- Movie Rating -

Someone to Watch Over Me (1987)

| October 9, 1987

I have a bit of a beef with Ridley Scott.  Why do his films look so glorious, so unique, so distinctive but his scripts come up empty.  His last two films Blade Runner and Legend have been marvels of set design, costumes, cinematography, but the stories leave large gaps in your expectations.  The same goes, I’m afraid for his new film Someone to Watch Over Me, a thriller/love story that is more in love with it’s cityscapes and its Chanel magazine décor than in the story that is being told.

The story traps itself in a corner almost at the conception level.  It features Tom Berenger as a weary, working-class detective named Mike Keegan who falls in love with a beautiful society woman that he is suppose to be protecting. She is Claire Gregory (Mimi Rogers) and she has witnessed a murder at the hands of some mafia thugs. 

You can almost plug in the rest of the movie.  It makes their union almost inevitable by, first, supplying both with bad relationships on of their own; he with a tough wife (Lorraine Bracco) and she with a boyfriend who couldn’t care less about her.  All despite the fact that she doesn’t really need him because she apparently has an income and a lavish apartment that would be toasted by Howard Hughes.

All of this is pretty much telegraphed, so you just kind of sit there and wait for all of it to play out.  My interest actually switched over the Berenger’s relationship with his wife Ellie.  She’s unusual for a movie like this.  She’s not your typical nagging wife.  There is some humanity in her and being a cop herself you can see the weariness in her eyes.  For my money, I would have done away with the story of the society lady and just focused on the relationship between Mike and Ellie.  What does being in law enforcement do to a marriage?  How do they interact?  How do they deal with their concerns over their safety.  That’s an angle I haven’t seen explored and I almost found myself writing that movie as this one ambled on.

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(1987) View IMDB Filed in: Drama, Thriller