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Crocodile Dundee in LA

IT was clearly not a snap decision to make the third in the Crocodile Dundee saga.

Crocodile Dundee in LA

IT was clearly not a snap decision to make the third in the Crocodile Dundee saga. Judging by the screenplay, it has been a carefully thought-out project from thrilling start to romantic ending.

If Croc 2 was a creative disappointment then Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles returns to the tried-and-tested format of the first.

Two cultures clashing was the theme adopted by Australian comedian and TV star Paul Hogan when he first donned the black hat and leather waistcoat for the original.

A fish out of water: an innocent abroad.

The loveable hunter from Down Under, temporarily based in the Big Apple for a month, became an instant world-wide hit.

The former bridge painter turned actor financed the 1986 original and became a richer man for it.

Like his exciting crocodile stunts, the latest script has teeth and charm by the XXXX load.

Number two, despite being a massive money-earner, was in comparison self-indulgent and rested on its predecessor's laurels.

The latest opens with Mick "Crocodile" Dundee again enjoying a settled existence in the outback with his live-in lover Sue Charleton and their offspring - a loveable little nine-year-old lad called Mikey.

Life in their home town of Walkabout Creek (population 20) is comfortable and goes along with all the zest of an anaemic koala bear.

Easy going Mick is feeling a bit jaded and wonders how he will be remembered in life - brave hunter or walking tourist attraction.

Then, out of the blue, Sue (Linda Kozlowski) hears from her editor father who wants his journalist daughter to work for her on a short-term basis in LA.

A hack has died in suspicious circumstances and he needs someone to cut the American mustard.

Linda, Paul's real life wife whom he met on the set back in 86, looks lovely in designer clothes and her character is greatly matured.

This aspect allows Mr H to become a droll private detective. Strewth - a sleuth.

Mick fancies a bit of a break feeling nostalgic for the US. So he urges the family to go to Southern California.

And there we have it. A wacky wizard from Oz in bizarre LA.

There's plenty of scope for visits to film sets while bumping into Baywatch babes and attending dinner parties where street-wise Bush-wacking logic meets the plastic personality of Hollywood.

Director Simon Wincer, of Free Willy fame, has worked with Paul Hogan before on Lightning Jack but this is his first Croc offering.

There's also a couple of very odd cameos. Odd in that they don't serve any real purpose - a form of celebrity product placement.

George Hamilton sips a martini while chatting to Mick at a film launch, and Mike Tyson plays an incoherent gentle giant meditating in a park.

So congratulations to their respective agents.

Back to the busy plot and there's a scam going on at a film studio run by dubious European villains involving some unusual imported arty props.

Sue investigates aided by Mick who volunteers to be an extra to get behind the scenes, so to speak.

There are some clever lines splattered throughout as well as another memorable mugging sequence.

"Why do I always get mugged?" says Mick with a hint of dramatic irony.

Mick, feeling lonely invites his low IQ pal Jacko over from Down Under to act as his son's nanny providing some funny two-way chat along the way.

Some scenes are either too short or quite unnecessary. A visit to the top of a skyscraper fails to reach any great heights of humour.

And Mick, sitting in a bath playing with an electronic remote control gadget, was one scene that had great potential but quickly went down the plug-hole.

Crocodile Dundee doesn't break any new ground. But it's good to have him back revitalised - there's plenty of life in the Old Croc yet.

Maybe Paul Hogan at 60 should try some other role for a change.

If it doesn't work out he can always lick his wounds and return with number 4 - Croc In the Kremlin or how about Croc Around the Albert Dock?

As the man says with his catchphrase 'No worries . . .'

Remember, boomerangs always come back.


David Holmes
Chief News Reporter
David Norbury
Mike Fuller
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