R.I.P. James Farentino 1938-2012

Actor James Farentino has passed away from a long illness at the age of 73. Farentino was more famous for his TV roles on Dynasty, ER, and Melrose Place than for his movies. Netflix streaming does have three of his movies currently available.

The Final Countdown (1980) – Rated PG

“What if a 1980s American aircraft carrier (with its modern firepower) time-warped back to Pacific waters just outside Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941? World history — and the U.S. entry into World War II — might have played out very differently. Given that scenario, should the crew prevent the disaster, or let history remain? That’s the intriguing premise in this sci-fi adventure that stars Kirk Douglas, Katharine Ross and Martin Sheen.”

The Final Countdown has a great concept but unfortunately rather poor execution. The film is worth watching for the footage of the Nimitz and Kirk Douglas, Charles Durning, Martin Sheen, James Farentino, and Katherine Ross are fun to watch. I think it is nearly impossible to watch this film without being disappointed by the choices made.

Dead and Buried (1981) – Rated R

“For years, the coastal town of Potters Bluff has harbored a dark secret. It seems that a number of strangers who have crossed through Potters Bluff have been brutally murdered, only to turn up in town as locals after being killed. Sure that there must be some explanation, the sheriff and the town mortician try to uncover the mystery and find something more shocking than they could have imagined. James Farentino and Melody Anderson star.”

This would probably be my pick for Farentino watching as he is the star here. This movie is rough around the edges and goes for the gross-out too often over the suspenseful but the story is original and I like the ending. Look for Robert Englund (Freddy Krueger) in a small role.

Bulletproof (1996) – Rated R

“In this buddy crime comedy, hard feelings must be set aside when undercover cop Rock Keats (Damon Wayans) is first shot by small-time crook Archie Moses (Adam Sandler), then forced to team up with the bungling oaf when both men are targeted by crime boss Frank Colton (James Caan). Upon Rock’s release from the hospital, he finds out that Colton’s hit men are after him and Archie. High jinks ensue when the dueling duo run from the baddies.”

I haven’t seen this one but don’t tell my daughter. She’s a big Adam Sandler fan and then I’ll have to watch it.

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