Review: MIAMI CONNECTION, Baby, is More Than a Diamond in the Rough
Dear Miami Connection,
You're the one for me. I've loved you since the first time I saw your trailer. I don't know whether it was the insanely acrobatic Tae Kwon Do or the incredible friendship-themed power pop that first got me hooked, but I'm stuck like glue. So often I find that incredible trailers are cut from the most inane films, it's not a challenge to turn 90 minutes of boring horseshit into 90 seconds of incredible highlights, so you'll have to forgive me if I was a little bit skeptical at first. I wasn't really that I doubted you, baby, it was just that, well, I've been burned before.
I can still remember the first time I saw the trailer for Seed of Chucky, the fourth Child's Play movie. I had long since broken up with that wicked little doll, but the promise of John Waters and Jennifer Tilly was just too much. I really hope you don't blame me for trying to make that threesome happen, I was young and stupid, I had to make my own mistakes. When I eventually found out that everything I thought I would love about the film was in the trailer and I still stuck it out through the whole damned movie, I felt cheated. It had potential, I loved it, but I needed a movie that could grow and change with me, not just a glorified trailer. It was an ugly break-up, and I hated to say goodbye to John and Jennifer, but there was no other way forward. I had to get a fresh start.
Then you came along.
Grandmaster YK Kim as the leader of Dragon Sound, both a new dimension in rock 'n roll AND leader of an anti-gang/cocaine/hoodlum/sadness crew to end all crews. Where do I begin. Darlin', you know I'm not much of an optimist, and it takes a lot to drag me out of my shell, but Kim's RELENTLESS optimism is infectious. There's nothing better at the end of a long night of rockin' out to songs about Tae Kwon Do and friendship, than a good old fashioned pizza party at your adult home for orphans/grown-up clubhouse. You really know how to bring a family together, Grandmaster YK Kim. Whether it's uncomfortable sounding, clearly improvised teasing from untrained actors, or playing "got your nose" onstage using your feet and the nose of your emotionally fragile keyboard player, you know just how to make me smile.
Sure, you aren't perfect. I mean, a lot of the dialogue was badly overdubbed, many of fight scenes are poorly choreographed, the script is non-existent, and no one on screen could act their way out of a paper bag, but, hey, nobody's perfect! I enjoy all of your imperfections as the pieces of you hat make you stand out. A diamond in the rough is still a diamond, and you are the jewel of my life.
As much as I love Dragon Sound and their promise to be "friends forever" through "loyalty" and "honesty," I must admit, I have a taste for the bad boys, too.
The leader of the cocaine running gang, Jeff, has the most amazing wardrobe known to man. He wears a sabre-tooth earring in his left ear throughout the film, even when he's wearing a suit. When he's not dressed for business, he's rockin' a mean collection of sleeveless t shirts, chains, headbands, motorcycle boots and more. As much as I love you, Dragon Sound, your plain Jane clothing choices have nothing on the wide variety of chains, rope belts, half-shirts, nut-hugger running shorts, headbands, and noose necklaces that these dirty, sexy thugs have at their disposal. If loving men's belly buttons and moose-knuckle is wrong, I don't wanna be right.
I guess what I'm tryin' to say, Baby, is that, I want this to last forever. I know you're only 90 minutes long, but it isn't the size that matters, it's the motion of the ocean, and Honey, you've started a tidal wave in my loins. I want to spent the rest of my life reliving your ass-kicking, tickle-fight-havin', positive-mental-attitude-espousing, ninja-fightin', motorcycle racin', mustache-and-jheri-curl-wearin', cocaine-hatin' times over and over again.
Please, Baby, please. Baby, Baby, Baby, Baby, please!
Love (and I do mean LOVE),
Review originally published during Fantastic Fest in September 2012. Miami Connection is now playing in select theaters in the U.S. and will continue to roll out during the coming weeks. Check official site for more information.