Tango & Cash (1989)

“Tango & Cash” (1989)

tango cash


Lethal Weapon meets Die Hard

This is old school now. Good to watch, by now it already has the dust that flavours what is generally known as a “classic”.

The odd thing about this is that if this was made today, it would hardly be considered to be action. Except for the last sequence, of fancy “watch me shoot” ordinary motion, the majority of the film is spent with funny, witty dialog. That’s because the film is built on the Lethal Weapon tradition. Two figures, opposed personalities, united by their justice beliefs, separated by their methods. A woman in the middle, conveniently placed (as Sly’s sister) to enhance the dispute between man (Glover’s daughter in LW). The difference is that instead of Gibson/Glover, here we have Stallone/Russell. The first pair was action versus commodity, and there lied the fun; here we have two guys already known for they physical looks, and the friction comes in the competition, because each one tries to prove better than the other. On a deeper level, it is fun to watch this because both Sly and Russell laugh at their own character in this film, so there’s a sense of irony and relaxation regarding the 80’s action films that appeals to me. All the rest goes with those premises, stylish shots, designed to photograph muscles and the dialog supports the thing here. A kind of Rambo meets Die Hard.

The other thing that matters here is the interest to watch the direction of a previous Tarkovsky collaborator! A man who started his career sharing writing credits with one of the most meaningful filmmakers ever, and indeed participated in some of his first really important experiences. Than, Konchalovsky moved to the US, and made a career with one step in Hollywood. That is already surprising. That he comes to direct Kurt Russell and Stallone makes this worth watching on its own terms. The disappointment is that apparently, what one might expect of Konchalovsky and his Russian heritage is absent. The direction is firm, but not especially inspired. His career is, nevertheless, interesting for its specific and unique path.

My opinion: 3/5

This comment on IMDb


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