Bullet Points: Roadhouse 66
Movies of the 1980’s were infamous for having the main character do battle with a bunch of local bullies. I’ve seen it parodied in so many movies and shows but anyone who watches a serious amount of 80’s flicks (like myself) will see right away that it was a recurring theme of the decade. Take on the local bully, get cheered on by the entire town, win the girl; let’s find out if 1984’s Roadhouse 66 checks all the boxes.
Synopsis: An ex-rock and roll star teams up with a naïve young man to set things right in a small town where the local thugs rule unchallenged.
- Discovery: I initially found Roadhouse 66 after one of my normal 30 minute long search through the numerous streaming services that I use. You would think that it would be easy to find a new movie to watch when you’re literally going through hundreds of different films but it wasn’t until I found this one starring Judge Reinhold and Willem Dafoe that I was sold.
- 2 Guys 1 Car: Judge Reinhold’s Beckman Hallsgood Jr. (maybe the most ridiculous name in movie history) meets up with Dafoe’s Johnny Harte after Beckman’s car is destroyed by a trio of local idiots who just start messing with Beckman for no reason. Harte is walking alongside the road and eventually finds Beckman stranded at a gas station. Lucky for them both, Harte knows everything about cars and fixes it enough to get it to the next town.
- Small Town, Big Problems: I know that sounds like the title of a Disney show, but it certainly rings true in this movie. Beckman and Harte run into a hot sisterly duo who become their second priorities beyond getting the car fixed and an old rivalry gets renewed when Hoot and his crew (the guys who wrecked Beckman’s car) become fixated on Beckman and decide to mess up his world. Rockabilly Willem Dafoe is having none of it so he steps in and dukes it out with Bubba from In the Heat of the Night. It’s no Jet Li level of action but it’s better than watching 90% of In the Heat of the Night.
- Car Montage: Nothing significant happened in the 80’s without a montage, so when Beckman, Harte, and the two blonde girls decide to fix up Beckman’s car and run the big race against Hoot we’re given a serious montage that will fulfill all of your desires. It reminded me a lot of the montage from Sly Stallone’s prison movie Lock Up. Just with fewer veiny Italian guys.
- The Big Race: Somehow the race is still a big deal when the only competitors are Hoot and his friends. It’s especially unimpressive when you remember that Hoot’s buddies aren’t trying to win but are just there to ensure that Hoot is victorious. Beckman and Harte find last minute vehicles and enter the race that seemingly has no prize. Who would risk their lives to win a race, most likely destroying their car in the process, for nothing more than bragging rights? Was there a prize that I missed somewhere?
- Vroom Vroom: If you’re like me then you’ll be waiting most of the movie to see a cool-ass car race that will push this movie over the edge. Sadly, the race looks more like it was filmed in slow motion than one that is as death defying as we’re led to believe. Beckman turns out to be the pussy loser instead of the hero and Willem Dafoe looks more heroic than creepy for once in his life. It’s not the most exciting way to end the movie but Roadhouse 66 is no Bullitt.
Slow your roll for these bonus Bullet Points:
- The owner of the local bar/restaurant gives some pretty good advice on men; “find’ em young, treat’ em rough, and tell’ em nothin’.” Amen sister!
- Leave it to Judge Reinhold to lose a race when he’s ahead by half a mile.
- Synchronized sex scenes need to be used more in movies. Just not with Willem Dafoe.
- What kind of lives must the two girls have had when they’re willing to just leave them at the drop of a hat for these two guys? So much for girl power.