Monday, July 9, 2012

Wrongfully Accused (1998)

It's a crime this film was made.

Wrongfully Accused is far from the many, many laughs in 1988's The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad which also featured actor Leslie Nielsen and writer Pat Proft.

Put it this way. Wrongfully Accused is about as much fun as The Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult which Proft also wrote. It's a film best to avoid. I'd rather remember Proft's wit for the two episodes of Police Squad! he helped craft.

The third Naked Gun and Wrongfully Accused are both silly, rather than funny. The humour isn't subtle. It's pummeled into the viewer's face.

Please watch The Naked Gun, or buy the Police Squad DVD with all six precious episodes, rather than sit through 87 minutes of hard-to-find fun in this weak 1998 effort.

This fan of the cinematic silliness, at best, smiled at some of the jokes in this movie that bases its plot on Harrison Ford's The Fugitive. That film gave some much-needed attention to Tommy Lee Jones as Ford's nemesis. Wrongfully Accused is, sadly, the last feature release starring Richard Crenna.

Poor Richard. As Lieut. Fergus Falls, he gets to speak most of his lines at a rapid-fire pace. But none of it is funny. Crenna's best moment is late in the film and involves a football. That's the type of humour that makes The Naked Gun so much fun to watch.

Here, Nielsen is Ryan Harrison, star of the popular Lord of the Violin concert series. He gets mixed up with a beautiful rich woman (Kelly LeBrock) who offs her husband (Michael York) and plans to kill a United Nations official with the help of terrorist Sean Laughrea (Aaron Pearl). Sean stands out with his one artifical leg, arm and eye.

Cass Lake (Melinda McGraw) is the woman who loves Harrison, or plays him for a dupe. Ryan spends a good chunk of the film trying to figure out whose side she's on.

There are funny moments some of which involve a train in the woods, a certain choice of liquid to celebrate Harrison's concert success and a remote car starter and a submarine.

Too often though, the jokes fall flat.

Viewer beware, the laughs aren't there.

RATING: 3/10

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