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The Tar Heel Thursday. July 17. 19867
RMeinitog Scared9 two fimny cops raeiniieg on empty
By MICHELLE TENHENGEL
"Running Scared," if not for Billy
Crystal and Gregory Hines, would
be running on empty. Along with a
cast of nobodies, Crystal and Hines
create a Xerox copy of "Beverly Hills .
The story is set in Chicago, which
the movie portrays as the dirtiest,
filthiest, cocaine-infested, crime
ridden town ever to be inhabited by
human life. Gregory Hines and Billy
Crystal play Ray and Danny, two of
the coolest desperado-type cops that
Hollywood has ever plopped out.
Yet, Hines and Crystal add their own
invention to each character.
Ray (Hines) and Danny (Crystal)
are the force's two hot-shot detectives
chasing the Godfather of Chicago, a
cocaine-dealing hellion named
However, the police captain
believes that Danny and Ray are
becoming too emotionally involved
with the case, so he puts them on
a vacation. Ray and Danny then go
to Key West, where sun is always
setting and the women are always
beautiful, of course, so we are treated
to about five minutes of Hines and
Crystal riding mopeds with scantily
After Ray and Danny have their
share of fun in the sun, they decide
that Chicago is not the place for them
anymore. "Crime will continue
whether we're there or not," says
Danny to Ray as they ogle at passing
babes. So they buy. a bar in Key West
and head back to Chicago to tell their
After they arrive in Chicago, the
captain tells them that their arch-rival
Gonzalez is back on the streets. Ray
and Danny then decide that this will
be their last big arrest and go out
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with glory. The captain assigns Ray
and Danny two rookies for them to
train, but of course, Ray and Danny
make a mockery of them.
Gonzalez's fatal crime was having
large quantities of cocaine shipped
in from Colombia. Crystal and Hines
quickly catch on, and chase Gonzalez
around Chicago until he masterfully
gets away without his cocaine
and vengefully captures Danny's ex
wife (with whom Danny is still madly
in love) to exchange for the cocaine.
The arena for the exchange is the
government building in Chicago.
Gonzalez has his men surrounding
the place (because, as all good
criminals do, he has captured all the
guards and replaced them with his
men). Ray and Danny cleverly blast
holes through all of Gonzalez's men,
and then save the final rounds of
ammunition for Gonzalez himself.
After ridding Chicago of its No.
. 1 criminal, Ray and Danny decide
that there's no place like home and
that they should stay right in Chicago
where they are needed.
Director Peter Hyams seemed to
have gotten many ideas for this film
from "Beverly Hills Cop." The only
difference between this clone and the
original is that there are two stars
instead of one.
The last third of the film has many
false endings; the audience really does
not know what is going to happen
until it really does happen. For
instance, the viewer does not know
whether Ray and Danny are going
to stay in Chicago or go to Key West,
or if Danny's ex-wife loves him or
is going to marry a dentist that she
has been dating, or if the two rookies
are really better detectives than Ray
and Danny, and the list continues.
The format is basically the same
as "Beverly Hills Cop" same chase
scenes, same sugary plastic music
made for MTV videos, and the same
tanned blondes wearing bikinis the
size of band-aids. Yet, Hines and
Crystal do a fairly decent job with
a script that may have not had much
to start with.
Some of Crystal's impersonations
or perhaps improvisations do merit
some laughs here and there. "Run
ning Scared" is definitely a breed of
movie that's nice to go see when it's
too hot for anything outdoors, but
too boring for indoors.
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