Three Fugitives (1989)

Oh Lord, give me strength. Talk about an incredible tedious (and generic to the point of being painful) 80s comedy to sit through. I had assumed this would be something in the line of being a slightly more comedic version of 48 Hours, but boy I couldn’t be further away from the truth. The movie is nefariously deceptive, because the first half an hour or so is actually pretty okay, at times even funny, which is why it’s so infuriating when you keep watching and it just keeps getting worse and worse with each passing nanosecond. It’s almost as if the screenwriter just stopped caring once  Nolte and Short got out of the bank, because after that the movie just inexplicably seems to decide to become a half assed and absolutely cringe worthy bizarre remake of The Odd Couple. I have so many issues regarding this movie it’s hard to decide where to start. Perhaps the worst thing is that despite being a generic buddy movie, Nolte and Short don’t have any chemistry together at all. They’re like oil and water. They just don’t mix. The fault does not lie on Nolte, he is pretty good as the angry white dude that serves the straight man role. No, it’s Short that ruins this movie. His character is entirely pathetic and his quirky characteristics aren’t charming at all and nothing he does is funny. Almost every joke involving him makes you want to cry instead of laughing. I’m not sure if this is a real saying and I’m just paraphrasing it horribly, but when you have to resort to lame cross dressing jokes for cheap laugh (which still bomb), you know your movie is absolute garbage.

And it doesn’t stop there. After the first 50 minutes the movie is basically over, it has reached its natural ending point. But bizarrely instead of wrapping up, it’s this point where they start introducing new plot threads to keep the movie going, like Martin Short’s daughter being so attached to Nick Nolte, who she has only known for like ten minutes, that she decides to run away from her father when Nolte is basically starting to walk to the sunset. Or Nolte and Short kidnapping the daughter a bit later from an orphanage and the trio then flee to Canada, with Short disguised as a woman which leads to some horrible gags when Short fakes being pregnant to avoid the border patrol’s gaze. The whole movie is just a depressing mess. It’s as if they had multiple different scripts piled atop each other and then they accidentally got them all mixed up together and rather than trying to sort them out they just shot the movie from that pile of paper, with the best of their abilities trying to keep everything semi-coherent. I’m fully aware that can’t be the case because I know this was a remake of a French film, but that’s the only explanation I can come up with for why this is so goddamn terrible. I can’t believe this made almost thrice its original budget.

Sigh. It’s been several days since I saw this and it still makes angry that I actually wasted my time watching this movie.


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