Robert De Niro and Charles Grodin star in this hilarious, action-packed blockbuster about a bounty hunter and an accountant who find themselves running from the FBI and the Mob.
© 1988 Universal Studios. All Rights Reserved.
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To hell with the pretentiousness of a Shyamalan or the increasingly misplaced self-adulation of the Coens, 'Midnight Run' has no other purpose in life other than to use the movie as a medium of entertainment. . . and it does. Oh boy; it does. Badly underrated on release and still unfairly under valued even now, 'Midnight Run' is actually class-act film making, the narrative impeccably engineered and the acting uniformly excellent throughout. Faults? Definitely, not the least of 'em being the gratuitous use of profanity: the movie's tone is such that it just doesn't need the endless ear-grating use four letter words -- 'Midnight Run' isn't about reality or anything remotely approaching it, so the insistence on so much gutterspeak is a major error. Set pieces though are gloriously handled, and the helicopter sequence is quite as good as anything in a Bond movie -- a genre that has managed quite well without spraying profanities everywhere because it knows, and we know, none of it's real. 9/10 then for 'Midnight Run', because as an exercise in how to develop a movie, to establish characters and plot trajectories, to bring 'em all together in a final wrap up and still leave space for a minor plot twist, it's of textbook quality. * I happened to see this as a late-night TV re-run, the day after watching the Coen's 'The Man Who Wasn't There'. 'Midnight Run' is everything that the Coen's work is not: it isn't self reverential, it isn't seeking to be a cult, and above all, it knows how to tell a story with speed and with style. RECOMMENDED.
- stopitgoaway, Tuesday, August 5, 2008