Monday, February 16, 2015

Smokey and the Bandit II (1980)

This movie would have been perfect for my salute to Burt Reynolds. Oh – please click the link to read my review of Smokey and the Bandit. 

Synopsis: If you’ve ever wondered why Burt Reynolds was super-cool in the 1970s and then became a bad joke in the 1980s, this movie explains a great deal…

Blurb From the VHS Jacket: “Burt Reynolds, Sally Field and Jackie Gleason team up again with an all-star cast as a raucous political race results in the comeback of the wild ways of the Bandit (Reynolds). Once again, he’s pursued by archenemy Sheriff Buford T. Justice (Gleason), who is still madly obsessed with apprehending him. 

What Did I Learn?: Apparently, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (sorry – “Canadian Mounted Police”) wear red serge uniforms when they’re on the job, drive red clunker cars, and are allowed to operate as law enforcement officers in the United States. 

You Might Like This Movie If: You've always wanted to see loveable Burt act like a real dick. [Check out this video near the 1:50 mark]
Really?: 1) It’s funny how the audience is informed right at the beginning that Big Enos is running for Governor of Texas against a really slippery eel, and then this plot thread is completely forgotten. 2) So, Frog (Field) decided to marry Junior a second time? Come on… and how many ministers would take a phone call in the middle of a wedding ceremony? 3) See: “What Did I Learn?” 4) What does Sheriff Justice hope to accomplish? He’s outside his jurisdiction for most of the movie, and from what I could tell, Bandit and Snowman actually drive the speed limit for the bulk of the trip. Oh, and how did Justice actually find those guys at the warehouse? 5) Hold on – Sheriff Justice’s police car falls off a retracting bridge into a canal, and…ok….I’m going to stop, now. 

Rating: The original Smokey and the Bandit certainly has its share of flaws, but it's sort-of funny, and a surprisingly charming adventure so long as you didn’t take it too seriously. Smokey and the Bandit II, however, is just abysmally bad; in spite of some impressive stunt work, the script doesn’t make much sense (see: “What Did I Learn” and “Really?”), the jokes fall flat, and the whole thing seems to be more of a bad, live-action cartoon than a legitimate sequel to S&B. Moreover, for reasons unknown, Reynolds portrays his character as an egotistical, self-absorbed jerk. I cannot recommend this movie. 4/10 stars.

Would It Work For a Bad Movie Night?: Absolutely! Take a drink any time Gleason says: “sumbitch”, or Reynolds mugs for the camera.

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