1981-1990CrimeHal AshbyThrillerUSA

Hal Ashby – 8 Million Ways to Die (1986)

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“The screenplay is a mess, with enough plot holes to drive the latest-model SUV through. Still, the film is colorful and chock-full of energy and several standout moments. It ain’t perfect, yet it’s far from boring.
The bottom line here is whether 8 Million Ways to Die is worth seeing. It is. A guilty pleasure of mine for over sixteen years, it can provide a whopping good time if you’re willing to overlook its many flaws, and just let the innate craziness of it all work on you. Nothing in it is the least bit logical; then again, there’s not a whole lot about it that’s stiff — there’s an aliveness, a pulsating sense of sleaze and profaneness permeating throughout it that can be quite liberating…
Forget the logical lapses and just revel in its quintessential profaneness.”
— Jack Sommersby, efilmcritic.com

This film is both the apex and the nadir of the ‘eighties American crime-thriller cycle inspired by the success of Miami Vice. Populated by dipso cops, coked-up pushers and doomed whores, all doing sleazy things in sleazy places to the pounding beat of a synthesizer, these films crashed and burned as audiences stayed away in droves.
Twenty years on, the likes of 8 Million Ways to Die and To Live and Die in LA are joining fellow box-office disaster Scarface as post-modern cults in an era naively nostagic for the decade that good-taste forgot but those of us who suffered through it remember only too well.


Language:English, Spanish
Subtitles:No English Finnish, etc sub/idx

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