It's a Hit With Me

So what's up with you guys, are you meant to be the spice boys or something - Keiko

Mark Wahlberg in The Big Hit (1998)

Melvin Smiley (Mark Wahlberg) is an expert hit man having scored over a century of hits, except Melvin has this affliction; he has a deep psychological need to be liked by people. It is why he finds him in the situation of being in debt as not only is he due to be married to Pam (Christina Applegate) but is doing Chantel (Lela Rochon) on the side and covering her spending in the process. In need of money he joins up with friends Crunch (Bokeem Woodbine), Gump (Robert Dunne), Vinnie (Antonio Sabato Jr.) and Cisco (Lou Diamond Phillips) in a plan to kidnap and hold to ransom the pretty Keiko (China Chow). The trouble is that Keiko just happens to be the goddaughter of crime lord Paris (Avery Brooks) who both Melvin and Cisco work for. And then things get complicated as not only does Melvin unsurprisingly fall for Keiko but Cisco double crosses the gang and starts hunting them down.

"The Big Hit" is basically a spoof movie, but rather than playing it for laughs with dumb jokes it plays it for laughs with over the top action and characters. That makes it amusingly curious when you have something as stylized as Melvin bouncing up and down on a bungee rope while killing guards then comically letting go so that he lands across the banisters of a staircase and as he rolls down keeps on shooting. I am literally trying to find a way to explain it and would say think of a John Woo action movie, who is actually an executive producer on "The Big Hit", but make all the stylish action over the top and amusing.

Lou Diamond Phillips in The Big Hit (1998)

But "The Big Hit" is not just about comically over the top and ridiculously stylized action as it also has its fair share of dark humour. An early scene where Chantel walks in and gives Melvin a boner only for the stiff he is disposing off in the shower to spoil things is simply funny even before Melvin grabs his crotch and kicks the dead body in frustration. But it is not just dark humour as we have stupid gags from Cisco playing it large when he doesn't get a bonus for supposedly making the hit to the video shop calling up Melvyn over a late video return, I did say it was stupid. And then we have scenes which basically revolve around the likes of Mark Wahlberg, Lou Diamond Phillips and Bokeem Woodbine walking around naked with just towels covering their modesty. It is a little random but so random that it is a whole lot of fun and there is a lot more daftness than I could ever mention especially when you have Lainie Kazan and Elliott Gould as Pam's parents.

As for the acting well "The Big Hit" features a lot of familiar faces with them all playing it seriously but doing things which end up comical. Basically they all play it large so Lou Diamond Phillips is an over the top character who gives it large which makes him funny but then so does him trimming his moustache as he gives it large. And Mark Wahlberg is fun for basically playing a nice guy hit man who wants everyone to like him and gets pains when ever someone has a go at him.

What this all boils down to is that "The Big Hit" is seriously stupid but intentionally so and a whole lot of fun with its varied humour which goes from dark comedy about stiffs to over the top action. Put this in the Friday night beer and pizza movie collection and you won't be disappointed.

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