Blame It On Rio on Blu-ray

Tuesday, 11 August 2015 23:00 Written by 

Blame it on Rio - out now on Blu-ray"Blame It On Rio" is a rom-com starring Michael Caine ("The Dark Knight", "The Ipcress File"). Two fathers who are best friends go on a holiday in Rio de Janeiro. Matthew (Caine) is in a stagnant marriage; Victor (Joseph Bologna - "Big Daddy", "The Woman in Red") is in the middle of bitter divorce proceedings. Their teenage daughters Nicole and Jennifer tag along to with the intention of dating local boys and have a good time.

Jennifer (Michelle Johnson - "Death Becomes Her", "Far and Away") has had a crush on Matthew since she was a small girl; now a curvy young woman, she seduces the much older man. Nicole (Demi Moore - "Ghost", "A Few Good Men") grudgingly keeps the affair a secret, but how long can they prevent a very protective father like Victor from learning the truth? In Rio, life is lived to the full but every indiscretion comes with a price.

I first remember seeing "Blame It On Rio" decades ago as a teenage boy. The film stuck in my mind for two reasons. Firstly, it is an entertaining sitcom with very colourful characters, set in a fantastic location. Secondly, it features a lot of semi-nude, highly attractive women. Made in the age of "Porky's" and "Weird Science", the movie perfectly encapsulates a time when the exploitation of the female form was far from uncommon, even in mainstream movies.

Being a child of the 1970s and 1980s it is hard for me to consider the film through the eyes of a more modern audience, so I will happily leave it to them to decide how to perceive the film. It may suffer under the terrible cloud of Operation Yewtree, even though the daughters depicted in this film are apparently old enough to legally make up their own minds. Through the spectrum of the 1980s however, it is a relatively innocent coming-of-age tale of sexual awakenings and frustrated, middle-aged men being...weak-willed men, for better or worse.

Caine puts in a solid performance as a rather pathetic, sweet man who is unable to resist a sensual young woman who comes onto him rather strongly, riddling him with guilt. Bologna's performance is to my mind the strongest, portraying Victor with layers of bitterness, anger and twitchy suspicion that drive the narrative and take centre stage later on.

Johnson, in her first major role, is excellent. Jennifer is a compelling character full of an effervescent lust for life and love, and totally at ease with her feminine sexuality. By contrast, Moore's Nicole is rather uptight and under-developed, lurking more in the background than the foreground.

For the most part, the comedy is amusing rather than hysterical, though the disapproving housemaid (deliciously played by Lupe Gigliotti) never fails to raise a laugh.

Rio is an essential component in the film's success, looking like a million dollars and to some extent the movie plays like an extended advert for the city, milking the beautiful beaches, awe-inspiring mountains, cityscapes and the exotic, exuberant lifestyle of the local inhabitants for all they are worth. And in this new Blu-ray HD release it all looks so much sharper and more resplendent.

Special features amount to a solitary trailer.

“Blame It on Rio” (1984) is out now on Blu-ray, courtesy of Fabulous Films. The main feature has a running time of 96 minutes approx, carries a ‘15’ certificate and retails for £14.99, or less from www.culttvstore.com

 

Last modified on Thursday, 13 August 2015 09:18

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