Movie News

ALEXANDRA DuPONT Suffers Through CROC DUNDEE 3!!

Published at: April 18, 2001, 8:34 p.m. CST

Hey, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab.

Ahhh... the lovely Ms. DuPont has weighed in with her look at a film that I can't believe actually exists. In fact, I won't believe it exists. I refuse. I'm going to pretend that this is all a filthy practical joke on the part of Paramount, and maybe it'll all just go away. Here's one of the prime candidates on my list of Potential Future Wives For An Evil Genius to fill you in on all the painful details...

Hullo, Harry et al. I've used a version of the following introductory sentence in a prior review, and I have no doubt I'll use a version of it again someday. Ready? Here goes:

I need to write up "Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles" very quickly, before I forget I even saw it.

Now, then:

*****

TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT 'CROCODILE DUNDEE IN LOS ANGELES' THAT YOU DIDN'T ASK, QUESTIONS WHICH ARE NEVERTHELESS ANSWERED

1. They actually MADE a "Crocodile Dundee 3"? For the love of St. Germain, WHY?

Good question. I suspect a low production budget (the film is largely set on a *studio backlot*, for pity's sake), combined with potentially strong overseas revenues and, hell, maybe even those Subaru Outback commercials, just sort of magically conflated -- and thus Paul Hogan found himself with yet another movie deal.

2. Is "Croc 3" just unbelievably horrible?

Well, with all due respect to the lacerating opinions expressed earlier on this site by the talented Capone, I personally couldn't muster the strength (or perhaps the interest) to hate this movie.

The screening I attended was sponsored by an adult-contemporary radio station, and the audience was filled with what I suppose were "contemporary adults," whatever those are. And they LOVED it. There was, I kid you not, applause at the end, and a jovial theatre vibe throughout. Which made something abundantly clear to me: "Croc 3" really is adult-contemporary filmmaking -- inoffensive, genial, never terribly exciting, never maddening, and aimed so broadly that you can't really get around to hating it. It's like that "Believe" song by Cher -- it's background noise, filler between moments of genuinely positive or negative cinematic passion. Which I suppose is, to hard-core geeks who read AICN, unbelievably horrible. But probably not to their parents. So.

3. Who directed it?

Simon Wincer -- the man who helmed several "Young Indiana Jones" episodes, "Phar Lap," "D.A.R.Y.L." (which they're currently remaking under the working title "A.I." -- kidding!), "Quigley Down Under," "Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man," "Free Willy," and, yes, "Operation Dumbo Drop." Oh, and "The Phantom." Suffice to say he's been working in TV a lot lately.

4. So the direction is, ahm, "workmanlike"?

It's utterly inoffensive, with a light touch.

5. What did you think of "Crocodile Dundee" and "Crocodile Dundee 2"?

I'll freely admit I enjoyed the first installment. I found Hogan refreshingly un-PC during an increasingly neurasthenic 1980s -- an uncomplicated man's man who liked to drink and make friends with the unpretentious. That said, Mick Dundee's particular brand of manliness looks mildly silly in hindsight, like a old beer commercial. (As my sister Shelley DuPont-Livesly put it the other day, "In the '80s, Mick Dundee looked manly. In the '90s, in that vest, he looked like rough trade.")

The sequel was of course execrable -- layering some TV-movieish drug-lord plotline over the proceedings in a desperate attempt to inject drama when no fish-out-of-water jokes were close at hand. (To this day, my brother Maximillian and I greet each other with the drug-lord character's immortally bad line: "Who is this ... Meek Dun-DEE?")

6. What does Max have to say about "Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles"?

He calls it "Crock Dung 3."

7. What's the story?

Mick Dundee and his gal-pal Sue (Linda Kozlowski) -- apparently fully recovered from "Croc 2"'s manhunt-in-the-Outback ordeal and unconcerned about drug-cartel retribution -- live in common law with their towheaded son in that little Australian town Mick calls home. (In the movie, the town's become a tourist trap, which is of course the fault of movies LIKE "Crocodile Dundee." There's a mild self-referential streak running throughout the film.)

Sue is called to Los Angeles to fill in for a murdered reporter who was investigating a shady upstart movie company (which operates, despite its shadiness, on the Paramount lot, conveniently enough). To help Sue's investigation, Mick gets a job on a film set. Wackiness with animals, silly chases, and semi-amusing culture clashes ensue.

8. Oo. We haven't seen Linda Kozlowski onscreen since 1996! How's she looking these days?

Taxidermied. Why can't these actresses just allow themselves to age gracefully? It's working for Emma Thompson.

9. Emma Thompson?

Did you SEE "Wit"? She looked like freakin' Powder during the last half, and she was STILL a goddess! That HBO telefilm was the best thing Mike Nichols has made in 20 years; I can't BELIEVE it wasn't released theatrically.

10. So let me guess: In "Crock Dung 3," there's a wacky chase through the studio lot, right?

There is.

11. And Mick Dundee drives a Subaru Outback?

Indeed he does.

12. And the towheaded son is annoying as all get-out?

No, actually he's genial and inoffensive. Sigh.

13. So what's good?

I wouldn't go so far as to call the following points "good," but let's just say they're "not bad": First off, there's a light, uncomplicated and above-all consistent tone throughout -- no easy feat when the last installment in the series was made 13 years ago. Second, everybody underplays. Third ... well ... your parents will probably like it. Oh, and I'm chagrined to admit I kind of enjoyed the fellow who play's Mick's croc-hunting buddy: He came off like a young, Australian version of Randall 'Tex" Cobb, sort of, and the film picks up EVER so slightly when he comes to L.A. to serve as the kid's nanny. And Hogan is remarkably low-key and well-preserved -- he's his own Madame Toussaud wax dummy, only made of leather.

Note the large number of qualifiers in the above paragraph.

14. What's not so good?

Paul Rodriguez and Aida Turturro are utterly wasted in supporting roles as an extra and a fellow reporter, respectively. (Turturro looks *aggressively* uncomfortable, as if she didn't fit in her clothes; she's a relatively high-performance engine trying to get to 75 while stuck in first gear.) There's a wacky chase through a studio lot. There's also some pretty damned sloppy slapstick comedy. And, as with "Croc 2," the crime story is annoying filler -- though not nearly as annoying as it was in 1988. And finally there's just the overall TV-ish tiredness of the whole concept -- which I still, for the life of me, cannot manage to get angry about.

15. You're not going to make it to 20 questions, are you?

No. No, I'm not.

Warmest,

Alexandra DuPont

Readers Talkback

comments powered by Disqus
    + Expand All
  • April 18, 2001, 8:42 p.m. CST

    "Crocodile Dundee 4: The Return Of Jacko!"

    by Uncapie

    OY!

  • April 18, 2001, 8:52 p.m. CST

    Hello, I'm third!!! Cause it matters so much.

    by James_O'Nasty

    Is anyone surprised? The reviews were chopped, e.g. "This film is crap! It would be a pleasure to personally bury this damned thing!" gets condensed to "This film is a pleasure!" What has Paul Hogan done apart from this thing? He tried some other films but they sucked, so what the hell does that tell you? He's already had eight facelifts, for fuck's sake! If he has one more, his nuts will give him the appearance of a cleft chin, like on Family Guy! Bring that show back, it was a great show. Love, Peace and Chicken Grease.

  • April 18, 2001, 9:09 p.m. CST

    Neura-what-nic?

    by Village Idiot

    I went to m-w.com to look that up, but I was almost too tired to read it. ***** What surprises me is the degree of DuP's ennui. I mean, it's not as though a movie like this doesn't provide ample fodder for Talkback discussion. For example. . . Ok, I'll get back to you.

  • April 18, 2001, 9:10 p.m. CST

    Wait! I've got something!

    by Village Idiot

    Whoops, no, lost it. Sorry. Never mind.

  • April 18, 2001, 9:23 p.m. CST

    Put another "Crock Dung" on the Barbee

    by csk360

    haha..everyone knew this flick was gonna be a stinker! Even hogen himself made a slight comment on HowardStern yesterday that it wasn't all that good. It's funny how Howard never likes to rip on Paramount flicks,Could it be his own radio station is ah part of viacom?Nooo..Nooo,Nooo Ofcourse not!..Noooo.

  • April 18, 2001, 9:49 p.m. CST

    Yes but Ms. Kozlowski-Hogan is quite sexy and alluring is she no

    by Regis Travolta

    I imagine Alexandra du Pont is also quite sexy and alluring but she's not in this movie and Linda is. I still won't go see it but it's nice to know they are milking this thing for one more go-round or maybe two if it's a hit like the first two were, I think they each made a hundred million bucks domestic. Not bad for Paramount or Paul Hogan. By the way do any of you remember his old TV show that aired here in America 20 years ago? It was totally hilarious.

  • April 18, 2001, 10:33 p.m. CST

    Who Agrees With Me

    by freethinker

    That Alexandra is far and away the best reviewer on this site? No meandering jibber-jabber (as Mr T would say), no lengthy pretentious crap of any kind. Straightforward, real, honest and with just the touch of sarcasm. I just wish she posted more, it's nice to hear from someone who thinks there is more to life than LOTR and Phantom Menace.

  • April 18, 2001, 11:51 p.m. CST

    What the crap

    by CrapHole

    I just want the commertials to stop..They are friggin hypeing this like it's another Shaft movie..It must be nice to have an ad campagin budget equal to the movie budget.

  • April 19, 2001, 12:08 a.m. CST

    Seriously, what is wrong with wacky backlot chase scenes?

    by Fat Lot Of Good

    I honestly believe that a wacky back lot chase helps a movie!!!!!

  • April 19, 2001, 12:16 a.m. CST

    struth!

    by speed

    i don't really have anything to say about the movie, just the reviewer. top bloody notch! that was the best review i have read anywhere for a long time. i never thought harry's charlies angels review could be topped but this did it. harry please try and get ADP to do more on the site...anything!

  • April 19, 2001, 2:49 a.m. CST

    "Wait, wait...

    by Kyle.Reese

    ... so the cops knew internal-affairs were setting them up?"... "That's not in the movie".

  • April 19, 2001, 2:56 a.m. CST

    Kyle Reese

    by Creep_Thunder

    hah hah Good Simpsons quote. Now a movie about Paul Hogan joining a religious cult sounds lie it would be.....just as crap as the rest of his films.

  • April 19, 2001, 5:35 a.m. CST

    ARrrrrooooooouuuuggAaaahhhh!

    by Dash101

    " Hear that commander? The submarine is under attack!" - "Christ sir. It's a freakin large Sub eatting Paul Hogan!!" NOOOOooo.. GOD HELP US ALL!!AAAAARrrrhhh... -dash101 out.

  • April 19, 2001, 6:41 a.m. CST

    I actually saw D.A.R.Y.L. - and she's right!

    by JackLint

    I never thought about it, but shes right. its the same story. It wasn't very good, in fact it never even entered my mind since I saw it in the mid eighties or whenever it came out, but its A.I. through and through!

  • April 19, 2001, 6:48 a.m. CST

    Listen up, "film geeks"...Crocodile Dundee is one of my all-time

    by WesReviews

    So, you "film geeks" (of which I am part of) need to get off your high horse and learn to enjoy films as entertainment and not just profound life experiences. I used to be all stiff and stuck up, not wanting to admit that I enjoyed the hell out of Pee Wee's Big Adventure and Rocky IV, but now I don't care. Because a piece of mindless entertainment can entertain just as much and in some cases more than movies with a lot of "meaning" behind them. Cases in point, i'm a film geek, but I only thought Magnolia and Wonder Boys were so-so. I mean, they weren't bad, but what the hell was so great about them? They're no American Beauty. Of course, a lot of you film geeks are now turning on movies like American Beauty and The Usual Suspects. I guess once everyone else starts liking them, you think it makes you less cool or something. Stuff like this pisses me off. Can't you all enjoy something without being told what other film geeks (the writers and directors) think? Make up your own minds, and for God's sake live a little. Don't hate a movie just because it doesn't have a "message" or whatever. I mean, some of you watch Magnolia and Wonder Boys and think you have a PhD in life. It's crazy. I've not seen Crocodile Dundee in L.A. yet, but you'd better believe I'm going to see it opening weekend because I loved the first two and hell, the previews for this one don't really give off that "we've screwed up this franchise" vibe. If it ends up sucking, I'll admit it, but people, when I go to the theater, I go for escape and most importantly fun. If you all can't have that or don't want that, then I thank God I am not you. What a cold, cynical world this would be.

  • April 19, 2001, 7:59 a.m. CST

    Please explain why everyone has such a hatred for this film befo

    by Blok Narpin

    From the day I heard mention of Crocodile DUndee III all I've heard is people making fun of it and bad mouthing it. The whole "I refuse to believe this film exists" at the opening of this review is the perfect example. WHY?? What makes you people hate this film SO MUCH? I mean, most of you havent seen it, and those of you who DID went into it EXPECTING to hate it, and in my experience when you expect to hate something you usually do. Case in point: Back in '97 my friend and I dragged my brother to see Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery. My brother saw the comercials for Austin Powers and thought it looked stupid. He did NOT want to see the film. He kept begging us to see Breakdown (which was also playing there) instead. Throughout the movie the audience howled with laughter (EXCEPT my brother who HATED it). Now, after seeing the film on video several times he LOVES it and was there opening day for "The Spy WHo Shagged Me". He EXPECTED to hate the movie when he first saw it so hence he hated it. Now I'm not saying that Croc III is a masterpiece and they only hate it because they expected to. All I'm saying is that it's very hard to take reviews seriously when the reviewer went into the film already biased and with a pre-formed opinion. I like Crocodile DUndee I and II. They were fun movies that made me laugh. From the comercials I expect that Crocodile Dundee III will do the same. I will be there opening day. If it sucks, then it sucks. I have no reason going into it to EXPECT it to suck however, and I'd LOVE to know why so many people do. The 80s was a wonderful time for movies. SO many good, FUN movies came out of the 80s. Gremlins, Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, The Goonies, The Neverending Story, Little Shop of Horrors, and Crocodile Dundee. Now in recent years we have had some fun movies, but nothing like back in the 80s. I welcome Mick Dundee back with open arms. Now if only a third Ghostbusters and Gremlins would follow I'd be a happy camper.

  • April 19, 2001, 10:01 a.m. CST

    Why would anyone be afraid to admit they liked Pee Wee's Big Adv

    by otis von zipper

    I mean, that movie was totally inspired. The tour through the Alamo, the Hollywood movie with James Brolin and Morgan fairchild, the images of maniacal clowns. Now that would be a character worth bringing back for a third movie, not Croc Dundee. Reubens has stated recently that he's working on a new script, so keep your fingers crossed.

  • April 19, 2001, 11:03 a.m. CST

    I'm not going to see this one, fellas...

    by cifra2

    althought that I agree that the best fun movies were made at the 80's... OK, OK, it's just my point of view, because I was a teenager. I remember Ghostbusters, War Games, Fright Night, Gremlins, Weird Science, Bachelor Party, and above all, that masterpiece that is Little Shop of Horrors, which has two endings, the one everyone saw, and a marvelous destruction finale with the plants destroying New York with the song "Don't feed the plants". I need this DVD with this ending. What are WB waiting for releasing it in Spain? Fuck, I hate Warner Brothers. The only good thing they've done was "The Matrix" and "Deep Blue Sea"'s DVD, but the cases are a mess. Mmmm, tomorrow "The Devil's Backbone", by Guillermo del Toro opens in Spain. I'll tell ya tomorrow... stay tuned.

  • April 19, 2001, 11:22 a.m. CST

    Ro-Hare

    by Jaka

    Sad, das.....HAHAAHAAHAAAHAAHAA! Fuck that was funny!

  • April 19, 2001, 11:22 a.m. CST

    Ro-Hare

    by Jaka

    Sad, das.....HAHAAHAAHAAAHAAHAA! Fuck that was funny!

  • April 19, 2001, 11:27 a.m. CST

    Well....

    by WesReviews

    Most people who review for this site, with the exception of Quint, usually do go into movies with a bias. Harry seems like a good guy and he runs a good site, but I never take his reviews seriously and often find them laughable. Episode One was the perfect curveball in the AICN review mill. They all hyped it great and went into it with a bias, and when it was only so-so or even flat-out sucked, they didn't know what to do. But most people are biased when it comes to movies. It's being biased intelligently (at least giving the film a chance) that makes a true movie critic. Not someone who thinks certain films are "beneath" them. Get off your high horse, boys and girls.

  • April 19, 2001, 12:22 p.m. CST

    People are too freaking cynical, man!!!

    by Terry_1978

    Half of the people on here weren't even old enough to go see movies by themselves when the first two came out, and they're jumping on the hate bandwagon, much like the rest of society does. I'm 23, so I am familiar with the character adn the movies. It's tame compared to most stuff that's out now, but at least Hogan has the balls to still promote this thing even though he knows people rag on him for the fact that he does.

  • April 19, 2001, 2:09 p.m. CST

    right sure...okay

    by jeff bailey

    The reason everyone hates this movie is because of how glaringly obvious it is why it was made. You want cynicism? Resurrect a character who hasn't been seen in 12 years (and wasn't missed) by an actor who hasn't had a hit in that same amount of time. Then shove in a routine formula high concept and throw out in the dead of spring. Smells like desperation to me. Oh shit, did I meantion the cute kid? Fine, first Croc. Very pleasant (side note: took one of my very first dates to see it) and still amusing when it's on the boob tube. Second one. Just awful. EVERYONE knows that. Hogan's other efforts were of course met with total indifference. Big surprise. Besides his charm, not much to the guy. As for this 80's nostalgia...I will try to reserve my poison. I think some wonderful movies were made in that decade (bound to be a few) and many of the blockbusters are unjustly vilified (Die Hard is still the greatest action ever) but all those big loud dumb comedies make me sick. Don't get me started on all those horrific teen flicks. Movies are STILL fun. But I have more fun watching the Parallax view then any thing Bette Midler made in the 80's (you guys never mention THOSE). Hey, your precious 80's are still alive. Go rent Big Momma's House or see Tomcats. What? Didn't think so. So you will excuse me if I find it sad its the middle of April and all I can go see is a movie that sounds like a SNL punchline. Sure it might be a painless timekiller, maybe even some chuckles but COME ON! Oh and Dupont, as usual, I would read her review of the new J. Crew catalog. Great job once again. Finally something we can all agree on...

  • April 19, 2001, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Here's a sequel!

    by Billy Talent

    Why don't they make 'Arthur 3'? Dudley & Liza - Together again! They could even dig up John Gielgud! It would be the best movie ever!

  • April 20, 2001, 12:17 a.m. CST

    Thought it was okay

    by The LeeMan

    I manage a multiplex out here and got done screening this movie for the audiences tomorrow. I thought this movie was actually pretty good. Yes it was inoffensive and of low-budget, but were you actually looking to be offended by this? Paul Hogan is pretty much a likeable guy. You nailed it on the head about his friend Jacko looking like Randall "Tex" Cobb. I thought the same exact thing. Except for Russel Crowe, I don't think that there has been an Australian that I've been bothered by. They actually seem really down-to-earth people. Yes even Jacko from the Energizer commercials. My only complaint about the film, if any, was on why they keep putting Jere Burns and Jonathan Banks (who looked chubby in this) in bland roles like this. There was a lot of inside jokes about the industry. Not since "The Player" has there as many jokes about Hollywood. Anyway, the film is light...very-light fare.