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Review: Runaway (1984)

By Aaron Vaccaro – Head Writer

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Best Bad Quote:

“Drop it, sucker!”.

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There’s something very comforting about Tom Selleck’s mustache.  Something that makes you instantly at ease and realize that everything is going to be alright.  But when he goes san mustache, my whole world is turned upside down.  Thank God Selleck chose to rock the ‘stache while fighting evil Gene Simmons and his killer robots in Runaway.

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Selleck plays police officer, Sgt. Jack Ramsay, whose specialty is handling cases involving malfunctioning robots.  Right, I should probably mention that Runaway takes place in the future where apparently SkyNet is in control and we’re nearing Judgment Day because humans are pretty much dependent on robots for everything.  When the machines start turning against their masters and killing them, Sgt. Ramsay knows there’s something more than meets the eye behind these homicidal robots.  Low and behold, the mastermind behind everything is Dr. Charles Luther, played by none other than Gene “Freakishly Long Tongued” Simmons, who gives his best evil villain look in every shot he appears.  As Ramsay hunts down the madman doctor, the hunter quickly becomes the hunted culminating in a finale scene involving Ramsay being attacked by robotic fire breathing spiders in an under construction skyscraper.

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You’ll probably all be as surprised as I was to learn that Michael Crichton wrote and directed Runaway.   If anyone has ever read any of Crichton’s books you’re well aware of how good a writer he is and although Runaway falls prey to some of the technological pitfalls of 1984, and some kind of horrible acting by Simmons, the story itself is pretty well done, and actually plays out like futuristic film noir.  Despite Simmons less than stellar performance, the rest of the cast, rounded out by Cynthia Rhodes (what happened to her?), and Kirstie Alley (pre-obesity), do an adequate job of keeping the story moving.

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I know it was the 80’s and all, but Gene Simmons, really?  Let’s be honest, that guy is one ugly bastard and there’s no mystery why he spent most of career with his face painted.  If it wasn’t for being a rock star and having the tongue of a salamander, I think Simmons might still be a virgin.

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Although the end of Runaway may be a bit on the silly side, it’s a pretty fun flick that is definitely worth checking out on your Netflix Instant queue.  After all, with Selleck’s mustache, Gene Simmons looking malevolent, and killer robotic spiders, it’s hard to go wrong.  The only thing this movie is missing was Bon Jovi’s “Runaway” featured on the soundtrack.  Bon Jovi would’ve solidified a 5 out of 5 for me, guaranteed.

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Rating:

4 out of 5 Malicious Gene Simmons’ Expressions


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One Response to “Review: Runaway (1984)”

  1. As a woman, I am instantly drawn to watching any Tom Selleck movie, good or bad. Though, Tom Selleck usually makes some pretty good choices. I can’t say that I’ve hated any one of his films (of those I’ve seen.) “Runaway” is no exception. I like this movie too.

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