On July 12, 1998, I was in the middle of a summer season. The FIFA World Cup in France was nearing its end; I was fighting with my college over a parking spot they charged me twice for; a time displaced Hal Jordan appeared in Green Lantern; my first car was on life support; I had seen Bruce Willis save the world three times; my ex girlfriend started dating my co-worker; and my relatives from New Orleans were visiting Boston for the first time.
The oldest daughter, Veronica, was about 15 months older than me. This was the fist time I’d met her, and discovered she was very shy. But that first day I also learned she was a big movie fan, and when I told her I worked at Blockbuster, we talked movies for over an hour. I had to work that night, but before I left I told her my friends and I went to the movies a lot, and she’d be welcome to tag along, or just the two of us could go.
Me and my big mouth.
On the afternoon of the Brazil vs. France World Cup final, Veronica decided it would be a good idea if we went to the movies to see “Lethal Weapon 4.” I wanted to be nice, so I told her sure, the game was at like 3 in the afternoon, we could see a movie that night. She replied, “No. I looked at the times and there’s one at 2:45.” I tried to counter with a later show, but she insisted on the 2:45 showing.
Things only got worse from there, because once in the car she shut off WZLX and put in one of her CDs. I couldn’t tell who’s CD this was, all I know for sure is that the singers were a boy band, and considering how many boy bands were around at the time, it could have been anyone. That was bad enough, but then Veronica opened the sunroof and lowered her window, and blasted the music. Oh, and I almost forgot to mention: she knew every word to every song.
Anyways, when we got to the theater, we found out the 2:45 was sold out. The next available show was 3:30. I bought our tickets, and asked her if she wanted something to eat. Veronica ordered a burger, nd she sent it back two times because she didn’t like the way it was cooked. Once the trailers had started, she wanted popcorn, so out I went to the nearest concession stand. But during all of this, all I could think about was whether Brazil was beating France.
After waiting in line for a while, I finally got the popcorn and headed back inside. By then, Danny Glover had already found the Chinese family and brought them home. Veronica tried to bring me up to speed on what I missed, but we got interrupted by a shouting scene between Chris Rock and Joe Pesci. Come to think of it, they weren’t fighting at all, but were discussing rotary phones for reasons I don’t recall.
For the rest of the movie, Veronica would talk to me about random stuff. But even when she wasn’t talking to me, she’d be talking to the screen, For instance, when Chris Rock was talking to Danny Glover about spending Christmas together, Veronica decided to join the conversation by saying out loud “He doesn’t know he’s dating his daughter!” The pople behind us started saying “keep it down,” and “shhh,” but it didn’t stop her from talking over most of the movie.
The ride back to my aunt and uncle’s house wasn’t much better. Veronica said she wanted to drive, and I was too tired to put up much of a fight. Most of the 20 minute drive home was uneventful, but as we got closer to our destination, Veronica hit a corner too fast, and spun us out. Luckily we didn’t go into the reservoir to our right, and didn’t hit any other cars. After we made sure we were both okay, Veronica swore me to secrecy because her dad didn’t want her driving in Boston.
Now she tells me.
Going to see “Lethal Weapon 4” was an awful experience, but I also realized I needed to give the movie another shot. When it was realeased on home video I decided to watch it, and to my surprise I really enjoyed it.
Even with some over the top action scenes like the highway chase, I would say this movie was better than “Lethal Weapon 3,” thanks to the whole “We’re one happy family” ending. It may have taken me a few extra months, but I finally enjoyed “Lethal Weapon 4.” But it still doesn’t make up for Brazil losing to France in the final.