tek's rating: ¼

The Dream Team (PG-13)
Imagine; IMDb; Rotten Tomatoes; Universal; Wikipedia
streaming sites: Amazon; Google Play; iTunes; Movies Anywhere; Vudu; YouTube

Caution: potential spoilers.

This came out in 1989, but I would have guessed it was earlier in the decade. I know at some point I saw it on TV, but I don't remember whether I knew, at the time, that it was a theatrical movie, or whether I thought it was a TV movie. Anyway, I would have thought I saw it in the 80s, but if it came out in '89, it seems more likely that I saw it in the early 90s. The four main characters are played by Michael Keaton, Christopher Lloyd, Peter Boyle, and Stephen Furst, all of whom are more familiar to me for other things. (I must have seen Keaton and Lloyd in things both before and after this, and the other two probably only after this. But the only one from the cast whom I remembered being in this was Keaton.) And I didn't remember anything about the plot, though I'm sure I liked the movie when I first saw it. Actually, the one thing I remembered about it was Keaton's character at one point saying "It's great to be young and insane." I always loved that line, but hearing it again when I finally saw the movie for the second time ever, in 2014, on DVD, it didn't sound nearly as good as I remembered it. It was okay, though. As for the movie itself... well, I liked it. I mean, it's reasonably funny, and I guess it has a bit of heart to it. In an odd way. I guess.

Anyway, Keaton plays Billy Caufield, a patient in a mental institution. I guess he was once a writer, but now he just makes stuff up. (They say he lives in a fantasy world, but he's clearly the sanest patient in the hospital.) He also has a violent side, but for the most part he seems pretty harmless. Lloyd plays Henry Sikorsky, a patient who acts like he thinks he's a psychiatrist, and hates any sort of messes or chaos, and wants everyone to follow the rules. He has a wife and daughter who miss him. Boyle plays Jack McDermott, a former advertising executive who now thinks he's Jesus Christ. Furst plays Albert Ianuzzi, who rarely speaks, and when he does, it's mostly in baseball terminology. I'm really not sure how realistic any of the characters are as mental patients, but seeing as this is a comedy, I suppose that's not important. Anyway, the four of them are part of a therapy group overseen by Dr. Jeff Weitzman. And one day, Dr. Weitzman decides it would be a good idea to take a field trip with them to a baseball game. (The hospital is in New Jersey, and the game is in New York.)

Before they can get to the stadium, Albert needs to pee. So they stop at a gas station, where it turns out the toilet is broken, and the attendant tells them to use the alley. While in the alley, the doctor hears a disturbance, which he investigates, and winds up witnessing a murder. The murderers then try to kill Weitzman, but are forced to retreat when other witnesses show up. So they only had time to beat him unconscious, and later he was taken away in an ambulance. Albert saw this, but when he got back to the van his fellow patients were in, he couldn't tell them. So they all just wait for the doctor to return. Some hours later, they give up on that, and one by one they leave the van, each going their own way. From that point on, they get into some trouble, but also reconnect with their pasts. Most of them, anyway. Most importantly, Billy meets up with his ex-girlfriend, Riley. Eventually the four patients learn where Weitzman is, and figure out that two people- who turn out to be cops- are trying to kill him. So they try to rescue him, but end up getting blamed for the attacks on him. And of course, when a story that sounds crazy is being told by people who are known to be crazy, it's understandable that no one believes them. I mean, no one except Riley, who helps them out.

And I don't want to say any more about the plot. The movie is just preposterous from start to finish, but it's fun. And it does have a happy ending.

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