Red Heat (1988) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)
|Red Heat comes from the
school of mismatched buddy flicks. Arnold Schwarzenegger is a disciplined,
humorless Moscow cop who is sent to the USA in pursuit of some heroin
dealers. James Belushi is a gregarious, wisecrackin', rule-breakin' slob
of Chicago cop who is assigned to work with Arnold. Together, they
must learn to overcome their differences and defeat some evil thing or
another. As you can see, this mismatched crime fighter premise is fairly
close to the formula that worked so well in director Walter Hill's most
successful film, 48 Hours.
It's not a bad watch, but it was an "Arnold movie" made before they had the formula exactly right. The super physique was already there, but the humor was still undeveloped, and Arnold's acting skills were still ... um ... emerging. He delivers a lot of lines in Russian, so I asked Elya how the big fella did with his pronunciation. That didn't prove very useful. Although Russian is her native language, she said, "I wouldn't understand one word without the sub-titles".
|In other words, pretty much the same as his
I've never heard Arnold speak German, but when I lived in Vienna, I was surprised to hear the Austrians say that Arnold is almost incomprehensible in German because he used to speak with a distinct Tyrolean regional dialect, and he now speaks that dialect with an almost incomprehensibly heavy American accent.
If only he could speak English with that same accent!
He seems to be a guy trapped without a native language. Is there anyone anywhere who knows what he's talking about?
|Back to the point. If you can ignore the fact that
Arnold is about as Russian as Samuel L. Jackson, you can actually
enjoy the film when Arnold and Belushi are on screen together. The actual
plot, whatever it was, was mere background for them to quibble about their
varying approaches to life and the merits of their respective cultures.
By the way - one more point, just for the record. I know it looks very dramatic to show Moscow and Red Square covered in snow, but when Arnold flies to Chicago, they make a point of saying it is August. The weather in Moscow in August is about the same as the weather in Chicago. No snow, in other words, and sometimes blistering heat.
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