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Awesome: 25%
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Total Crap75%

1 review, 2 user ratings

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by Chris Parry

"Eric Roberts.. Rachel Hunter.. John Ritter.. how could this not win Oscars?"
1 stars

You've seen these kinds of movies before. In fact, you've seen lots of them. They're made cheaply, look too shiny, star 'actors' who're more known for walking down a catwalk than actually acting, and generally boast the kind of screenplay that would win a Golden Raspberry Award... if the film ever made it to a screen wider than 27 inches. Tripfall tells those who have charted the career of straight-to-video veteran Serge Rodnunsky two things: 1) Rodnunsky is just as bad with C-grade actors as he is with unknowns, and 2) after 40-something feature films, Rodnunsky still hasn't figured out how to do what he does to any kind of competent level of artistic vision.

Now, if you read the reviews on this website, you know that Rodnunsky doesn't like us. More specifically, he doesn't like me. He's threatened us, abused us, poured excrement on the world of online film criticism in general, and painted himself as a rich, successful, often-laid-by-beautiful-babes man about Hollywood.

Meanwhile, we've heard all manner of allegations about how Rodnunsky does business - such as telling actresses they don't have to do nudity, only to then use body doubles to make it appear as if they have (said one recently, "I might not have minded so much if he found someone with a nice ass"), and threatening others that if they tried to make life difficult for him by insisting such scenes are removed, that he'll have them blackballed in the industry.

But none of those allegations matter right now. All I care about is whether Tripfall is a good film, a great film, or a steaming pile of doggy doodoo.

See if you can guess.

John Ritter stars as a chubby middle-aged businessman with some dollars in the bank. He's married to ... uh... supermodel Rachel Hunter (...wha?) and they have a couple of kids and they're off to the beach for a vacation.

So let's ignore the obvious improbability that Hunter would be seen dead with a pudgeball like Ritter, let alone married him and had two kids. Assuming this guy is actually worth a million bucks, why is he taking his folks on a vacation to a crime-riddled beachside suburb, and staying in a hotel that looks like a Motel 6?

Oh, because Serge Rodnunsky ALWAYS comes in under budget... right.

So while they're at the pool, some piece of southern white trash comes around and starts conversation with Pops Ritter, and the next thing you know Eric Roberts is around (complete with mini-dreadlocks) and dragging dad into a strip club. This of course gives Serge a chance to show some boobs without having to pay Rachel Hunter extra money... because he ALWAYS comes in under budget, see?

Of course, Ritter is incredulous that men would sit in a bar and look at boobs, so he makes for the exits, only for the Dread Pirate Roberts to beat him up, have his kids and wife kidnapped and tell Ritter that if he doesn't empty his bank account they'll all die. And he'd do it too, because he's CRAAAAAAAZY! I mean, just look at his hairstyle. And his hawaiian shirt.

What follows is an awful movie where basically Rodnunsky tries to throw red herrings around and almost give Ritter chances to escape, only for Ritter not to take those chances and end up having to 'find the man within' that he needs to beat the Dread Pirate Roberts up and save his family.

There's no denying it, this is hopeless stuff. There are one or two moments of mindless diversion (read: boobs), and the oddness of Ritter and Hunter as a couple will stop you from changing channel for at least three minutes, but once the 'thriller' aspect of this film gears up you're really looking down the barrel of a small intestine. Hunter is nice to look at, but as an actress she has all the delivery of a baloney on rye. Ritter was pre-comeback here, and I'll wager my wages that Tripfall didn't help that comeback happen.

And Roberts... he really does earn whatever pittance he was paid to do this flick, throwing himself into woeful dialogue and implausible situations with the ruthless abandon of an inspired rookie, but that only serves to completely point out how crappy everyone else is.

But hey, no harm done. It's not like you're likely to have paid $8.50 to see this thing in a theater or anything...

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originally posted: 05/16/03 08:06:14
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User Comments

7/01/04 Steve R Hunter's in it, what else could you want and not get. Not even a laugh. 5 stars
8/28/03 Angel John best movie by john ritter 5 stars
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  27-Jun-2000 (R)


  02-Feb-2001 (M)

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