Eye For Film >> Movies >> Crocodile Dundee In Los Angeles (2001) Film Review
Crocodile Dundee In Los Angeles
Reviewed by: Angus Wolfe Murray
Where will it end? Crocodile Dundee In Bejing? Crocodile Dundee On The Moon? You chose. He'll go there.
Paul Hogan hit the jackpot with this fella. He owns the rights, he makes the millions. There was a time when he was famous for lager ads. Now he's famous for dumping his wife, marrying his co-star and churning out excruciating comedies about a small, skinny, blonde bloke who, when asked: "Are you gay?", replies: "Most of the time, I'm happy."
Despite all this, you can't help liking him. Charm goes a long way and, in his case, that's all there is. He looks good, too, doesn't seem to have aged since he first strapped on that outsized hunting knife 15 years ago.
The plot of the new one is as intellectually demanding as Rush Hour 2. Dundee goes to L.A., because his girlfriend's dad is sick. He runs a newspaper and so she steps in, straight from Walkabout Creek (pop: 20) in the Australian outback.
Croc acts as househusband and father to their son in one of those Californian mansions where everything works by remote control. There is a missed opportunity here for Hogan to emulate Jacques Tati in Mon Oncle. He cracks a few jokes about political correctness, but doesn't go anywhere like far enough. A more acerbic wit would have carved the city to pieces and exposed its adoration of the A-list as a pseudo-religious cult.
Instead, Dundee goes undercover at a film studio to catch a bunch of crooks, which are smuggling fine art into the country. Do you care? Yes, indeedy. Not!
The best part is the early stuff in Oz, where the croc hunting business has been stuffed by environmental legislation. Killing animals is not cool anymore. Dundee and his mates trap the scaly critters for zoos around the world and tourists come to watch. "I'm in the entertainment business," he tells the folks in Beverly Hills, which is true up to a point.
Hogan has created a time-honoured character, the innocent abroad, but instead of using him as a satirical weapon against the pretentiousness of modern Western culture, he thinks he should introduce hammy villains and have a chase. Also, he knows about America's love of sentimentality. And so feeds it.
The Croc is in danger of selling out.Reviewed on: 22 Aug 2001
If you like this, try:Rush Hour