3,000 Miles to Graceland

By Adam Lippe

3000-miles-to-graceland-11If you have not seen 3,000 Miles to Graceland, please do, or don’t, depending on your sensibility. I should note a few things about it. First, it is a heist film (oddly enough, it seems to rip off the terrible Reindeer Games), in which the heist occurs in the first twenty minutes, but the film continues for another hour and 40 minutes. We are supposed to sympathize with Kurt Russell’s character, who just participated in an Elvis clad robbery which netted $3 million but resulted in the killing of what seemed like 50 or more innocent cops. Kevin Costner kills most of them, but why that makes Russell the good guy is beyond me. The security at the casino seemed kind of lax during the robbery (compare this to the remake of Ocean’s 11), but then all of a sudden an entire police precinct’s worth of security shows up.

The no-brainers: all the women are sex crazed and love outlaws, the black guy dies first, anybody who shows any sense is killed immediately, people who seem to be at least 3 to 4 states away will no doubt run into each other. A constant in the film, Courtney Cox plays Russell’s lover who sleeps with him 5 minutes after meeting him, with her son in the room! Later she double crosses him at least five times, one time in which she leaves her son with Russell! Any time that Costner needs to find Russell, not only does he know where he is (he is never told), he can get there much faster. It’s like a Friday the 13th film. Russell is continuously being tricked by Cox, and yet decides to trust her, just because she breaks down and cries in front of him. There are so many other problems, even considering this was supposed to be a stupid trashy movie, that I could go on for pages (bad blue screen work too). Least of all, it’s slow and unentertaining. Even though it’s more than 2 hours long, it feels choppy, meaning at some point, this was probably hours longer.

The only good touch is a sly in-joke via a road sign. The road sign says Jackpot, Nevada: 2 miles and Twin Falls, Idaho: 44 miles. Jackpot and Twin Falls, Idaho are two films by the Polish brothers, who hopefully have distanced themselves from the director.

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By Adam Lippe

Whenever there’s a genre parody or ode to a specific era of films, such as Black Dynamite’s mocking of Blaxploitation films or Quentin Tarantino’s Death Proof, the second half of Grindhouse, the danger is that the film might fall into the trap of either being condescending without any particular insight, or so faithful that it becomes the very flawed thing it is emulating.

Black Dynamite has nothing new to say about Blaxploitation films, it just does a decent job of copying what an inept [...]

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Featured Quote (written by me)

On Cold Fish:

Though the 16 year old me described the 1994 weepie Angie, starring Geena Davis as a Brooklyn mother raising her new baby alone, as “maudlin and melodramatic,” Roger Ebert, during his TV review, referring to the multitude of soap-operaish problems piling up on the titular character, suggested that it was only in Hollywood where Angie would get a happy ending. “If they made this movie in France, Angie would have shot herself.”

Well Cold Fish was made in Japan, where Angie would have shot herself and that would have been the happy ending.