Chasers (1994) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Chasers is the flip side of The Last Detail. The premise of the two films is essentially the same: two Naval Shore Patrol guys are assigned to transport a prisoner. The Last Detail used that premise as a backdrop for gritty drama with a sad, realistic, and ultimately infuriating ending.  Chasers used the same basic backdrop to carve out a farce, deriving the humor from a gender twist.

The part played by Randy Quaid in The Last Detail is played by Erika Eleniak in Chasers. Why did the Navy assign two guys to escort a female prisoner? It seems that naval paperwork got shuffled improperly, and the sailor named Tony was actually named Toni.


Erika Eleniak took out the D+ chest for nighttime sex with William McNamara. Although the scene is not brightly lit, her breasts can be seen clearly. There's also a brief look at her buns, but no pubes.

William McNamara does an outdoor scene in which his buns are clearly seen as he runs, and he flashes his Johnson briefly when he climbs through a window.

Well, that and the fact that they just thought it was cool to have the part of Randy Quaid played by Erika Eleniak.

Plus if the part had been played by Randy Quaid, there would have been no movie.

Tom Berenger stars in Chasers as the crusty, tough old navy veteran who works full-time on Shore Patrol. William McNamara plays a young swabbie con artist who was temporarily assigned to assist Berenger only because the duty officer happened to be desperate for bodies when McNamara was nearby, idly awaiting re-assignment.

In the course of what should have been a three hour drive back to the naval base, Eleniak seemed to attempt about eight or nine thousand escapes using false bathroom breaks, tampon stops, sex, and all the other usual female movie prisoner tricks. In fact, she would have gotten away from our boys except that she came back voluntarily a couple of times to help the lads escape from their own personal Perils of Pauline, like mine shafts, the blazing desert heat, and exploding volcanos.

All this in the Carolinas, and all in a matter of hours!

Of course it was always some seriously heart-warming shit when she came back to save their asses instead of making a mad dash for her own freedom. You can probably guess that, unlike The Last Detail, this version has a predictable and improbable happy ending.

The film is not consistently good but has enough dribs and drabs of laughter and charm to make it watchable. Warning. It's not a subtle movie. You're most likely to enjoy it if you have a high tolerance for broad lowbrow humor. It features lots of unhinged cameos from the likes of Crispin Glover, Dean Stockwell, Gary Busey, and director Dennis Hopper. Hopper was especially eccentric, wearing a Pinocchio nose and speaking with some kind of pseudo-Louisiana accent, as a perverted traveling salesman who picked up a hitchhiking Eleniak.

DVD info from Amazon

  • Widescreen anamorphic, 1.85:1, enhanced for 16x9 screens.

  • No other features besides a trailer.

Sidebar #1: one fight scene is marked by what may be the worst stunt doubling in history. The guy who does Tom Berenger's fight scenes looks exactly like Claude Akins. Nice match-up.

Sidebar #2: Co-stars William McNamara and Erik Eleniak capped off their set-side romance by announcing their engagement. They never married.

The Critics Vote

  • General consensus: Maltin 1.5/4.

The People Vote ...

  • With their votes ... IMDB summary: IMDb voters score it 4.7, pretty much consistent with Leonard Maltin's low opinion.
  • With their dollars ... IMDb list a gross of $1.6 million.
IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a C-. It's no masterpiece, but it's sporadically charming, and probably won't impel a grab for the remote unless you just hate lowbrow comedy.

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