Saturday, May 8, 2010

Next of Kin (1989)

Okay, forgettable late '80s actioner about 2 hick brothers out to avenge the death of a third in Chicago. The dead brother is played by Bill Paxton, and his brothers are played by Liam Neeson (YEAH!) and Patrick Swayze (...he's dead.) Because this was made 2 years after Dirty Dancing, and not in smarter times, Swayze is the lead, the pacifist brother who wants to take the law and order route until *gasp* they cross the line! The villains are played by Adam Baldwin, Andreas Katsulas (the one-armed man from The Fugitive), and Ben fucking Stiller. The script is crappy and stupid, with the characters all being stereotypes, and boring ones at that, but the film rests on the laurels of the cast for a good amount of the film. Baldwin, Stiller, and especially Neeson, as the fur-trappin, John Deere drivin psycho hick of the two brothers, have charisma coming out of their ass, and make their scenes pulpy and larger than life. But Swayze was no action lead, no matter how hard he wanted to be. Without a role like the Bodhisattva in Point Break, he could not bring anything extra to a role, as can be seen in Red Dawn (which I prefer to this) and Road House (which I don't). And in movie with this many talented actors (Helen Hunt plays his wife as well) he comes across as puny and pathetic; no good when you're standing next to Liam Neeson talkin about raining hell on the bastards that killed his brother.

Slightly Recommended to late '80s B-movie action buffs or diehard Neeson fans curious to see him rock a southern accent. Firefly fans take note: Jayne plays a pretty badass evil henchman in this one, and helps pushes the film across the edge into enjoyable status.

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