BADass SINema Unearthed - Blu-ray Review

D.C. Cab (1983) - Blu-ray Review

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D.C. Cab (1983)

“Fool! Your fare is the only thing stopping me from breaking your face!”

Directed by Joel Schumacher (Lost Boys, Falling Down, 8MM, Batman & Robin), D.C. Cab is his blissfully unaware feature film which follows in the hilarious footprints of The Incredible Shrinking Woman, which he released in ‘81.  It’s a product of the 1980s through and through and, as a result, viewers can either LOVE IT or leave it.

"a mess of a movie, but it makes for a fun and unforgettable tale"


But, if you depart this cab ride through D.C. early, ya better tip something on your way out.  Hat, wallet, purse, I don't care.  D.C. Cab is a cinematic time capsule, if you will.  There’s no earthly way a film like this - crude and reckless - could ever get made today, which is a bit of a shame.  The comedy is a testament of its freewheeling era and remains a sheer joy to watch as cabbies change their stripes by way of the randomness sewn into this Revenge of the Nerd-like plot.

This film, which follows the misadventures of a group of down and out taxi drivers in Washington, D.C., might not be a comedic high on anyone’s chart, but the film - warts and all - is entirely watchable as Max Gail, Adam Baldwin, and Mr. T take the reins for some brainless fun driving ‘62 Checker taxis, insulting their passengers, and trying to thwart a kidnapping plot.

With a cast that includes a young Bill Maher, The Barbarian Brothers, Marsha Warfield, and a coked-out Garey Busey (who steals the show with his one-liners and general goofiness), D.C. Cab brings the filth of the streets right into the seats of its audience.  Prostitutes? Druggies? Kidnappers?  You got it!D.C. Cab (1983)

And it does it with a smile on its face as sexist remarks come flying out of the mouths of its cast faster than they can all be caught and collected.  The film is loaded with gags and overcrowded with cameos and such, but it never fails to land a gut-busting laugh as Mr. T waxes poetic about pride and brotherhood and Irene Cara sings the main theme.  Ridiculous, but it works.

D.C. Cab is a movie which, good or bad, would never have survived 2020.  Unfortunately.  But now - because we "know" better - we can point and laugh at the possibly unscripted insanity of “bend and flush” moments as one of the wildest and weirdest crew of cabbies charm their way through a screwball comedy that isn’t afraid to get serious at times.

D.C. Cab is a mess of a movie, but it makes for a fun and unforgettable tale and the fine folks at Kino Studio Classics know it.  Embrace the R-rating and take a ride with D.C. Cab.  You will probably regret it, but you definitely won’t forget it!

4/5 stars

D.C. Cab (1983)

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Kino Lorber
Available on Blu-ray
- December 1, 2020
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles
: English SDH
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

From Joel Schumacher, the outstanding director of St. Elmo’s Fire, The Lost Boys, Flatliners, Falling Down, The Client, A Time to Kill and Veronica Guerin, comes this action-packed comedy about the misadventures of a group of streetwise cabbies. Washington, D.C. becomes the District of Comedy in this high-speed hit starring Adam Baldwin (My Bodyguard), Mr. T (The A-Team), Gary Busey (Point Break), Irene Cara (Fame) and Bill Maher (House II: The Second Story). When young Albert Hockenberry (Baldwin) wants to become a cabbie, he’s got the wackiest teachers around, courtesy of his uncle Howard (Max Gail, Barney Miller) and the freewheeling D.C. Cab Co., including Samson (Mr. T) and Dell (Busey). Along the way, Albert falls in love with beautiful waitress Claudette (Jill Schoelen, The Stepfather) and gets caught up in a kidnapping, with Mr. T and the other cabbies riding to the rescue. From a raid on a topless club and a game of chicken with an oncoming train to cameo appearances by top stand-up comedians, their hilarious hijinks spell comedy with a “capital” C!

Video:

The new 2K scan from the interpositive is a thing of pristine glory as, what was once muddied and unclear, bounces back into focus with fine details and crisp shadows.  The slick and littered D.C. streets absolutely come into focus and pops thanks to the new 1080p transfer.  Framed with an aspect ratio of 1.85:1, the film looks pretty solid for a film shot in the 1980s. Some shots, due to the era of the day, are fuzzier than others but the image is reasonably well defined with crisp contrasts and solid textures. Colors are solid. Blacks are, too. Surprisingly, there's enough fine detail on display to make this seem revelatory for those used to the previous releases.

Audio:

This release comes with an explosive DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 track.

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • There is a NEW audio commentary by film historian/filmmaker Daniel Kremer and film critic Scout Tafoya which doesn’t disappoint.

Special Features:

IFans get the new commentary, eight radio spots, and a theatrical trailer.

  • Radio Spots
  • Theatrical Trailer

Blu-ray Rating:

  Movie 4/5 stars
  Video  4/5 stars
  Audio 3/5 stars
  Extras 2/5 stars

Overall Blu-ray Experience

3/5 stars

D.C. Cab (1983)

MPAA Rating: R.
Runtime:
110 mins
Director
: Joel Schumacher
Writer:
Joel Schumacher
Cast:
Max Gail, Adam Baldwin, Mr. T
Genre
: Comedy
Tagline:
Pity the fool who messes with Mr. T.
Memorable Movie Quote: "I don't work January the 8th, 'cause it's Elvis' birthday."
Theatrical Distributor:
Universal Pictures
Official Site:
Release Date:
December 16, 1983
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
December 1, 2020.
Synopsis: The tale of a hapless group of cabbies and a rundown cab company owned by Harold. Albert comes to town with a dream of starting his own cab company but needs to motivate Harold's employees to want to make something out of themselves. It is only when Albert is kidnapped that the cabbies must decide whether or not they are loyal to Albert and his cause.

D.C. Cab (1983)

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