Review of The Dead Pool (1988)

12 May

The Dead Pool (1988) is a thriller/mystery/action film and the fifth and last movie in the Dirty Harry film franchise.

Directed by Buddy Van Horn (Pink Cadillac (1989), Any Which Way You Can (1980)).

Written by Steve Sharon, Duck Pearson and Sandy Shaw.

Starring: Clint Eastwood, Patricia Clarkson, Liam Neeson, David Hunt, Jim Carrey, Evan C. Kim, Michael Currie and others.

Harry is back, his hair now is even whiter, face wrinklier, constipation frown even more intimidating and why he’s not in retirement or jail is anyone’s guess. Harry has changed, he is now a lot more liberal. But one thing stays constant. If there’s one thing Harry hates more than criminals, it’s bureaucracy.

We’re now deep in the 80’s and rest assured, this movie won’t let you forget it. We get to see a young Jim Carrey acting mental and lip-synching to „Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns n’ Roses during the filming of some The Exorcist inspired music video, directed by Liam Neeson with a more prominent Irish accent. Watching it now, it seems sort of delightfully bizarre, but back then?

Carrey is in the movie for like 5 minutes, however, and dies from a drug overdose. Oh, and in exchange for their song to be used as the background for Carrey’s junkie rock star video, Guns n’ Roses members cameo in his funeral scene. In another scene Slash even gets to shoot a huge-ass harpoon through a window.

When they want to assign a new partner for Harry, even he himself acknowledges that his partners aren’t the luckiest of people, but maybe he just doesn’t want an asian partner. I know he slept with an asian chick in Magnum Force, but who wants a partner, who is a bad driver. Ok, you might call me racist, but the movie isn’t any better, because soon we find out that the asian cop knows martial arts.

Patricia Clarkson is also in this and I don’t think I’ve ever seen her this young, but she’s still hot so it was no surprise she was stunning back then.

The dead pool is this game where people predict death’s of famous people and suddenly the ones from Liam Neeson’s list start dying. The idea is kind of interesting and makes the movie very mysterious, but then again the game is pretty pointless, since celebrities don’t actually die like every other weekend. Although, if I had this list, Amy Winehouse and Whitney Houston would’ve definitely been on it.

It’s also a decent commentary on celebrity pressure and violent movies influencing people to be violent. Liam Neeson is an arrogant horror director, who’s movies are being replicated in the ways some people are killed, so there’s some slasher movie elements thrown in. And it sort of goes with my opinion, that only already unstable person could be influenced by a movie enough to go out with a hockey mask on and slash teenagers with a machete. But to quote this movie „Opinions are like assholes. Everyone has them.”, I’m thinking about making this the tagline of my blog.

There’s a very interesting chase scene, where the chaser is an RC car. A pretty fucking powerful one at that. And watching the chase I realised that it must be a bitch to live in San Francisco. All those steep streets, it’s like going up the stairs for a whole block, I mean, you must feel like Rocky when he ran up those stairs in Philadelphia, but what if you just want to go to the store for some smokes? You’d die, before you had the chance to develop a cancer.

Overall, a fast and entertaining movie, cheesy, but with at least some substance. Not one of the better Dirty Harrymovies, but recommended nonetheless.

“Duuuuude, Mr. Popper’s Penguins is so funny on heroin.”

2 Responses to “Review of The Dead Pool (1988)”

  1. Aloha Mister Hand May 12, 2012 at 10:15 pm #

    Hahaha, good post! Constipation face is even more intense now eh? Very interesting!!!

    • karlails May 12, 2012 at 10:24 pm #

      Thanks. If there was another Dirty Harry movie, it would have him dying from severe face… disorder.

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