Movie Reviews

True Lies (1994) – Film & Wine Club

So, you probably know already that it’snot just me in my family that enjoys movies – my parents and brothers do too! Whilst on holiday last month me and my parents got talking about some of our favourite movies, movies that we would call classics. Not classics by the standard definition, just movies that we enjoyed so much we wished everyone would watch them! I haven’t watched many movies at all pre-2000, and my Mum & Dad can reel off loads of older movies that they love that I haven’t seen yet. Then on the other hand, I’ve seen some amazing modern movies that wouldn’t necessarily be their ‘type’, but I’m certain they would enjoy.

So our film club was born! We each wrote down 3 movies and put them in a hat, with the aim of meeting regularly to pick a movie from the hat and watch it together. As a bonus, whoever’s movie choice was picked is in charge of picking a nice bottle of red wine to share. I won’t share my 3 picks with you because I know they read here from time to time, so it’ll have to be a surprise for you, too.

The first pick was True Lies (1994), one of my Mum’s favourite action movies!

true-lies-movie-review-1994-posterDirector: James Cameron

Genre: Acton, Comedy, Thriller

Runtime: 141 Minutes

Main Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Arnold, Bill Paxton, Tia Carrare, Art Malik, Eliza Dushku, Grant Heslov, Marshall Manesh, Charlton Heston

Plot: Harry (Arnold Schwarzenegger) is a spy for a secret government organisation. For years he’s hidden his real job from his wife Helen (Jamie Lee Curtis), who thinks he’s a salesman. Harry and Helen are happily married, but Harry’s real job comes with a lot of unexpected, sudden overtime, and as a result he doesn’t spend a lot of time at home. When he turns up at Helen’s work one day to surprise her, he suspects she may be having an affair.

My Thoughts:  True Lies is absurd in every single way. It’s based on a generic, terrorist/spy plot and showcases some of the most farcical action sequences I’ve ever seen. BUT. It’s fantastic. There, I said it. I pretty much loved every minute of it. We all agreed that if it were remade today (although mostly impossible, as a lot of the content wouldn’t be acceptable these days) that Dwayne Johnson would be playing the lead. It’s that kind of movie, silly, but you know what to expect and it delivers.

I haven’t seen much of Schwarzenegger outside of the Terminator franchise but I really enjoyed him in this role. It’s similar in a lot of ways to his character in Jingle All the Way. He’s clearly believable in the action hero role but he’s got a clear talent for comedy too. The ‘death stare’ that he does was a joke that was never going to get old for me! Jamie Lee Curtis, though. Phew! It’s an actual crime how few movies of hers that I’ve seen but I can only imagine that the hotel room scene in True Lies was hugely popular at the time? She’s incredible. I wish we could all chuck some vase water over our heads and somehow look that great.

I’m starting to realise that the 90’s was the decade of great action movies. I’m sure my Mum has a few other suggestions up her sleeve but I’d love to know what your favourite 90’s action movie is? I’m a convert for sure. After the movie finished we video-called my husband so he could pick the next movie out of the hat for us, and it was one of my choices! It was Hunt for the Wilderpeople, and I can’t WAIT to see it again.

true-lies-1994-jamie-lee-curtis-schwarzenegger

Best Bit: So many great moments to choose from, but it has to be the motorbike/horse chase scene. It was just so ludicrous. I mean, the chase on the streets was crazy enough but then they went into the hotel and we all laughed. Then they got into the lifts and we laughed even harder. THEN the scene on the roof? My sides actually hurt a little bit. That must have been such a great experience at the cinema!

Worst Bit: I’m going to have to turn to something my Mum mentioned for this section. We were chatting about the movie afterwards and she said how hilariously unlike Schwarzenegger his stunt double was. Hand on heart, I didn’t notice but she said it was glaringly obvious!

Fun Trivia: The appearance and traits of Spencer Trilby (Charlton Heston) is based on Nick Fury, a Marvel Comics character. Like Fury, Trilby has an eyepatch, and the same mannerisms; as well as heading a peacekeeping organization. At one point, Cameron wanted to be a comic book penciller, and does a lot of his own concept art. He even designed the entire T-800 endoskeleton.

My Rating: 4 out of 5 helicopters – are you even shooting a ridiculous action scene without one?

true-lies-1994-helicopter-jump-scene