This week, Jeremy Morrison takes a look back at another often overlooked comedy classic from the 90s with a look at one of Olive Films most exciting new releases, “Clean Slate,” starring Dana Carvey, Dana Carvey, James Earl Jones, Michael Gambon, Valeria Golino, Kevin Pollack, Michael Murphy and Olivia d’abo.
First, a quick synopsis: Clean Slate stars Saturday Night Live alum Dana Carvey as Maurice Pogue, a private detective recovering from amnesia. Pogue suffers a head injury that affects his short-term memory (which disappears every time he falls asleep), an affliction that will jeopardize his professional life as well as a major case against mobster Cornell (Michael Gambon, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban), in which he’s a witness. Add to the mix a murder plot, double-crosses and a possible femme fatale (Valeria Golino, Rain Man) and you have the ingredients for a first-rate comic thriller.
Clean Slate, directed by Mick Jackson (L.A. Story) from a screenplay by Robert King, features supporting performances by James Earl Jones (Star Wars), Kevin Pollak (L.A. Story), Michael Murphy (Phase IV), Jayne Brook (Kindergarten Cop) and Olivia d’Abo (Wayne’s World 2).
REVIEW: Olive Films recent release CLEAN SLATE is a hilarious take on the film noir private eye thrillers of the past. I’d never seen this film prior to Olive Films acquiring the title and I’m glad they’ve been able to salvage another film that was off of my radar. Starring Dana Carvey, James Earl Jones, Michael Gambon, Valeria Golino, Kevin Pollack, and Michael Murphy, Olivia d’Abo, and featuring in smaller roles Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) and Christopher Meloni (Law and Order: Special Victims Unit), the cast is pitch perfect delivering well timed comedy sautéed in a mystery marinara sauce.
The film centers on Maurice Pogue (Carvey) as a private eye with one big problem, while witnessing a murder, Pogue sustains a head injury resulting in amnesia. Now the only way to ensure he catch the killers is by communicating to himself via recordings he tapes for himself prior to falling asleep. The comedy comes in spades as you watch Dana Carvey navigate through his chaotic day-to-day activity while the very man he is set to testify against and a blackmailing F.B.I agent are hell-bent on getting to him before he takes the stand. Years before ‘Momento’ or ’50 First Dates,’ ‘Clean Slate’ is a film that will keep you guessing, and laughing, for the duration of its runtime.
The real gem of this film is watching Carvey and Kevin Pollak share screen time. Friends and roommates dating back to before each one hit the big time, these two bring their real life chemistry to their characters in hilarious fashion. If you’re like me and have never seen this forgotten classic, don’t hesitate to pick it up. If you’re a fan, but are having trouble finding previous releases, look no further. Olive Films has you covered.
CLEAN SLATE is a disc that features a lone trailer for supplemental material, but the audio and video transfers are perfect!
J-Mo says: CHECK IT OUT!
Check out this film and a plethora of other amazing releases from Olive Films via their official website — www.olivefilms.com.