Tuesday, April 21

2nd best fire movie..

Ok, so that's not really a fair title.

I've only really seen 2 fire-based disaster movies.

The Towering Inferno, and Backdraft.

The Towering Inferno was the far superior film, but Backdraft was enjoyable.

Partially because of the AWESOME late 1980s/early 1990's outfits.

Please do not let jeweled jackets and shoulder pads come back.

They make movies funny, but do not make real people look cute.

Anyway, Backdraft follows a family of firefighters in Chicago.

Lots of chest-thumping male bonding, but still kind of endearing.

The two grown up brothers (Kurt Russell and one of the Baldwins..the not cute one) are both scarred by the death of their father.

Kurt acts out by being risky and overly heroic.

The unattractive Baldwin tries to run from his past, only to return and embrace that firefighting is in his blood.

There's a minor love story going on, and the movie also follows a series of mysterious arson cases.

The arson investigator is a firefighter played by Robert De Niro.

So, some things I've learned:

1. Ron Howard can save almost any movie. Even a movie that relies upon the 'acting' skills of William Baldwin and Jennifer Jason Leigh.
2. Robert De Niro plays grumpy but dedicated characters really well.
3. Backdrafts are really scary.
4. Plot is almost superfluous when you have lots of cool fire scenes. Which is probably good, given that the plot in this movie is almost superfluous anyway.

Overall, I liked the fire scenes. I also really liked that the (dead) burn victims are somehow not very scary. The one firefighter who is badly injured is just shown all wrapped in bandages. I really really appreciated that they didn't go for shock value.

Also, no kids died. So I was pleased.