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Today we’re talking about the 1984 movie Romancing the Stone.
This is pretty standard 80’s adventure movie stuff but has a few stand out moments. The story never takes itself seriously and does a great job at giving the female lead the agency in the story. There are a few seriously dated tropes, meek girl becomes fierce, no makeup until romance, etc.
There’s a moment that’s so dated my wife and I burst into laughter. After the main female lead sees a dead body she screams, drops the machete, and the male lead pulls her into a hug to comfort her. Anyone I know in the same frightened or surprised situation wouldn’t have taken being pulled into a hug that well. But it’s an old Hollywood tradition.
The characters all start out really stereotypical but find nice nuances along the way. It’s hard to tell if the character journeys are predictable because they’re cliché, satire, or because it influenced a lot of adventure romance movies over the past thirty some years.
They are however unique and interesting in their motives and personalities. I really enjoyed the drug runner who was a fan of her books.
The dialogue in this movie spanned the entire gamut from pure cheese to deep character development. I wouldn’t say it was ground breaking but it was entertaining.
Visuals and Music
The movie was obviously shot on locations, although not Colombia. It’s beautiful and pretty well shot. There are some camera angles that must have been a pain to film at the time.
The music was epic enough but very 80’s synth.
This movie was fun. It’s nice to see movies with writers where they aren’t tortured artists, bastards, or lusting after teenagers.
The adventure part of the story was grand and small and had everything I love. Including a sexy/fun dance scene. We need to bring those back for adventure movies.
This was a funny, interesting, and overall fun movie. It explored some interesting themes of feminism and romance. It had a “bad guy” that didn’t want to be and a lot of good twists. If you enjoy slightly more adult adventure movies and can handle the 80’s, this is a fun movie.
Final Score: 3.5 Stars
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