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.
Friday, August 12, 2011
Double Trouble (1992)
I've wanted to do an Elvis Presley movie ever since I started the DTVC, and I figured Double Trouble would be as good a place to start as any... oh wait, that's not Elvis, those are two dudes with enormous pecs and even more enormous ape drapes. Hey, you know what? This might be pretty good too...
Double Trouble follows the Paul brothers, one of whom is an LA detective that wears the same LA Raiders sweatshirt all the time, the other an expert jewel thief and wisecracker. They're forced together by the cop's chief, Jimmy Doohan, when it's revealed that the thief one stole something from criminal mastermind Roddy McDowall. Now the question is: can the brothers stop fighting with each other long enough to crack this case?
This is a total fun time. When the jokes weren't funny, they were unintentionally hilarious. Then you had the sweet Beverly Hills Cop-style score-- in fact, the whole movie was a smaller scale Beverly Hills Cop-style movie, and it worked well. Also a solid supporting cast, featuring Roddy McDowall, Bill Mumy (who was fantastic as McDowall's be-ponytailed hatchetman), Jimmy Doohan, and DTVC Hall of Famer David Carradine in a one-scene cameo. The action was solid, and though maybe there could've been more of it, there was enough other stuff going on that it didn't matter. I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
The only other movie I've seen the Paul brothers in is D.C. Cab, where they played off of Mr. T in smashing heads and and breaking things. This was an extension of that, as they were doing more comedic work than action work, but still broke things. Their go to move was turning over vehicles. Then there were the ape drapes. 90% of the charm is in the ape drapes. Yes, the one brother in the LA Raiders sweatshirt that bordered on a belly-shirt was good, but a beaver pelt with that kind of business in the front and party in the back is just epic. I'm going 9.8 in mulletude. I do want to put out a quick warning that you should be careful about watching this movie with the sound up too high, especially if you live in a dorm or apartment. There's a scene near the beginning where one of the brothers is working out, and there is excessive grunting.
This is our first Jimmy Doohan flick at the DTVC, and I gotta say I'm excited about that. No, he's no George Takei, but really, who is? One of my fondest Doohan memories came in the documentary Trekkies, where Doohan was telling this emotional story about a girl who wrote him a letter, saying she was going to kill herself, and he convinced her to see him at a convention. She did, but was still depressed, so she visited him at a few more, before stopping all together and ceasing all communication with him. Then, however many years later, she contacts him again, and says she has a PhD in physics. Anyway, I was watching Trekkies with a buddy, and as Doohan is telling this story, my buddy starts making fart noises. As you can imagine, it was pretty funny, and now whenever I see Doohan in anything, that's what I associate him with.
As I mentioned above, this had quite a few great supporting stars. Roddy McDowall goes without saying, and it's interesting that we review one of his films as two remakes of movies he was best known for are out or about to be released: Fright Night and Planet of the Apes (I know this one is the sequel to the remake, but still). He made a sweet head baddie, playing the tongue-and-cheek aspect of the film to the hilt. Even better was Bill Mumy as his hatchetman. I was pleasantly surprised by how well he did. Do any of my MSTie readers remember the sketch they did about Bill Mumy? I believe Crow got a timeout in that one. One you may not be familiar with is AJ Johnson, who played the cop Paul brother's partner. She was Sharane in the first House Party. Incidentally, the House Party series is one of my favorite movie trilogies-- though it isn't a trilogy if you count that 70-minute DTV fourth installment that didn't feature Kid N' Play, but I don't.
Last night Warrant singer Jani Lane was found dead in his LA hotel room. For many of the DTVC's readers, we're in that age range where we remember when Warrant was not only relevant, but one of the biggest names in music. They came in toward the end of the Hair Metal movement, and I'll always remember Lane's anecdote about how they went to their label exec's office, and saw a huge framed poster of their album on the wall; then a couple short years later, they went back and saw Alice in Chains' "Dirt", and Lane realized the end was coming. It's by complete coincidence that I picked Double Trouble to review today-- I'd made the decision on Wednesday--, but it's fitting, because famed Hair Metal video queen Bobbi Brown, made most famous for part in Warrant's "Cherry Pie", has a cameo in this. So here's to you Jani Lane, you were one of the good ones, rest in peace.
And with that we'll wrap this up. If you're not going the Netflix Watch Instantly route-- and this is available on there as of this posting-- VHS is the next best thing. Yes, it's mainly for pure, DTV, bad action completists, but hey, what are you doing here if you're not that, right? Why not spend a few hours feathering your mullet and have a ball. It doesn't get much more fun than this.
For more info: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104135/