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Celebrating B Movies, Cult Films, and Indie Classics.

Midnight Run (1988)

by  |  April 29th, 2011  |  Action/Adventure

The 70s – 90s was a great time period for the Action movie genre, I mean such truly 'in my opinion' classics came out during this time, such movies as the exploitation piece Chrome And Hot Leather (1971) with William Smith (Maniac Cop) and Tony Young (Quantum Leap) to the Lethal Weapon series with Mel Gibson (The Mad Max series) and Danny Glover (Age Of The Dragons) to one of my personal favorites Point Break (1991) with Patrick Swayze (Red Dawn) and Keanu Reeves (The Bill and Ted's series)

Why are these movies so great? Well their are to many reasons to put in to words for each and every one of these movies, so I figured I would mention the one that I think is most applicable to this recommendation:

Simply put the best example I can give, is that in movies such as the Lethal Weapon series, they injected an almost equal amount of humor in to the series as they did with series action sequences, as well as taking the story line serious! I still think that may be the best thing about that series of movies…

That's why it brought me so much joy to watch the movie Midnight Run.  Now I had known about this movie literally for years, I mean I have seen the VHS in Video rental stores (when I still went to them) for years… Unfortunately I kind of thought that this movie was probably a bomb (Never judge a book by its cover… Or in this case a movie.)  Once I was able to set myself down with the movie and set aside my pre-conceptions of what this movie was going to be, it turned out to be a FAN-FUCKING-TASTIC Movie, but we'll get in to that in a bit…

Written by: George Gallo (Columbus Circle) and Directed by: Martin Brest (Meet Joe Black) and starring: Robert De Niro (Righteous Kill), Charles Grodin (The Ex) Yaphet Kotto (Alien) and John Ashton (A Letter To Dad)

Midnight Run tells the story of Jonathan 'The Duke' Mardukas (Grodin). Mardukas is a man who is probably about as blue collar and average as you get (I mean he is a married Accountant).  Now the problem with Mr. Mardukas is that he discovers that he has been doing the accounting for mob boss Jimmy Serrano (Played by: Dennis Farina).  Once Mardukas discovers this, he robs Serrano of 15 million dollars and gives it to charity, that is when things get interesting, in that at some point he is arrested and decides to jump bail and go on the run…

Jack Walsh (Robert De Niro) and John 'The Duke' Mardukas (Charles Grodin)

This is where Jack Walsh (De Niro) comes in.  Jack was once a happily married Chicago Police Officer, with a daughter… That is until one day when Walsh is approached by Serrano to work for him as a corrupt Cop.  When he refuses, it turns disastrous for Jack when it turns out that the unit that he worked for is corrupt, and looses his job.  After he looses his job, he looses everything else.  His wife and family leave him to go live with one of the corrupt Police Officers that Jack had railed against…

Thus he heads off to Los Angeles to become a bounty hunter for local Bai

l Bondsman Eddie Moscone (Played by: Joe Pantoliano).

A few years later, and after Jack brings in his latest collar to the LAPD, Jack heads over to collect his money at Moscone's.  During this time Eddie offers him a deal that would end up being the deal of his life time in a contracted collar for $100,000 dollars.  This collar being former mob accountant John 'The Duke' Mardukas.

Of course Jack has already heard about 'The Duke' and his connections to Serrano, and refuses to take on the case (this is of course till after Eddie convinces him of how easy this case will be, as a matter of fact he calls it a 'Midnight Run').  The only problem with this case is that Mardukas needs to be back in LA before midnight that Friday or else Eddie was going to basically loose his business…

Eddie and Jack as they are discussing the deal for Jack to go grab Mardukas and bring him back.

So after all the appropriate contracts are signed, and everything has been worked out Jack heads to the Police department to find his first clue.  After he finds it, he begins to head over to the Airport. Just as he is heading out of the Police Station though, he is stopped by Agent Alonzo Mosely (Kotto) of the FBI.  Agent Mosely tries to strong arm Jack in to not taking the case, but fails miserably because after they part company, Jack heads to the airport with Mosely's FBI Identification in hand!

After he arrives in New York, he is approached by Serrano's men, who try to make him an offer that he can't refuse… Of course Jack doesn't take the bribe and goes on to catch The Duke at his wife's house.  Now with Jack intending to head straight back to the Airport to deliver his prisoner, they head over to the Airport and on to first class accommodation's on the Plane…

After this, the plane heads back to the Airport, where they head on to a Train heading toward Los Angeles.

With that said, and with only a few days left to him, Jack is going to have to try to dodge the authorities, the mob, and another bounty hunter that Eddie will send out after them, so that Jack can get the annoyingly likable Duke to LA by Friday at midnight so that he can get his money!

John Mardukas and Jack Walsh on their way back to LA.

With that said, what I like about this movie, and what I found made this a truly Awesome B Movie is:

1. I found the cast to be both fun, likable, and in most cases believable! I mean all of them, from Robert De Niro as the crochety bounty hunter Jack Walsh, to Yaphet Kotto as the  constantly annoyed FBI Agent, and everyone in between was just pure gold!

2. The next thing that I gotta say, that I really like about this movie is the story.  I have always enjoyed a good story about a small group of people that have to over come insurmountable odds to reach the goal, and get in to zany situations during their quest!

3. The other thing that I like about this movie, is the hidden message it conveys.  The message is that just about everyone deserves a second chance…

Anyway if your looking for a fun action packed hilarious movie, then I would recommend checking this one out, you might like it!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_OcChP6FbGk

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Nathan Strack

About

I am a huge Horror/B-Movie/Grindhouse movie fan! Rather it be Writing/Acting/Directing or just watching one I love it all!

Judgment In Berlin (1988)
Hard Times (1975)
Assault On Precinct (1976)

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