Review: [In Memory of Tony Scott 1944-2012] REVENGE (1990) | Casey's Movie Mania | Movie Reviews, Features & Others

Friday, 24 August 2012

Review: [In Memory of Tony Scott 1944-2012] REVENGE (1990)

RATING: 2.5/5

After back-to-back, big-budget blockbuster success of TOP GUN (1986) and BEVERLY HILLS COP II (1987), director Tony Scott returns to a small-scale picture that recalls his feature-length debut, THE HUNGER (1983). Except of course, his little thriller here in REVENGE, isn't about vampire.

Adapted from Jim Harrison's novella (which was once a hot property among some of the top directors in Hollywood including Sydney Pollack, Jonathan Demme, and Walter Hill), REVENGE begins with retiring U.S. Navy pilot Cochran (Kevin Costner) heading out to Mexico to visit his old friend, Tibey (Anthony Quinn), who is a powerful crime boss. Cochran falls in love at first sight the moment he meets Tibey's beautiful young wife, Miryea (Madeleine Stowe). At first he tries to ignore her irresistible charm, but in turn, she finds way to pursue him relentlessly until one night during Tibey's party, both of them end up secretly make love. Even though both of them know their infidelity will cause them a lot of serious trouble, they still can't resist lustful temptations against each other.

Finally they get caught in the act by Tibey and his bodyguards during their weekend getaway at Cochran's cabin. They kill Cochran's faithful dog, beat him pretty bad and slash a knife across Miryea's face. After they torched the cabin and dumped Cochran on the road to die, they take Miryea away to a brothel where she is given shots of heroin.

Meanwhile, Cochran is lucky enough to be saved by a kind Mexican and subsequently nursed back to health. After he is fully recovers, he resolves to seek revenge against Tibey and also finds out what's happened to Miryea.

Like THE HUNGER, REVENGE is a slow-burner that takes its leisure time to get to the point. At times, the movie also tends to get too talky. As a crime thriller, there's nothing really much to recommend here but the movie mostly works because of Kevin Costner and Madeleine Stowe's sizzling chemistry. Their explicit love scenes alone are worthwhile enough (and especially their scenes aren't actually rehearsed or choreographed in any way before shooting!), while Tony Scott's stylish direction is eye-catching as usual. His brilliant use of different lighting, warm colors and lurid amber filters are visually engaging that you can almost feel the scorching heat of the sun-drenched Mexico.

Acting-wise, Kevin Costner displays a perfectly brooding look here, even though his frequently deadpan expression brings little gravitas to his character. Madeleine Stowe is stunning as usual, while veteran Anthony Quinn is seemingly sleepwalks throughout his performance.

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