Black Dog is a 1998 film about an ex-con manipulated into transporting illegal arms. The film stars Patrick Swayze, Randy Travis, and Meat Loaf. Seeing as this film is 15 years old there will be spoilers in this review!
You might be looking at this post title and thinking to yourself “WHY TFG1Mike WHY??” Well the short answer is because I want to damnit. In the past 15 years since this film came out, I’d only seen it in passing. I had never seen it all the way through, before the last night it was gonna be available on Netflix streaming. Normally when I found this film on TV, it was in the middle or close to the end.
Most people will know Patrick Swayze from Ghost, Dirty Dancing, and The Outsiders. I knew him from those, but Dirty Dancing and Ghost weren’t high on my movie watching lists as a kid. He was a damn fine actor in the roles that he was given. To this day I doubt I’ve seen all of Dirty Dancing or Ghost. They’ve just never been on my radar. however Black Dog was always “that” film that I missed it by thaaat much! After watching it on Netflix, I can safely say that whomever controls the Tomatometer is freakin’ wrong. This film is awesome!!!! Thankfully the audience agrees!!!
It centers around Jack Crews played by Swayze. The entire cast in the film call him “Cruise” as in the ship. Which is weird to me, but whatever. So Jack is on parole, and trying to get himself and his family back on track. He’s offered a job off the books, driving a load from Atlanta to New Jersey. The money he’d be paid would get his family out of debt with the bank foreclosing on their house. So Jack drives, and as he goes along the route several bad things happen. I’ll say this for the film, the action is pretty damn awesome. Especially for 1998 standards of an action film.
The actors and actresses that are in this film do a damn fine job. I can’t believe the filmographies Meat Loaf and Randy Travis have, I just can’t believe how extensive they are. It goes to show you that no matter what you start out doing in the entertainment industry, anyone can crossover into any other part of the industry. I love watching this film for what it is. I story about a father who will do anything to get his family back on track. Sure he kills several henchmen while driving the truck, but they shot first damnit. Jack Crews is a cool character. I completely forgot that Brenda Strong was in this. It’s so strange to see her popping up everywhere these days, besides being the voice of Desperate Housewives. She is a wonderful actress, and her playing Ann Ewing on Dallas is just amazing. Say what you will about Meat Loaf’s acting, but I really enjoyed his over the top villain here and them making fun of Randy Travis’s character as a country artist is just damn funny. Charles S. Dutton always plays a great Federal Agent and Stephen Tobolowsky playsa great opposing personaliyt with Dutton’s character. FBI Vs ATF!
Is the movie without it’s flaws? No, but rewatching it I found I had way less issues then most people do. For me the story, characters, action scenes, and the music make Black Dog to be one likable film!!! The music just pulls you in from the opening credits, to Randy Travis’s characters bad singing and more. Just awesome!!!!!!!!!!!! If you are fan of any of the people in Black Dog, you need to rewatch this for yourself.
Favorite Line in the film: “ATF what does that stand for Alcohol, Tobacco, and Fuckups!”