Monday, February 27, 2012
There's a movie where Swayze rips a guy's throat out and it's called "Roadhouse"
You're welcome, Internet.
"Roadhouse" is one of those crazy, completely-forgotten-about 80s action movies that's not only badass and completely watchable, but gloriously bizarre in its decision to include scenes such as the one above. It's like the script wasn't finished yet and the writers had just thrown in whatever crazy-ass dialogue they could think of, and they never bothered correcting it later on.
There's another line in the film where Swayze is walking through a room full of creepy dead-stuffed-animals (is 'taxidermised' a word?) and the main villain says something like "Impressive collection isn't it? There's only one thing that's missing...YOUR ASS."
He says it so completely straight-faced that I can't help but wonder if the actor ever really pictured how galactically hilarious it would be to have Patrick Swayze's tightly-groomed posterior hanging proudly on his wall as if it was some kind of measure of achievement.
The movie is a riot from start to finish. It's a "modern-day Western" as only the 80s could envision, with Swayze's character 'Dalton' (it's never specified whether that's his first or last name) rolls into town to work as a bouncer for a troubled nightclub full of The Wrong Crowd. Naturally, he goes up against the typical Capitalist villain Who Owns the Town and is the only one with balls enough to stand up with him. Throughout this run-of-the-mill plot, he earns $3500 a week for working in a crappy nightclub in the middle of nowhere (!), lives in a barn and drives a peesashit car even though he has a Mercedes, fires half the barstaff because they're scumbags and sees lots and lots of naked female bodies and kicks even more asses
It's clear that this movie was pandering to the badass-action-movie-liking male demographic with its emphasis on high-octane fights and female toplessness.
Why then did they feel the need to have this great big scene where Patrick Swayze's Ass is given more screentime than Venom in "Spider-Man 3"? You could stop time with those sharp buns. Almost every attempt at a tender scene in the film is rendered ridiculous by its forced inclusion of ridiculous 80s nudity or bizarre sex scenes. In the film's attempt at a 'love-scene', Swayze rams his blonde girlfriend up against a wall, without even taking her clothes off. The film's attempt at seriousness in scenes like this just make the film even more endearingly crap and awesome.
The highlight of this film is course the absolutely concentrated injection of manliness that is Patrick Swayze. If Dirty Dancing was the movie where Swayze proved he could dance, "Roadhouse" is the movie where he proved he could fight like a motherfucker. Throughout 90 odd minutes, Swayze kicks all kinds of middle-American ass. I have to say though, the fight scenes in this film are really well-choreographed and visceral, even by modern-day standards. There's a few moments of sheer lunacy (the 'Fuck you in prison' guy from the video once brandishes a pool cue like it's a samurai sword) but the violence is mostly realistic and always impressive.
The throat-ripping scene above isn't an isolated incident, either.
It's referenced earlier on in the film that He Once Killed a Man and that that's how he did it. The Throat-Ripping even comes up in the final battle with the main villain, where Dalton suffers the inner struggle between his thirst for throat-rippage and his Desire to be Human and Conquer His Demons (capital-letters for movie-clichés, in case you hadn't copped it). There seriously needs to be a "Roadhouse" drinking game for every time Swayze does the weird "throat-ripclaw" hand-tense. CHALLENGE ACCEPTED.
This movie was passionately recommended to me by a friend and made for perfect 2am viewing last night. It's bizarre in a way that makes it eminently watchable, but it sort of yo-yos between sheer lunacy and actual quality (for an 80s action movie). It's not as moronically bizarre as the likes of "The Room" or "Troll 2" and it certainly has a flair of style and craftsmanship that far exceeds those two supernaturally-bad cult movies; but make no mistake; this is an awesomely bad movie, for many of the reasons I've mentioned, and loads more that I haven't. These are the kinds of films I was born to watch.