True Romance

1993 fictional romance movie

Rating: 16/20

Plot: Comic book store employee Clarence meets and weds a prostitute, and for their honeymoon, they flee from a bunch of drug dealers who are after the suitcase of cocaine Clarence procured during a visit to his bride's former pimp.

What a cast this son of a bitch has! It's a Who's Who of cool actors--Gary Oldman, playing a cartoonish black man; Dennis Hopper as Christian Slater's timid but nearly-stoic father; Christopher Walken getting a great creepy role to play; Samuel L. Jackson playing a kind-of mean guy; Saul Rubinek as a Hollywood big shot; the Great Bronson Pinchot (that's how you have to type his name because he's the Great Bronson Pinchot) with his "Save the gorillas" line; a perpetually-stoned Brad Pitt; the lovely Patricia Arguette; some of Val Kilmer before he reached the point in his career where he topped 350 pounds; James Gandolfini with a typical tough guy role; and even Chris Penn and Kevin Corrigan. Even Christian Slater's probably cool enough at this stage in his career, and I like him here after he's shaken off the Jack impression. You know who I can't stand though? Michael Rappaport. But not even Michael Rappaport and his stupid head can subtract from the cool here. And you've got Hans Zimmer getting his xylophone on. It's tons of cool, almost more than a movie should be allowed to have. The movie's main problem is that there are a lot of movies made that are like this these days, very few as well, so this doesn't feel as fresh as it would have back in '93. Tarantino's writing keeps things lively although things are never very realistic, unapologetically unrealistic. The script's packed with film references, and the black characters all speak like they just walked off the set of a blaxploitation flick. Whatever this is--black rom-com neo-noir gangsta flick?--it's just daring and original enough to give it a satisfying flavor.

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