Disorganized Crime ★★★

This is a movie which starts out really, really slowly, and mostly relies on you liking the actors involved for at least the first twenty or thirty minutes. Luckily, you spend most of your time with Fred Gwynne, Ruben Blades, Lou Diamond Phillips and William Russ for that time, and they're all good actors and they all spend time establishing their character tics. There's not a lot of jokes early on.

This changes pretty quickly when Corbin Bersen, as the mastermind, escapes the cops, who are Ed O'Neill and Daniel Roebuck, who manage to demonstrate across the breadth of the movie that A) they aren't really stupid cops (they figure out most of what the criminals are doing as they go) but B) they're stupid cops, because who the fuck takes off their pants to cross a river? O'Neill in particular is doing about 90% Al Bundy here and it's glorious, because the man is a funny motherfucker. About this time is when the criminals start getting their laughs, at the same time as the caper starts advancing dramatically, at the same time as Bernsen is going through a horrendous ordeal in the desert.

The movie doesn't exactly mount to a frenzied climax - even as it rises in intensity it's still mostly doing so in a relaxed, laid-back sort of climb - but it's still entertaining in a low-key way, with actors who have good comedic chops and a plot that isn't stupid.

This isn't a lost classic, not really, but if it's streaming on your local service and you just want to relax with some pleasant fun, it's a great way to spend ninety minutes.