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'Big Trouble'
Pulp nostalgia

HEY, REMEMBER the '90s, when ensemble pictures about guns, goofy criminals, and pop culture detritus were all the rage? Anybody who's nostalgic for those heady days of 1996 might want to seek out this likable enough take on Elmore Leonard-lite cinema. A mysterious suitcase floating around Miami brings together a crazed hired gun (Dennis Farina), an ad executive (Tim Allen), a frustrated housewife (Rene Russo), her foot-fetishist husband, dopey cops, dopier thugs, Russian arms dealers, FBI agents, et al in a wacky misadventure. The combination of Russo, Farina, director Barry Sonnenfeld, and lounge lizard Florida locales might cause some to think they've stumbled into a less hip Get Shorty, but a bric-a-brac cast (Tom Sizemore, Jackass's Johnny Knoxville, and Heavy D!) and a breezy touch keep everything moving along like gangbusters. Compared with the genre's heyday films, Big Trouble might appear slight; compared with today's piss-poor excuses for entertainment, however, this lesser entry seems practically heaven-sent. (David Fear)