Dub Cee Reviews: Judgement Night (1993) by Reader Request

Director: Stephen Hopkins

Writer(s): Lewis Colick and Jere Cunningham (story), Lewis Colick (screenplay)

Ok, this movie stars: Denis Leary, Jeremy Piven, Stephen Dorff, Cuba Gooding Jr, and Emilo Estavez. I could not believe I had never heard of it. How could it have so many names, a couple of which I am huge fans of, and I totally whiff on its existence. Then, I watched the movie. And suddenly I totally understood why this movie has been hiding.

Suppose I should sum up the plot of this movie. Four suburanite friends, (Estavez, Gooding, Dorff, and Piven), load up in an RV to take in a boxing match. The freeway is jammed, they are going to miss the fight. So they take a shortcut and in up in the wrong part of town. Sound familiar? Yea, cause about a million movies have used this same exact setup. The witness a murder, bad guy says no witnesses even though they were in near darkness and could not be Identified in a million years. The yuppies escape and “the race is one with pride in the backstretch. Heartache, goin to the inside. My tears are a holdin’ back there, tryin’ not to fall.” Erm, sorry.

Where they running? Who knows? We learn later than the cops never respond to calls in this area. They do not know anybody and have no clue how to get back to the freeway or any other way for that matter.

My biggest complaint is the general decision making by the characters. Trying to bluff negotiate your way out of trouble with a gang you just watched kill a guy in the middle of the street? Great idea, let me know how that turn out for you. Oh, damn, got your ass tossed off the building and ended up a splatter on the sidewalk. I guessed wrong there. Note the sarcasm here kiddies.

Next, the remaining three friends eventually say to hell with running lets fight. After a quick skirmish they kill the bad guy from the Mask and then run away some more. So let me get this straight, run and friend dies. Fight, get bad guy’s gun, kill the bad guy, have the ambush set…so we run some more? M’kay. Sure, why not. Gooding and Emilo have an argument about kids and big balls…akward, really. I found all four of the “hero” characters bland. Estavez can pull off the psycho I think with his eyes, I could see it. But the bad ass…no, just no. He was actually better in the crapfest known as “Freejack”. Leary was solid as the gang leader Fallon. He even gives a speech that I considered for my top 5 favorite speech list. (Yet somehow I still whiffed on his speech in Suicide Kings….w-th!)

Grade: D

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3 Responses to “Dub Cee Reviews: Judgement Night (1993) by Reader Request”

  1. chainsawcheerleader Says:

    I like how at the end of the poster it says that Judgment Night is on videocassette and laser disc. That makes 1993 feel so long ago when it really isn’t. I am surprised that I haven’t seen this. I watched a lot of crap in the early 90’s. Especially if it had Denis Leary. What the hell ever happened to Emilio Estevez? The last thing I ever saw him in was The Mighty Ducks. I know the 90’s loved him but since then he’s done like three crappy movies and several crappy made for tv movies.

  2. I love this movie. Okay…scratch that. I love that this movie exists. I’ve seen it…and I’m pretty sure your review sums it up perfectly. BUT…I will say this movie has one of the greatest soundtracks EVER. 90’s rap groups paired with 90’s rock groups. Helmet and House of Pain, Teenage Fanclub and De La Soul, Living Colour and Run DMC, Biohazard and Onyx, Slayer and Ice T, Faith No More and Boo Ya T.R.I.B.E., Sonic Youth and Cypress Hill, Mudhoney and Sir Mix Alot, Therapy and Fatal, Pearl Jam and Cypress Hill…and the cream of the crop…Del tha Funkee Homosapien and Dinosaur Jr. The movie might suck…but the soundtrack is epic.

  3. Take away Leary and the soundtrack and this movie shouldn’t even exist. Those two things are all it had going for it.

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