BLACK DOG Add To My Top 10

Smokey Revisited

Content -3
Quality
None Light Moderate Heavy
Language        
Violence        
Sex        
Nudity        

Release Date: May 01, 1998

Starring: Patrick Swayze, Meatloaf, Randy Travis, Gabriel Casseus, Brian Vincent, Graham Beckel, & Charles Dutton

Genre: Action

Audience: Older teenagers & adults

Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 89 minutes

Address Comments To:

Content:

(B, AbAb [[[{{{Please remember that AC = anti-Communist}}}]]], LLL, VVV, A, D) Light moral worldview of man trying to save his family including a strong anti-Christian character; 20 obscenities, 5 profanities & several blasphemous Bible quotations; extensive action violence including chase scenes, explosions, gunfire with some bloodshed, fighting, threats with guns, & numerous car & truck crashes; no sex; no nudity; brief alcohol use; and, smoking.


Summary:

Patrick Swayze portrays a macho trucker in the country-fried action-adventure BLACK DOG. Swayze’s Jack Crews delivers an illegal shipment of guns while being chased by the FBI, ATF and an arms dealer. Including lots of crashes, chase scenes and a blasphemous villain, this tobacco-chewing, good ol’ boy movie seems perfect material for young men weaned on THE DUKES OF HAZZARD.


Review:

After prancing around in a dress in TO WONG FOOÖTHANKS FOR EVERYTHING, JULIE NEWMAR, Patrick Swayze has decided to portray a more macho character in the action-adventure BLACK DOG. Straight out of the 70s and even co-starring 70’s rocker Meatloaf, BLACK DOG borrows more than a little from SMOKEY AND THE BANDIT and the lesser known CONVOY. Including lots of crashes and chase scenes, this tobacco-chewing, good ol’ boy movie seems perfect material for young men weaned on THE DUKES OF HAZZARD.
Swayze is an ex-convict named Jack Crews, who was jailed for vehicular homicide and is working a dead end job as a mechanic. He is barely supporting his wife Melanie (Brenda Strong) and daughter Tracy (Erin Broderick). Before the accident, Jack was a truck driver with a good income. When faced with the loss of his house, something he has struggled for years to buy, Jack is approached by his crooked employer to drive a covert shipment from Atlanta to New Jersey. Reluctantly, Jack agrees.
In Atlanta, Jack meets brassy, Bible-quoting Red (Meatloaf). Red shows Jack the truck, the shipment of illegal arms and Jack’s partner Earl (Randy Travis) and armed escorts, Sonny (Gabriel Casseus) and Wes (Brian Vincent), who will follow the truck in a Camaro.
On the road, Jack gets to know his traveling companions and finds he is being chased by armed thugs. The road becomes a battle zone. Leading the assault is none other than Red himself, who obviously believes in highway robbery while quoting his favorite Scriptures. Topping it off, FBI Agent Allen Ford (Charles Dutton) and ATF Agent McClaren (Stephen Tobolowsky) head a government crackdown on the operation to nab everyone involved. On the way, Jack must find out which of his companions is a snitch and come to terms with the fact that, if he concludes the operation, he will be as guilty as everyone else. Hence, he comes up with a plan to stop the shipment and rescue his family which has been kidnapped by his boss for safe keeping until the shipment is delivered. All the while, more chases, explosions and mayhem ensue.
A leading B-movie star, Swayze only goes through the motions in BLACK DOG. Most of his motion is sitting in a truck seat. Meatloaf and Randy Travis shouldn’t give up their day jobs. The real stars of the movie are the stuntmen. Fiery, loud and big, the stunts keep coming, and the plot is only secondary. With such an antiquated theme, the movie seems to have a potentially limited audience, but every few years a movie does come out catering specifically to action/country music fans. Without sex or nudity or even a token bimbo, this movie achieves slightly higher moral ground than many action pictures. Jack accepts the job for his family and then stops the job for the sake of doing the right thing.
Many people, however, will be very offended by the Bible-quoting villain Red. Before the audience realizes that Red is a villain, there was reason to cheer his frank spirituality. He asks Jack, “Do you read your Bible?” Also, he chews out a co-worker for using the Name of the Lord in vain. Yet, through most of the movie, Red blasphemes the Name of the Lord and misconstrues Scripture for his own evil ends. He is a villain through and through, and his spirituality is a mere sham. Nevertheless, this evil doer is vanquished in the end, but it is grievous to see the Bible and the Lord’s Name misused this way. Thankfully, Earl points out his wicked ways by stating, “For all this talk of Jesus, Red sure is a greedy man.”


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