Houseguest (1995)

PG   |    |  Comedy


Houseguest (1995) Poster

In hot water with the mob over an unpaid debt, a con man poses as a family friend in an affluent Pennsylvania suburb.

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6/10
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  • Sinbad and Phil Hartman in Houseguest (1995)
  • Sinbad and Phil Hartman in Houseguest (1995)
  • Sinbad and Phil Hartman in Houseguest (1995)
  • Sinbad and Phil Hartman in Houseguest (1995)
  • Sinbad and Phil Hartman in Houseguest (1995)
  • Sinbad, Phil Hartman, Chauncey Leopardi, Kim Murphy, and Talia Seider in Houseguest (1995)

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19 August 2006 | gavin6942
7
| Heaven Help Us All, I Loved a Sinbad Movie
I thought for sure I was going to run kicking and screaming from my television... a film with Sinbad? Unwatchable! But this gem proved me wrong, as I not only watched it but loved almost every second of it (and Sinbad is always on the screen, so surely it must be his doing!).

The story is a common Hollywood theme: a guy (Sinbad) passes himself off on a group or family as someone he's not: in this case, a childhood friend of a father (Phil Hartman). A little variety exists in how to play this out, but the same old stuff happens: stranger teaches family a lesson and learns one himself along the way.

What made this film great was the cast. Sinbad was surprisingly insightful and was able to make even average activities seem far-fetched and outrageous. Phil Hartman had a relatively minor role and didn't really get to provide us with a full performance, but his physical facial comedy of biting into a piece of turkey was extremely amusing (facial comedy plays a large part in this film, later coming back when a wine taster is testing a glass).

Jeffrey Jones has too small a part (this man is so under-rated in Hollywood), but does well with what he's been given. And most of all I think Kim Murphy's career should have ignited from this film, but I guess producers didn't watch it. Murphy is obviously beautiful (which seems to be enough to make it in Hollywood), but more so she played her Gothic character perfectly. I was amused with her delivery of the lines concerning Edgar Allan Poe's last meal, her Smiths t-shirt (perfect choice) and the really wacky line about evil rats. The writers did their homework when writing in Murphy's character and she repaid them in spades. (Can I use the word "spades" when talking about a Sinbad movie?) The soundtrack was amusing. Best feature: the fact that some scenes were so obviously McDonald's commercials, with one really extended scene including a McDonald's theme song. Heck, after that moment I would have cut off my own leg for a double quarter pounder with cheese.

I love this movie, and would not be against displaying it proudly on my movie shelf for all my relatives, friends and guests to see. I do not know why this film has gone underground and has been long forgotten my many people, but it shouldn't have been. This is comedy gold, people.

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