Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Only now does it occur to me... POINT OF NO RETURN

Only now does it occur to me... that John Badham's lukewarm remake of LA FEMME NIKITA contains a romantic scene that was surely intended to be as iconic as the pasta slurping from THE LADY AND THE TRAMP or at least the food montage from 9 1/2 WEEKS––but instead, it lands about as well as the "Sexy V8" sequence from NINJA III: THE DOMINATION. To set the scene: as in LA FEMME NIKITA, Bridget Fonda plays a junkie turned assassin who's looking for a human connection. She makes one with "90s nice guy" Dermot Mulroney, who picks up one of her off-brand Chef Boyardee ravioli cans after she drops it in the grocery.

This, naturally, leads to a dinner, whereupon, like Constance Leonore Gielgud in TROLL 2, she decides that the best seduction tactic is to take the generic canned ravioli and feed it to Mulroney with her mouth.

I especially love the look of "discount marinara-sauce clown mouth" satisfaction afterward.

While on the whole it can't touch its progenitor NIKITA, there's a few things to like (or be fascinated by) here, like the muscular Hans Zimmer score with Enya-esque wailing; a bit part by Miguel Ferrer:

(who is essentially playing it as if Bob Morton survived ROBOCOP and took his job more seriously); Anne Bancroft as the mistress of "Assassin Charm School" (a role played by Jeanne Moreau in the original):
and finally, Harvey Keitel as the Terminator-esque badass The Cleaner,

a role perfected by Jean Reno in the original, but given an even more ominous (and overtly villainous) twist by Harvey Keitel, who is always welcome, no matter the context.

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