Point Break is a tremendous movie, but damn is it corny.
On Friday night, I decided to finally test my repaired leg out on the town, and I went to see Point Break Live.
It’s a great concept. Actors do a live theater version of one of the cheesiest action movies ever, Point Break. And to make sure the Keanu Reeves role is authentic, rather than have an actor play Johnny Utah, they pull a guy out of the audience to play the role and read the lines directly off of cue cards.
Seeing Point Break Live brought all sorts of happy memories back. So I decided to make a list of the corniest 11 lines in the movie. And trust me… narrowing it down was much harder than I thought.
Here they are in order, ending with the corniest line of all.
1 | “You’re cold because all of the blood is running out of your body, Roach. You’re gonna be dead soon. I hope it was worth it.”
Johnny Utah’s weird love of Bodhi makes it so he never really gets a hero’s revenge on the surfers. So this is about his best action hero line. And Keanu could not deliver it flatter.
2 | “I’ve been to every city in Mexico. I came across an unclaimed piece of meat in Baja, turned out to be Rosie. I guessed he picked a knife fight with somebody better. Found one of your passports to Sumatra, I missed you by about a week at Fiji. But, I knew you wouldn’t miss the fifty year storm, Bodhi.”
Such a stilted monologue. But more importantly: How much more interesting would this movie had been if they’d shown this manhunt in a montage rather than waste SO much time on the first skydiving scene where nothing really happens.
3 | “That’s, ahh… that’s a surfboard all right! Looks like a ’57 Chevy I used to have.”
I picked this because it doesn’t make any sense. There’s nothing visible wrong with Johnny’s surfboard. Just seems like a completely arbitrary comment.
4 | “Right around that corner, there is a sandwich shop. They sell meatball sandwiches. Best I’ve ever tasted. Would you go get me two? Come on partner. Two. Thank you… Utah, get me TWO!”
Until I watched the live show and rewatched the movie, I’d completely forgotten Gary Busey’s character’s OBSESSION with the meatball sandwiches. In a movie that was determined to be extreme, it’s crazy that a giant deus ex machina plot point (the cops not seeing the ex-Presidents pull up to the bank) completely revolves around meatball sandwiches.
5 | “I’m so hungry I could eat the ass end out of a dead rhino, I should have had you get me three of these things!”
And even more on the meatball sandwiches… as they get closer to Gary Busey’s mouth, the lines get even cornier.
6 | “They will nail you wherever you land. They’ll use something new called radar, maybe you’ve heard of it.”
Point Break came out in 1991. Yes, by that point, we all knew about radar.
7 | “22 years. Man, L.A. has changed a lot during that time. The air got dirty and the sex got clean.”
A line that’s totally overwritten, completely illogical… and delivered with overenthusiastic zeal by Busey.
8 | “Bodhi, this is your fucking wake-up call man. I am an F. B. I. agent!”
While rewatching the movie, my friends and I discussed whether Johnny Utah is the worst undercover agent ever. He’s a former college superstar athlete and, therefore, recognizable. He never lies about his name and acknowledges his past. And when he sees the ex-presidents robbing the bank, he jumps right out and shows his face. So, no, this “wake-up call” was completely unnecessary. As was over-enunciating the letters “F. B. I.”
9 | “You’re a real blue flame special, aren’t you, son? Young, dumb and full of cum, I know.”
Just so unsettling and so cheesy… and this line is in the first few minutes of the movie.
10 | “You gonna jump or jerk off?”
Possibly Keanu’s most famous line in the movie. Doesn’t make sense, does make you cringe… and feels awkward, even for him.
11 | “Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!”
Nothing like a random scream while shooting a gun into the air. This “Ahhhhhhhh!” led to an iconic moment in action movie lore. He doesn’t even say “Nooooooo!” He just yells. Nothing.
Apologies go out to: “They’re traveling on the money, going where the waves are.” … “Surfing’s the source. It can change your life.” … “That’s Bodhi. They call him the Bodhisattva.” … “Lawyers don’t surf! / This one does.” … “They only live to get radical.” … “Everything moves in cycles, so twice a century the ocean let’s us know just how small we really are. A storm comes out of Antarctica, tearing up the Pacific, and it sends a huge swell north miles. And when it hits Bells Beach it’ll turn into the biggest surf this planet has ever seen. And I will be there.” …
“I’m fucking surfing!” … “This was never about money for us. It was about us against the system. That system that kills the human spirit. We stand for something. To those dead souls inching along the freeways in their metal coffins, we show them that the human spirit is still alive.” … “It’s 100 percent pure adrenaline. Other guys snort for it, jab a vein for it. All you gotta do is jump.” … and “Via con dios.”
I wish I’d had room for all of you.