Monday, February 15, 2010

Back in Time Reviews: The Cutting Edge (1992)

With the Winter Olympics upon us it seemed like the right time to share one of our favorite little movies: The Cutting Edge. Since it came out in 1992 it's probably older than many of this year's competing athletes... and perhaps hasn't aged as well. But if you enjoy campy, funny little romantic sports movies then Kate and Doug's story might just be the ticket for you.

The tag lines "The King of the Rink is about to meet America's Ice Queen" and alternate "The Ultimate Love/Skate Relationship" are good demonstrations of exactly how campy the movie is willing to be. But when you get past that you discover a genuinely funny little gem that focuses on two competitors who, disappointed at the 1988 Olympics, team up to compete in 1992. The twist is that Doug Dorsey is a blue-collar hockey player while Kate Moseley is a blue-blooded second generation Olympic figure skater. Easily anticipated friction ensues.

I'm sure there's nothing I do that you'd find exciting. I don't open beer bottles with my toes, I don't sit around and count what's left of my teeth, hey, I don't even enjoy a good tractor pull. It's been a limited existence, but I've gotten used to it. ~ Kate
The movie relies on Moira Kelly, as Kate, being able to balance an acid tongue with ingenue vulnerability, confidence with anxiety. Kate is actually one of my favorite heroines because of Kelly's ability to pull that balance off and it has left me wishing that Kelly had been cast as a lead in more movies.

To play against Kate's volatile personality the adorable Doug, played by D.B. Sweeney, only seems to have the two speeds of mellow and angry. With the fussy, pushy Kate of course being able to tip him over into anger a bit more often than would naturally be the case.
If it was forty below and that button meant the difference between a long satisfying life and a cold horrible death from hypothermia, I still wouldn't give you the satisfaction! ~ Doug, after Kate nags him to button the top button of his skating outfit
The Commander's Rating: Four out of five Vulcan salutes. (Admittedly it's a sentimental favorite.)
Pros: Humor, sports-related humor, quotable lines.
Cons: Some seriously 90s hair and clothes, moments of campy humor, moments of even-more-predictable-than-usual plot points.
Recommendation: Fun movie to watch with your sweetie or any friends who really, really like ice skating.  A good option to feel Winter-Olympic-y without having to watch Curling.

Notes on sequels: There were two sequels and neither had the heart that the first one did.

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