HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
True Don Quixote, The
Babymother
Mitchells vs. the Machines, The
Dora and the Lost City of Gold
Unholy, The
How to Deter a Robber
Antebellum
Offering, The
Enola Holmes
Big Calamity, The
Man Under Table
Freedom Fields
Settlers
Boy Behind the Door, The
Swords of the Space Ark
I Still See You
Most Beautiful Boy in the World, The
Luz: The Flower of Evil
Human Voice, The
Guns Akimbo
Being a Human Person
Giants and Toys
Millionaires Express
Bringing Up Baby
World to Come, The
Air Conditioner
Fear and Loathing in Aspen
Kandisha
Riders of Justice
Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Maki, The
For Those Who Think Young
Justice League: War
Fuzzy Pink Nightgown, The
Plurality
Scooby-Doo! Moon Monster Madness
Night of the Sharks
Werewolves Within
Honeymoon
King and Four Queens, The
Stray Dolls
   
 
Newest Articles
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
   
 
  Crossroads Wild Guitar
Year: 1986
Director: Walter Hill
Stars: Ralph Macchio, Joe Seneca, Jami Gertz, Joe Morton, Robert Judd, Steve Vai, Dennis Lipscomb, Harry Carey Jr, John Hancock, Allan Arbus, Gretchen Palmer, Al Fann, Wally Taylor, Tim Russ, Tex Donaldson, Guy Killum, Allan Graf, Diana Bellamy
Genre: Drama, Fantasy, MusicBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: The legend of bluesman Robert Johnson is well known in music circles, that he sold his soul to the Devil for the tunes he recorded, but then died before he was able to capitalise on his deal, though not before putting twenty-nine songs down on vinyl. There is a rumour, however, that Johnson had one song, the thirtieth, which he was unable to record, and seventeen-year-old Eugene Martone (Ralph Macchio) has been reading up about this for a while now, thinking he has tracked down the man who might just know what that final song sounded like...

Here was a well-meaning attempt to update the blues to the eighties and the kids who might have liked Macchio in The Karate Kid, which picked up a few fans, but the fact that when you mention the star's name you still think of wax on wax off should be some indication of how this flew under the radar of most people. Some grumbled that there was very little authentic about what director Walter Hill thought the music should sound like, ending as it did with a setpiece that came across more heavy metal than anything else, but with Ry Cooder providing the tunes there was at least some degree of talent behind it.

Obviously Macchio didn't play the music himself, but did a pretty good job of matching his fingers to the notes on the soundtrack, yet the fact that he was intended to be the gateway to this experience did speak of a somewhat lightweight approach, and that was trying to ignore Ralph looking fourteen for the whole of the eighties (he was actually in his mid-twenties when he filmed this). His Eugene character, embarrassingly nicknamed Lightnin' Kid, is a classical music student who would rather be playing the blues so when he finds retired harmonica player Willie Brown (Joe Seneca) in a home for the elderly he thinks he has hit the jackpot for this man surely knew Robert Johnson and can tell him all he needs.

It doesn't quite work out that way, and it's significant that we never get to hear that fabled lost song, as Crossroads turned into a road movie where Eugene springs Willie from the hospital and they head off to Mississippi, which along the way is meant to teach the fresh-faced boy about life and offer him something to back up his dexterity on the guitar, a few bittersweet life lessons and whatnot. In effect this means meeting up with Jami Gertz, playing a teenage runaway with a line in criminality who breaks his heart, or so you're supposed to believe, but it's difficult to tell. Really everything leading up to the climactic duel may have been straining to replicate the blues for a young audience, but flimsy was the best word for it.

There were elements of the supernatural here, not enought to qualify it as an out and out horror or fantasy movie, but enough to raise the plot to mythic resonance, except that little of what you see is particularly convincing in the grittier levels intended. Joe Morton appeared as an emissary of the Devil at that crossroads of the title, making what was surely metaphorical that bit too literal, but he did lead the plot towards what it was evidently most proud of, which was that duel. It was played out between Macchio and guitar hero Steve Vai in a Devil Went Down to Georgia fashion, only with electric guitars rather than violins, but this was all done with more humour and less grandiosity in Tenacious D in The Pick of Destiny a couple of decades later. Not helping was that it didn't really sound like the blues as Robert Johnson would have known it, and instead of that timeless quality it was planted right in the middle of eighties cheese.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2426 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Walter Hill  (1942 - )

American director, writer and producer who specialises in action and Westerns. Entered the industry in 1967 as an assistant director on The Thomas Crown Affair, and in 1972 adapted Jim Thompson's novel The Getaway for Sam Peckinpah. Hill made his directing debut in 1975 with the Charles Bronson actioner Hard Times, but it was The Driver that introduced his hard, stylish approach to the genre. The Warriors has become a campy cult favourite, while The Long Riders was his first foray into Westerns, with Geronimo, Wild Bill and the recent TV show Deadwood following in later years.

During the eighties and nineties, Hill directed a number of mainstream hits, including 48 Hours and its sequel, comedy Brewsters Millions and Schwarzenegger vehicle Red Heat, as well as smaller, more interesting pictures like Southern Comfort, Streets of Fire and Trespass. Hill was also producer on Alien and its three sequels, contributing to the story of the middle two parts.

 
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
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: