Three Fugitives Reviews
Lucas is furious by the incident and has to get his name cleared. Ned begs for his help as he in desperate need of money for himself and his daughter. The two have gone through quite a bit of strife since the passing of the mother. As a result, his daughter has not spoken for two years, and only telling Lucas not to go is all she has said. Lucas finds in his heart to help the two and get them back on their feet. From this point on the film gets a bit goofy and loses some of its cache.
Three Fugitives is a pretty interesting and original movie. The events and sequences that occur throughout the film just seem viable enough. Short does a good job keep his humor in check, and is a good character and he has good chemistry with Nolte. The film has some surprisingly endearing moments as the two of them try and care for Ned's daughter Meg. One includes when Martin Short is passing out and holding Meg, and two keep them both safe, Lucas carries both of them. The film definitely has the feel of an 80s comedy, but this is works well for the film. Three Fugitives is good comedy that has a mix of action, sentimentality and humor.
It's an uneasy mix and the end result is that neither the drama or comedy work well enough to cover up the nauseous feeling in the pit of your stomach that comes from the jolting shifts in tone. Take, for instance, the scene in which Martin Short watches his daughter in the orphanage through the fence once she is taken from him. It's meant to tug at the heartstrings, until the sprinkler water hits him square in the face. It's jarring and completely unnecessary, but it does sum up the basic problem of the film.
Unusual casting match-ups were a sign of the times in the 1980's, and teaming Short up with a gruffer-than-normal Nick Nolte must have sounded golden on paper. It comes across as less successful on the screen. The film also suffers from a severe logic deficiency. While I know this is essentially a comedy, the cops in the picture are unbelievably stupid, even more inept at their job than Short is at robbing banks. It's insulting after a while, as is the terrible score by David McHugh. The musical score is not something I normally notice in a film, unless it's this bad.
"Three Fugitives" is a mess of a movie with a good heart. It's just misplaced most of the time, and the audience suffers the consequences.