FATAL BEAUTY: DVD
Rita Rizzoli (Whoopi Goldberg) is a narcotics cop with a plethora of disguises. When a drug shipment is hijacked, the thieves don't know that the drug is unusually pure and packs of badly mixed 'Fatal Beauty' begin turning up next to too many dead bodies. Against direct orders from her boss, Rita goes on a rampage against the druglord Conrad Kroll (Harris Yulin), who is responsible for the deaths, wielding both her mighty gun - and her wicked tongue. And to get close to the enemy, Rita targets Mike Marshak (Sam Elliott), the drug kingpin's rugged and handsome bodyguard. And she doesn't know whether to kill him or kiss him!
Review by Andrew L. Urban:
Whoopie Goldberg is at her sassy, funny best in this upbeat 1987 cop caper, playing a Los Angeles detective who takes no nonsense and is ready for anything the badass guys can dish out. Driven along by a funky soundtrack and a hip script, the movie is irrepressible fun. I mean, she drives a pink Mustang convertible ... and she's playing Rita Rizzoli - an Italian.
Sam Elliott comes growling into the picture as the big baddie Conrad Kroll's (Harris Yulin) security guard, powder grey moustache and long hair and steely eyes all fluffing her up. He's great fun and multo macho; then there's crazy Brad Dourif (crazy in One Flew Over the Coockoo's Nest, if you recall) and of course the dependable Harris Yulin (you'll probably recognise him even if the name doesn't register) as the druglord with a mansion, pool, goons and attitude.
The plot spits along at a good clip, and the tone is a neat mix of drama and jive: bit like a bloody mary. Her under cover wardrobe comes straight out of a camp frock shop. Like the relationship between Goldberg's detective Rizzoli and the druglord's security chief, Mike (Sam Elliott). This is one twister in the story and the element that adds some (slightly unlikely) spice to an otherwise predictable scenario. The other concerns Rita Rizzoli's past and her demons.
The extended, fiery climax has a hefty shootout in a shopping mall, which may be a conscious or unconscious symbolic comment on society's endless consumption, as a reference to the bad drugs that form part of the plot's deadly payload.
January 15, 2009
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FATAL BEAUTY: DVD (R)
CAST: Whoopi Goldberg, Sam Elliott, Ruben Blades, Harris Yulin, John P. Ryan, Jennifer Warren, Brad Dourif, Mike Jolly, Charles Hallahan, David Harris, James LeGros, Neill Barry, Mark Pellegrino, Fred Asparagus
PRODUCER: Leonard Kroll
DIRECTOR: Tom Holland
SCRIPT: Hilary Henkin, Dean Riesner
CINEMATOGRAPHER: David M. Walsh
EDITOR: Don Zimmerman
MUSIC: Harold Faltermeyer
PRODUCTION DESIGN: James William Newport
RUNNING TIME: 104 minutes
PRESENTATION: 16:9; DD 2.0
SPECIAL FEATURES: trailer
DVD DISTRIBUTOR: Shock
DVD RELEASE: January 10, 2009
RIVERSIDE SCREEN PREMIERES
A program of premiere screenings of new movies prior to their commercial release
on 6 consecutive Tuesdays, starts February 17, 2015 at Riverside Theatre,
Curated & presented by Andrew L. Urban, discussion to
follow with special guests. Briefing notes provided.