The Guilty Pleasures: “Point Break”
For years, people have told you that you should be embarrassed for liking particular movies. They might question your taste in film because you couldn’t stop giggling at Encino Man. You appreciate many of the best movies of 1988, but you’re confused when Beaches isn’t listed in the top 20. You go to the theaters and get a ticket for Black Swan, when in reality you really wanted to see Green Hornet. Should you hide these skeletons away to the recesses of your closet to save yourself from ridicule?
No! I am sick and tired of people being embarrassed for liking silly movies. Everyone has their guilty pleasures. Take those skeletons out of the closet and enjoy them. I am here to take a stand. I want everyone to admit to themselves one guilty pleasure movie they have. Come on now, don’t be shy. It’s okay. The sheep in Hollywood aren’t going to ban you from seeing The King’s Speech or The Social Network just because you enjoyed Miley Cyrus in the The Last Song.
If nobody will go first, I’ll step up to the plate and admit that I have tons of guilty pleasures. But let’s start with #15 on my Flickchart:
Point Break was released in theaters in 1991, starring Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze. When this movie arrived, you had two stars at the crossroads of their careers. Reeves was just beginning to generate some buzz and slowly becoming a household name, while Patrick Swayze was at the top of his game after Dirty Dancing, Road House and Ghost put him on the map. But after Point Break, Swayze fell from the spotlight while Reeve’s star shone brighter.
Reeves plays Johnny Utah, a washed up football star who ends up joining the FBI. Johnny Utah teams up with Pappas, played by Gary Busey, as they attempt to take down the Ex-Presidents, a bank robbing gang that have been terrorizing the coast for years. Patrick Swayze plays Utah’s friend Bodhi who also helps Utah in his quest to stop the Ex-Presidents. Also starring Tom Sizemore, Lori Petty and John C. McGinley, Point Break put Reeves on the action star map.
But what makes Point Break such a guilty pleasure for me? I know I shouldn’t like it. Between Reeves’s acting, laughable dialogue and some over the top action scenes, this movie shouldn’t be in my top twenty. But you know what? It works for me. The fast pacing makes the movie fun to watch. The bank robbing scenes are shot extremely well and are guaranteed to get you jacked up.
Terminator 2 was a colossal hit in 1991 as it destroyed the box office. This movie cemented Arnold Schwarzenegger as the biggest action star in the world. Terminator 2 also had one of the best directors ever, James Cameron, calling the shots. On the other side, you have Kathryn Bigelow leading the Point Break charge. The same Kathryn Bigelow who ended up divorcing James Cameron the same year. Before she became a legend by directing The Hurt Locker, Kathryn Bigelow directed Point Break – and that’s the best part of Point Break. She made a movie that would fall apart in most directors’ hands into an entertaining popcorn flick.
Silence of the Lambs won the Oscar for Best Picture, introducing Dr. Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling onto the list of some of the most memorable characters ever in a motion picture. Lambs dominated the Oscars winning five awards including Best Director for Jonathan Demme, Best Actor for Anthony Hopkins, and Best Actress for Jodie Foster. Sure, Point Break wasn’t nominated for any Oscars, but Reeves did win an MTV Movie Award for “Most Desirable Male” over his co-star Patrick Swayze. Dr. Lecter didn’t even get a nomination, so chalk up a point for Point Break!
After Point Break was released, Reeves’s next movie was Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey. When Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure was a surprise hit, you knew it was only a matter of time before a sequel would be released. After seeing Bogus Journey, I wish that it never saw the light of day. Lucky for Reeves, he still had a good year with Point Break. Sadly for Alex Winter, his career never really took off.
I am happy that I can finally admit that I love Point Break. This movie sucks me in every time it’s on. For some reason, it was on the Golf Channel last weekend and I ended up watching it twice in a row. Now, go ahead and make fun of me for liking Point Break. But before you do that, at least have the guts to admit some guilty pleasure movies you enjoy. I have plenty of other skeletons in my closet that I can’t wait to discuss.