Monday, March 24, 2014

F/X - 1986, F/X2 - 1991

F/X is one of those films that isn't a masterpiece, but was a whole hell of a lot of fun, and seems to have gotten lost in the annuls of time for no good reason. I suspect it's just because it was a film from the 1980s, and it seems like if it wasn't a megalithic hit in the 80s, it's often forgotten, which is a shame. I remember catching this film on cable at some point when I was in high school, showing back-to-back with the sequel, F/X2, and thinking that this was a fun film to catch.

Rollie Tyler is a special effects man who's cut his teeth on films such as "I Dismember Mama," and he's hired on by the Department of Justice to help fake a murder for someone about to go into the witness protection program. And that's about the end of what I want to tell you about the plot.

It's fun to see a movie about movie making that isn't, well, Robert Altman's "The Player." F/X takes the special effects business as a springboard to leap into a fairly fun and sophisticated thriller, despite the quasi-low budget feel the whole film has. It's got a cast of people you've mostly never heard of (except Brian Dennehy! Who's awesome! Because he's Brian Dennehy!), you don't know the director, you don't know the writers, but it's still a fun little Saturday afternoon film, assuming you can get past the 1980s made-on-the-cheap feel. The film is even subtitled "Murder By Illusion!" And the second one was subtitled "The Deadly Art Of Illusion." So here you go - your next Saturday afternoon double header. F/X and F/X2. (There was also apparently a TV series for a couple of seasons, but I never saw that, so I can't speak to its quality.)

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