A Reminder for You to Rent and Watch “Deadfall” Starring Nicolas Cage

Before I started my 2019 blogging streak, I was still actively writing reviews for movies I’ve been watching this year. As of the publication of this entry I’m on track to watch about 190 or more movies in 2019. That’s higher than normal, trust me.

In some ways, I feel like I’m making up a lot of ground. In other ways, I feel like I’ve got to slow down. There have been some real stinkers in the mix.

No small part of that is my commitment to the insanely ambitious podcast project I’m on for The Nerd Party, a show called RetroPerspective that I cohost with my friend @mumbles3k. I’m pretty sure he asked me to accompany him on the journey because I’m the only one of his friends who’s [crazy? ambitious?] enough to go through a week-by-week rewatch of movies from 1994. That’s right, we’re crawling through 1994, one week at a time.

The majority of it has been painful. Some (very) small part of it has been sublime.

And one movie in particular has stayed with me above all the others. A movie that is fascinatingly bad. I think of it as such an absolute train wreck that it must be seen to be believed. Think of The Room, or even a Neil Breen movie, but with an A-List cast of Oscar-caliber actors.

Be sure that you rent it on iTunes, as Amazon Prime’s got some questionable pan-and-scan bologna. If you’re going to suffer, suffer in the proper aspect ratio.

Nicolas Cage Eddie Deadfall
This is one of the less crazy moments, believe it or not.

My Review of Deadfall, Starring Nicolas Cage

This is one of the most bafflingly awful movies I’ve seen. Absolutely everything with it is an incoherent mess, from the screen to the bizarre choices in performance and editing. An ending that’s supposed to be a shocking reveal is, at best, nonsense.

Nicolas Cage is so completely off the rails as to wonder if he received any direction at all during filming, or was even aware that the footage was going to be shown to anyone. The trailer that emphasizes his insane choices doesn’t do it justice. Witnessing it in its entirety is the only thing that could.

Usually I don’t pick on the set decoration or budget for a movie, but this entire production looks like it was lit in a hurry on the worst soundstages available. Not one location felt authentic. As the movie progressed, it looked like someone behind the scenes was cutting that budget as they saw the rushes and realized what a mess they were funding.

This isn’t even a case of being disappointed because there was a Coppola behind the camera. This is disappointing that anyone was behind the camera at all. I suppose I’d be proud that someone was willing to take the blame for what the audience endured.

The cast is undoubtedly, on the whole, the result of a truckload of favors and family loyalty. The rest were likely bedazzled by the idea of working with a member of the Coppola family. I don’t blame anyone for wanting to appear in the film. Micky Dolenz from The Monkees is in here, alongside Michael Biehn, Peter Fonda, Talia Shire, and Angus Scrimm, the beloved “Tall Man” from Phantasm. Screen legend James Coburn is in here. Charlie Sheen is in here.

I can’t help but think of how many talented people miss opportunities in show business just so someone with connections can get a shot. It’s understandable – I’d want to give my kid as many opportunities as well – but it’s a shame.

In case you’re wondering, I watched this out of morbid curiosity for “RetroPerspective” on The Nerd Party. Subscribe so you can hear me and my cohost compare and contrast our reactions to it.

I’m in a generous mood, so I’m going to give it half a star simply because Nicolas Cage acting nuts is captivating, no matter how bad the production may be.