August 20, 2018

Ever Heard of CRAZY SIX?
Starring Rob Lowe, Burt Reynolds, Ice-T, Mario Van Peebles, Thom Matthews, Ivana Millicevic, Blanka Kleinova. Directed by Albert Pyun. (1997/94 min).


Review by Tiger the Terrible😼

Perhaps you're like me...checking out this cast and asking yourself, "How come I've never heard of this movie?" After all, it's two decades old, and while none of these guys were ever mistaken for Daniel Day Lewis, they've all made their fare share of entertaining, low-ball action flicks. Well, maybe not Rob Lowe, who's never been the star of anything worth seeing twice.

Still, the idea of gathering these straight-to-video heroes for some gratuitous gunplay sounds like time well-spent on the sofa, even if the titular character is played by Lowe.

But only twenty-minutes in, it was clear why I had never heard of Crazy Six.

In an unnamed Eastern European country where crime runs rampant, Crazy Six is a crack addict hired by gangster Dirty Leo (Mario Van Peebles) to steal cash and plutonium (!) from rival Raul (Ice-T). But Leo is actually setting him up take the fall when the job goes south. While trying to recover what he rightfully stole, Six becomes infatuated with sultry lounge singer (and recovering junkie) Anna (Ivana Milicevic). Cynical American lawman Dakota (Burt Reynolds), who once busted Anna, eventually gets involved, cowboy hat and all.

Ice-T phones it in.
Sounds like the makings of a decent - if unoriginal - action thriller. Instead, the plot and motives of its villains are murky at best. After the initial robbery, the action slows down to a crawl...almost literally. Prolific cult director Albert Pyun goes way overboard with slow-motion and montages set to pulsating industrial music, trying in vain to pad-out his flimsy story by creating an illusion of urgency.

We spend a majority of the time with Crazy Six and Anna. In between breathlessly - and endlessly - crooning techno-ballads onstage, she falls inexplicably in love with this guy, who looks like a vagrant that wouldn't even be allowed to enter the neon nightclub where she sings. Lowe may to be trying to shed his pretty-boy image here, but his idea of intense and gritty consists of scowling behind a porn star mustache and moving like he pooped his pants.

Since this was made just before Boogie Nights briefly resurrected his career, one can assume Reynolds took the role because he needed the work (or simply fancied a trip to Europe). Still, he's enjoyable in a role that seems tailor-made for him. Despite being prominently featured on the cover, Ice-T hardly shows up at all and does little more than glare (I doubt if he has ten total lines of dialogue). Van Peebles comes of worst, decked-out like a pimp and continually lugging around a trembling chihuahua while unintelligibly mumbling his lines with a godawful French accent (in Van Peebles' defense, I'm sure none of this was his idea).

The whole thing comes to an abrupt and underwhelming conclusion. A shame, really. With a cast like this, Crazy Six should have been 90 minutes of mindless fun. While there's mindlessness in abundance, the fun is conspicuously missing, even for fans of any of these actors. Dull and forgettable, the film has earned its anonymity.


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