Runaway (1984)

Rating: ***
Review Date: 10/2/16
Director: Michael Crichton
Writer: Michael Crichton
Music: Jerry Goldsmith
Cast: Tom Selleck, Cynthia Rhodes, Gene Simmons, Kirstie Alley

A fun and highly enjoyable sci-fi thriller from Michael Crichton about a cop named John Ramsay (Tom Selleck) who is chasing after Charles Luther (Gene Simmons), a sadistic killer with an arsenal of extremely advanced technological weapons (including a pocket-sized heat seeking cruise missile). Ramsay's new partner is Karen Thompson, played by super pretty Cynthia Rhodes. She's absolutely stunning, looks great with a gun, and really knows how to run in heels. My only complaint would be that her blue eyeliner looks dated and tacky. Gene Simmons makes an appropriately menacing villain and Kirstie Alley plays his doomed assistant, Jackie. Damn... Remember when she was just insanely smoking hot? Wowzers. Anyway, this extremely attractive and undeniably likable cast gets to deal with all sorts of runaway robots and mechanical murderers. The whole thing plays out like a classic "hot-headed cop vs. untouchable criminal" thriller, and the high tech angle is just stylistic sugar. The action is pretty low key and the robots are pretty silly, but the atmosphere is serious and tense throughout. The acting is quite good and the women are drop-dead gorgeous. It's also very refreshing to see so many women on the police force in such a wide variety of different capacities, and seeing Cynthia Rhodes in her cute little police uniform is utterly delightful. Unfortunately, the film ends on a regrettably sour note as a seriously injured Ramsay and Thompson kiss during the closing credits for WAY too long. I mean, the guy has multiple burns and lacerations, and was just hit in the face with a stream of acid. An extended lip-lock in a shower of sparks should be the last thing on his mind.