Tequila Sunrise has everything it needs to be a fun sexy crime thriller. It has an all star cast that includes Mel Gibson, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Kurt Russell, everyone looks very slick and the visuals are beautiful, and the plot includes drugs. These puzzle pieces appear to be all you’d need to form an entertaining successful film, and they work SOME of the time. But unfortunately, this 80’s crime film’s flaws stop it from being worthy of a full fledged recommendation.
The cast is for sure the best hand Tequila Sunrise has to play. Mel Gibson is quite a talent and he has something specific that makes him very successful: his charisma and charm. Especially in his younger days, Gibson has had the ability to emit this undeniably charismatic energy and simultaneously been able to be a sexy charming force. Both of these skilled combined makes for a lovable leading man that is just enjoyable to watch, plain and simple, and he doesn’t disappoint here.
Michelle Pfeiffer is another great talent whom I’ve enjoyed in many films and I liked her a lot here. Pfeiffer is very sweet and likable here. But the thing I liked the most about her character is the way she proves the men around her wrong by being unexpectedly tough. While it is true that her role isn’t as developed as Gibson or Russell’s, I still think she did the best she could. Kurt Russell is one of my all time favorites who I’ve enjoyed greatly in other films as well as here, he is irresistibly handsome and uses that suave sex appeal to his advantage. The cast and the performances they give isn’t this film’s problem.
The main problem is with the writing and construction of the plot. The plot becomes monotonous and a bit hard to follow as we go along. Real action and stakes don’t really arise until the last half hour. For the whole first hour we’re just trying to keep track of who’s after what and why this person is doing that and it gets kind of boring. I mean, sure it’s always nice to see talented actors engage with one another but I would’ve liked for some of the more interesting moments to have come before the final act. I felt like the film was making it a challenge to see if I could keep up with all the different moving pieces and that’s never a good sign.
Once we get a little over halfway through, things heat up with a sexy love scene. That is when all the pieces are finally ready to move and we have something more interesting to watch. If only the entirety of the film could’ve been like the last 30 to 40 minutes. I will say that the love scene towards the end is appropriately steamy and the onscreen chemistry was pretty electric. The scenes between Gibson and Russell are pretty well done too and they have a fun amusing connection that’s entertaining to watch.
The soundtrack was fitting and delightfully 80s so that’s at least there throughout and I was a fan of the costume design. Russell looks very suave and well put together with his slicked back hair, sun glasses, and suit. Pfeiffer also looked great throughout from her hairstyle to her clothing. She wears a very nice sparkly dress in the final scene that I loved. There really isn’t much else to say about Tequila Sunrise. It’s a forgettable crime thriller with an entertaining cast but is unfortunately bogged down by a convoluted script that doesn’t really kick into gear until after we’ve already been watching for an hour.
Tequila Sunrise is a let down unfortunately and while I love these actors and they do in fact try their best, they can’t overcome this scripts problems.
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