Passenger 57 (1992): Breakdown by Rantbo
DIE HARD on a plane and at a state fair, then back on a plane again.
You know the scenario. When terrorists attack! This time, it’s at 35,000 feet and the only man able(willing) to do anything about it is Wesley Snipes. Because Bruce Willis was busy shooting THE LAST BOYSCOUT. But these aren’t just any terrorists, these guys are lead by Charles Rane (Michael Bolton), whom Snipes must stop from, not only escaping, but also from killing stewardess Marti Slayton (Michael Jackson).
PASSENGER was an obvious DIE HARD archetype, meant to rope in the fans of the one-man-versus-many-in-a-small-area-starting-with-no-weapons formula and it delivers pretty much what you could hope for. Snipes is(or at least, was) a fun guy to watch. His lackadaisical charm and good looks segues well into a stoic bug-eyed badass and when he kicks mother fuckers in the jaw, you really believe that shit must have hurt.
While I would never consider the film to be even as good as the worst Die Hard, it still has some entertainment value. It was the first (at least that as far as I can tell) of the Die Hard Sub-Genre “…On A Plane” films, and in being pretty mediocre, it allowed for it’s knock-offs (of the knock-off) room to improve on the situation, with more talented casts and better writing (EXECUTIVE DECISION, AIRFORCE ONE). And though I could be wrong, as my memory is poor, I do think that 57 has the superior blood and gore. So, it still retains something to be proud of.
The only real gripe I have, aside from the “been there, seen it done WAY better” syndrome, was the music. Somebody went apeshit with the fucking bass guitar. Seriously, what the fuck? Practically every scene that doesn’t feature Snipes kicking the shit out of somebody, has a loud-ass layover of shitty bass-fueled jazz music. And I’m a big fan of jazz music in Action film; HARD BOILED anyone? So in order for me to not only notice the mood music enough to have my attention taken away from the dialogue, but also get pissed-off about the amount and volume, is something odd that should have never made it through the sound editing. But, all-in-all, PASSENGER 57 is an OK flick, and if you’re into DIE HARD and Die Hard formulaic flicks, this should prove to be an entertaining enough 90 minutes and change. Though if a choice must be made between the two, I’d easily still go for AIRFORCE ONE. “GET OFF MY PLANE!”
[HOW BAD-ASS IS THE MAIN CHARACTER?]
Wesley Snipes is Undercover Security Officer John Cutter is Passenger 57
“Tell me you’re good at this.”
“I’m the best.”
Nothing really special to report. Cutter is your average, everyday, burnt-out cop that can’t help but risk his life for people under the threat of terrorist scum. He’s very good at some type of martial arts, that deals with power kicks and bobbing back and forth like a boxer. But, I wouldn’t call it kickboxing. Snipe-Fu, perhaps. ‘Cuz it’s the same shit he does in every movie he fights someone in. So, Cutter kills some terrorists, saves some unfortunate looking woman and gets in a brawl with Michael Bolton’s Evil Twin. Pretty cut and dry.
[THE BODY COUNT: 19]
Cutter cuts down a disappointing 5, meanwhile the terrorists kill a sort-of impressive 14 airline guests, cops and county fair attendants. Pretty lackluster, considering how many opportunities there were for civilian and terrorist massacres.
[MOST SATISFYING DEATH]
Whilst trying to shoot Cutter in his back in the middle of a state fair, Bolton’s henchman misses completely and tags a clown instead.
Take that, you goofy looking fuck!
[DUDESWEAT AND MACHISMO]
“That’s what I admire about you. Even though you were being hit on by an absolutely beautiful woman, you are determined to maintain your vow of chastity.”
Wesley performs some shirtless Snipe-Fu, but all the while he is thinking about his dead girlfriend. And he’s working out alone and not in the presence of other gym-jocks. So, I can’t really count it. Even straight guys take off their shirts sometimes when home alone. He does, however, take a liking (as does the villain) to the unfortunate looking woman lead. Who, as I mentioned above, looks just like late-eighties Michael Jackson.
[EXPLOITATION AND MISOGYNY]
Both Snipes and Bolton show the “flight-attendants” one for, with some backhanded lessons.
Bring the peanuts faster next time sky-cunt, or you’ll get more of the same!
Also, on a personal note, there is a moment in which Cutter refers to Michael as a stewardess and she corrects him, but quick: “FLIGHT—ATTENDANT.” Yes. There is a VERY great distinction. How dare he suggest with his barbarian chauvinistic terminology that these woman are glorified walking soda-machines with tits! And just because they are, is no excuse. Look, giving something a euphemistic name change, doesn’t change what something is, it just covers it up with bovine-droppings. These people are airplane waiters and let them be happy with that.
[EPIC MOMENT AND BEST ONE-LINER]
[flashvideo filename=videos/P57.wmv.FLV /]
Copyright held by Warner Bros. Pictures
Epic Moment = That Camera Zoom.
[THE MORAL OF THE STORY]
Elizabeth Hurley was a FOX! Oh, and of course, always bet on black, mother fucker!
[THE CHECKLIST: 16 outta 25]
[ ] Athlete(s) Turned “Actor”
[X] Clinging To The Outside Of A Moving Vehicle
[X] Crotch Attack
[X] Dialogue Telling Us How Bad-Ass The Main Character(s) Is/Are
[X] Ending Featuring An Ambulance, A Blanket or A Towel
[ ] Factory/Warehouse
[X] Giant Explosion(s)
[ ] Heavy Artillery
[X] Improvised Weapon(s)
[X] Macho Mode(s) Of Transportation
[X] Main Character Sports Facial Accessory(s)
[X] Manly Embrace(s)
[ ] Notorious Stunt-Man Sighting
[X] Passage(s) Of Time Via Montage
[ ] Politically Fueled Plot Point(s)
[X] Senseless Destruction Of Property
[X] Shoot Out(s) and/or Sword Fight(s)
[ ] Slow-Motion Finishing Move(s)/Death(s)
[X] Stupid Authoritative Figure(s)
[X] Substance Usage and/or Abuse
[X] Tis The Season [Christmas via Flashback]
[ ] Torture Sequence(s)
[ ] Unnecessary Sequel
[X] Vehicle Chase(s)
[ ] Vigilante Justice