Judgment Night is the story of four friends who head out to view a boxing match in downtown Chicago. Along the way they decide to take a detour and make every terrible decision that four grown men could possible make.
Emilio Estevez: Frank Wyatt – A former “bad ass” that is now married and responsible and played with such raw power and emotion by Estevez.
Cuba Gooding Jr: Mike Peterson – The black guy in the movie who is not homeless or a drug dealer.
Jeremy Piven: Ray Cochran – The scheming weaselly friend and not one of the other guys dad as I originally thought when this movie first came out.
Denis Leary: Fallon – Leader of Chicago’s Irish mafia, which consists of Denis Leary and like three other dudes.
Stephen Dorff: John Wyatt – Frank Wyatt’s younger brother who does not realize that this might be the best movie he ever gets to be in.
Hank McGill: Paramedic #2 – Way better character development than Paramedic #1
“You used to have bigger balls than anybody!” – Mike This movie will constantly remind you about what a bad-ass Emilio Estevez’ character used to be and this line is yelled by Cuba Gooding when they should really be quiet and hiding. Just top notch.
Judgment Night Breakdown
We begin with Frank waiting for his friends to pick him up for the boxing match and we get to watch him beg his wife to let him go. He even tries to smooth it over by letting her know that her favorite TV show is on that night. That strategy has the exact result that you would think.
Ray arrives in a brand new RV that we discover he “conned” a car dealer into letting him test drive for the night. That sounds like the kind of scheme a dumb 28 year old would try to pull off. What’s that? The actors were how old when this movie came out? Jeremy Piven was freakin’ 28 when this movie came out?! When I watched this movie as a kid I would have sworn up and down that the movie was about a group of 50 year old dudes. I had to look it up and the four main actors were 30 years old or younger.
They head off for the fight in broad daylight and then fast forward about what I’m guessing is 12 hours because it’s completely dark out and they’re stuck in traffic and still so far from downtown. Whilst in traffic we get our first mention of what a bad motherf***er Frank was in his younger days. His brother almost gets into a fight in the middle of the Expressway and Frank breaks it up causing Cuba “Mike” Peterson to say that there was a time when Frank would have “dumped that guy on his ass.”
I’m sorry but I can’t look at Frank and imagine him dumping anyone on their ass. I could easily see someone taking a dump on Frank while he makes excuses as to why the guy is justified in defecating on him.
Realizing they’re going to miss the main event they decide to get off the Expressway and take their chances through the ghetto. Now I’m not sure what the economic state of Chicago’s Projects were in the early 90s but according to this movie, once you get off the main highways you will be murdered almost immediately by Predator. More specifically, Predator 2.
Our heroes finally start to look for a map when Ray hits someone with the RV. They got out and find that someone was shot, so they drag him into the RV. Ray is drunk as piss so he pretends that his cell phone has no reception so that he doesn’t have to call the cops.
The gunshot victim starts babbling some nonsensical stuff like “They’re after me!” and “We gotta get outta here!” You know, the incoherent ramblings of someone who is obviously just in shock. Or maybe, just maybe, the guy who was shot is telling you that the people who shot him are coming after him and will probably shoot him some more and then shoot the rest of you.
While they are arguing and not driving away as they should be doing, they notice a cop car going down a side street. They race after the cop car only to be side swiped by another vehicle and then they manage to get the RV comically wedged in a narrow alley, a la Winnie the Pooh.
Somehow after all of this these guys still don’t seem to grasp the situation that they are in. Their main gripe is that whoever hit them doesn’t have insurance. To prove how stupid that is, Fallon and his goons rip the gunshot dude out of the RV and promptly put a bullet in his head. The good news is that they most likely have car insurance.
After intensely witnessing Fallon and his gang murder someone the gravity of their predicament finally seems to hit them over their damn heads. As Fallon and his goons casually stroll over to the RV to eliminate all loose ends, our guys smash through the windshield and take off. Now at this point, they have a pretty good head start on Fallon and just need to duck from building to building until they reach something even close to resembling civilization.
So naturally they run to a nearby train yard and proceed to stop running. Not only do they stop running but they start arguing very loudly. They can hear Fallon’s car and it sounds far enough away that our guys could just keep going and still manage to stay ahead of them, but then this wouldn’t be Judgment Night.
So instead they run about three train cars further and climb on in. Naturally Fallon and his goons stop the car and start taunting the guys while slowly moving through the train yard. Once again, had our guys just kept on going then Denis Leary would just be talking to himself while they got further and further away. Oh well.