Re the LA Times review--True Lies is INDEED disturbing in its portrayal of
women. Even though Jamie Lee Curtis' character does get a chance to go beyond
the typical parameters of action film wifery, she and her daughter are finally
reinstalled in the family with a nuclear vengence. (Not to get too far into
spoiler territory, but I do mean Kiss Me Deadly/Total Recall-revisited
nuclear.) There's still a considerable amount of Blue Steel-like pleasure to be
found in the character's physical feats, yet the final preferred point would
seem to prove Father Knows Better than we ever guessed. The father is the
phallus--that's the film's Truest Lie.
Hate to say it, but for me the O.J. Simpson scenario makes intertextual ripples
here too, particularly during the Curtis' character's interrogation scene.
Schwarzenegger's character does receive a certain sort of physical punishment
for his jealous actions, but still, the theatrical extremity of his actions
suggests a very familiar form of violence toward "unfaithful" women. Accepting
Schwarzenegger's Harry Tasker as a hero after all this may be a tad bit
problematic after all this. Tom Arnold's presence in all this just ups the
But you know what the weirdest part was? It was watching Charlton Heston give
orders as Schwarzenegger's boss. No, no, it was watching Schwarzenegger dance
(not). No, it was ... yeah, there's plenty here to talk about here.