I hadn't seen it in close to two decades (insert obligatory expression about aging and/or the flying of time here), and some of it still holds up very well: the ridiculous chemistry between Crystal and Hines (this may have been the only '80s buddy movie where the leads actually seemed like buddies), the banter with them and Joey Pants and Dan Hedaya, the car chase on the elevated train tracks. Hell, I'm not even that troubled by the notion of Billy Crystal as a hotshot cop who kills a dozen or so guys in the movie and recites dialogue like "If you hurt her, you'll never be dead enough" with a straight face.
But then, in the middle of the movie, comes the sequence where the angry police captain forces Hughes and Costanzo to take a vacation to Key West, and My. God. The clothes.
Was it actually considered cool in 1986 to wear a rainbow-pastel skintight tank top, tight red shorts and flaming red roller skates (as Crystal does at one point in the montage), or a baby blue belly shirt, similarly high-and-tight shorts and blue roller skates (as Hines does)? I had hoped to find YouTube evidence of this quintessentially '80s montage, but the best I could find was the music video for Michael McDonald's "Sweet Freedom," which features a few clips from the movie but is mostly Hines and Crystal in slightly less embarrassing clothes goofing around with McDonald. (There's also a clip splicing together several scenes about their bulletproof fake taxi, but that's not as much fun, plus it cuts Hines off in the middle of the punchline.)
So, several questions on this overcast Sunday:
- Anybody else have fond memories of this movie?
- What movies from your childhood contain some element (wardrobe, dialogue, adult themes you didn't recognize at the time) that's completely mortifying seen through adult eyes?
- Like Crystal as a badass cop, what other actors have surprised you by being convincing in a role to which they're so obviously unsuited?
"This is real shit. This coke is pure shit."
"It's good shit, right?"
"I mean bad shit."
"Bad shit like, 'this shit is bad?'"
"It's shit shit. This shit isn't worth shit."