Monday, 16 September 2013

The Freshman 1990

I enjoyed watching again the Freshman with Marlon Brando playing his Godfather role, sitting in a corner of New York bar but this time behind a racket to serve endangered species to those willing to pay for the experience with charges from a quarter of million to half a million dollars a plate depending on the scarcity of the creature.

The Freshman is a naive to city life young man who on arrival is hoodwinked to being given a taxi lift for $10 only for the vehicle to go off with his trunk and which amazingly also included his money. He has come to the City for University Course in media studies, cinema orientated and where the professor is singularly unimpressed by the predicament of the young man an his inability to acquire the Professors book for the course.

When the young man sees and tracks down the petty villain he finds that everything worthwhile has been sold and the money used for a bet which failed. In order to make up for his crime the thief introduces him to Brando who offers him an well paid assignment to collect something from the airport and take it to an address. This turns out to be a giant lizard taken to a restaurant. The thief explains that the Brando character in the Godfather was based on the Brando lookalike in this film The young man is introduced to Brando’s daughter who immediately wants the young man and before he knows he is engaged to be married.

The university professor is mightily impressed when the girl visits the Freshman at a lecture because she announces who her father is and that her father expects her fiancée to get top grades. The Professor assures the Freshman is his best student and asks if he could meet Brando which is declined.

The girl has called to take the young man off to attend the high society final gourmet dinner of an endangered species.

Meanwhile the young man has been picked up by two federal men who explain the racket of his employer and expect the young man to cooperate. They raid the event insisting on taking the proceeds ( which they do not know is only half ) and where the young man with the agreement of Marlon Brando has advised the employers of the behaviour of the two agents who are arrested for attempted hijacking of the funds. Moreover although the creature is shown to the guest they are provided with in effect a chicken dish and the creature is made over to the local zoo as others have been in the past. It is a great con.

The reason the Feds had become involved is because his step father had heard a telephone conversation between the young man and his mother when the Komodo Dragon creature is mentioned and he had revealed the conversation to the Justice Department. The film closes with Brando offering to help the Freshman through his contacts in Hollywood. The young man declines the offer.

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