Sunday, January 28, 2018

Sunset (1988)

On this episode, Michael and Pax take a detour from traditional Westerns and talk about Blake Edwards' murder mystery in which Western movie star Tom Mix (Bruce Willis) and Western legend Wyatt Earp (James Garner) try to catch a killer in 1920s Hollywood. Also starring Malcolm McDowell and Mariel Hemingway.

And as long as we're covering not-quite-Westerns, Michael shares some thoughts about Brett Haley's The Hero, starring Sam Elliott, Laura Prepon, Nick Offerman, Krysten Ritter, and Katharine Ross.


  1. My opinions on Blake Edwards are pretty mixed as well. Appears that he wanted to actually be making movies 20 years before he actually was since he dipped into the comedies and slapstick stuff a lot.

    A I think his best stuff was in the early to mid-60s. The early Pink Panther films, The Great Race, Operation Petticoat, etc. And Days of Wine and Roses proved that he could do dramas as well.

    But he also seemed to be trying to mix genres too much in later films as you pointed out in reviewing Sunset. Lots of good comedy/companionship bits, but then veering into a couple of very dark characters.

  2. Thanks, Zeke. That encourages me to check out some of his '60s stuff. I've been curious about Operation Petticoat and especially Days of Wine and Roses for a while now.

  3. The comedies are pretty good. And you get some very good actors as well. Carey Grant and Tony Curtis in Operation Petticoat. The Great Race is Curtis again, Natalie Wood, and then Jack Lemmon/Peter Falk as the villains and Lemmon is mustache twirling and chewing on scenery in a very fun way.

    I view Days of Wine and Roses a bit like Breakfast at Tiffany's in that I find it quite depressing at times.

  4. Nice! I love all those people. I've put all three movies on my Watchlist. Thanks!

  5. The Hero:
    I'm a big fan of Sam Elliott, so The Hero is on my list to see. He is great in everything he does. It was so strange though to watch him in We Were Soldiers without his mustache. He looks so unrecognizable without it.

    This was a pretty interesting movie. James Garner was great in this. I've seen most of Bruce Willis' films but never came across this. I just happened to catch this on TCM and DVR'd it. I liked the movie. It reminded me of Maverick, but not as good. I liked Garner in this more than Willis. This reminded me much of Willis' character from Blind Date. I had recently rewatched Blind Date and that movie is still funny. I enjoyed that just as much as I did when I first saw it.
    I enjoyed the cast in this movie, a lot of character actors. McDowell's early violence towards women was particularly shocking given what's been going on lately in Hollywood. This movie is generally a light hearted comedy but McDowell's violence seems a bit out of place. You quickly realize he is the villain soon after his introduction. I really liked Richard Bradford, who I know best from Earth 2. He does a great job playing sleazy characters. Of particular note was seeing Andreas Katsulas who played G'Kar in Babylon 5. He was a great actor and died soon after Babylon 5. I would have liked to seen him in more movies. I also recognized Liz Torres from several TV Shows, but in this she is just the singer at the club and that is it. This is surprising as she has done a lot of comedies after this movie. Also Dann Florek who is the captain on L&O: SVU.

    All in all a decent western comedy, but not one that I'd revisit often.