Saturday, February 21

Bulletproof (1988)


"Your worst nightmare, Butt-horn!"

Directed by Steve Carver
93 Minutes / RCA/Columbia Home Video / Cropped from 1.85:1 to full screen

Gary Busey as Frank McBain, a hard-nosed L.A. cop with a "too-old-for-this-shit" partner, short-fused boss, and an ass-kickin' pad with a jukebox and hot South American girlfriend. McBain ends up roped into saving U.S. military troops and a super secret tank (codename: Thunderblast) that got squeezed down in Mexico. Why McBain? His nickname is "bulletproof", repeat "bulletproof", as said numerous times throughout. A beret sportin' Henry Silva in yet another villainous terrorist leader role with the serpentine Juan Fernández as his righthand man. The rebel's only have one problem standing between them and the destruction of America. The tank's access codes reside in the head of a female officer hostage (Darlanne Fluegel) that resists her captor's (rather soft) demands for them.

McBain arrives, but is quickly captured upon sneaking into the compound and tied to a huge wooden wire spindle. Minutes later in a hilarious scene the female officer drops a live grenade behind the spindle and McBain makes an escape by simply rolling off into the desert. A search convoy is assembled and following a convenient machine gun ambush McBain and the officer finally acquire the tank. A cheeseball hell of Atari-like tank display graphics and smoke explosions descends upon the terrorist compound, but can McBain and Thunderblast survive the sudden presence of a beefy Russian army chopper?

Yep, it's as ridiculously cliched as it all sounds. A perfect slice of Lethal Weapon era action hokum with a presumably coked-up Busey delivering almost nothing but one-liners and a bevy of B-action movie notables. The leathery L.Q. Jones, gruff William Smith, and a young Danny Trejo show up for a paycheck. Trejo even gets blow'ed up real good after machine gunning from the back of a speeding ice cream truck. Gary does get lost a bit in the chaotic conclusion and by the end he even seems above the Fred Olen Ray influenced claptrap that's boiled up around him. Still, it's all in idiotic fun.

Film: 5/10
VHS Picture: 4/10
VHS Sound: 6/10

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