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Romancing the Stone (DVD, 2006, Special Edition) Reviews
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Romancing the Stone (DVD, 2006, Special Edition)

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Romancing the Stone - more than a brief trip to the Jewellery Quarter...

Jan 13, 2006 (Updated Jan 16, 2006)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:A perfect blend of action and comedy, Douglas and Turner make a great onscreen couple...

Cons:... not necessarily suitable for younger audiences

The Bottom Line: Action, adventure, romance, comedy - Romancing the Stone has them all in abundance.


In Romancing the Stone, Kathleen Turner plays Joan Wilder, an author of trashy (but hugely successful) romance novels. Her life is turned upside down, however, when her sister is kidnapped while in Columbia, and she sets off to rescue her. The thing is, just before leaving England, she receives a map that her sister sent her…

When in Columbia she meets rugged adventurer Jack T. Colton (Michael Douglas), who – somewhat unwillingly, it has to be said – decides to help her. Can they rescue Joan’s sister from the ruthless bad guy and his incompetent goons (including Danny DeVito)? Will they find whatever treasure the map is leading to? Will they fall in love? Will Joan Wilder be able to write a best-selling trashy romantic thriller out of it? Is Jack T. Colton (The “T.” is very important) just using Wilder to get to the treasure?

Since it’s directed by Robert Zemeckis (Back to the Future, Who Framed Roger Rabbit), it’s no surprise to find that this is a fast-moving action movie with plenty of action in it. (Okay he may have bucked the trend somewhat with movies like Cast Away, What Lies Beneath, etc, but we’re talking pre-nineties Zemeckis here.) Overall I wouldn’t say it’s exactly brilliant, thus the 4-star rating, but it is extremely enjoyable and very funny in places, so it well deserves its place in my Top Ten Action / Adventure Movies list. With some great photography added into the bargain, along with terrific performances the cast, Romancing the Stone is a really pleasing film.

Of the performances, the three that stand out are, not particularly surprisingly, the lead pair’s. Douglas is energetic physically and laconic verbally to give his character just the right balance of loveable rogue and someone you wouldn’t trust to take care of your least favourite child (or maybe you would, depending just how much you don’t like them). Apparently the role was turned down by both Sylvester Stallone and Christopher Reeve before Douglas got it; I can’t honestly see either of them in the role, so perhaps it’s just as well they turned it down. Turner is perfect as a strong yet easily flustered woman, not a typical damsel in distress but not quite sure of herself. The chemistry between the two is excellent, really believable. Oh yeah and Turner has very nice legs, which are very important to the plot. (As important as Cybil Shepherd’s were in Moonlighting!!) If she didn’t have nice legs, I’m sure the whole thing would fall apart. (Or at least, the cameraman wouldn’t quite know what to do in several scenes.) Danny DeVito gives a typically gruff performance as one of the bad guys and gets a few laughs along the way.

It’s all good fun but not for younger children. The UK rating (well, re-rating for the uncut version) is 12, USA rating is PG. Some countries have ratings as high as 16 (not to be seen below the age of 16). There’s nothing terrible in it but there is some back language and a few reasonably intense scenes. I would advise parents of younger children to watch it themselves before deciding if it’s too much for their kids or not. The runtime of 105 minutes goes by very quickly.

The film won a handful of awards , most notably Golden Globes for Best Motion Picture (Comedy / Musical) and Best Actress for Turner.

Quotes

Jack Colton: My minimum price for taking a stranded lady to a telephone is 350 dollars.
Joan Wilder: Will you take 275 in traveler's checks?
Jack Colton: American Express?
Joan Wilder: Of course.
Jack Colton: You've got a deal.


[Jack shows off his new, crocodile skin, boots, made from the crocodile he has killed]
Joan Wilder: I like the boots.
Jack Colton: Yeah, that poor old yellow-tailed guy... developed a fatal case of indigestion. He died right in my arms.
Joan Wilder: I can't blame him. If I were to die there's nowhere on earth I'd rather be.

-----------------------------------------

(After Jack takes the heels of Jaon’s shoes.)

Joan Wilder: These were Italian.
Jack Colton: Now they're practical.

-----------------------------------------

Jack Colton: What did you do, wake up this morning and say, "Today, I'm going to ruin a man's life"?


Recommend this product? Yes

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Though she can spin wild tales of passionate romance, novelist Joan Wilder (Kathleen Turner) has no life of her own. Then one day adventure comes her ...
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