The bastard child of Die Hard has matured quite nicely…
Yeah, okay, it’s true that The Last Boy Scout is a formula job of the worst kind. From a script by the Lethal Weapon writer and produced by the man who funded everything from 48 Hours to Die Hard, it’s a bag of familiar tricks and contrived plot devices. If it’s not a scene milking that Bruce Willis’ character took a bullet for the President, it’s Damon Wayans’ football player being miserable over the murder of his girlfriend or his injury-induced drug addiction. The supporting characters are as obvious as they are shallow. And some of the one-liners are really cringe-worthy. Even the poster – Willis and Wayans looking badass while an explosion fills the background – is pretty stupid.
It should have been a sloppy mess of profanity-laden gratuitous violence and action movie cliches (and it was), yet Boy Scout has stood the test of time. The late Tony Scott knew how to pump energy into his scenes, Willis channels Die Hard’s John McClane, while Wayans is perfect for the dry jokes and sarcastic one-liners spewed back and forth. This all carries the movie, with a lot of help from over the top action and moments of cinematic gold.
Boy Scout had enough charm to keep it from being a total disaster, but why did it become more fun to watch as its aged? Probably because the world moved on to new sets of action movie rules, which allows this movie’s better parts to shine. You can forget why it was once a cookie-cutter hack job – now The Last Boy Scout is a free-wheeling catalog of what made action movies of 25 years ago so awesome. It’s dead squirrels. It’s bad guys falling into helicopters. It’s John McClane on a holiday job, saying stuff like: “Touch me again and I’ll kill you” and meaning it.
Best Scene: Bruce Willis applies his own variant to the one punch kill.
Best Quote: ” I think I fucked a squirrel to death, and don’t remember.”
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Last Updated: March 10, 2014