Thursday, December 29, 2011
Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man (1991)
Harley has the bright idea to rob the bank that owns the bar's lease and in the course of the heist, they inadvertently steal a ton of drugs belonging to the bank manager Chase Wilder (Tom Sizemore). Wilder sends out a hit squad in armored trench coats led by Daniel Baldwin and apart from some disconnected romantic interludes between Johnson and a cop played by Chelsea Field, very little outside of banter and bullets occurs.
Performances are generally non-existent with Rourke uninterested (he did this film for the money and it shows) and Johnson doing his usual charming guy routine that honestly works better on the small screen anyway. Sizemore is in very little of it, appearing in three scenes and it really says something that I was more interested in the secretary he had played by Tia Carrere who does nothing than him. Daniel Baldwin is okay as the main henchman but really, this kind of role doesn't really require much outside of height and a menacing voice. There's also a small role for perpetual action movie punching bag Branscombe Richmond. Here. he gets his ass kicked in a bar by Don Johnson.
Given the lack of any good performances, the film is left to sustain itself through style which is does fairly well. The story takes places in a then-futuristic 1996 where it seems like the ozone layer is quickly vanishing and new designer drugs are on the market. It's not quite a post-apocalyptic movie but it's close enough. Also amusing is the naming of characters after alcohol and tobacco products which happily, they don't overdo.
Director Simon Wincer does an okay job with the action and humor but the script is so anemic and underdone it just doesn't register. What we are left with is a inoffensive, lame action comedy with one or two okay moments and a generally agreeable tone. You can afford to miss it.