DRIVING ME CRAZY (aka: DUTCH) (director/writer: Jon Turteltaub; screenwriters: Johnny London/David Tausik; cinematographer: Phedon Papamichael ; editors: Armen Minasian /Nancy Richardson; music: Joey Balin/Christopher Franke; cast: Thomas Gottschalk (Gunther), Billy Dee Williams (Max), Dom DeLuise (Mr. B), Milton Berle (Hotel Clerk), George Kennedy (John McReady), James Tolkan (Vince), Michelle Johnson (Ricki), Steve Kanaly (Mr Goodwyn), Morton Downey, Jr. (Taj, Spiritualist), Vlade Divac (Yugo Boss); Runtime: 88; MPAA Rating: PG; producer: Brad Kevoy/Steven Stabler; Sony Pictures Home Entertainment; 1991)
“A major problem for the likable comedy is that laughs are hard to get.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Jon Turteltaub(“National Treasure: Book of Secrets “/”The Sorcerer’s Apprentice“/”Phenomenon“) directs this lighthearted feel-good comedy, that follows along the lines of a Disney family comedy. It’s scripted by Turteltaub, Johnny London and David Tausik.
An eccentric young East German car engineer, Gunther (Thomas Gotttschalk), develops the Trabbi, redesigned from the clunky Communist built Trabant. It can run at over 200 mph while using turnip juice and there’s no pollution. When the Berlin Wall falls, his hometown must raise 15 million dollars to buy back the land from the unethical American tycoon capitalist John McReady (George Kennedy), whose secret intention is to build on the property pollution inducing factories. Gunther attends a car show in LA to display his car, hoping to sell it to American car companies and using that money to buy back the land from McReady. In La, American gangsters (Dom Deluise and James Tolken) steal it while it’s parked outside his hotel. He’s a lost soul in Hollywood trying to get back his car in a foreign culture he doesn’t get. But a street-smart parking-lot attendant, Max (Billy Dee Williams), from his hotel, an ex-car-thief, teams with him to recover the stolen ‘wundercar.’ While tracking down the car, Gunther hooks up again with Ricki (Michelle Johnson), a hometown gal now living the good life in LA. She turned out to be a good looker, which gets his juices going.
A major problem for the likable comedy is that laughs are hard to get.
Milton Berle has a cameo as a hotel clerk. Morton Downey, Jr. has a cameo as a spiritualist. Vlade Divac, NBA star, has a cameo as a Yugo dealer and his one-liner gets the film’s biggest laugh.
REVIEWED ON 8/29/2015 GRADE: C+
Dennis Schwartz: “Ozus’ World Movie Reviews”
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