Double Take: Tango & Cash

Stallone and Russell are one of the best team ups I remember back in the 80’s.

tango-and-cashIs it safe to say that Tango & Cash is at cult classic status at this point? I don’t know but if it isn’t it ought to be. In the 80’s there were numbers upon numbers of buddy comedies and cop action movies down the pipeline and this movie is one of the best ones in my opinion.

The movie just worked. I forgot how much one liners and witty comebacks between the two leads there were. One after another and even poking fun at themselves. These two were perfect to be paired up together also as bad cop/worst cop. At the time of release it was 1989 and both Sylvester Stallone (Rambo and Rocky series) and Kurt Russell(Escape From New York and Big Trouble in Little China) had a bit of movies under their belt to create fandom. So it made sense not only to have them in an action cop film but to be paired up and do things they weren’t normally use to which is make us laugh our butt off and just have fun. Which is exactly what they did in this film.

Two of the best cops Tango(Stallone) and Cash(Russell) in Los Angeles, even though both fighting for justice but work in different districts. Some would say they were in competition to be the best of All of L.A. During this back and forth of who is the best a crime drug lord played by the legend Jack Palance is caught in the middle with his business suffering. So he comes up with a brilliant plan to have them framed and put in jail. Now these two will have to work together to clear their names and not drive each other crazy in the process.

After watching this movie again just laughing my butt off replaying certain scenes multiple times, I ask myself, “Why wasn’t there a sequel?”. Maybe it’s because it didn’t make so much money. Grossing a little over budget at $63 million and 33% at Rotten Tomatoes clearly not many agree with me but this post isn’t about that. This post speaks to the people who may have liked it just as much as I did. This movie was 80’s gold on the cheesy cliché’ factor but I believe director Andre Konchalovsky knew that. That is how 80’s and 90’s movies were made…over the top and ridiculous with tons of explosions.

tangocash2I believe these guys worked very well together and had the potential to have one or two follow ups afterwards. Great chemistry from the both of them. The two of them together fit together how the odd couple was. Stallone playing the clean-cut, suit and tie, glasses wearing, by the book cop.


tango-cashWhile Russell played the laid back, play it by ear, bend the rules, jeans and t-shirt wearing cop. They had the fixings of a bond franchise. Teri Hatcher looking as beautiful as ever brought on the sex appeal in the film and her character was smart and took care of herself. Cash even had a tech gadget friend that supplied them with weapons and a jacked up fully loaded vehicle to battle the bad guys with in the final act.  

This movie obviously wouldn’t work for the general movie watchers nowadays. This takes a certain movie fan to enjoy a film like this. Movies like these served a purpose back then, compared to today where movies are subjected to PG-13 ratings instead of a R rating to give action movies some justice as well as just flooded with degrading gay joke after gay joke to see how close two guys can be friends and work together without it getting too “gay” for them. Kurt Russell dressing up in drag was hilarious and didn’t seem insulting and served its purpose for the scene and he still walked away without feeling emasculated. You couldn’t really do that now and that is what is so much fun about these types of movies made back in the 80’s and early 90’s. Too bad I never saw a sequel but if they decided to revisit these characters again, they have my money.

4 out of 5


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