We Watch Bad Movies So You Don't
Clean Slate (1994)
(Doctor takes a moment to remember Stanley Kubrick 3/7/00)
As a Doctor I've seen many things. But the last time
I saw Saturday Night Live, Bill Murray was still on. By Eddie Murphy
I was in College and more interested in tripping than watching TV
on Saturday. Now I'm old, and Dana Carvey is a relative unknown,
but here he turns up the lead of Mick Jackson's new comedy CLEAN
SLATE. This stocking stuffer is simply a Total Recall clone; a fable
about a fellow who wakes up with a new case of amnesia every day,
forgetting that he is a Private Eye named Pogue and a witness to
an organized crime, masterminded by RTC muse Michael Gambon. This
witnessed act is nothing less than the car explosion murder of his
Ex , the mysterious Beth, played to perfection and with great depth
and feeling by Valeria Golina. But now, Beth shows up very much
alive and looking for some old Chinese coin that's worth a lot and
Carvey hid it somewhere and he has to testify on Sunday about the
coin and Gambon and his dog, who is blind & apparently sometimes
made of cardboard... Is it as confusing as its sounds? Not at all.
Like CHINATOWN or THE GODFATHER, the film layers its characters
so richly, so delicately, that soon all the relationships become
clear, and the drama ensues in always unpredictable fashion. In
addition to all that, the film heralds the debut of a grand comedian
and an every man for the ages. He is a Jimmy Stewart with a quizzical
face; a Laurel without an Ollie; a Richard Dreyfuss for a new millennium.
He is Costello without Dean Martin. And with the help of his beautiful
girl Friday, ("Pogue, I'll help you.") this unlikely gumshoe ("I
have got to go meet Sarah..." "But Sarah's dead") will become an
unlikely hero, ("You said you gave it to Baby." "Baby?! Who's Baby!!!")"
if only he can remember, ("Tell us where the coin is!" "The coin?"
) that love ("Pogue, I always love you.") conquers all. ("I'm Pogue.")
Dana Carvey, ("How do you spell that?" "That's P,O....") Valerie
Golina ("I fake my dayeth, don you remaymber?" )James Earl Jones
("Have you seen Beth today?" "Beth's dead.") and Michael Murphy,
("I'm Michael Murphy.") in CLEAN SLATE (Pogue, you have to stall
them." "WHAT!!!!!) Rated PG-13
*************1/2 out of 20.