"Not So Wise, Guys"
What You Need To Know:
Regrettably, the makers of THE CREW squander its promise. THE CREW has some decidedly hilarious moments, but the bulk of the movie suffers from mediocre writing and surprisingly poor comic delivery from its set of seasoned actors, who include Richard Dreyfuss, Burt Reynolds and Dan Hedaya. This movie feels like it was made in a hurry. Its sets are lush, but the actors seem as if they’ve barely memorized their lines and haven’t had time yet to work on their delivery or timing. Aside from its shoddy production, THE CREW is also pretty violent for a PG-13 movie and includes plenty of foul language and some sexual situations
(PaPa, B, PC, LLL, VVV, S, NN, D, M) Pagan worldview with moral elements & a politically correct moment supporting gun control & unfairly slamming Republicans; 37 obscenities, 9 profanities & public urination; animal cruelty, kidnapping, punching, beating with objects, murder by shooting, wounding by shooting, destruction of property, implied murders, kicking, choking, attempted drowning, & arson; prostitution, implied sex with prostitute, implied oral sex, & scenes in strip club; partial male & female nudity plus scenes in strip club; alcohol use; smoking & protagonists fight local drug lord; and, lying.
THE CREW is based on an appealing story idea: four retired “wiseguys,” or gangsters, decide to stage one last crime to save the neighborhood. These aging mobsters live in a seedy senior residence hotel in South Miami Beach. The hotel’s management wants to evict its elderly tenants and replace them with a more moneyed clientele. So “the crew” hatches a scheme to save their residence by faking a grisly murder to drive property values down. Their zany scheme goes awry when they get mixed up with a drug lord who thinks the “murder” is a threat from a rival gang leader.
Sounds funny, right? Regrettably, the makers of THE CREW squander its promise. THE CREW has some decidedly hilarious moments, but the bulk of the movie suffers from mediocre writing and surprisingly poor comic delivery from its set of seasoned actors, who include Richard Dreyfuss, Burt Reynolds and the under-appreciated Dan Hedaya.
This movie feels like it was made in a hurry. Its sets are lush, as befits the Miami Beach setting, but the actors seem as if they’ve only barely memorized their lines and haven’t had time yet to work on their delivery or timing. The talented Richard Dreyfuss’s Brooklyn accent is distractingly weak (his “fuggedaboutit” is so strained that it grates), and he doesn’t exactly fit the mobster stereotype. No matter how hard he tries to become his character, Bobby Bartellemeo, he never transcends his own celebrity presence. Burt Reynolds, who can make great comedy, is wasted in his role as Joey “Bats” Pistella, a mean-spirited bully who likes to beat anyone who disagrees with him. His character is just too petty to be funny. Dan Hedaya, so funny in DICK and other comedies, doesn’t have much to say or do throughout this movie.
Aside from its shoddy production, THE CREW is also pretty violent for a PG-13 movie. Director Barry Sonnenfeld apparently avoided an R-rating by substituting a milder ‘f’ word for the more scatological one (thereby demonstrating the absurdity of Hollywood’s rating system). The movie also includes some adult sexual situations, including implied sex with a prostitute. Because of its PG-13 rating, many people may go to this movie expecting to see something with content as mild as the average teen movie. Be warned, however, THE CREW toes the line between ‘R’ and PG-13.
After about an hour of mediocrity, THE CREW finds its groove with several scathingly funny scenes, most of which involve the bumbling drug lord (Miguel Sandoval) who’s out to avenge the wrongs he thinks the mobsters have done to him. By then, it’s too late to save THE CREW. The tired old-people jokes peppering its first hour have already rendered this movie a cliche.