There are some days I really struggle to come up with an entry for this weekly post. I may let some of the other weekly entries like the Bungles or the Throwback slide from time to time but not this one. It's mainly because I'm a little anal retentive. I can't go two weeks in a row seeing the same picture in that little Vault Pick of the Week area to the right. And in order to change it I need a new entry. So it forces me to stay on top of this one.
The problem is I have had SO many amazing picks over the years that the field to pick from is getting smaller and smaller. There can only be so many great movies out there, right? Can there really be that many classics? Well I guess there could be but then you also have to consider they have to be flicks that I have also seen. That's cutting down the list even more. I know I've seen a ton of films in a lifetime but there's also a ton I haven't seen. And it's not like I'm out there trying to play catch-up.
So since the list is getting smaller, I decided to go back and check out some of my early selections. There were several that I didn't give the proper respect they deserved. Partially because I was just starting out and I was a bit anxious in my writing. I didn't take the time to give a little more insight as to why they were made a Vault Pick. "Major Payne" was one of those.
The first time I saw this one, I wasn't majorly (all puns intended) impressed with it. Not sure why because I have been a Damon Wayans fan ever since the days of when he had tiny roles in flicks like "Roxanne" (which needs to be getting Vault Pick status very soon). It was when my then brother-in-law started harping on it that I started really paying attention to it and how saw how good it was. I watched it again and couldn't believe I had the nerve to ever doubt it's hilarity.
The best parts were when Major Payne (Wayans) was relaying his incredulous war stories to whomever was listening. Whether they wanted to hear them or not. Plus it was the manner in which he told them that made them so funny. A combination of the ridiculous voice Payne has, his mannerisms, patterned colloquialisms and facial expressions that combined together perfectly. If anyone was telling me any type of story in that manner I wouldn't be able to keep myself from laughing. I don't know how the actors playing opposite Wayans were able to maintain straight faces.
Then it was also the way in which Payne interacted with the kids. He was the epitome of a fish out of water as he had NO parental-type skills at all. All they were was tiny adults to him. They were subject to just as much sarcasm and/or ridicule that he would lavish on anyone else. Case in point was when he first dealt with the deaf kid. One of the best scenes in the movie. It should be wrong to be laughing at it but you just can't help it.
I could never understand is why Karyn Parsons couldn't get more roles in films. She came from one of the most popular Black sitcoms ever so she was well known. She even did a decent enough job here. As much as she could while constantly being upstaged by a stellar Wayans performance. Yet no one could hook her up with more work? It's a shame that someone of her caliber really only has "Major Payne" as her one big screen success. But at least if that is the only one she'll ever have then it was a great one.
Ultimately, this flick is really all about Damon. To this date he has still never made a better movie. Sure the storyline is absolutely abysmal and predictable, but there are so many classic quotes that come from this one that I've lost count. If you're not a fan of senseless comedy then you won't and/or didn't enjoy "Major Payne". However, any fan of movies that make you laugh will find "Major Payne" a must-have.