There a rich pair of brothers (Ralph Bellamy and Don Ameche) who control a lot of stuff, and are having a debate on Nurture vs Nature. To prove a point, they turf rich trader Louis Winthrop (Dan Aykroyd) out on the street and disgrace his name, and bring con artist and beggar Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy) in to his position. One thing leads to another and they discover the swap and hatch a plan, along with the hooker with a heart of gold, Ophelia (Jamie Lee Curtis) and awesome butler Coleman (Denholm Elliot).
There are a lot of things politically incorrect about this film, including liberal racism and use of the ‘n’ word, plus almost every woman has her breasts out with very little reason… and perhaps some of that can be explained away by it being the eighties. I think. It’s funny and mostly quite good, even if it is somewhat ridiculous. But it is that good ridiculous that makes you feel warm inside – I’d suggest it was a good film for kids if not for the language and nudity. And the hooker. And the suggestion of certain activities in the prison. Okay, maybe not for kids…
Trading Places was nominated for an Oscar for Best Music, Original Song Score and its Adaptation or Best Adaptation Score.
Shrek (Mike Meyers) is an ogre who lives in a swamp and is blissfully happy on his own. Then a whole heap of fairy tale characters turn up in his swamp, dumped there by the evil Lord Farquaad (John Lithgow). To get his swamp back, he must rescue Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz) and take her to marry Lord Farquaad. Shrek takes his new companion, Donkey (Eddie Murphy) and it turns into a marvelous adventure.
It’s such a great film. Funny, silly, loads of cultural references that have not grown old. And really, how many kids’ movies can get away with a lead character with an extremely rude sounding name, popular kids fairy tale characters being tortured and a bird exploding? What ace times.
Shrek won an Oscar for Best Animated Feature and was nominated for Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published.
Trey Sellars (Eddie Murphy) wants to be a star. He is an actor who survives through his day job – he’s a cop because he was not coordinated enough to be a waiter. Chase Renzi (Rene Russo) is a television executive who is looking for a new reality show to wow the world. After Sellars botches the drug raid of Detective Mitch Preston (Robert Di Niro), Preston is strong armed into appearing on a police reality television show, Showtime. Preston and Sellars are the typical unlikely buddy cop pairing, attempting to solve the mystery of some new super-guns whilst constantly being followed by cameramen.
There is something about this film that looks as though it should be awful. However, it’s actually extremely funny. Robert Di Niro is doing comedy, but he is playing the grumpy straight man and this works beautifully. Eddie Murphy is, as pretty much always wonderful. The pairing works well, the plot is almost feasible and it’s a surprisingly good film. Definitely worth a trip to the DVD shop. Oh, and William Shatner’s in it.