July 24, 2021

Bruce Willis comedy hits Netflix

The criticism was relentless with The great hawk (1991). I summarize what they said thirty years ago about the film that has been incorporated into the Netflix catalog: it is not clear if it is an action movie or if it is a comedy; if it is a thief movie or is it a spy movie; if it’s a spin-off of The Pink Panther or a crude attempt to parody Hitchcock. And it’s not fair. The film has always been accused of being genderless, and it is not true. It has also been said that it is an experimental film. Let’s see, experimental is Citizen Kane, whether or not it is better than Black Panther. The great hawk it’s a movie blunder with constant script rewrites during filming. The original idea is from Bruce Willis, born in the heat of one of his youth songs; the first script is by Steven E. de Souza, tanned in the first two installments of Crystal jungle, as well as in V, the television series of the Nazi references, and The fantastic car, the series in which the dashboard spoke; and the final script, which was rewritten over and over again, is by Daniel Waters. The film is also a story with an hour of footage cut off. The additional 60 minutes, they were convinced, were going to confuse the respectable. There was a dead monkey, named Little Eddie, and a personal vendetta from Willis himself to honor his memory. The great hawk It is also a production in which the director, Michael Lehman, was delirious in the competitive world of summer blockbusters without knowing exactly what he had gotten into. And, be careful, it is also a film that accuses the whims of producer Joel Silver and Bruce Willis in the sweetest moment of their respective careers.

But above all it is an action comedy with the problem that it is not funny enough to rise to the Olympus of the great comedies of the nineties (Andie McDowell speaking in the mysterious language of dolphins is curious, but not funny), but it is entertaining enough to be considered an action movie at the height of The last boyscout O The last great hero. It is not an experimental robbery movie as it can be Bottle Rocket, the magnificent misunderstood artifact of Wes Anderson, nor is it the inversion of the genre it intended, but that does not detract from its merit. It is a film that had a large budget (it cost 51 million dollars, approximately 15 more than originally budgeted, although legend says that it reached 85 million dollars). Terminator 2) about a thief who wants to stop being a thief and whose romantic interest is a sugar cane nun (a version 2.0 of Maria Rainier crossed with Sister Luke).

The great hawk it’s a victim of the year it was released. Bruce Willis came to the film after the success of the series Moonlight and of the first two installments of Crystal jungle, hike, hike. And Joel Silver, three-quarters of the same. Willis and Silver had already gone over budget with Die Hard 2 (1990), which ended up costing $ 70 million. “If you put Joel Silver in front of a movie, you know you’ll get the movie done in the Joel Silver way,” said Michael Dryhurst, co-producer of The great hawk.

In the end, the movie is the perfect example of what happens when someone asks the very healthy question What if?… without thinking about where you want to go. What if we stick ten hypodermic needles in a guy in the face and they take the whole scene with them? Come on. What if Bruce Willis is driving around the Brooklyn Bridge at rush hour, dodging cars, on an ambulance stretcher, chatting with passing drivers and then digging for some loose money in his pockets and throwing it to pay a toll? ? Come on. What if we convince James Coburn to play the villain and give Hitchcock a wink? Come on. What if we make a meta-joke with Silvester Stallone’s brother that neither Blas will understand? Come on. What if Bruce Willis’ character has a racy scene with a nun? (It is understood that without this being an arthouse film.) Come on! And so with everything. And, of course, what happens happens. It’s very healthy, seriously, but without a clear goal to aim for, not everything goes. And, of course, then you have to cut and the film becomes lame: if you go crazy, you go completely crazy.

And yet the film ends with a serious laugh at itself in its last scene. “Yes, most likely that is what happened,” says the character of Bruce Willis to justify that his partner Danny Aiello continues alive when he has neither head nor feet that has survived what he has survived. And then the movie makes sense. Without that scene it would be an absolute nonsense, but with that you say: ahhhhh, okay.

Deep down, yeah The great hawk I would not have aspired to the category of summer blockbuster right now the movie would be a true cult film. The problem is that it has always been measured by the money it cost. Because the film was released when it began to flake that films – which are always expensive – cost so much and then they were a mess. In its day it was published that the film had cost between 75 and 85 million dollars, well above the 41 budgeted. They were actually between 50 and 55 million, but the fact that they talk about money gives an idea of ​​where the shots were going. It was an ambitious film in its production, not in its plot. Is not the same. Initial plans called for filming in Rome, Budapest, London, New York, and Los Angeles. And that was expensive. A long list of problems followed one another during filming. Basically they were rewrites of script that forced to modify the initial planning, delays derived from the European bureaucracy. an unexpected strike in Hungary, although the Hungarian scenes were later removed, and a change of nun. Because Andie McDowell, the film’s greatest success with Rupert E. Grant and Sandra Bernhard, did not start on the set. He replaced Maruschka Detmer, who left production for health reasons.

Columbia TriStar

In the end, what explains what happened in the film is the anecdote of the monkey, which came to be in the script. “Bruce had all these little ideas and I had to work on them. Bruce wanted to have a pet monkey in the movie that he could finally see again after getting out of jail. We realized that if we introduced a monkey, then I would have to stay in the movie. So I thought, “What if someone kills the monkey while Bruce Willis’s character is in prison and that gives him a reason to get mad at a villain?” So we kill the monkey. called Little Eddie. We included in the script a scene in which Willis was reading a newspaper headline in which it was said that the mafia had shot the monkey, “wrote screenwriter Daniel Waters years later in an interview.

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“The movie got even crazier than it is now. The fact is that Hudson thinks it was the mob that killed him, and if you look closely, in a scene from the movie James Coburn admits that he killed little Eddie . When Coburn dies in the movie, he falls on top of the limo as it falls off the cliff. If you look at his face, there is an image of a monkey on his forehead. That’s because in the fight scene Bruce Willis had hit him with a picture of little Eddie on his forehead and he had said, “Say hello to little Eddie, you son of a bitch.” We shot all these little things that made up this subplot about little Eddie’s death. Originally when Danny Aiello picks him up from prison , you have to give him the news: By the way, Little Eddie is dead“Well that.

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