The popularity of Sylvester Stallone He was not going through his best moment in the early 90s and the interpreter initially sought refuge in films with a more comical and somewhat forgettable vocation as ‘Oscar, get your hands off!’ or ‘High! or my mother shoots’. His triumphant return to action cinema took place in 1993 with ‘Máximo Riesgo’ and ‘Demolition Man’, a film that you can watch tonight on laSexta starting at 10:30 PM.
Of course, the initial plan was not for Stallone to face a then ascendant Wesley snipes, because initially the idea of Steven Seagal giving life to John Spartan and Jean-Claude Van Damme as Simon Phoenix was considered. It was not possible, being that key for later versions of the script to add those elements of comedy that helped make it one of the best action shows in Hollywood during the 90s.
An impossible mix that works wonders
It is true that at the beginning, with that intense prologue in which Stallone manages to stop Snipes but at the cost of falling into the plot that had laid out for him, everything points to a festival of excesses with action as the only great element, but it does not stop be a very powerful way to present the rivalry between the two protagonists before the real movie.
It is when he leaps into the future that ‘Demolition Man’ really shines, as he manages for most of his footage to find a peculiar balance between science fiction, comedy and action. In the end everything ends up leading to the inevitable confrontation between Stallone and Snipes, but how delusional it could be in isolation takes on a different dimension thanks to everything we’ve seen before.
In the script of ‘Demolition Man’ many people put their hands, something that often usually has little stimulating results, but here it was key to give life to a unique show, perhaps the only great Hollywood action production during the 90s that can compete with ‘Head to Head’ in a sense. Curiously, the John Woo film took years to make because of ‘Demolition Man’, since Joel Silver was going to be the producer of both, but he ended up discarding ‘Face to face’ due to the similarities in their approach.
You just have to take a look at the three people who appear accredited as scriptwriters to be clear that the contribution of Daniel Waters, also author of the libretto of ‘School of young killers’ and co-signer of ‘The Adventures of Ford Farlaine’ and ‘The Great Falcon’, was one of the keys to the humor of ‘Demolition Man’ becoming the great asset of the film. It is still curious that the same year came as the also essential ‘The Last Great Hero’, a film that to some extent played the same thing.
Because yes, there are a few action scenes, solved with ease but lackluster by the director Marco Brambrilla, where the one who looks best is Wesley Snipes when they leave him a certain margin in the physical, and that future that he raises has the most curious ideas, but at the moment of truth what really remains in the memory is the feeling of seeing a rather light film thanks to the comedians, something that Stallone himself understands very well rather than approaching the film as just another great show.
From the recurring joke of the three shells to the fines for non-compliance with the statute of verbal morality, ‘Demolition Man’ is full of small details that make its review a joyous experience. I do not want to forget either that waste of sympathy and naivety of the character played by Sandra Bullock, although then at the moment of truth the stars of the function are still Stallone and Snipes.
All this also benefits its most excessive aspect, making all the “Simon says“of Snipes and, above all, creating the right climate to have a great time with her. It is true that there are some secondary ones that contribute little beyond the need of the story to go forward, but they never become a nuisance.
We have been hearing about a possible sequel for years, something understandable given the affection with which many moviegoers remember ‘Demolition Man’, but the thing does not finish materializing. The truth is that it is difficult to imagine a stimulating reason to recover John Spartan, but hey, they will know, that it is true that the first succeededBut it wasn’t a big hit either with the $ 159 million in global gross it got.