When an escort girl is found dead in the offices of a Japanese company in Los Angeles, detectives Web Smith and John Connor act as liaison between the company's executives and the investigating cop Tom Graham.
They finish each other's sentences, dance like Fred and Ginger, and share the same downtown loft--the perfect couple? Not exactly. Gray and Sam, are a sister and brother so compatible and inseparable that people actually assume they are dating. Mortified, they both agree they must branch out and start searching for love. He'll look for a guy for her and she'll look for a gal for him.
JC is at the end of his Twenties and is living with his girlfriend Chloe in a small coastal town in England. He is a surfer legend and some day, three of his friends show up, including Terry who is about to get married. While he is supposed to have the last good time in his life, Josh (a successful Techno music producer) tries to figure out what type of music he likes most and Dean, who sells drugs on a regular basis, must face the fact that his life is not what he would like it to be. JC has his own problems with Chloe: Will he stay with her and run a surfer coffee shop or travel around the world without her?Written by
Thomas Meyer <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Professional surfer Steve England was a body double for Peter Gunn. To replicate Gunn's look and larger build he had to have his long hair cut and wear two wetsuits with towels packed around his stomach. See more »
When JC is in the car with his friends, he says Chloe has no money and between shots his collar jumps from under to over the seat belt. See more »
Thematically, "Blue Juice" has a lot in common with Barry Levinson's "Diner" from a few years earlier. Both are what might be called "delayed coming-of-age movies". Coming-of-age films traditionally focus upon characters in their teens, but for many young men their twenties, when they have finished full-time education, are starting out on their careers and are starting to think seriously about marriage and relationships with women, can be a time of even greater changes. Both "Blue Juice" and "Diner" focus upon a group of young men in their mid-to-late twenties who are confronted with the choice between growing up and accepting new responsibilities or keeping their old, carefree lifestyle centred around a group of like-minded friends.
The main character of "Blue Juice" is JC. (We never learn what those initials stand for). Unusually for the hero of a British film, he is a keen surfer. Britain might not have the balmy climate of California, Australia or Hawaii, but we still have our own surf culture, mostly centred upon the South-West Peninsula, especially Cornwall. JC's great dream is to travel around the world surfing accompanied by his beautiful girlfriend Chloe, but she would prefer to settle down and buy a café. Things are complicated by the sudden arrival in Cornwall of musician Josh, drug-dealing Dean and Terry, three old friends from London, friends that Chloe does not really approve of. The plump, easy-going Terry has his own difficulties, which are the opposite of JC's problem- he is keen to marry and settle down, but his fiancée longs for a more adventurous life. One thing I didn't care for was the film's rather laissez-faire attitude to drugs and the implication that it was the drugs supplied by Dean which helped Terry become a more relaxed, open-minded character.
Despite the similarity in theme, this film is not nearly as good as "Diner", which was better written and better acted and had more characters with whom the audience could identify. The first half of "Blue Juice" is particularly slow-moving and often baffling. There is an attempt to establish JC (played by Sean Pertwee, son of the former Doctor Who) as a sympathetic character, but it is never really explained why he should have become friends with unsympathetic losers like Josh and Dean. (Terry, although treated as something of a figure of fun, is rather more likeable).
It is interesting to note that when the film was released on DVD in 2000 the cover showed not Pertwee, who plays the film's main character, but Ewan McGregor, who plays the smaller role of Dean. Mc Gregor was relatively unknown in 1995, but five years later he had become much better known than Pertwee. Neither, in fact, is particularly good here. The lovely Catherine Zeta-Jones, as Chloe, shows plenty of the charisma which made her one of Britain's hottest young actresses of the nineties, but few would class this as one of her best performances. Unless, of course, you judge the quality of an actress's performance by the amount of flesh she reveals.
Rock fans might enjoy the music; there is a cameo appearance by rock star Edwin Starr, some of whose songs are featured on the soundtrack. The film brightens up and becomes more comprehensible in the second half, and I quite liked Peter Gunn's amusing contribution as the hapless Terry. Overall, however, I found this a rather mediocre production and one of the British film industry's weaker efforts. 5/10
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