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Murphy's Law [DVD] [1986] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Region 1 encoding. (This DVD will not play on most DVD players sold in the UK [Region 2]. This item requires a region specific or multi-region DVD player and compatible TV. More about DVD formats)
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Product details

  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: R (Restricted) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00007GZRJ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 454,264 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
This is one of Charles Bronson's better movies of the 1980s. Directed once more by J. Lee Thompson, this actually has quite a good storyline. Bronson is Detective Jack Murphy, for whom life is not going particularly well at the moment. His ex-wife, for whom he still has feelings, is working as a stripper, and two of his fellow detectives hate his guts.
One night, as he is walking back to his car with a bag of groceries, he sees a teenage girl ( played by Kathleen Wilhoite ) break the car window and drive it away, only to crash it moments later into a shop window. He catches up with her and is about to arrest her when she kicks him in the privates and escapes.
Later, he is framed for the murder of his ex-wife and is arrested and taken to the police station, where he is handcuffed to the same girl who smashed his car up. Seeing no other course of action, he makes his escape, dragging the girl with him.
From this point there is action all the way, with them both being pursued by the cops and also the real murderer, a psychopath ( played by Carrie Snodgrass ) who has her own reasons for wanting Murphy dead.
Unlike 'Kinjite : Forbidden Subjects', which was made three years later, this is well-written, and there is some good banter between Bronson and Wilhoite, who gradually grow to like each other.
The movie is in widescreen and the quality is excellent.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
THE MOVIE

Murphy's Law is an epigram stating, "Anything that can go wrong will go wrong", and there is no better way to summarize this movie.
Charles Bronson plays Jack Murphy, a hard-drinking antisocial L.A. detective, who is not very well liked at his precinct. He is framed for the murder of his ex-wife and her lover and his colleagues are just all too eager to arrest him. He is cuffed to Arabella McGee (Kathleen Wilhoite), a potty-mouth petty thief and placed in a holding cell inside the precinct.
Murphy escapes with a police helicopter to pursue the real killer, dragging along McGee, to whom he is still handcuffed. To clear his name he has to find the real killer while being pursued by cops and the mafia, who want him dead for shooting one of their top guys in self-defense.
While MURPHY'S LAW was in no way eligible for prizes in originality and realism it still is a very enjoyable action/thriller/comedy/buddy movie mix. British director J. Lee Thompson, with whom Bronson also shot the superb 10 TO MIDNIGHT, DEATH WISH 4, THE EVIL THAT MEN DO and KINJITE - FORBIDDEN SUBJECTS and writer Gail Morgan Hickman both did good jobs and made this movie work. The comedy takes the backseat and usually is restricted to memorable one-liners, which is the only way comedy should be implemented in movies such as this. MURPHY'S LAW is suspenseful and while not overly heavy on the action part it does feature some bloody shootings - hence the 18 Certificate.
Personally I could have done with less of Wilhoite's colorful profanity, which really isn't that strong or offensive, but rather childish.
Charles Bronson gives a convincing performance, even though the drunken cop character is a cliché, he pulls it off well.
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One of Bronson's best films, got everything you need a hardman, a female psychotic serial killer for a change instead of the usaral male killer, and a foul mouthed girl that Murphy is handcuffed too who is hilarious and makes the movie as great as it is, i highly recommend this.
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Lost-in-limbo from the Mad Hatter's tea party.
Life for police detective Jack Murphy is the pits, especially after his wife left him and has become a stripper. He hit's the bottle, and gets into scuffles with his fellow officers. Things get worse when he's suddenly framed for his wife and lover's murder, and he's arrested. He gets handcuffed to the dirty-mouthed street thief he caught earlier. By chance they both manage to escape and Murphy goes after the real killer, to only find out he's the one being preyed upon by the mafia and psychotic murderer.

This tough guy image really works for Charles Bronson, and makes any standard revenge story compelling. In it's defence, this Bronson vehicle (produced by Cannon) might be routine, but Gail Morgan Hickman's above average screenplay has plenty going on and throws our way a few effective surprises. The strategic story is grounded by its hard as nails approach, where the sombre and seedy urban atmosphere can be a brutal smack in the guts. Even the humour has that dark touch, but what did get tiresome was the constant potty-language and banter erupting from Kathleen Wilhoite's explosively charming character.
Did it grate! The compulsively uneven, but hard-bitten script keeps on the move and can draw tension, but never goes in to much depth of the characters and situations. What begins interestingly enough, changes course for a buddy story with awkward attempts of humour and nastiness. In parts it kinda reminded me of Eastwood's superior action film "The Gauntlet(1977)".

J. Lee Thompson's efficient direction is sharply observed and packs grittiness, but really lacked the avid jolts. The professional camera work visually gets amongst the dirt, but can provide some airy scope.
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