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Stripes (1981)

  Directed by: Ivan Reitman
Starring: John Candy, Bill Murray, Warren Oates, Harold Ramis
Links: Stripes on the IMDb, Buy on Video, Buy on DVD
Genre: Comedy

This movie gets: 5.00 (1 rating) Ranking: not yet ranked (awaiting 2 ratings)

"You know the drill" - a review by mino

OK, so I'll confess straight up: I'm not really that big a fan of the ex-Saturday Night Live-star comedy genre (if you don't think that this type of movie deserves its own genre, then you haven't been paying attention). No matter how funny any given actor is on SNL (and the answer to that little question varies wildly), chances are that any movies made as a star vehicle for an ex-cast-member will be execrable in the extreme.

Possibly the only exception to this is the great Bill Murray. It's easy to just dismiss him as another hack comedian who makes crap movies, but he's a lot better than you might think. Look at his career over the years. Ghostbusters (1984) was a classic, of course, as was Groundhog Day (1993). Wild Things (1998) was actually a good, fun movie (don't listen to the critics) — and there are many others. Hell, he nearly even managed to make Charlie's Angels (2000) into a good movie (I did say 'nearly'). The more you look at his career, the more you realise how underrated he is as an actor.

Stripes is no exception to this rule. An otherwise unexceptional movie, it's Murray who really makes it. There's a good supporting cast, too, from Harold Ramis to John Candy. Murray and Ramis are two buddies who, deciding that their lives are going nowhere fast, decide to enlist in the army, as a kind of 'health retreat' to get their lives back on track. Needless to say, there's a hard-ass drill sergeant (Warren Oates) to be contended with, a little bit of romance, and (of course) many slapstick shenanigans. There's nude women, mud wrestling, and gratuitous toilet humour, which is kind of all you'd expect, really.

Stripes is never going to be held up as a shining example of the movie-maker's craft, but if you go into it expecting a stock-standard 'goof-off in the army' comedy, well, you should find it a pleasant enough hour and a half of time-killing. Did I mention that there's nude women?

mino gives this movie 5 out of 10.
Review created on Mon 11 Nov 2002

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Reader comments

  1. I personally think that stripes is one of the funniest movies I have ever sat down to watch, I personally have watched this movie 23 times and it does not seem to get old or lack in halariousness , from the time i pop this VHS is the player, to the time the movie ends im slapping my knees and shitting in my pants.

    Rating given: 10

    A comment from J~vecc on Thu 25 Mar 2004 10:19 #

Those who have commented give this movie: 10.00 (1 rating)

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