US, 1993, 108 minutes, Colour.
Richard Dreyfuss, Emilio Estevez, Madeleine Stowe, Rosie, O’ Donnell, John Rubinstein, Dennis Farina, Cathy Moriarty.
Directed by John Badham.
Another Stakeout is an entertaining police comedy thriller, coming six years after the original Stakeout. Richard Dreyfus and Emilio Estevez resume their original characters. An unbilled Madeleine Stowe appears as Maria, Dreyfus's girlfriend. However, comedienne Rosie O' Donnell joins the two in the new stakeout.
As with the Lethal Weapon sequels, the Stakeout sequel tends more to farcical and comic touches rather than blood, violence. The film focuses on the Mafia, the hiding of a witness (Cathy Moriarty) and a corrupt cop (John Rubinstein) as well as a hired killer (Miguel Ferrer).
The material is fairly predictable - but is presented in an easygoing entertaining way. Direction, as with the first film, is by John Badham (War Games, Blue Thunder, Bird on a Wire, The Hard Way, The Assassin).
1. Entertaining sequel, the blend of the dramatic, crime thriller, stakeout, comedy and farce?
2. The Las Vegas settings - especially the safe house and the explosion? Seattle and chases through the city? The island and the beauty of the north-west coast? Musical score and songs?
3. Audience expectations from the original, style, cast, action, comedy?
4. Las Vegas and the stakeout, the hiding of the witness, the tension in the house, the guards? Tony and his gambling, the phone call and his leaving his win? The sewage truck, the pizza delivery? The explosion and the deaths? The witness's escape?
5. The police, the chief and his corruption, the phone calls to the gangster and supplying of information? Tony and his background, contract killer? The high life, gambling, women? Being hired by the gangster chief? The confrontations with the police chief?
6. Chris and Bill, Seattle, their work, in the park, radio links, the old man pointing out the criminal? Their cover, the chase, through the city? The confrontation, the criminal rushing for the balcony, Chris and the criminal in the garbage? The old man shooting the criminal? Going to their boss - covered in litter?
7. Gina, presence and personality? The DA, the job, the plan? The men and their unwillingness? The humour of setting themselves up as a family, the cover story - and their forgetting the details when required? Discussions? Bill's moustache and Chris taking sides? Gina's house and its colours, her cases and their not taking them? The trip, the jokes?
8. The O' Haras as neighbours, pleasant, meeting them while chasing the cat? Their wariness about the family, working in the garden, the visits? The odd behaviour, trapped into going to the meal, the tensions at the meal, the food, Gina's talk, having to pretend to be psychic, O' Hara over hearing Chris on the phone with Maria? The safe house for the witness, the friendship?
9. Chris and Maria, their clash, Maria walking out? The phone calls? The threats? Chris's return, Maria waiting, the happy ending? Bill and the background of his married life?
10. Going to the home, Archie and his chasing the cat? Settling in? The phone tapping - and Gina listening, getting the information, using it and having to pretend to be psychic? Going into the O' Haras' house and trying to put in the bug, their arriving home, Bill trapped and the door locked? At home and the baseball, smashing and their fearing of a shooting? Chris escorting the woman - and Bill misinterpreting it on the phone to Maria?
11. The comedy patter between the two, jokes, jibes? The dinner and Bill's absence? Chris continually going out, getting wet, the phone call and his being overheard? Bill and his putting in the bug, his being caught, tied up, trying to escape?
12. The witness and the car chase, Bill and Chris pursuing, the harbour, the car on the pier - and its collapse? Everyone in the water? The rescue, the witness taken to hospital? Gina becoming friends with her?
13. The final confrontation, the police chief and his confrontation with Tony, his death? Tony and his trying to kill the witness? The police shooting at Bill and Chris? The shootout, the witness's reaction - and everything being sorted out?
14. The happy ending - a nice combination of thriller ingredients with the light comic touch?