HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Marjorie Prime
Hotel Salvation
Mangler, The
Shiraz
Mercy, The
Kickboxer: Retaliation
Molly Maguires, The
Party, The
Dante's Peak
Housemaid, The
Vendetta
Brimstone
Boys in the Trees
Once Were Warriors
Red Planet Mars
Blade Runner 2049
Devil's Express
Belko Experiment, The
Flashback
War of the Arrows
One-Trick Pony
Cloverfield Paradox, The
Beach Rats
In Between
Flesh Feast
Gerald's Game
Crocodile Dundee II
Baaghi
Bat People, The
Kingsman: The Golden Circle
   
 
Newest Articles
They're All Messed Up: Night of the Living Dead vs Land of the Dead
The House, Black Magic and an Oily Maniac: 3 from 70s Weird Asia
80s Meet Cute: Something Wild vs Into the Night
Interview with The Unseen Director Gary Sinyor
Wrong Forgotten: Is Troll 2 Still a Thing?
Apocalypse 80s UK: Threads and When the Wind Blows
Movie Flop to Triumphant TV Revival: Twin Peaks and The League of Gentlemen
Driving Force: The Golden Age of American Car Chases
Madness in his Method: Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
   
 
  Big Bus, The Kings Of The RoadBuy this film here.
Year: 1976
Director: James Frawley
Stars: Joseph Bologna, Stockard Channing, John Beck, Ned Beatty, Rene Auberjonois, Sally Kellerman, Richard Mulligan, Ruth Gordon, Bob Dishy, Lynn Redgrave, Stuart Margolin, José Ferrer, Howard Hesseman, Richard B. Shull, Harold Gould, Larry Hagman, Murphy Dunne
Genre: Comedy
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Plans have been unveiled to the press for the journey of the first nuclear powered bus in history. It will travel from New York to Denver non-stop, but even before it's set off, there are problems. The oil industry, concerned about loss of earnings, have set up a saboteur to halt the bus in its tracks, and the laboratory is blown up in a suspicious explosion, injuring the two drivers. The designer, Kitty Baxter (Stockard Channing), reluctantly asks an old flame, Dan Torrance (Joseph Bologna), if he will pilot the bus, but Torrance has been disgraced by a incident in his past - can he pull himself together and drive the bus to success?

Nowadays The Big Bus, which was written by producers Lawrence J. Cohen and Fred Freeman, lives in the shadow of Airplane. You can't mention this film without referring to the fact that it was a disaster movie spoof three years before the hit take-off of Airport movies, and that's a pity, because while this treads the same path, it's easily as funny, and in some parts, funnier than its more famous counterpart. A few people would have you believe The Big Bus is on the whole the more enjoyable film, but I wouldn't quite go that far.

The writers have obviously studied the likes of Airport, The Poseidon Adventure, The Towering Inferno and Earthquake to gather ammunition for their comedy. Ther hero is a man with a past, who has to redeem himself and win back his old girlfriend. What happened was that he was a driver in a coach accident and when they were left stranded, his co-driver ate all the passengers to stay alive. Torrance ate the bus, except for one night when, in a state of delirium, he tried the co-driver's stew and accidentally consumed a foot. "You eat one lousy foot," he laments, "and they call you a cannibal - what a world!"

The passengers on the bus are no less clichéd, and all the better for it. Sally Kellerman and Richard Mulligan play a warring couple on the brink of divorce who are still passionate about each other. Rene Auberjonois is a priest who has lost his faith, Ruth Gordon is a little old lady (what else?) who is escaping the drudgery of her home life, and Bob Dishy is a vet who has been banned for life and has lost his confidence. As in those disaster movies, the tragedy that befalls them helps them to find the courage to be what they want in life, well, except for Ruth Gordon, she stays a little old lady.

There is such a wealth of gags that if one joke doesn't come off, another one swiftly arrives to take its place, delivered with great expertise by a reliable cast. The mood is ridiculous throughout, and it works up a fine line in hilarity. For example, Torrance's co-driver on the big bus is Shoulders O'Brien (John Beck), who admits as the bus is about to pull away that he's called Shoulders because that's where he drives, and also that he's prone to blackouts - but only when the bus is moving. The mock serious tone is ideal, and there's some great dialogue: "Where's your god now old woman?!" demands the priest when he gets a window seat instead of the old lady. But really the film only exists to get to the next gag, which means not much story and an abrupt ending. Music by David Shire. Watch for the lounge bar piano player: "Six months to live!"
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 9257 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
  Andrew Irvine
Ian Phillips
Paul Shrimpton
   

 

Last Updated: