|The Crew (2001, VHS)|
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This is an underrated comedy with some outstanding talent playing agaisnt their types. The romantic lead isn't Burt Reynolds, it is Seymore Cassals. Reynolds plays a wacko thug with a penchant for baseball bats. Richard Dryfuss and Dan Heyeda show previously under-used comedic skills. The script is a polished comedy about four retired hoods who just want to live out the rest of their lives in their little Florida retirement hotel and are being dispossessed by speculators turning the hotel into condominiums that will raise the market value. The higher value will put it beyond what the boys in the Crew can pay, so they come up with a scheme to make the yuppies and speculators go away. All with a nice romantic story and an odd reunion of father and daughter.
This is in a class with other comedies that have slipped by through the years; it has a quality also found in ONE TWO THREE by Billy Wilder, AFTER THE FOX by Vittorio De Sica and Peter Sellers and SMALL TIME CROOKS by Woody Allen.
Snap up a copy and add it to your library. Break it out when you need a giggle.
This hilarious movie finds four old wise guys, long past their prime, living in a dingy apartment in an old hotel called the Raj Mahal, in South Beach, Miami. They have been here for years, but now South Beach is booming, real estate is out of control, and the manager thinks the rent is too cheap. Facing eviction, they devise a plan to keep from being kicked out. They get a stiff from the morgue and blow his head off in the lobby. As it turns out, the stiff was the father of the local drug lord and mob boss. The plan works, and the rent actually goes down, but the mob is now looking for them. Years ago, Bobby (Ridhard Dreyfuss) went to prison in New Jersey, and in the process, was estranged from his daughter Olivia. He's been looking for her for years, and now she turns out to be the cop investigating the shooting. Having pulled off this job, suddenly they feel like wise guys again, and just like wise guys, they get stupid! Bobby's roommate and best friend, Joey (Burt Reynolds), goes out and buys a new Jaguar. Mike (Dan Hedaya)sports a gold Rolex watch, and Tony (Seymour Cassel) is running around with a young stripper, who decides to blackmail all of them into killing her step mother who is loaded. It seems that Tony likes to talk after sex, and he spilled the beans to her. They kidnap her mother, because they can't kill her. She turns out to be an old acquaintance from home in Jersey. After taking her, they set her house on fire as a cover, but burned down the neighbor's house too, who turned out to be the mob boss. As things progress the craziness gets worse until the mob boss kidnaps Bobby's daughter, Tony, his girlfriend, and her mother. He still don't know who's after him, but he is afraid of losing a big drug shipment that is coming in. Well, the old wise guys snap into action, and call in favors from all of the other old retired wise guys in Florida. They raid the ship where the hostages are being held and save them all. This is a funny movie about a bunch of bumbling fools.
A very funny bunch of has-beens coming back as they were in their younger days. Great entertainment. The cast of characters fit their parts to a tee. It had a lot of movement, and didn't keep you bored with what was coming up next as you were deeply surprised. Only problem I found with the movie was the cursing in the taking of the Lord's name in vain, which was totally unnecessary and not needed. If it hadn't been for that, I would had rated it as excellent.