This is topic The Coca-Cola Kid (1985) in forum « 80's Movies at iRewind Talk.

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Posted by Johnny Roarke is reckless (Member # 9826) on :

Eric Roberts stars as an American big-shot sales executive for the Coca-Cola company sent to Australia
to improve sales, and encounters all kinds of odd people and zany situations before reaching his goal.

Very strange Australian movie directed by Yugoslavian filmmaker Dusan Makavejev, with an American
in the lead role.

Great supporting role from Greta Scacchi (who looks absolutely stunning) as a quirky secretary
at the Australian Coca-Cola office.


It's difficult to say anything negative about The Coca-Cola Kid, but at the same time it's also
hard to like.

For example, the relationship between Roberts and Scacchi is definitely not your typical 80's movie romance.
She, a divorced mother of one, shows interest in him right from the start, while he, the personification
of the 80's yuppie life-style, doesn't even bother to talk to her, and even fires her because
she gets on his nerves too much.
Later on, when she seeks affection again, he tells her there's no way she's getting her job back.
Now that's just rude, mr. yuppie ! [Mad]

Also there are many, many storylines that eventually lead to nowhere.
A lady in an airplane carrying a wounded kangaroo comes and goes without any importance to
the movie's story, a hotel employee who assumes Roberts is a secret agent (or something), a violent
ex-husband, a lone ranger in the outback, a party where there are taken some compromising photo's
of Roberts with a guy dressed up as woman.. All making little to no sense !
Even at the end, when it is revealed that Scacchi is actually the daughter of Coca-Cola's biggest local competitor
and his deceased wife who was a Coca-Cola billboard girl in the 1950's / 1960's, it all leads to nothing !

There's also a small supporting role from Australian musician Tim Finn (Crowded House) who
wrote and performed some of the (very catchy) songs from The Coca-Cola Kid.

Tim Finn and Greta Scacchi reportedly ended up having a real-life relationship after meeting on the set
of The Coca-Cola Kid.

Strange and offbeat comedy / satire.. (or is it a drama?)
I guess one's appreciation strongly depends on the mood you're in when watching this.

Theatrical trailer :

I wonder what you guys make of this one . [Smile]

[ 25. August 2012, 05:59: Message edited by: Johnny Roarke is reckless ]
Posted by the young warrior (Member # 9554) on :
johnny you're right it is a hard film to categorize, i personally really like it.

i've had the region 1 mgm dvd in my collection for quite sometime,i remember when i first rented it out something about the film left me with a feel good attitude so i went straight out and purchased it.

i like roberts and scacchi and i liked the australian setting and i also liked the overall quirkiness of it all.

great review johnny of what i think is a great movie,very underated.

by the way johnny i don't wanna go where there's no coca cola!
Posted by Johnny Roarke is reckless (Member # 9826) on :
Thanks for the compliments, Young Warrior.

When i first saw this back in the 80's, i really didn't like it at all.
When i recently re-watched the movie i was indeed pleasently surprised by the movie's charm.

Roberts is good (as usual) and Scacchi is terrific. I love her part as Terri, the secretary.
There's an extremely awkward and funny scene towards the end of the movie where she tries to
seduce Roberts' character who simply doesn't know how to react to her coming on to him.

It's just that there are so many loose ends to the story, which make the movie far more confusing
than it needs to be.

The main question i was stuck with at the end was if Roberts actually liked Scacchi's character Terri,
or that he just felt bad for her. For the whole movie he just seemed to have no interest in her
despite that she tried so hard to be liked.

And yes, that song is bound to get stuck in your head for days to come. That's for sure ! [Smile]

[ 25. August 2012, 09:48: Message edited by: Johnny Roarke is reckless ]
Posted by Valley (Member # 1322) on :
I've had this movie in my Netflix queue for quite awhile, but continue to pass it over. My 80's memories of it were that it was a kinda slow and an awkward film. Maybe it is the loose ends that never go anywhere?

Johnny's comments have me at least wanting to give it another try now though.
Posted by the young warrior (Member # 9554) on :

johnny have you ever seen white mischief with greta scacchi in it,i've never seen it but i wouldn't mind checking it out, i too thought she was great here.

roberts is always good value for money even when he's in more lightweight stuff like the first two best of the best movies.

the performance from roberts that totally blew me away was star 80,unbelievably good,that and a close second was his turn in runaway train with jon voight.

johnny help! i've still got that coke song playing in my head [Big Grin]
Posted by the young warrior (Member # 9554) on :
valley give it another go if you get a chance,it might have a very laid back pace and a bit of a rambling plot but it's got a lot of charm.

looking at the poster art at the top which is identical to the u.k cinema quad poster and also the u.k palace pictures vhs release i wonder how many people (not clued up on the movie scene)went into this blindly thinking it was some kind of 80s american t&a sex comedy.

[ 25. August 2012, 16:04: Message edited by: the young warrior ]
Posted by Johnny Roarke is reckless (Member # 9826) on :
Star 80.. now that's an awesome movie desperately in need of a re-release !
I took a quick look on Amazon, and apparently Warner Brothers released it on region 1 dvd
in the early days of the format.
Maybe i still have it laying around on VHS somewhere, i'm not sure.

Eric Roberts is a very good actor, who ended up doing lots and lots of b-movies.
The imdb lists an incredible 258 acting roles to his credit, wow !
I wouldn't be too surprised if he suddenly pops up playing a fantastic role once again somewhere
in the future, and maybe even getting himself an Oscar nomination for best supporting role at age 70
or something. I can see that happen !

I've never seen Scacchi in White Mischief either. To be honest, i don't think White Mischief
is a movie i would easily pick out myself to buy, despite the fact that it's highly acclaimed.

Valley, you should definitely try and watch it again. I'm curious to find out what you think of it.
Posted by Valley (Member # 1322) on :
Just finished watching the movie. I must say that watching it as an adult made me appreciate it so much more than I ever could in the 80's.

Eric Roberts performance was beyond quirky and totally agree that the aussie Coca-Cola jingle is excellent.

The film still felt very awkward, but I have to say it was entertaining. Maybe it was the wild tumble in bed with Santa while feathers are flying in the air. [Wink]

I'm still shocked that this film was made without Coca-Cola's permission. No way that happens in today's environment.

You both mentioned "Star 80" which I've always thought was Eric Roberts best performance, but not until today did I realize it was a flop on release.

I highly recommend that you read this People magazine article from 1985 when a young Eric Roberts discusses his recent films at the time.. but there is something in the article that kinda felt like a time portal of a 'before they were a star' moment that I think you will quickly realize:

People Magazine article 9/9/1985
Posted by aTomiK (Member # 6575) on :
Never seen the movie but they released it here on VHS back in the day.
There was a topless girl on the cover so the company definitely tried to sell it as a teen sex comedy [Cool]
Posted by Johnny Roarke is reckless (Member # 9826) on :
There was a tagline on the Dutch VHS release which said :

,Sex is the medicine for almost anything !! ..It's the real thing !!'

I have no clue what that has to do with the movie. [Big Grin]

But yeah, i guess they just didn't know how to sell this oddly constructed, hard-to-categorize movie.
Here in Holland some video-shops even put this one in the action department back in the day.
It ended up in the same rack as other movies that were released on video in late '86 such as
Death Wish 3, Highlander, The Park is Mine, Iron Eagle, Commando, and the also hard-to-categorize Turk 182.
Posted by Johnny Roarke is reckless (Member # 9826) on :
Originally posted by Valley:
I highly recommend that you read this People magazine article from 1985 when a young Eric Roberts discusses his recent films at the time.. but there is something in the article that kinda felt like a time portal of a 'before they were a star' moment that I think you will quickly realize:

People Magazine article 9/9/1985

Very cool retro vibe there, indeed !

Apparently they were in Eric's kitchen before they were famous ! [Big Grin] [Razz]
Posted by Johnny Roarke is reckless (Member # 9826) on :
I accidentally came across this odd but awesome artwork for The Coca-Cola Kid :

Posted by aTomiK (Member # 6575) on :
Love it!
Posted by Rob@80s (Member # 13270) on :
Would love to see this. Eric Roberts had such charisma on screen back then (The Ambulance, Slow Burn etc.)
Posted by the young warrior (Member # 9554) on :

always thought this was a pretty wacky and feel good flick the 1985 comedy drama - the coca cola kid with eric roberts and greta scacchi.

that crazy coca cola song sure does get stuck in your head though!
Posted by aTomiK (Member # 6575) on :
Well, i own the film now so maybe i need to check it out. Like tonight!
Posted by the young warrior (Member # 9554) on :
Yeah check it out atomik,it's a bit all over the place at times but It's a likeable movie in my opinion.

Never seen slow burn from 1986 starring Eric Roberts,Beverly d'angelo and a young Johnny depp that sounds quite interesting.

Anyone ever caught up with that one? - slow burn trailer check out Eric Roberts In a rage [Mad] at about 54 seconds.

I think he needs more than a coca cola to calm himself back down,a strong whiskey or two [Big Grin]
Posted by aTomiK (Member # 6575) on :
Watched The Coca-Cola Kid yesterday and it´s indeed a strange film.
I know that there´s lots of sarcasm and hidden meanings on offer here from writer Frank Moorhouse and director Makavejev
but i´m not a guy who analyses films to death.
You can find lots of interesting thoughts on IMDb about those things.

Eric Roberts was good once again and i just loved Greta Scacchi, so cute and what a body!
Like Johnny said, there´s lots of storylines unsolved and unexplained. Maybe it´s just Makavejev´s style, i don´t know.
I´m going to check out his earlier film Montenegro (1981) soon.

Couple nice tunes from Split Enz/Crowded House man Tim Finn. And yes, that jingle was pretty good too [Smile]

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