Mad Dog Time (1996)

R   |    |  Comedy, Crime, Drama


Mad Dog Time (1996) Poster

With his boss in the madhouse, a mobster is temporary boss of the criminal empire just as vicious rivals threaten the control of the empire.

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5.5/10
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  • Jeff Goldblum and Ellen Barkin in Mad Dog Time (1996)
  • Jeff Goldblum in Mad Dog Time (1996)
  • Michael J. Pollard in Mad Dog Time (1996)
  • Richard Dreyfuss in Mad Dog Time (1996)
  • Jeff Goldblum and Richard Dreyfuss in Mad Dog Time (1996)
  • Billy Drago in Mad Dog Time (1996)

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2 March 2004 | David_Mark
A complete waste in every sense of the word
This is perhaps the worst movie ever made. It is absolutely indefensible. The positive comments here must have been posted by the producers and their friends. The idea of comparing it to "The Player" (as one reviewer did) is close to lunacy. The Player was a great film. It is a masterpiece compared to this movie. Come to think of it, "Scooby-Doo" would be a considered a masterwork in some parallel universe where the only other movie ever released was "Mad Dog Time."

This movie was made to feed the ego of its producers (who also appear in this disgraceful mess.) I will do them a huge favor and not name names (though you likely know who they are at this point.) How they managed to sell this to all of the fine actors in the cast is beyond me. I am sure that for Burt Reynolds, this is preferable to the dinner-theater circuit and obviously Billy Idol hasn't had a career in decades, but how do you explain the presence of Jeff Goldblum, Gabriel Byrne, Diane Lane, et al? I am guessing blackmail of some sort. Maybe the producers had compromising photos. Maybe they were forced to take part at gunpoint. I really don't know, but the end result is a serious black mark on everyone's record.

The "film" (I call it that begrudgingly) is a parody of the old Rat Pack movies. Granted it is hard to parody things that weren't serious to begin with, but the producers get zero points for trying.

The script tries very hard to be witty and fails miserably at every turn. Running "gags" include the hilarious fact that three of the characters names rhyme (that one is beaten to death, despite the fact that it was clearly stillborn), vapid musings about the meaning of life (and death of course) and the side-splitting fact that one of the characters may or may not have angina (which, it is cleverly pointed out, rhymes with vagina.) They threw in some people shooting each other as filler for a script that is lacking every essential element needed for a competent film. And someone commented that this is good family entertainment? In what universe? Perhaps they meant in the universe that this film is set in (a gimmick that has a tacked-on feel, like it was added at the last moment to explain why these characters all act like aliens from another planet.) The Rat Pack in space? Was that the pitch for this monstrosity?

Even fans of gangster movies will hate this. Do yourself a huge favor and avoid it at all costs. Oh by the way, they sneakily changed the title of this bomb to "Trigger Happy." I have to give it to them that this is a far more appropriate and clever title, but just imagine the outrage of some poor viewer who has already suffered through "Mad Dog Time" (on cable ten times a day) and rented this "new" title by mistake! The tragic error would be oh-so-painfully apparent as soon as the initial voice-over kicked in. In the beginning there was a bad opening and it was bad. Really bad. And God (or Vic depending on what universe you are in) knows it is all goes steeply downhill from there. Hit rewind, go back to the video store and demand a refund!

Note to the executives who green-lighted this "film." Go home, pack your bags and leave Hollywood. Please!

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