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.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Plato's Run (1997)


I always like a good Gary Busey as a hero movie, so when I found this one while looking him up on Netflix, I went for it. It also had Roy Scheider, Steven Bauer from Scarface, and Jeff Speakman. But most of all, it had Gary Busey.

Plato's Run has Gary Busey as an ex-Navy SEAL living in Miami with his old Navy buddies Bauer and Speakman. He gets a job rescuing a political prisoner in Cuba which he takes because he needs the money. That's when things go bad. The guy he thinks he's saving isn't the guy, but an assassin hired by Scheider to kill the guy's father, a Cuban politician living in exile in Miami. The guy also frames the murder on Busey. Now he's gotta clear his name, and when he gets close, Scheider mucks up the works by kidnapping Busey's daughter. Scheider! Why do you always have to be a pain in the ass?


This was pretty good. The action wasn't bad, and Busey was believable as an aging ex-SEAL. I could've gone for more Speakman, because when he was there, he showed why he's so good. He's pretty much only there at the beginning and end. Again, Busey's great as an aging ex-SEAL, but for the real action I need a Speakman amping it up, and I didn't get that. Just the same, the Busey factor prevails over the diminished action quotient.

It's been a while here at the DTVC since we've been able to report a film was highly Abusive. More often than not Busey just does cameos. Not here baby. His name's front and center, and so is he. Looking back on past posts, the most recent one we did with him, No Tomorrow, I listed as a seven on the Abusive Scale. Here I'm thinking it's like a 9.5-9.7. That good, and that's good that we've had two back-to-back posts with Busey with an average of above an 8 on the Abusive Scale. As I said above, it's also cool to have him as a good guy. Eye of the Tiger is another you may want to check out where he plays an action hero. The review is here on this site.


Jeff Speakman is one I've been trying to review more of here at the DTVC for a while now. He's just kind of been lost in the shuffle. The other film I did with him in it was Hot Boyz, where he barely had a cameo, and the movie sucked anyway. What I didn't like here was how little they used him. And not only that, they bring him in in the end and kill him off like he was whatever. I've never liked this idea of someone helping the protagonist and dying for his or her trouble. It just makes the hero less heroic in my eyes. As far as the Speakman goes, we'll try and get some more up here soon.

I feel like I've posted more than just three (now four) Roy Scheider movies. He just seems like a guy who's been in more of the type of movies I watch. Looking at him on imdb, there's tons of stuff I could go to. Of the four posts I've done, all four have a DTVC Hall of Famer in them, so he's batting a thousand there. A guy of his quality should probably only have movies of his reviewed with Hall of Fame talent in it. He actually has a posthumous film coming out in 2010 called Iron Cross. Doesn't look like much, but who knows.


I'm sure it's no surprise that a dude with a blog like mine liked Scarface. Great film. Best one-liner ever: "Would you kiss me if I wore the hat?" Steven Bauer seems to have bounced around from film to film, with nothing of any real importance after Scarface. This is the third film of his up here, the others being Raptor Island and The Last Sentinel. I'm not sure if he's worth tagging yet. I guess what he can say is he's also batting a thousand with DTVC Hall of Famers, because Lamas is in Raptor and Don "The Dragon" Wilson is in Sentinel.

This is worth the rental if you're a Busey fan. Again, it's always great to have him be the hero for a change, and this film doesn't scimp on the Abusive level. We're talking near Point Break levels. If you're a Speakman fan, this probably isn't what you're looking for, and if you're just an action fan with no particular affinity for Busey, you may not be that impressed with this either.

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