The Ref [1994] Movie Kevin Spacey and Judy Davis looking at the intruder for the first time

The Ref [1994]

Christmas is just around the corner and Robot Santa Claus is anxiously waiting, so you better lock up with some good, old movies and The Ref is a perfect choice. I usually really hate these movies, but when I saw that Denis Leary is in this one, I had to check it out. Fucking Kevin Spacey in a lead role, how I could’ve missed that too! Anywhoo, enough with my shit, let’s talk about the movie.

The Ref is a Christmas-themed black comedy with great actors and an interesting story. It’s certainly better than the rest of the crappy holiday movies. It’s intelligently written, witty and amusing while at the same time dealing with some serious subjects like a failed marriage, burglary, and life of crime. Our lead trio gave magnificent performances, not that I expected anything less than perfection from them. What’s the most important thing is that they got the tone right.

It’s Christmas Eve, traditionally a good time for burglars and Gus knows this. He decides to rob a house, and almost fails after being bitten by a dog and falling through the floor. Injured and on the run he stops a car with Caroline and Lloyd Chasseur. This is the decision that he will come to regret. Lloyd is terribly depressed and unhappy with his life and marriage and Caroline is also having a major life crisis. The three of them are on their way to the Chasseur residence for Christmas dinner…

Ahead of its time The Ref is a pretty straight-forward comedy that doesn’t skimp on the offensive jokes, but 1994 was a long time ago, so now they just sound normal. Another thing that I enjoyed about this movie is the bickering that’s going on between Lloyd and Caroline, an opportunity to say: hey they are just like…

Overall The Ref is a fun movie for holidays and you can watch it without any issues with family and friends. It’s certainly better than the crap that’s going to be on television. If you already have to watch something Christmissy, it’s better to watch something good and funny.

Director: Ted Demme

Writer:  Marie Weiss, Richard LaGravenese

Cast: Denis Leary, Judy Davis, Kevin Spacey, Robert J. Steinmiller Jr., Glynis Johns, Raymond J. Barry

Fun Facts: Denis Leary only fires his gun once in the entire film. He fires it at the smoke detector.


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