As we enter Christmas week and everyone gets together with their families to inevitably talk about things that will hopefully lead to some sort of irrational argument between two drunken relatives, we need to take a look at a movie that is coming out this Christmas season.
Not Star Wars. While I have no interest in mocking those who like Star Wars, I’d be lying if I said I had any interest in seeing it.
Not Concussion. While this one I will see, and will no doubt create an intense amount of predictable media polemics, this is not what we will be discussing either.
Instead, we will be talking about the remake of Point Break, the 1991 film starring Keanu Reeves, the late Patrick Swayze, Lori Petty, and Gary Busey. The remake comes out on Christmas Day, and I hope it’s great, but for now we have to focus on the original.
I consider the original a cult classic. I have probably seen it 75 times, and it has no doubt made me unusually tired for school and/or work way too many times because I stayed up to watch it. (Even though if I wanted to see it that badly I could have just recorded it and watched it the next day). But with Point Break, when it’s on, I have to watch it. This seemed way more normal in high school and college, but now it just seems weird. And I have no problem admitting that. As a way of accepting this as being one of the many anomalies in my periodically functioning brain, I’d like to share the 10 reasons I most loved the original Point Break, in descending order.
10. The actor who is a part of Patrick Swayze’s “Bodhi” character’s criminal crew who wears the Nixon mask does a very good Nixon imitation. A very brief but good Nixon imitation in the van before the heist.
9. When Gary Busey’s “Angelo Pappas” character says while enjoying the meatball sandwich, “I’m so hungry I could eat the ass end of a dead rhino.” Not sure who wrote that, never heard it elsewhere, not even out of my own mouth. But this reminder may mean I’ll start using it. What would the ass end of a dead rhino taste like anyways?
8. The fact that in the fight scene on the beach there’s a character named Warchild. Maybe War is his first name and Child is his middle name. I don’t know. I always wanted to think it wasn’t a nickname.
7. And that a member of the Red Hot Chili Peppers is in that same scene. But he wasn’t Warchild. Don’t think we ever learn his name.
6. The very attractive blonde who is in love with Patrick Swayze’s “Dalton” character in “Roadhouse” is also in Point Break for a fleeting moment during the drug raid at the house. This, in fairness, I did not pick up on until it was pointed out to me. Her name is Julia Michaels. Have not heard from her since Point Break. One article said she found God and gave up acting. Or maybe she felt typecast. Who knows.
5. The chase scene between Utah and Bodhi. It starts during the bank heist when Utah and Pappas are staking out the bank , goes to the gas station, and in no particular order goes in and out of different houses, includes a big dog being thrown at Utah by Bodhi, goes through several different alleys, and ends in a vacant lot when Utah injures his knee on the long jump from the fence. It is the turning point of the movie, and one of the best chase scenes I have ever seen. Chase scenes are often overdone in movies, but this one stands out, and perhaps stands alone, as what a chase scene should look like. Take a look for yourself:
4. Bodhi says toward the end “This was never about the money, this was about us against the system. The system that kills the human spirit.” And he goes on to mention the people driving to work on the freeway in their “metal coffins.” Even for all the wrong he’s done, the ideals he sticks to makes him a character that elicits a mosaic of emotions. He is not a villain in the traditional sense, and avoiding that type of black/white characterization makes this movie so much better.
3. The fact that Johnny Utah creates the story that his parents passed away so that Lori Petty’s character (whose parents did pass away) will give him a chance. He then realizes he has to live with that lie, and eventually accept the fact that creating deception from a professional point of view has created deception in every aspect of his life. A little too analytical, but without this premise, the movie would be worse.
2. The reason Keanu Reeves received the name “Johnny Utah” was because the best quarterback in the NFL at the time the original was made had a state for a last name-Joe Montana. They played on that. Useless knowledge gets you nowhere, and makes you tired for work and/or school.
1. The presence of Keanu Reeves. They wanted to give that role to both Charlie Sheen and Johnny Depp, but in the way that things happen in the movie business, it ended up that Keanu Reeves played Johnny Utah. The former Ohio State star quarterback turned FBI agent under the guise of a surfer. Love him or hate him, no actor on this planet is more perfect to deliver the “Vaya con dios” line in the last scene of that movie. No one.
So there you have it. A Top 10 list of a movie no one has really talked about for a long, long time. Will the 2015 be as good? Of course not. At least not to those who were around for the original. Will I see it? Absolutely. But I can only do another Top 10 list like this one if I see it 75 times, so you might have to wait a little while for that. And if this list will make people want to see the 1991 Point Break again, just imagine how I feel.
Lifestyle blogger. Mom and wife. Saucy homemaker with heart and a touch for the sentimental. Obsessed with food, the home, and sustainable living.