Release year: 1992
Director: Mick Jackson
Screenwriter: Lawrence Kasdan
Starring: Kevin Costner, Whitney Houston, Gary Kemp, Bill Cobbs, Mike Starr, Michele Lamar Richards, DeVaughn Nixon
Ratings: 2 Oscar nominations: Best Original Song, Best Original Song.
Former Secret Service agent working as bodyguard Frank Framer (Costner) is talked into taking the job looking after singer Rachel Marron (Houston) after threats to her life. The bodyguard and the diva have different opinions on how the situation should be handled and he soon recalls why he swore never to work for celebrities.
A movie that dominated the beginning of the 1990s, both because of the popularity of the movie but certainly also due to the best-selling soundtrack which made Whitney Houston an even bigger star. Her cover of ‘I Will Always Love You’ will forever be linked with this talented and far too soon gone singer to a degree where most don’t even know it was first a hit for Dolly Parton who also wrote the song. But in the movie Houston (Waiting to Exhale, 1995) also showed a talent for acting, portraying the diva-like Rachel as feisty and passionate. Next to her Costner’s (Dances With Wolves, 1990) Farmer is emotionally controlled and stiff, an effect brought forward by Costner’s perfect underplaying and which balances that of his female co-star perfectly. As a couple the two make the restrained feelings burn through the screen in a way perhaps best appreciated by people with the life experience to read between the lines and the untold feelings between their looks, showing the guarded passion between them. The music is off course outstanding, most will know and recognize the songs, and is used to great effect. When it comes to the drama and the action scenes you won’t feel left out either. Kasdan has written screenplays for both the Indiana Jones trilogy (Raiders of the Lost Ark, 1981) and the Star Wars franchise (Return of the Jedi, 1983) and knows how to handle his way through action sequences and there are genuinely tense moments as well as sweet ones. Farmer is a brilliant written character, he is cool and human, one you could have watched further movies with and for a while there were rumours of a sequel, a rumour which has now changed to one of a remake in the making. But as it is, there is plenty of reasons to (re)watch this brilliant 1990 classic.
The movie still holds the record of the best-selling soundtrack of all time.
Picture copyrights: Warner Home Video