REVIEWED
6.29.05

STORY



LOOK

Raising Arizona
Director: The Coen Brothers
Year: 1987
TRT: 1:34


It's refreshing to see Nicolas Cage in a role he was born for. That dude has made some odd choices in his career, but damn if he didn't nail this one. The action-adventure roles, though? Nic! Hey! Spare us, please? Everyone else involved with this flick is top notch as well, from Holly Hunter and John Goodman to the minorist of characters who may only have a single line or two, but still make a lasting impression. It's kinda hard to believe that this is the Coen brother's second film, that followed the noirish crime drama Blood Simple. Truly masters who have the gift for telling quirky, fairy tale-like stories with the most unlikely of elements. And, of course, great characters.

H.I. McDunnough leads a checkered past. Due to not much motivation and that damn Reagan in the White House, he's got no choice but to end up knocking over convenience stores. And because he's not the brightest bulb in the socket, ends up spending a lot of time in the clink. But he eventually comes to see the error of his ways, and tries his best to become an upstanding member of the community for his new love, Ed (short for Edwina). But problems bombard the newlywed couple from all fronts, quickly wilting their "salad days" of marriage.

This absolutely positively must be seen by all. It's got that perfect pitch of comedy, character, and style that make watching movies so enjoyable. Like most movies written by the Coen brothers, there are subtle one-liners tossed out left and right that make it that much more amusing. Some people prefer the comedic subtlety of Will Ferrell on crack, but here's the opposite end of the spectrum, like a fine wine. And it's aged nicely.

Great Scene: The Huggies robbery is a classic. Cage has so many great expressions in this flick, but when he comes against the grocery store manager with the double-barrel and his look of exasperation, it is quite priceless.

DVD Notes: For shame, but not surprising, that this is a bare-bones DVD from the early days of 20th Century Fox. The only lovin' is a trailer and TV spots. Hopefully when they re-release it in HD format it gets a little more respect. The bastards'll get more of my $cratch, but for this, it's worth it.