The decline of Bruce Willis has been rapid, with the former A-list star now showing up for a handful of scenes in as many VOD thrillers as possible, and he’s barely even pretending to be interested anymore. Netflix boasted half a dozen entries from his back catalogue, none of which come highly recommended from either critics or audiences, but one of his best and most underrated efforts is now available to stream on the platform.
The Last Boy Scout arrived in 1991, and all of the major players were at the peak of their powers. Lethal Weapon creator Shane Black was paid a record $1.75 million for his screenplay, which essentially recycled the same formula but gave it a fresh coat of paint and a brand new bickering odd couple at the center.
Joel Silver was coming off the back of Lethal Weapon, Die Hard and Predator sequels, and was famed the industry’s most well-known producer of action cinema, while director Tony Scott’s reputation as a visually dazzling and kinetic filmmaker had already been secured by Top Gun, Beverly Hills Cop II and Days of Thunder.
Bruce Willis stars as washed-up private investigator Joe Hallenbeck, a former secret service agent who finds himself tasked with protecting a stripper, played by Halle Berry. He ends up forging a reluctant alliance with her boyfriend and disgraced footballer Jimmy Dix, in what arguably still ranks as a career-best performance from Damon Wayans.
Teaming up to track down the bad guys, they become involved in a conspiracy involving kidnapping, murder and legalized gambling, trading plenty of barbs along the way. If you love 90s action movies and the buddy cop subgenre, then The Last Boy Scout should be added to your watch-list immediately.