and I wanted to make a few announcements.

First and foremost, it appears a dubious site has claimed the old url, meaning any link in any review that goes to the old mattmovieguy url is corrupt. I'm in the process of trying to remove them all, but it's a lot! It's best not to click on any link without hovering over it first to make sure it doesn't have mattmovieguy in the url.

Second, it appears since my last trip to the blog, Photobucket has decided to charge for third party hosting, meaning none of my images are appearing anymore. That's simply an aesthetic issue, but still annoying.

Thank you all for your patience, and again, hopefully this will all be fixed soon.


Thursday, August 9, 2007

Late Last Night (1999)

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My buddy and I saw this on ON Demand. We were shocked to find out an Emilio Estevez movie came out and slipped our notice, and we figured it'd be worth watching. The addition of Wings' Steven Weber made it all the more intriguing. We found out subsequently that the film was made for cable TV; Showtime I think.

Late Last Night has Estevez as a guy who's just been given the ax by his wife. Looking to blow off some steam, he calls Steven Weber, who takes him on a mad romp of the town. They meet some strippers and do coke with them, go to a warehouse party that's raided, and after Estevez luckily avoids jail, he and Weber finish the night playing a round of golf in the dark. Estevez realizes throughout this that he loves his wife, and goes back to her to give it another go-round.

This was a great film. Though it sounds like a run-of-the-mill all-nighter adventure film, this really does have some great and memorable scenes. For my buddy and I a favorite one was when Weber pretended to be a valet and stole a car for him and Estevez. The car had a 70s compilation CD, and they listened to Hamilton, Joe Frank, and Reynolds' "Don't Pull Your Love Out on Me Baby". Weber's analysis of the song is priceless.

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Weber overall made for solid viewing. It was like he played his Wings character, only without the goofiness. There's some speculation, primarily in the form of Estevez's psychiatric evaluation from Catherine O'Hara, that Weber's character isn't real, but just Estevez's wilder alter ego. I'm not sure I buy it, because Weber interacted with people throughout. It was more like he was the devil on Estevez's shoulder in the form of a real person. And Weber played it perfectly.

Estevez is good in this too. He does well as the guy who's totally out of his element in most of the circumstances Weber puts him in, and we as the viewer can't help but sympathize with him. This is especially true when he's arrested. We know he's only in trouble from what Weber's done, and we feel bad that he's going to go through this ordeal, despite the fact he might not be entirely innocent. When he's interrogated by O'Hara, we think she might take pity on him and let him go, but she doesn't. Instead, just as he's about to be processed, we find out the coke in his pocket was baking powder that the strippers switched on him earlier, and he's released.

There are plenty of attractive women in this, foremost among them Dancing With the Stars and General Hospital's Kelly Monaco, who is naked. In a flashback scene, Estevez's wife finds his porno mags, and when she dumps one on the table it opens to her centerfold. Then it comes to life as Estevez fantasizes about hooking up with her. This scene alone should've gotten her the win against J. Peterman in Dancing with the Stars.

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There was one scene in this that my buddy loved. It's in the trailer, which you can view if you want on imdb from this movie's page there. Estevez and Weber are using the escalator to get to the subway. They look over and see a man in a Santa Claus suit taking a huge swig off a liquor bottle. There was something classic about that, and I couldn't blame him when he rewound it to watch it again.

The ending for me was pure genius, when Weber and Estevez play golf in the middle of the night. It was a perfect denouement to a wild movie like that. Weber had stolen a large Cadillac and picked Estevez up at the jail. He assumed correctly that there would be a set of clubs in the trunk, and he drove the Caddy right onto the course. They used the headlights to haphazardly light their play. Movies like these tend to have trouble winding the energy down and wrapping things up properly, and this late night golf game did the trick for me.

This is worth a look, especially if you're renting a movie with mixed company (i.e. people who don't really like bad movies). I think my buddy found it on Encore ON Demand, so if you have that, give it a try. For a made for cable TV movie, this is much better than most of the things that make their way onto the big screen.

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