Paparazzi (2004) Paul Abascal

Production Budget: $20 million

Worldwide Gross: 16 million

Paparazzi is about up and coming star Bo Laramie (Cole Hauser) who sounds like he should be in a cigarette commercial. Four paparazzi are stalking Bo and they behavior eventually lead to Bo’s son and wife getting seriously injured in a car crash. Bo then decides to get revenge on the eeeeeevil paparazzi.

This is an exploitation film; pure and simple. This movie handles the topic of paparazzis about as level headed as Steven Seagal talking about the environment and the government…and medicine, and his career, and his past, well you get the picture. The paparazzi are all evil, murderous, rapist scum and Bo is a good ol boy who isn’t used to all the fame nonsense. It is an easy set up to get Bo to mow through some baddies in increasingly elaborate ways. You also get some unintentionally hilarious moments. Take for example when Bo walks out of his mandatory anger management course and waiting in the lobby is a stressed out Mel Gibson with stacks of journals documenting his “feelings”. That may have been funny at the time when Mel only had a crazy on screen persona, but now when we have heard his ramblings on race, religion, and sex? Comedy gold my friends.

My one problem with this movie, is that this movie doesn’t go far enough on the camp value. Oddly enough, the times when Bo tries to kill the paparazzi are played more serious than they should be. The movie has an odd cat and mouse game between Bo who is trying to get away with these murders and the local Columbo type detective (here played by Dennis Farina). Much of the plot has to do with Bo covering up evidence with Farina constantly giving his “Oh just one more question…” If we are gonna go overboard with the camp, then just do the triple lindy off the high dive. I wanna see Bo kung fu fighting with photogs and having car chases in supercharged muscle cars and giving cheesy one liners as he mows down the people that hurt his family. This movie shouldn’t try to be Death Wish, it should rather be what Death Wish 4 was.

Cole Hauser is okay but to this day does not strike me as a leading man. While he has the look, he doesn’t have enough of a personality to carry a movie like this. He is frequently getting upstaged in this movie by Tom Sizemore and Farina who are clearly unafraid of hamming it up in a movie like this.

There really isn’t much more to say on this movie. It is a straight up revenge flick and a rather average one at that. I actually like the premise and it is all done competently, but the movie doesn’t go nearly as far as I would like it to. I want crazy action scenes, over the top acting, and cheesy dialog. At the end of the day this movie is just ‘meh’. Maybe if you are bored and you find this on TV you should give it a shot, but I found it to be a little disappointing.

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One Response to “Paparazzi (2004) Paul Abascal”

  1. I love how long it takes Farina (or anyone) to think “Hey traffic cameras are everywhere. Maybe one of them can reveal what happened the night of the accident!”

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