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DVD Reviews: One Crazy Summer

The Final Say!

Feature Score:
DVD Extras Score

Reviewed by Alex Cuming
Review Date: 15 May 2003
Distributed by:
Warner Home Entertainment

Even though this reviewer approached this film with little to no expectations I was still disappointed.  To be honest I had never heard its name until now and would not expect to remember it in a week.  Disappointing is how it could be described because it involves such a great cast but loses its qualities in execution. 

We have all heard our parents moaning with disapproval over American comedies and we’ve always wondered why.  But this reviewer can claim he knows the reason and now it’s official.  American comedy movies in the eighties were too over contrived and bordering on the ridiculous.  There were a few fun movies to note of course like Police Academy but films like this lesser known title fail to hit its mark. 

Hoops (John Cusack) has just graduated from school and is applying to get into Art school with his cartoons and also if lucky enough, find love.  He stumbles into Cassandra (Demi Moore) who is on the run from some sort of Punk gang at a service station.  Cassandra is in an unsuccessful band desperately in need of exposure.  This is where Hoops steps in and shows interest and slowly but surely wins her attention.   

The movie main fault is digression and the aimlessness of the plot is a little confusing.  What could be said, as strength is its weakness as the film fails to grab the viewer’s attention.  Its attempt at being a no-brainer is thwarted unfortunately by its scattered execution and wavering direction.     

You would be forgiven for thinking at the end of the film “what was that all about?” I know that it’s an 80’s comedy and these movies aren’t renown for storyline and plot but the inane humour seems to get boring quickly.  Honestly if this was what most movies were like in the eighties then they have come a long way into the wee early years of 2000’s.  With movies recently like Goldmember, which involved a plot and genuine funny characters, have better production values and more laughs than this effort brought out in 1986. 

John Cusack and Demi Moore star in what seems an aimless plot involving what seems to involve little consideration and genuine funny gags.  The main reason for this being there is no direction.  Sure the main characters have enemies but they lack character and there is no line to follow.  The viewer just simply loses interest because of the ridiculous and over-the-top stupidness of the majority of the film.   

Yes Americans are a little boisterous by nature because of their culture.  I know that’s not their fault, the war, capitalism, an affinity with fast food, the guns, all the theme parks, and lets not forget the ignorance of anything outside their country.  Their focus on me, me, me all the time becomes a bit tiresome after a while and loses impact because of this. 

This all out comedy is the reason why we all sit down at the Tele to watch Seinfeld a perfectly good comedy with our father looking over our shoulders moaning sarcastically “This is soo funny”. We have Hollywood in the seventies and eighties to thank for that.   

The sound is a little muddy because of the age of the film but little has been lost in its transition to a shiny disc.  There is a slight letterbox but is not irritating and is eventually not noticeable. Dolby 2.1 is used but in comedies this is not a problem, as long as the dialogue is audible.  The soundtrack written by Cory Lerios is done well sharing similarities to other films of the time, namely St Elmos fire.   

There is no black squares or low level noise to be seen. Filters are not used.  The extras are ok with commentary to listen to, which is rather pointless because the movie is a comedy and not a very good one.  If it were likeable then yeah this would be interesting.  But as it stands is a little superfluous.

Only slightly recommended to those studying highbrow degrees wanting a little rest from their mental acrobatics.

One Crazy Summer Features

  • Scene Selections
  • Cast & Crew
  • Commentary


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