Forgotten Action Cinema: The Last Boy Scout


When I was just a snot-nosed punk with nothing better to do than watch movies all day, I absolutely adored director Tony Scott’s hyper vulgar 1991 buddy action flick “The Last Boy Scout.” And I don’t mean ironically. I thought it was legitimately badass, and once argued with a friend that it was a better experience than “Lethal Weapon.” Yeah, I went there. Like I said, I was a pretty devoted fan. However, it’s easily been 20 years since my last viewing, and I have to admit that time has not been kind to this goofy little actioner. Don’t get me wrong — the movie is still awesome, though I’m not overly surprised that I found a copy at Big Lots for three whole dollars. Everything about the flick is shoddy, from the jokes to the acting to Scott’s half-hearted attempt at aping Hong Kong action movies. What’s peculiar about this particular cinematic misfire is the number of genuinely talented folks working both in front and behind the camera. Although Scott isn’t the most accomplished director on the planet, he usually gets the job done with a fair amount of style. The same can be said for Willis; he’s no slouch as an actor, though you wouldn’t know it from his turn here. Wayans, meanwhile, is just Wayans — you get what you pay for and that’s about it. And while I love the “fallen football star teams up with jaded private detective” premise, the filmmakers don’t really do anything interesting with it. But hey, at least the opening with Billy Blanks is still kind of cool. It makes no sense in the grand design, but it’s definitely a fantastic way to get an otherwise forgettable action experience off the ground. Still, I’m perfectly satisfied with my three dollar purchase. Plus tax, of course.

Author: Todd Rigney

Todd was raised on a steady diet of Hollywood blockbusters, late-night Cinemax programming, and USA’s “Up All Night,” which may explain why his taste in movies is more than a little questionable. When he isn’t providing news and reviews for Beyond Hollywood, he can be found lounging lazily on his couch, perched in front of his television, or dwelling in places where direct sunlight can be easily avoided. He's happily married, in his 30's, and totally badass. If you'd like to reach Todd, you can follow him on Twitter or send him email/scoops to todd (at)
  • Brent McKnight

    The years have not been kind to this film, indeed, but I still love the holy hell out of it. I watched a super pixelated version on demand about a month ago.

    • Todd

      I cringed the entire time, but it was a good cringe. The “distract the bad guy with ‘your momma’ jokes” bit is one of cinema’s greatest treasures.

      • Brent McKnight

        The puppet scene is brilliant. “Why did Mr. Milo cross the road? Because his dick was stuck in the chicken!” Genius.

  • ErickKwon

    I remember this was such a great, fun palate cleanser after “Hudson Hawk” and a fine preview for the pulpy-bloody violence Tony Scott would rollout in “True Romance.” Bonus: It’s a great 2-for-1 bargain on Blu-ray since it comes with “Last Man Standing”, another 90’s Bruce Willis guilty pleasure

    • Brent McKnight

      Nice. I feel like that is a double feature I need to own.

  • Romeo garcia

    My top 5 movies of BRUCE WILLIs are:
    and THE LAsT BOY sCOUT

    • Brent McKnight

      Ooh, Blind Date is a good one.

  • Nix

    Looking back on “Boy Scout”, you can see that there were some really cool moments, lots of great “shots”, but in total, it was a bit wonky. I always thought Shane Black (he wrote this and Lethal Weapon) was trying a little TOO hard here to justify his huge paycheck. (He also wrote The Long Kiss Goodnight and of course, is directing Iron Man 3 now.)

    • ErickKwon

      I think “Last Boy Scout” and “Long Kiss Goodnight” are definitely Shane Black in overdrive in terms of the violence, vulgarity and quippiness. And honestly that’s why I like both a lot. They’re both only slightly less cartoonish than the in-movie sequences from “Last Action Hero”.

      • Dedpool

        LOL YEAH! Long Kiss is a favorite of mine too. I use the Assumption line all the time!!!

        • ErickKwon

          “Die screaming, motherfucker!”-Best kiss-off line of 1996

  • Scott Shots

    if you think the movie is vulgar read the book. yes there is a book
    our bo
    one of the raunchy lines to not make the film is in my favorite touch me again and I will kill you sequence

    Our boyscout calls the main bad buy a cocksucker his response is What would you do if someone called you a cocksucker

    the response I would ignore it if its not true or shut up and suck some cock

    or did that line make the film.

    hey and did we not forget a young Halle Berry? that alone is worth the $3

    sorry no quote marks that button on my keyboard is broken