Friday, May 31, 2019

Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man (1991)

Terrible Biker Movie #3

Synopsis: Biker-and-cowboy-caricatures drive recklessly, bang supermodels, take down a drug-dealing bank(!) and otherwise ooze plenty of toxic masculinity. [Just to be clear: I use the term “toxic masculinity” facetiously] 
Blurb From the VHS Jacket: “When the going gets tough… the tough take the law into their own hands.” 
What Did I Learn?: 1) It’s better to be dead and cool than alive and uncool. 2) Never chase buses or women, you’ll always be left behind. 3) It only takes a couple of scumbags to stink up a convenience store. 4) The older the bull, the stiffer the horn. 5) Guns are meant to be shot, not thrown. 
Oh, and the five rules for shooting a game of pool:

Lesson #1: Always shoot with a cigarette in your mouth; 
Lesson #2: Always know the table before you shoot; 
Lesson #3: Make sure you chalk that stick REAL GOOD before each shot; 
Lesson #4: Never make a bet if you can’t pay the debt; 
Lesson #5: If you lose, make sure you stand up straight and tall. 
You Might Like This Movie If: See: "What Did I Learn?"
Really?: Haha – where do I even start? 1) First of all, aside from Marlboro’s girlfriend, where are the cops? Daniel Baldwin and his Kevlar-wearing goons murder a bunch of people (including an airport baggage handler on the tarmac!), and fire off automatic weapons in public, yet we never so much as hear a siren. And wouldn’t Baldwin retrieve the bodies of his fallen comrades, at least to prevent a police investigation? 1b) Come to think of it, could Harley and Marlboro possibly hide out in the baggage compartment of a jet with a corpse and a kidnapped baggage handler, fly to Las Vegas, and then escape into the city without encountering the cops, or airport security? 2) See: “Synopsis.” Seriously, isn’t running a bank a fairly difficult job? How would Wilder have the time, or the criminal expertise to oversee a drug empire? 3) So, Marlboro steals a motorcycle belonging to his lady’s new fiancĂ©, and even gets to meet the dude later in the film, yet nobody even mentions the theft and there are no consequences? 4) Call me a lazy slob, but I’m pretty sure I would require medical attention after getting shot in the arm twice; I don’t think I would be physically up for a final showdown with a drug lord. 5) I have to admit that I’m a little fuzzy on the revenge plan…. Harley and Marlboro want to kill Wilder, but return the stolen money to renew a lease on the bar, even though none of their friends are alive to operate it? Am I getting that right? 
Rating: Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man is a trashy, foul-mouthed and excessively violent early-1990s reimagining of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. It’s not a very good movie, but HDatMM never takes itself too seriously, its script includes some enjoyable one-liners and pseudo-philosophical musings, and I’ll admit that I like the chemistry between Rourke and Johnson, even though the two of them hated each other during filming, and they apparently won’t work with each other even today. 6.5/10 stars. Yes, I know I’m being overly generous. In the spirit of Bad Movie Night: take a drink any time Baldwin or his goons can’t seem to hit either Harley or Marlboro even though they’re firing machine guns.  

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