Sunday, May 8, 2011

Stone Cold

Stone Cold
D: Craig R. Baxley

Claim to fame: Aw, shit, isn't that that fucking Brian Bosworth movie?!

Suspended Alabama cop goes undercover for the FBI, infiltrating an out of control biker club seeking revenge for a member's imprisonment.

For those of you who weren't football fans in the '80s, "Boz" was what is referred to as a draft bust. A standout linebacker for the Oklahoma Sooners, his accomplishments seemed a little less impressive after he tested positive for 'roids. Drafted in the first round by the Seattle Seahawks (after sending letters to some other teams informing them that he'd refuse to sign if they picked him), he showed up for camp in a helicopter and immediately sued the NFL for the right to wear his college number, 44 (uniform number series are based on position, and he lost). His mediocre career was cut short by injuries, and he's remembered most for his antics, and for boasts he'd never lived up to (like that he'd "shut down" another young player, Oakland's Bo Jackson, in a Seattle-Oakland Monday night game--highlights of Bo's 221 yard breakout performance are occasionally shown to this day). Following his two year football career, he went into acting. Having learned nothing from Joe Namath, he started with a biker flick.
Like "C.C. & Company," in fact, this one opens in a grocery store. In this case, it's being robbed by a too-old looking street gang. Boz, looking like the gay Road Warrior, shows up to kick some ass and thwart the robbery in a scene with exactly the cliche action and "tension building" music you'd expect in such a film--right down to the cops arriving just as he finishes dispatcing the bad guys, and the PD brass mentioning that Bosworth's character is a suspended cop. Things do not improve from here.
Cut to the bikers. The unnamed club is shown at a party, doing insanely ridiculous shit like shooting cans of beer (Dixie brand beer, no less) off of each other, William Tell style, in one case with a fucking Uzi. In a flashback, a member's killing spree is shown; he's convicted and gets 45 years, and shortly afterward the gang blows up the judge in his fishing boat. They're also out to get the DA, who's now running for governor and has also appealed the 45 year sentence, seeking the death penalty (can a prosecutor even fucking do this?!)
The suspended cop turns out to be Joe Huff, who has busted more bikers than anyone in Alabama history. He's also a complete caricature who wears only the hippest in 1991 jock wear (except when he's walking around in a speedo), nails only the hottest fake-titted broads, has that happy-go-lucky tough guy attitude, and lets his pet kimodo dragon wander around his condo. Huff is asked by FBI agents (Richard Gant and Sam McMurray, who's the comic relief) to spend his suspension across the state line, working for them and infiltrating the bikers in Mississippi. Clearly they need a man of such experience, one familiar with such biker argot as "prospect" and, uh, well that's about it. Huff agrees, and goes undercover under the equally stupid name John Stone.
Huff, now Stone, heads out to meet him some bikers at the titty bar, which, nipples aside, looks straight out of a Miami Vice episode. Gang VP & enforcer Ice (a doing-his-best William Forsythe) is not impressed, calling Stone a "grown up Bab Bam" in one of the three good lines in the picture. The two get nose to nose, but an unrelated fight breaks out. Stone saves Ice's ass, but the help is not appreciated. Gang member Gut (Evan James) is impressed, though, and Stone has himself a toady.
Gut brings Stone to the next party, and whaddya know, Stone turns out to be better than everyone at just about everything... If you guessed that leader Chains (Lance Henriksen) would take a shine to Stone but Ice would voice some doubts, congratulate yourself for not being retarded. Chains does, however, call a chick he knows in state PD and ask her do do a background check... We learn of the gang's plan to kill the DA.
Rather quickly, Stone is asked to prospect, and agrees. Part of the initiation is to kill a South American (I dunno, maybe they mentioned a country) drug dealer who crossed them. The SA is picked up by the FBI, and his ear tattoo is copied onto a cadaver's ear, which is removed as proof of SA's "death." He's then simply put on a plane and told not to return. This couldn't possibly come back to bite them on the ass, right?
Desperate for kill-the-DA money, the bikers have been encroaching on mob turf. Nancy (Arabella Hulzbug), Chains' old lady, is accosted by a captain and his crew, and saved by Stone. In retaliation, Eyetalians toss a grenade at dorky biker Tool (Tony Pierce), blowing him up real good but not killing him.
The bikers strike back, and bring the mob boss the grenade-throwing captains head --and a proposition. Via the FBI, Stone gets his hands on $1 million worth of P2P (the kind used to make speed, not Playstation devices), which the gang offers to sell to the mobsters. Unless I missed it, they never explain what P2P is; this may be because they wanted to avoid having the viewer wonder why bikers would be selling a crank ingredient to the Italian mafia. The deal is a go.
Either things happen really fast in Mississippi politics or this movie has a fucked up time sequence, because the DA has now been elected and sworn in as governor. To protect the courthouse from the bikers, he calls in the National Guard to seal off the town. The MC kidnaps and kills two Guardsmen to "send a message," which is where things get too heavy for Nancy, and for Gut, whose fingers are ground off in motorcycle spokes (not shown) as punishment. Stone works on Nancy, looking to turn her. (At about this time I noticed with disappointment that there were a good 40 minutes left.) He leaves their lunch date to meet with the feds, and is spotted by Ice. After a chase that includes lots of explosions and dead cops, Ice crashes and gives Stone his final words: "Fuck you, cop." No one in the gang knows what happened, but the call from their cop friend comes in--Stone might, in fact, be a cop. It's Nancy who takes the call, however, and she sits on the imformation.
The deal with the mafia types goes off, but Chains has taken over the deal. Not only is Stone cut out of his end, but the RV point is moved, preventing the FBI bust. Not to worry, though: Stone later keeps the dope off the streets by SHOOTING THE TRAILER OFF OF THE BOBTAIL WITH HIS PISTOL, blowing it (and the Eye-ties) up.
The bikers use their drug money to buy a helicopter from a crooked military guy at a National Guard post or over in Ft Rucker or someplace... Stone returns to find that Nancy has told Chains that he's a cop, and that the "dead, earless" SA from earlier has returned. Chains kills them both anyway, but has bigger plans for Huff. He'll be strapped to a bomb and thrown out of the helicopter.... Fuck this. Chains gets into the courthouse disguised as a priest, and the rest of the bikers begin a seige. Chains delivers a decent line about his father's last words ("Don't, son, that gun is loaded!") and kills the governor... Lots of alleged action, including the deaths of most of the bikers and a cycle crashing into and blowing up the helicopter (a chopper on chopper crash, geddit?)... Huff finally beats the crap out of Chains, who then grabs for a gun and is shot and killed by the Sam McMurray guy. End.

This not only stars a complete douchebag but was helmed by a stuntman whose other directing credits were some A-Team episodes. The plot is not only ridiculous but was used in about two dozen cop movies in the 80s and 90s. Any indicators of time passage are all over the place and make no sense. Though Henriksen is a good action movie bad guy and Forsythe is always dependable, they sure as hell aren't enough to save this clunker. McMurray's role was probably trimmed to cut back on the comedy, but pushing him into the background makes the ending suck even more. This isn't even entertainingly bad, it's just a complete bore.
Out of five choppers, this gets a Sportster that some tool got his daddy to buy him after seeing Sons of Anarchy a few times, now collecting dust in the garage because he beat it to shit until he got bored with it.

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