|I love axe murdering.|
Hello folks, welcome back to the Tagline, where it's all Mike Myers movies from the early 90s as far as the eye can see. After going on my Wayne's World bender earlier in the week, and while doing research for my post on the matter, I came across a movie so thoroughly forgotten that it had even slipped MY mind for a moment. This was 1993's So I Married an Axe Murderer, a movie that properly speaking had no right to be good OR entertaining, because it was dopey and simplistic at its core. Despite that, I actually really like it and think it's a really funny movie, in no small part thanks to Myers and also the general enthusiasm of the cast. So let's talk about it! So I Married an Axe Murderer was the first movie Mike Myers made after Waynes World 2, and it cuts a similar tone despite a very different premise. In this film Myers plays a beat poet named Charlie who lives in San Francisco. He seems really terrible, but people like him, so maybe I just don't know what a GOOD beat poet is like. Charlie has lousy luck with the ladies, mostly because he is paranoid and a commitophobe, constantly finding reasons or forming theories about reasons why his girlfriends aren't right for him. Around this time he meets Harriet, a local butcher who he immediately takes a liking to. The only catch is that he begins to suspect that she might be a black widow, as some of her strange behavior, along with a tabloid story about "Mrs. X" gets his imagination really running. Charlie has his friend Tony, who is a cop, looking into it. Tony himself has his own problems, centered around how disenchanted he is with actual police work, and how boring it is. Basic premise established, kind of a mixed bag of rom-com cliches along with some other thoroughly random bits, but really the random bits are what makes the movie entertaining.
For instance, Mike Myers actually has two roles in this film. In addition to playing Charlie, he is also Charlie's eccentric very Scottish father. There is an extended scene toward the beginning of the movie where he rants extensively about the secret society of the five richest people in the world who rule everything. One of them apparently is Colonel Sanders I guess? Even though he's dead, I guess he was still exerting some other-worldly influence through his buckets of chicken. Anyway, during this scene Anthony LaPaglia (the actor portraying Charlie's friend Tony) is laughing at Charlie's dad's rant, but I think he is actually just cracking up while Mike Myers acts like an ornery, crazy, old Scotsman. The whole movie kind of plays like that for better or worse. It feels a little less like a big screen feature and more like a series of high quality skits with a bunch of actors playing opposite Mike Myers, including a large number of pretty excellent cameos. My favorite of those is probably with Phil Hartman, who plays an Alcatraz tour guide nicknamed "Vicky" who tells a story about a guy having his eyes gouged out in prison, and then people peeing in the "ocular cavities" all in a deadpan while Charlie and Tony talk about girls. The whole scene is awkward and funny in a way I have a tough time describing.
So everyone is working together well, and the movie is generally energized by the talent on hand, but it just never really feels like a coherent movie, which is I think why it was received so poorly. The movie is kind of all over the place, trying to fit in lots of cameos and divergences which while very funny don't necessarily serve the main plotline, and tend to muddle the pacing of the film overall. It ends up feeling like there's too much going on, and it isn't all leading towards a single conclusion. It ultimately DOES but then you end up feeling sort of like a lot of the ancillary characters and plot points didn't really need to be there at all. If I seem to be telling two stories about this movie, it's because I am very much of two minds about it. While the movie is inherently flawed in a lot of ways, I still find the actual experience of watching it very satisfying, just as in other circumstances I watch a movie that on paper should be enjoyable and good, but I just find nothing to really like about it.
As a financial failure that was also met with extremely mixed critic reviews (and also with a really cumbersome title) So I Married an Axe Murderer has been thoroughly forgotten by essentially the entire world. It's one of those movies that Comedy Central used to play all the time and so as a consequence I've seen it about a billion times, but no one really remembers it. I think it's a really fun movie and you should check it out if you get the chance, if only to marvel at how very much anchored in 1993 it is. Now watch Anthony Lapaglia fail to keep a straight face, and I'll see you on Thursday!
|He had what we in the system called a "bitch"|
|hard hitting cop drama.|