Saturday, May 02, 2009

What I watched: "My Bodyguard"

The recent appearance of Scott Bakula on the season (and quite possibly the series) finale of "Chuck" set off a bout of nostalgia in me, prompting me to rent the film debut of "Chuck" cast member Adam Baldwin. He isn't one of the Baldwin brothers (Alec, Stephen, William), but you may recognize him as Jayne from "Firefly."

He debuted way back in 1980 as Ricky Linderman in the film "My Bodyguard" (not to be confused with "The Bodyguard," which I hated). The movie also features Chris Makepeace, a gangly and adorable Joan Cusack and budding teen heartthrob Matt Dillon.

Tormented by Moody (Dillon) and his group of bullies, Clifford (Makepeace) hires Linderman to be his bodyguard. Linderman, troubled and misunderstood, helps Clifford but doesn't want to be friends. In true buddy-film fashion, the two do become friends, along with a group of misfits that includes an uncredited Jennifer Beals.

Although there are predictable moments in the movie, it never becomes trite. It's sweet without becoming saccharine. And it's fun and funny without becoming cheesy. If they made it today, it would probably have to be an independent film in order to keep it the way it is. I hope no one decides it should be remade with Hayden Panettiere and Zac Efron.

If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it. If you watched it long ago, watch it again. It holds up despite it being nearly 30 years old.

In short, I love this movie. It was a perfect way to end a stressful week.

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