A dragnet is any system of coordinated measures for apprehending criminals or suspects; including road barricades and traffic stops, widespread DNA tests, and general increased police alertness. Since the 1950s, such "dragnets" have generally been held to be unconstitutional as unreasonable search and seizure actions.
It's also the name of a 1987 buddy cop movie starring Dan Aykroyd, Tom Hanks and the late great Christopher Plummer. We're talking about the latter this week.
Sidey: and it changed to a not previously advertised we weren't going to review something else or chat about something else, but because the sad passing of Christopher Plummer, we've decided to. Have a chat about Dragnet, which we had mentioned to him before he passed away.
So it seems seemed like the right thing to do.
Reegs: Yeah. Maybe a quick thing on Christopher Plummer first,
Reegs: or he was rad. He's the oldest person to win an acting award at the Oscars is an 82 year old back in 2010. Uh, No beginners was the name of the movie. I've not seen that easily later. What, where did I just say that? Essentially?
Sidey: I don't know.
Reegs: anyone care to come up with a definition for that?
He more recently played the patriarch in knives out, which we did review, but his filmography was long. And Distinguished and varied one. He was obviously kept in Von Trapp in the sound of music. He was also in star Trek six, the undiscovered country. He's worked with spike Lee Ridley, Scott, David Fincher, Terry Gilliam, Brian Johnson, Oliver stone, Mike Nichols.
You know, he's the only Canadian to ever win the triple crown Oscar, Emmy and Tony. So a bit of a screen legend. It's got to be said, rest in peace.
Sidey: There's a movie that people were talking about after he died, where he played a psychopath.
Howie: Social path
Sidey: by the bike lane,
Dan: let's just lay down there on the floor.
Howie: handler method.
Sidey: if they had a psycho. And it's, it's another one that I I've not seen, but I did it.
Must've been on the news. Cause I did see a cliff bed. He looked fucking terrifying. So I'm going to hunt that one down and have a look at it. It looked really
Reegs: Got a name of that or?
Sidey: no, I died should have done, but I didn't say fuck off. W I have seen many, many times 1980 sevens Dragnet,
Sidey: And finally a film I watched this week that I enjoyed
Reegs: Has anybody ever seen the TV series that this was based on? Cause I, I haven't.
Dan: only, only parts of episodes. So I understand what it was like, but not a whole
Reegs: So this was the sort of reboot. This is a sort of thing that's quite popular nowadays, where they reboot a TV series as a movie and put a big Hollywood star in it.
Sidey: Dan Akroyd was a mega mega fan of the original Joe Friday character and the dude that played every, so he was keen for this to be.
Reegs: he's got a, a co-writers credit. On the movie as well with director Tom Mancke of it. So yes Ackroyd plays Joe Friday his, the nephew and namesake of the original character, Joe Friday who was a sort of. Amy Lee retentive police officer by the book guy, he, he, if you've ever seen red dwarf, he's memorized the rule book in a far better way than Rimmer because he can quote it.
And it actually is the the rule that, that is applicable,
Sidey: Well, should I take you through that? Cause he at length, he lectures pep about the dress code.
Reegs: Tom Hanks, pep street. Becky's the,
Reegs: yeah, thanks. There, there is sort of An odd couple really? Aren't they? Cause pep street Beck is the cool one.
Sidey: Yeah, which is not unusual for Tom Hanks. You'd normally be the sort of square one as well. So there was lots of different ideas of who they were going to cast for him, but he, he lectures him about the dress code and he says section three, so six Oh five paragraph 10, that, that actually covers the need for a neat professional appearance paragraph 2.0 through 2.6 covers, half paragraph five dot.
Oh. Allows normal civilian clothing, if appropriate to the assignment. paragraph.seven refers to ornamentation, such as rings, paragraph.io covers the appropriate time for court.
Reegs: So basically, so, so when he's quoting the rule book at him, he is actually quoting the rule book at
Sidey: is the actual, but yeah.
Dan: There's some classic
Lines in this though. And I was, there was one point where they're holding somebody in this cell and he asked for a lawyer. He says, whoever, whichever lawyer you'd have would just ooze right under this door, like, you know, the slime that they would be under. Fantastic. I mean, that's kind of, he's got that airplane kind of vibe to it where there was just lots of quick lines and, and clever kind of quips
Reegs: there were assigned to investigate a series of bizarre threats by the pagan group, which
Sidey: launched straight into it. Don't be the very start of the film, but just straight in there's no sort of buildup or hint of what's going on with straight into burning of all the bait magazine
Reegs: now bait. Now I just want to stop a second and talk about bait. I'm assuming this was not the Mark Jenkins extravaganza about gentrification. I thought this was probably either a reference to either Jailbait or masturbation
Dan: I would say both. I think it was potentially aimed
Sidey: I was thinking probably more masturbation because Jailbait is skating on thin ice a little bit. There aren't
Dan: Yeah. But it just seemed one of those films where it was an eighties film and it was, yeah, it was a gal.
Sidey: a lot of the ladies at the let's say Playboy mansion in this didn't seem
Reegs: That young. No,
Dan: under rage.
Reegs: no. This was more like how he's granny porn that he keeps showing us.
Sidey: well, they did have them all there because it was down the first three
Reegs: That's true.
Sidey: the 25th anniversary. So he was, he was really assembling all the bait maids or
Dan: the pipe might. Yeah. Which was basically Playboy. So bait was Playboy and he was you half know and no.
Reegs: in a lisping sun, Southern accent.
Sidey: is it because. This movie, it really parallels the una bomber
Dan: rarely I followed this. So what, what show me the parallels.
Sidey: that, so the plot of this the pagans I've got the hump because what's his name, Jerry Caesar. publish their manifesto and the similar sort of time.
Sidey: The Uber bomber had a manifesto and penthouse magazine were supposed to publish it. And then also there was a sketch made of the suspect in the Unabomber case.
And he looks almost exactly like,
Dan: Yeah. Not,
Reegs: I hope was that actor because he does, I recognized him. He's you know, he's, he's very distinctive appearance. He also does the Phil Heelan maneuver of picking up the car halfway through. Christopher Plummer plays Reverend Jonathan Worley. Who's leading a moral crusade against Caesar's business.
And this was a good choice for this because I thought he was great in this Christopher Plummer. He's such a slimy sycophantic. Yeah.
Sidey: that pathetic laugh he does at the start, when he's just being introduced as the the big, bad
Dan: the television?
Sidey: I don't, you know, it's easy to sort of hate praise with someone after they've died,
Reegs: No, he was very good at this. Yeah.
Dan: Where they got that goat's head when they finally
Sidey: I love that safe.
Dan: to this big celebration of pagans.
Reegs: People against goodness and normalcy.
Dan: that's right.
Reegs: So yeah, street back and Friday. Go to this sort of cult ceremony, I guess. They F they fight what I believe was a fake snake, although it was difficult to tell because the prop was so good that they used they, they free the Virgin Connie swale, who was going to be sacrificed, played by Alexandra pool of Baywatch vain.
Sidey: they did that thing in the movies that happens quite a lot, where they go to take someone back to the scene of the crime and it's all been cleared up.
Reegs: Normalized completely
Sidey: and it's, it's impossible. For it to happen, like the, the, the sort of wealth or whatever it was, where they, they jumped in was full of ground.
That looked like it had never been disturbed. You know what I mean?
Reegs: Yes. And only the night before it was a pit with a Anaconda in it and
Sidey: he recognize the captain from the police force?
Reegs: did. But who was it?
Sidey: It's Harry Morgan. He was a Colonel Potter of the mash four Oh seven seven.
Reegs: Yes, that's it? Yeah. Yeah. Oh good.
Sidey: The picture of his wife that he has on his desk is the same picture from mash.
Reegs: Oh, I liked that.
Reegs: They get tipped off. Well may the, the, by the book, Joe Friday is, is fired from the case because, and fired from the police force. Having gone too far in his pursuit of police, commissioner, Jane Kirkpatrick, and obviously the Reverend Jonathan Worley, who it's all tied to.
Sidey: I'd forgotten that she was she was all in on the crime thing. You know, the commissioner just completely forgot about it until I watched it again. One issue I did have with this is that Dan Akroyd, who I think is fucking fantastic in this, I go as far as say, I think this is his best role. He is by the book, like to the letter, he quotes the, you know, the rule book and everything like that, but he is immediately fine.
Like nothing's happened to convince him with the level of police brutality that they inflict
Dan: going for donuts and coffee.
Reegs: Yes, because I'm straight back.
Sidey: torturing him effectively to give him by squashing his bollix in the drawer of
Howie: in the
Reegs: Yes. Yeah.
Sidey: he, when he's. Then find some resolve and decides it's not gonna give any more information up.
They fuck. They go do it all again and crushes bollix and more.
Reegs: well, this was 1987. I mean, Rodney King is only four years away. Police acts of brutality in Los Angeles where obviously I'm part of the system. So maybe that's just being true to true to the, I don't, I don't think this was a documentary, but perhaps it was.
Dan: it shows that it was probably very conscious of the time then if there's parallels with a unit bomber killer as well, and maybe just trying to have some of. Social commentary of the time to get more people going into it and talking about it around and it's difficult then sort of 25 years down the line.
Obviously I was also young as well. We wouldn't have remembered it that well. When it came out and the, and what was happening around the issues of, of those days. So you lose a little bit of that when you revisit these films, which makes them maybe harder to impress you nowadays. But classic and funny is still classic and funny.
And this for me was still stands up even without maybe knowing the small facts and trivia that you can bring to it. Like the unit bomber, like, you
Reegs: Yeah, that is interesting.
Dan: the time. It is interesting, but without knowing it, I still enjoyed the film.
Sidey: what was also very interesting was the ladies that Tom Hanks was not going to bat with were very interesting. I thought really grabbed my attention.
Reegs: they? Well, because of their contribution to the script, was it or.
Sidey: Yes. I'm set dressing.
Reegs: Like you said before, Ackroyd's performance really is the centerpiece of the film. He's got this sort of rapid fire sort of delivery. It must take an, I don't know how many takes they had to do, but he's giving off these very long sentences really quickly.
And then it's they have he, he and Tom Hanks, I think have a pretty good chemistry in this There's good supporting actors, obviously, like we talked about with Christopher Plummer and several others. I enjoyed detective story. Beck's television watch, which was a real one. Well thing amazingly, it had a black and white display and a battery pack about the size of a Walkman that you had to carry separately which is low.
How did anybody feel about the. Classic drag net theme tune being converted into a rap by Dan Akroyd. Did anybody enjoy that or did anybody want to kill themselves?
Sidey: I have to say I didn't hang around for the whole duration of it. I have to say
Dan: What, one of the the lines that I was just looking back on, the made me laugh was captain Gannon said, Frank, coming into work today, Joe and aqui goes 24 hour virus or tomorrow 48 hours. Just
Sidey: I like the, the lady that's had a wedding dress stolen
Sidey: go to visit her and she just gives them a torrent of abuse for about five minutes.
Reegs: I recognized her, but I wasn't sure who it was. Did anybody do the research or
Sidey: now I can be bothered. I just enjoyed her swearing at the policemen. It was great.
Dan: five, two, one that's address. 22, one. She never looked that great in it.
Reegs: So this was, I'd seen this a number of times in sort of teams and that sort of thing, but this was the first time I revisited it in a while. It tends to drag now and again the romance is pretty dull, but you know, it's got some amusing moments in it. It's lots of funny lines. I liked the sort of montages that they do while they're talking over the plot and you see them acting out really sort of ham-fisted really like pointing.
Really obviously, and that sort of thing that, that, that, yeah, this is, this is watchable. There were other people who gave it. Different levels of praise. Our friends on the Google reviews T V V Vignelli gave it five stairs and said, may you live as long as you want, but never want as long as you live, which I think is important and definitely helps it shed further light on this.
Sidey: certainly relevant.
Reegs: CD Hirsch was not so enamored.
He or she said, we shut it off after 28 minutes and sat for a moment in silence in remembrance, in remembrance of our $2 99, unfortunately, to submit this comment requires at least one star. So there again, we like to present you with all of the various opinions at Baghdad's film review.
Dan: Yeah, that's the high and
the low of it.
Sidey: I would be sort of positioning myself with the former review.
Reegs: T V V. Vic Nash. May you live as long as you want, but never want as long as you live.
Sidey: but you gave it five stars, isn't
Reegs: He did. Yeah.
Sidey: Yeah. I probably get four stars. I don't know if I'd go as high as I'd go. I give it four constellations out of a galaxy.
Reegs: For me, this was a sort of three police brutalities out of, out of seven.
Howie: I'll give it three Virgin Connie sways out of, out of maybe five.
Dan: I think it's probably seven fishing nets out of a trawler.
Sidey: Okay. So overall, the best thing we saw this week, the ad.
Howie: so better.