Film Friday #193

Midnight Cowboy (1969)

Small town short order cook, Joe Buck (Jon Voight) decides to leave his job and head for New York city where he intends to make his fortune as a gigolo. His unique selling point is that he is dresses as a cowboy believing that the posh women of the Upper East Side will love the idea of paying for a shag with a genuine cowboy. (Although Joe has never been anywhere near a cow in his life). Unfortunately for him he lacks almost any street smarts, isn’t sure where to find any punters and makes a bit of a hash of it when he does and it’s not before he is living in abject poverty. One night he meets, sickly hustler Rico Rizzo (Dustin Hoffman) nicknamed Ratso in a bar. After a rocky start, Joe and Ratso become firm friends – and possibly lovers – living together in various squats, scraping to survive. I have to admit that I found Midnight Cowboy to be quite a challenging watch. Both Joe and Ratso are infuriating at times in their behaviour and there were times where I wanted to shake them. Voight gives a great performance as the guileless Joe but Hoffman absolutely steals the show as nervy, twitchy Ratso. There isn’t really all that much of a storyline but the depth comes from nightmarish flashbacks and flashthroughs (I think I just made that up) which give some insight into Joe’s past and also his current experiences while representing the real grit and grime of New York in that era, which creates a disturbingly surreal atmosphere. Definitely one to watch but probably not one that I would watch again. 3.5/5

I'm sorry I can't hear you I'm having my ears cleaned

I’m sorry I can’t hear you I’m having my ears cleaned

Mission to Lars (2012)

Tom Spicer has Fragile X Syndrome, an inherited learning disability that means he doesn’t like any element of his routine to be disrupted and tends to get stuck on the same idea over and over again. As an adult he lives in a sheltered residential facility where he also works. One thing that Tom really loves is the music of Metallica with a particular fondness for drummer, Lars Ulrich. When his sister, Kate, decides that she has been neglecting spending time with Tom, she ropes their filmmaker brother, William, into joining her as she attempts to make Tom’s dream of meeting Lars a reality. It’s not going to be easy though because essentially Tom is resistant to anything out of his very limited comfort zone and Kate and Will want to take him on a transatlantic flight followed by a road trip in a mobile home and they’re not even sure if the band will actually be in anyway interested in their plans. As Tom constantly resists any of their plans and often becomes deeply distressed there are moments throughout this documentary where you wonder if Kate and Will have actually undertaken their mission for Tom’s benefit or their own. However at the point [SPOILER ALERT] that Tom actually does meet Lars, everything suddenly becomes totally worth it and I have to admit that I had a little tear in my eye. Very moving. 3.5/5

Tom was only one step from rocking out with his cock out

Tom was only one step from rocking out with his cock out

Son-in-Law (1993)

When Rebecca Warner (Carla Gugino) leaves the farm she grew up on to go to college in California she is initially baffled and alienated by her wild fellow students and their weird Californian ways but just at the point she is about to give up and go home she makes friends with Crawl (Pauly Shore). Crawl is her resident advisor and has been at college for rather a long time changing from one major to another. He introduces Rebecca to her new home, giving a complete makeover and the two become best friends, so when she realises he will be home alone for Thanksgiving she decides to take him back to the farm with her. Needless to say Crawl is a complete fish out water and Rebecca’s family aren’t thrilled with her transformation or her friend. Things get even crazier when Rebecca’s high school boyfriend (Dan Gauthier), who she was about to break up with, decides to propose and Crawl steps in to rescue her by claiming they’re already engaged. Now he must attempt to win over his new “in-laws” and keep the truth under wraps as he and Rebecca start to realise that they might actually fancy each other. There is no question that Son-in-Law is predictable and very, very silly and that neither Gaugino nor Shore are young enough here to look like college students even though Crawl is supposed to be  little older. However it’s also harmless and fun and great for if you just want to turn your brain off. As annoying as Shore can be Crawl’s enthusiasm and eagerness to try anything  actually really endearing. 3/5


Crawl wasn’t sure how to tell Rebecca that he had just shit himself

Clue (1985)

I’m not sure who thought it would be a good idea to take the board game, Clue (or Cluedo as it’s known in South Africa) and make it into a film but that person was clearly a complete idiot but not as big of an idiot as me who decided to watch it. Nothing about this tedious pile of shit makes any sense. Basically six people are invited to a mysterious dinner by a stranger where they discover not only that they are trapped but that they have been brought together to confront the person who has been blackmailing all of them. Then the murders start. And they spend about an hour wandering around the house trying to figure out what happened. And then there are three alternative endings with different murderers. I think this was supposed to be a comedy but there wasn’t a single time that I laughed. It also had the most cringeworthy dialogue I have ever had to sit through in a film, ever. Avoid like the plague. 0/5

You have massive tits? I hadn't noticed.

You have massive tits? I hadn’t noticed.


  1. theipc

    You didn’t laugh at “I HAD TO STOP HER SCREAMING!!”??

    That cracks me up!

    1. Abbi

      I didn’t laugh… I just sighed and groaned a lot.

  2. Just watched Clue. I give it at least a 2! I adore Tim Curry, though.

    1. Abbi

      It all just seemed a bit ridiculous to me. So much wandering from one room to another.

  3. Great reviews! Hoffman is just superb in Cowboy. I LOL’d at your write-up of Clue.

    1. Abbi

      Thanks! It was a total standout for Hoffman. He completely embodies Ratso, Clue is so dreadful.

  4. Clue?! That sounds… terrible and then some! Sounds like the rest were alright though!

    1. Abbi

      It was utterly awful. A complete load of shit! Overall the rest of the week was not bad at all.

  5. Oh wow! Not sure if I’ve seen you give a zero before! Clue is the only one here I’ve not seen – I thought that was quite a popular film at the time I’ll avoid it! : ) I loved Midnight Cowboy (and Everbody’s Talkin) but you’re probably right that it’s not a “re-watcher”. I’m SO watching Mission to Lars at some point – have wanted to see that for ages. : ) And I LOVED Son-in-law back in the day but it got a lot of unfair hatred because of Pauly Shore. Don’t care – I liked it. : )

    1. Abbi

      I don’t often give a zero but every now and then I can’t find a single redeeming quality about a film and this was one of them. Mission to Lars is really touching. Pauly Shore was very much a one trick pony but it was a good trick.

  6. Oh no!! Oh noooooo!! A Clue hater?! My heart…she breaks…

    1. Abbi

      Maybe it had some time to do with the epic hangover I had when I watched it.

      1. Hahaha! Well that certainly wouldn’t help…

  7. jennypugh

    I love Clue and I was in fact only selling its great points to someone at work a couple of weeks ago while we were stood by the photocopier. But then, I do love Tim Curry, so maybe I’m biased 😀

    1. Abbi

      Tim Curry is great but even he couldn’t save this for me. It just felt like it went on forever.

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