Movies From the Black Lagoon:Eye of the Tiger
Movies From the Black Lagoon
Eye of the Tiger - 1986, Rated R
By Tom Doty
Weekly Contributing Writer
A paroled war veteran returns to his hometown and squares off against a gang of vicious bikers in this action-fest from the awesome 80's.
Before we go any further a warning, not unlike the Surgeon General's, is in order. This move does contain gratuitous Gary Busey. His flicks can do you a lot of harm. They are dumb, loud, badly dressed, and strenuously avoids such movie staples as linear plotting and strong characterization. That said they are a lot of fun and do you about as much good as a pounding down a barrel of "Twinkies" or drinking yourself free of a vat of "Jack Daniels."
The film opens with Busey, as Buck, getting set to leave prison. Apparently this is because of overcrowding as he was up for murder. A second convict, Jamie, is also being released despite his history of selling drugs. We are given little back-story but you van figure that Jamie owes Buck for saving his bacon from an attempted shower shanking. That or he was a great Pinochle player.
Buck arrives in his hometown and is immediately taken to the Sheriff, who is not happy to see him. Apparently the lawman is against paroling murderers. Ironic rally he is much more liberal when it comes to letting a biker gang run a "Crack Cocaine" business outside of town.
Buck gets a job with a local construction company as a night watchman but he walks off the gig on his first night to save a nurse who is being assaulted by the resident biker gang. This goes over very badly with the bikers, as well as the Sheriff.
The bikers decide to retaliate by road testing their choppers through Buck's living room. They follow this up by beating on Buck, murdering his wife, and traumatizing his daughter. Big mistake. We all know that Buck is a bad dude but now we learn he was in Vietnam, knows his weapons, and is about to cash in his "you owe me " chip with Jamie.
Buck's revenge starts with stringing some wire at neck level so he can decapitate the riders. This works like a charm and we have lift-off now. Soon Buck is tracking the gag with a tricked out pick-up truck that can fire advanced weaponry, cruise rugged train, and just about anything else you need outside of baking a lasagna.
It all comes down to a death duel at the biker's crack cocaine facility outside of town. Buck gets an assist form his Detective buddy, J.B., who bombs the bikers form the air while Buck handles the ground invasion. You even get a bone-crunching smack down with the head bad guy and a fiery send-off for the corrupt Sheriff. Great stuff folks and it won't even kill a brain cell.
This is one of your better revenge flicks. Busey is fortunate to have a director who knows how to make this stuff look great on camera. He also gets a big assist from William Smith as the bad guy. Yaphet Kotto is also on hand as Busey's law officer buddy. All this and the whole movie adds up to one important life lesson - never throw a hand grenade at the driver of a car if you are clinging to the hood.
Best Line: "This place is crawling with lice and you're acting like it's Mayberry R.F.D."
Tom Doty occasionally emerges from the Lagoon to check his e-mail. If you'd like to get a message to him, write to: firstname.lastname@example.org.