Demolition Man

1993, Movie, R, 115 mins

Review

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Tofu-eating proponents of PC can look forward to the future with confidence, at least if they live in Los Angeles. According to DEMOLITION MAN, LA (actually, San Angeles) in the year 2035 will be a place where violence is unheard of, "hello" has been replaced by the phrase "mellow greetings," and everything "bad for you"--cigarettes, alcohol, hamburgers, coffee, sugar--has been outlawed.

Somewhat out of place in this anemic paradise are John Spartan (Sylvester Stallone), a maverick cop, and Simon Phoenix (Wesley Snipes), a superpsychocriminal, both of whom have recently emerged from extended stays in a deep-freeze prison facility. Phoenix has escaped and begun to wreak havoc in a world where the police have no guns; Spartan has been released in a desperate attempt to hunt him down.

The pleasant surprise about DEMOLITION MAN is that both the script, and Stallone, are funny; the film blends big-budget action and tongue-in-cheek humor in the way that LAST ACTION HERO tried, and failed, to do. The future world has been conceived with a gently satirical eye toward the late 20th century, with citizens speaking in CONEHEADS-style euphemisms ("enhance your calm"), admiring the "Hall of Violence" (including a preserved LA city block) at the Museum of History, and referring those interested in studying the past to the President Schwarzenegger Memorial Library. It could never happen here. leave a comment

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