Cast: Tim Allen, John Travolta, Martin Lawrence, William H. Macy, Marisa Tomei
Direction: Walt Becker
Rating: * * *
John Travolta in black leather and cool shades, on hot wheels. Sounds cool all right. You have Marisa Tomei too, hotter than the wheels actually. Put Martin Lawrence, Tim Allen and William H. Macy — able actors all — as Johnny biker’s buddies on the road and the film’s shot at the box-office just got a quantum kick.
Wild Hogs is marketed as a smart thrill ride. The idea to parcel a 50-something foursome as fuel-headed road rashers is neat formula too. The gag bag is functional — guy jokes, slapstick stunts, on-the-road action. They have it all, right in place.
<b1>What they forgot to put in place was a clever script. Perhaps it doesn’t matter after all. Hardcore buffs of the genre will lap it all up anyway — the salad dressing is just right.
Still, Wild Hogs is no City Slickers — or Biker Boys, for that matter. The plot, about four middle-aged heroes on a road trip to get away from their loser lives only goes downhill as the reels roll. These old boys tear up the road, until, at a highway pub halt, one of their bikes get stolen by a gang of goons.
How the Wild Hogs get back the bike is — well — the ‘script’. It’s silly, it’s soulless, it’s set-piece cinema, I know. But it also flaunts a swagger in its own weird paisa vasool way.
When a movie doesn’t hide its unabashed tug at being predictable, you simply sit back and stop thinking. It all boils down to smart packaging then, and that’s exactly where Wild Hogs manages to score.
Going by the classic Hollywood fad, I’ll be surprised if they don’t manufacture Wild Hogs 2 soon — sillier, more soulless, more set-piece, and of course shamelessly more expensive. After all, there’s always room in the world for funny goofs on sexy bikes. Oh, and there’s room for Marisa’s hot diner owner too, plenty of it.