Amos & Andrew
|Amos & Andrew|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||E. Max Frye|
|Produced by||Gary Goetzman|
|Written by||E. Max Frye|
|Music by||Richard Gibbs|
|Edited by||Jane Kurson|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
|Box office||$9.7 million|
Amos & Andrew is a 1993 American buddy action comedy film directed and written by E. Max Frye and starring Nicolas Cage and Samuel L. Jackson. The film's title parodies that of the sitcom Amos 'n' Andy while the premise also appears to be a riff on The Defiant Ones. Shot in and around Wilmington, North Carolina in 1992, the film concerns wealthy African-American playwright Andrew Sterling's (Jackson) purchase of a summer home on a predominantly white island. It was released to box office failure, grossing just under $10 million domestically, and receiving generally negative reviews from critics.
When Andrew Sterling (Samuel L. Jackson), a successful black urbanite writer, buys a vacation home on a resort in New England, two of his new neighbors, the Gillmans, mistake him for a burglar as he sets up his new stereo. The neighbors have no idea that the former residents of that home had moved and soon call the police.
As the police move in, Andrew's car alarm goes off and with keys in hand, he goes outside to shut it off; where he is met with gunfire. The reporters arrive and interview Chief Tolliver (Dabney Coleman), who speaks to Andrew over the phone and realizes his mistake. To avoid the bad publicity, the Chief offers a thief in his jail, Amos Odell (Nicolas Cage), a deal.
The Chief orders Amos to break into Andrew's home, hold the writer hostage, and give himself up, in exchange for free passage out of town. Armed with the shotgun given to him by the Chief, Amos enters the house under the Chief's direction and ties up Andrew. Andrew believes Amos is an assassin sent to kill him due to his published views against "white America".
As the press piles up outside of Andrew's home, the Chief calls Amos to release Andrew as soon as the press is in place, promising to leave Amos's name and face out of the news. While Amos waits, he turns on the news to see he has been betrayed, with his name and face all over the television. With his deal broken, Amos steps outside and demands a ransom for the famous author.
The Chief comes in the back door demanding Amos's surrender and reveals his lack of concern with Andrew's well being, stating his opposition to Andrew living on the island. During a scuffle, Andrew hits the Chief unconscious with his frying pan and goes for the shotgun. Amos takes the gun back and tells Andrew he will remain his hostage.
With the Chief's handcuffs, Amos cuffs himself to Andrew and runs through the backwoods behind the home and hole themselves up in the Gillmans' home. The Gillmans return home and Amos takes them hostage as well. The Chief, now free from captivity, once again demands Amos surrender, believing he is still somewhere in Andrew's home. When the Chief tells Amos he is not concerned with Andrew's safety and intends to prosecute him for assaulting him with the frying pan, Amos reveals his two new hostages, and repeats his ransom demand.
Awaiting the ransom, Amos and Andrew watch the Gillmans' news interview, explaining how the incident started because they had seen a black man inside of the house and assumed he was up to no good. A pizza Amos ordered arrives at the Gillman home, and Amos gives the pizza girl the Gillmans' and the Chief's interview tape to give back to the press. Back in the Gillmans' home, Amos finds the key to the Gillmans' car and invites Andrew to join him as his partner in crime, which disgusts Andrew.
Andrew's home is set on fire during a scuffle between the police and the crowd. The pizza girl returns the interview tape to the reporters. The Chief sends out a man with his two bloodhounds to find Andrew, and Amos, as he is chased through a field, rescues Andrew and the two watch as Andrew's home burns in the distance.
Still upset at the Chief, Andrew uses the Chief's wallet, which Amos had taken from him and sics the bloodhounds on the Chief using the new scent. In the middle of the news interview, the reporters reveal they know the truth about the incident. As the Chief realizes he no longer possesses the tape of his interview, the two bloodhounds chase him from the scene.
Amos and Andrew are shown having boarded a barge, now on the other side of the island, where Amos and Andrew meet up with Andrew's wife. Amos drives away as Andrew and his wife hug, and the two part ways as friends. The last scene shows Amos at a stop sign saying "Canada here I come" and then turning onto Interstate 95...heading in the wrong direction.
- Nicolas Cage as Amos Odell
- Samuel L. Jackson as Andrew Sterling
- Dabney Coleman as Police Chief Cecil Tolliver
- Brad Dourif as Officer Donnie Donaldson
- Michael Lerner as Phil Gillman
- Margaret Colin as Judy Gillman
- Giancarlo Esposito as Reverend Fenton Brun
- Tracey Walter as Bloodhound Bob
Amos & Andrew was poorly received by critics, as the film holds a 20% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 25 reviews.