Towering Inferno: The Movie Review (Thirty six years too late)
Starring Fred Astaire, O.J. Simpson and the kid who played Bobby Brady, The Towering Inferno is easily one of the greatest movies of all-time to ever feature Fred Astaire, O.J. Simpson and the kid who played Bobby Brady.
Calling this film a “disaster movie” is fair, but “disastrous movie” would be closer to the truth. (Wow, I actually felt like Rex Reed with that catty comment. Well to be honest, it’s either that or these white loafers, and red and white checkerboard leisure suit jacket I’m wearing, but for whatever reason, I’m feeling a bit Rexish.)
The film weighs in at almost 2 hours and 40 minutes long, and about 2 hours of that is exposition. What really rankles though, is that next to none of that set-up time is spent on making any of the movies’ characters more than one-dimensional – which maybe wouldn’t be so bad if we could see some fire sometime soon. When the hell is this tower gonna start to inferno? It takes over an hour for the flames to claim their first victim, and that guy doesn’t even die, nor is he even a guest at the gala penthouse party. Sixty minutes and the first victim is just some extra. A lousy burnt extra.
We’ll overlook the fact that the 134-story building was constructed in San Francisco, and would more likely be perfect for a title like, Earthquake, but apparently that flick had been done before… and by many of the same perpetrators.
When free-spirit-caught-in-the-constraints-of-the-modern-world/ world-famous-architect, Paul Newman realizes the building he designed was constructed by cutting corners he’s incensed. This is after all, exactly why he has such a beef with the modern world – it’s filled with corner-cutting bastards.