Rating: 2 out of 5
It's hard to watch your favorite childhood movie characters grow up and try to capitalize on the same, tired dog and pony show. Alas, Hollywood has turned the recycler on full steam, sending Aussie icon Paul Hogan back into celluloid with an empty third installment of the "Crocodile" Dundee saga: Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles.
Not much has come from Hogan since his days as Mick "Crocodile" Dundee. He has written and starred in many forgettable films over the past decade -- stuff like Almost an Angel, Lighting Jack, and Flipper -- and has even converted his Crocodile Dundee role into a spokesman for the Subaru Outback. Did anyone want or need another fish-out-of-water story about a hillbilly croc hunter trying to adapt to Big City life? With the keys to his Outback in hand, Hogan is back in the trademark hat, dishing out another tale of the simple Australian man mingling with that kooky, extravagant, and pompous American culture.
This time around, Dundee and his son Mick, a crocodile hunter in training, accompany his wife Sue (Linda Kozlowski, best known for starring in the earlier Dundee movies also) to L.A. when she takes over as bureau chief for her dad's newspaper. Apparently, the former bureau chief was mysteriously murdered during an investigation into a new movie studio in town. During his wife's investigation of the investigation, Dundee gets involved in the movie business as a monkey wrangler for Paramount (how convenient!) and plays detective in uncovering the shady operations of the suspicious studio.
In his L.A. adventure, Dundee is mistaken for a gay cowboy, discusses coffee enemas with famous celebrities, trains monkeys, tosses Styrofoam cows at bad guys, causes a massive traffic jam rescuing a skunk, dines at Wendy's, stars as an extra in an action movie, and thwarts gangbangers and purse snatchers with his Spider Sense of danger.
Dundee's adventures in L.A. really lack one major element: Originality. Hogan's character tossed into a script written by Matthew Berry and Eric Abrams (two story editors from the defunct TV show Married... with Children) comes out tepid and warmed-over, as if Hogan or the writers couldn't convince themselves that another trek down these familiar grounds was plausible. Using L.A. as a backdrop for comedic situations fails as well because the novelty of Los Angeles as this crazy netherworld of Hollywood starlets, bad drivers, and obnoxious people on every corner has become clichéd and is about as interesting as an episode of TV's Beastmaster. The subplot about the sleazy movie studio and the kid who plays little Crocodile Dundee are both annoying.
The most appropriate audience for this latest Dundee flick will be the children who never got to see the original import from Down Under. The film is light, stages a minimum of violence, and carries a decent message. Too bad that this time Crocodile Dundee will only be recognized as that guy from the car commercials and not the guy with the knife.
Blondes meet crocs.
Facts and Figures
Run time: 92 mins
In Theaters: Friday 20th April 2001
Box Office USA: $25.3M
Distributed by: Paramount
Production compaines: Bungalow Productions, Silver Lion Films, Vision View Entertainment
Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 11%
Fresh: 9 Rotten: 70
IMDB: 4.8 / 10
Cast & Crew
Director: Simon Wincer
Starring: Paul Hogan as Michael J. 'Crocodile' Dundee, Linda Kozlowski as Sue Charleton, Jere Burns as Arnan Rothman, Jonathan Banks as Milos Drubnik, Alec Wilson as Jacko, Gerry Skilton as Nugget O'Cass, Steve Rackman as Donk, Serge Cockburn as Mikey Dundee, Aida Turturro as Jean Ferraro, Paul Rodríguez as Diego, Kaitlin Hopkins as Miss Mathis, David Ngoombujarra as Arthur, Patrick Dargan as Troy, Matt Winston as Limo Driver, Morgan O'Neill as Matt, Clare Carey as Skater