Pin It

Caribbean Caper 

by Mark Savlov

The man behind the Rush Hour franchise proves that dropping sly nods in Alfred Hitchcock's direction does not necessarily a fine caper make. While a couple of references to the master's 1955 classic To Catch a Thief crop up in this inane-yet-not-unpleasant bit of balderdash, the script, from Paul Zbyszewski (whose only previous credit, fittingly, is on the television program The Weakest Link), is high-grade hokum, a cookie-cutter mishmash of Pierce Brosnan's minor-league Cary Grantisms and plenty of shots of Salma Hayek's bosom and backside. It's as if the essence of the heist genre had been filtered through the mindset of Maxim magazine, complete with lingering looks at the various actresses lounging around in thongs and sarongs while the former 007, bless his Irish heart, does his best to play the scampy rogue with a heart of gold.

What's not to love? For starters there's the threadbare nature of the plot, which has Brosnan's master thief Max Burdett and his accomplice/bedmate Lola Cirillo (Hayek) hightailing it to the Caribbean to spend the rest of their days frolicking in the sunshine after pulling off that fabled last big job. As it happens, they've perennially made a fool of FBI agent Stan Lloyd (Harrelson, hamming it up enough to make a kosher Jew nervous), and this time agent Lloyd comes looking for them. How, exactly, he tracks the pair to the Bahamas, where they live in mild island splendor, is never explained. You'd think this pair of ace jewel thieves could cover their tracks better, but no, one moment they're making an ass of the FBI, and the next Lloyd wanders back into their lives to tell them he's on to their scam, and they'd better mind their p's and q's.

The scam in question, however, hasn't even occurred to the otherwise occupied duo, who spend their days adding a deck on to their beachfront property and sparring over the whole marriage issue. It's up to Harrelson's oddly unprofessional agent, then, to tip them off to the fact that a titanic cruise ship containing a mega-carat Napoleonic diamond is about to drop anchor in the bay - a perfect target for the egocentric Max and an equally ideal piece of bait for agent Lloyd to use as a snare against his wily adversaries.

The plotline is ridiculous on ever-changing levels, but Brosnan, at least, acquits himself admirably. His Max may be a clich & eacute; of the first rank, but it's also just as clear he's having a ball playing the featherweight role. I suspect a lot of that has to do with Ratner's choice of locations: What actor wouldn't enjoy such an admittedly silly role set amidst the eye-popping splendor of crystalline beachheads and azure, sun-kissed skies? (OK, I'll admit it's difficult to see John Turturro doing anything in the role but melting in a frizzy-haired pool of sunburned goo, but Brosnan? Not a problem.)

Possibly the ideal film to more or less ignore while lounging poolside and sipping Jamaican rum, After the Sunset is 100-proof pap that's as inoffensively asinine as it is eager to explore the wonders of diving into Hayek's admittedly impressive cleavage.

Publication date: 11/18/04

  • Pin It

Latest in News

  • OK, Hold Your Nose
  • OK, Hold Your Nose

    Everything you need to know before Election Day
    • Sep 22, 2016
  • Base of Support
  • Base of Support

    Polling local leaders and opinion-makers about presidential politics
    • Sep 22, 2016
  • The Messenger
  • The Messenger

    Local leaders weigh in on how Donald Trump's campaign has impacted racism in America
    • Sep 22, 2016
  • More »


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu | Fri
Spokane Social Sketch

Spokane Social Sketch @ Boots Bakery & Lounge

Last Sunday of every month, 2-5 p.m.

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Mark Savlov

  • Horror-ified History
  • Horror-ified History

    Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter turns the storied president into an axe-wielding badass
    • Jun 26, 2012
  • Take Two

    XXX is dead; long live XXX. Xander Cage, the former super-agent/bad-ass of 2002's Rob Cohen-directed XXX, has been killed in the line of kickassery, and so NSA spookster Augustus Gibbons (a scarified Samuel L. Jackson) recruits one of his o
    • May 5, 2005
  • Take Two

    It's disconcerting to watch Bruno Ganz's portrayal of Adolf Hitler, which ricochets from moments of quiet introspection to lunatic flights of paranoiac ranting and back again in the dead space between heartbeats. Ganz is perhaps best known
    • Apr 28, 2005
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • To Kill the Black Snake

    Historic all-tribes protest at Standing Rock is meant to stop the destruction of the earth for all
    • Sep 8, 2016
  • Murrow's Nightmare

    Debate moderators need to be much more than an onstage prop to make our democracy work
    • Sep 15, 2016
  • More »

Top Tags in
News & Comment

election 2016

trail mix


green zone


Readers also liked…

© 2016 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation