Wild Hogs

Martin Lawrence, John Travolta, Tim Allen and William H Macy

 

 

Four suburban guys, all losers in different ways, go on a cross country trip on their Hogs – that’s Harley Davidsons to the uninitiated. The guys are John Travolta, Tim Allen, Martin Lawrence and William H. Macy. En route to wherever they get mistaken for gays, find themselves on the wrong side of a group of real, hairy assed bikers (led by Ray Liotta) and one of them even finds love with a waitress (Marisa Tomei in a cheerleader-ish succession of “I’m hot” poses). Tim Allen and Martin Lawrence as buddies? Yes, it’s a stretch, but no more than imagining William H Macy and John Travolta cracking open a couple of beers after a hard day. But the big question about Wild Hogs is not “is this movie funny?” – scripted by Arrested Development writer Brad Copeland, it certainly has its guffaw-inducing moments – but “who is it for?” Judging by the twee Preston Sturges/Frank Capra depiction of smalltown America, the soundtrack heavy with the Allman Brothers and Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Me Generation self-help manual themes and Tim Allen’s character’s assertion that, at 54, he’s only “technically” middle aged, the answer would appear to be – people who are dead or no longer go to the movies.

© Steve Morrissey 2007

 

Wild Hogs – at Amazon

 

 

 

Galaxy Quest

Alan Rickman in Galaxy Quest

 

 

Turn on TV most nights and there’s some Star Trek spin-off boldly heading off somewhere. In it are actors you’ve never seen before and will possibly never see in anything else again. As coloured latex hangs off various bits of various faces they strike heroic poses and over-earnestly deliver lines from rehashes of scenarios that were tired in the Sixties. Galaxy Quest knows those shows and those actors. It follows a past-it sci-fi cast as they do the convention circuit, signing books for the geeks they despise, bickering among themselves, boring anyone who’ll listen with stories of antique Shakespearean glory. Then, gasp, a bunch of real aliens turn up, expecting not crummy autographs, but real heroes to save their planet. At which point Galaxy Quest takes off, boldly going with its perfect cast where Mel Brooks’s Spaceballs should have gone before. As for the cast, Tim Allen could be William Shatner’s brother, no one does supreme boredom like Alan Rickman and Sigourney Weaver shows that even an Alien star can laugh at her legacy. Zapping satirical targets with photon-torpedo accuracy and eventually hitting warp speed with jump-out-of-chair heroics, this is a geniunely funny sci-fi spoof and a great adventure too. These days that’s harder to find than William Shatner’s hairline.

© Steve Morrissey 2013

 

Galaxy Quest – at Amazon