Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Plain Clothes (1988)

Plain ClothesI discovered this movie on cable quite by accident about 25 years ago and fell in love with it. The quirky screenplay by Scott Frank ('Get Shorty', 'Little Man Tate') under the skilled and well-thought-out direction of Martha Coolidge ('Real Genius', 'Valley Girl') made for a tight, yet low-key and funny-as-all-get-out movie that stands head and shoulders above a lot of the other films of its day that seemed somehow to garner more unwarranted attention.

The cast, ranging from relative unknowns Arliss Howard and Suzy Amis to screen legend Robert Stack, do an astounding turn in this movie, neither taking themselves too seriously, nor poking fun at the source material. As Martha Coolidge says about the film in her commentary, 'it's a good, fun romp!' It's sad that this got lost in the shuffle during its theatrical release, but fortunately, it's now on Blu-Ray and DVD.

The transfer is very good (full-screen, unfortunately, but a very good one), the sound and picture are rich and full, and the only other things I would've liked for this disc to have would be either the 'director's cut' or at least some deleted scenes (which Ms Coolidge talks about in great detail), and an isolated soundtrack to hear the songs performed by The Knack. Beggars cannot be choosers, especially ones as lucky to have a little-known film get not only a digital release, but also an insightful director's commentary, so please don't take that as a complaint. This release could've had ~no~ bonus features and I would still own it on Blu-Ray.

Do yourself a favour and take a trip back to a better time. It's well worth it.

This was a simple but funny movie that we had on VHS tape recorded off TV. We have been looking for it for years and were pleased to find it on Amazon.

Buy Plain Clothes (1988) Now

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