Tuesday, May 26, 2015

MacGyver: Trail to Doomsday

Synopsis in 3 sentences or less:
MacGyver is in London visiting an old friend at a birthday party when his friend is killed in a coordinated attack.  In his quest to bring the killers to justice, he stumbles upon a nefarious plan involving nuclear weapons.

Memorable Quote:
Elise, I must have an answer!  ~Dr. Massey
Try the library.  ~MacGyver

The chase scene while MacGyver is on the lam from the police.  It starts when he's framed for murder and jumps out the building window, and it ends on the subway (or "tube" as they say across the pond).  The entire scene is tremendous edge-of-your-seat excitement -- it's got a very modern feel and seems like a brave and successful attempt to bring MacGyver into the next decade.  

A very bizarre scene after MacGyver is gassed in the sewers.  He puts his head down in a puddle and then we see some imagery of him sinking to the bottom of a sea.  When he wakes up, he's naked and cuddling with Natalya and bed, and she tells him that "his fever broke."  The whole sequence is very strange and makes no sense whatsoever.  

Best MacGyverism:
Uses a tennis racket and some wires to unscrew the metal container containing the nuclear bomb. The nuclear control room seems like an odd place for a tennis racket -- maybe the castle was near Wimbledon! 

Other thoughts, observations, and questions I didn’t ask when I was in fourth grade:
  • Just as with Lost Treasure of Atlantis, I don't remember a single thing about this movie. Let's get started!
  • We get things off to a fun start as MacGyver is zipping past Big Ben on his way to the English countryside in a red sports car, all while a happy Ken Harrison theme plays in the background. The festive mood is interrupted by a flashback scene where MacGyver and another man are struggling to climb a snowy mountain -- MacGyver is wearing a very cool looking yellow and black hat here. 
  • Once the flashback ends, the jollyness continues as MacGyver drives up to the country estate. His hair has the dyed dark brown look, similar to the end of Holy Rose 2
  • Some familiar names in the credits, including director Charles Correll (directed 19 episodes going back to Season 1) and writer John Considine (frequent guest star and writer of several episodes). 
  • 3:23 - MacGyver passes a lady on the stairs and then gives her the quick look back, ala Cleo Rocks.
  • The actor who plays MacGyver's friend Paul looks a lot like the man who played Aubrey Montague from Chariots of Fire, one of my favorite movies of all time.  He's one of those people who I think I see all the time in movies or shows but it's not really him.  Well, a quick check of IMDB reveals in this case it actually is him!  The actor's name is Nicholas Farrell, and his Montague character was an English Olympic runner in Chariots.  Paul's brother Frederick is played by Peter Egan, who it turns out was also in Chariots as the Duke of Sutherland (I didn't recognize him, however).  Pretty cool for these two to say that they were in the possibly the greatest ever film and the greatest ever tv series.  
  • Our first glimpse at Natalia -- she gives off an interesting vibe and I'm not sure what to make of her just yet.
  • Whoa, it's an ambush!  Wasn't expecting that.  Overall the opening is strong and dark, just like a good coffee (even though I don't drink coffee).  I don't trust Frederick -- seems a little too convenient that he was only shot in the arm, but he wouldn't have had his brother killed, would he?  Regardless, we have some well-armed villains and a full fledged mystery on our hands. 
  • We also learn that Paul's daughter Elise was killed too.  Elise is played by Lena Headey who stars in Game of Thrones, a show I haven't seen but I hear is quite popular.
  • My parents watch a lot of British tv, and I've caught glimpses of some shows here and there. The scene in the manor where MacGyver, Natalia, and Frederick are talking to law enforcement has a definite "British tv" feel.  I think it's great -- adds further to the amazing diversity of this series.
  • Whoa, Natalia is packing heat!  I like her so far -- she's kind of saucy.  Though I wonder, would a KGB agent working in England be called "Natalia?"  Seems a little too obviously Russian sounding.
  • Tremendous scene as MacGyver goes undercover in an attempt to get ingratiated with a London underworld boss.  He's in a dingy warehouse and surrounded by about 6 tough looking dudes, and one of them jumps him.  After taking a few hits, MacGyver gets the better of him by spraying some powder in his face.  Then when the leader tells MacGyver to kill the man, MacGyver refuses but actually does fire a machine gun near the leader for effect.  I love it -- a dark, gritty situation where MacGyver has to go undercover (feels a little Jack Bauer-like).  He ultimately sticks to his principles (i.e. doesn't shoot anyone) but still is willing to go outside his comfort zone in doing what it takes to fulfill the mission.  I wouldn't want all the episodes to be this dark, but it's a great scene and an interesting interpretation and direction for the character to go in.
  • MacGyver now has earned himself a private meeting with the leader, and they meet in front of the Tower Bridge.  This telefilm does a great job of working in some of London's finest landmarks.  As for the scene, I doubt that this crime boss would be so trusting of MacGyver right off the bat, but I'll go along with it.
  • Things are still rolling in the middle part of the movie as MacGyver goes into investigative mode trying to solve the mystery.  I like the scene in the ancient-looking library where MacGyver is doing research, and he takes the glasses belonging to the older gentleman sitting next to him and uses them as a magnifying glass.
  • Quick reaction by our hero jumping out of the exploding car, and then a good scene between MacGyver and the inspector.  Seems like this can't go on much longer before the inspector puts a stop to MacGyver's interference.
  • Oh no, MacGyver's been framed for the death of the American investigator!  And now he's on the lam!  Not sure why the soldiers wouldn't draw their guns here, but that's ok.  A ton of action here (as described in the highlight) -- great stuff.
  • I'm still not sure what to make of Natalia -- is she on the good side or not?
  • Another great chase scene as MacGyver sees Natalia shot by the side of the road (more on this later) and then leads the masked men through the dark streets of London and then into the sewers.  I went into this movie with very low expectations since I heard some whispers from readers of this blog that it was a disaster.  Well, I keep waiting for the bottom to fall out and it just keeps getting better and better!  I'm kind of shocked that this is not more highly regarded (though a quick check of the MacGyver Online episode discussion forums show that there are others who like it too so it's good to know that I'm not going completely crazy).  Still 25 minutes left, however, and enough time for the bottom to fall out.
  • Fun scene with Plato, the British motorcyclist who picks up MacGyver and takes him to Carcroft Castle.  I love chase motifs and sneaking around, and this movie has a lot of that.
  • Creative use of the belt to repel up the pole.  Some great and brand new Harrison music here too.
  • I love the set, and the moments where MacGyver is walking around the halls of the empty castle are fantastic.
  • Whoa, the daughter is still alive!  And the doctor is in on it!  A double shocker that I did not see coming at all.
  • There aren't too many MacGyver episodes that have such a large scale threat level as a nuclear bomb -- definitely feels like a Bond movie or a 24 episode.  I'm also thankful that he's not as grumpy as he was in the last movie.
  • I knew it!  Frederick, how could you?!
  • And now we see Nataia is in on it too!  Once she got shot in the street, I figured she would come back as a villain since that would have been too quick of a way to dispose of her character (though I don't understand why it was necessary to fake her death -- unless the guys in ski masks from earlier really were trying to kill her and she had on a bullet proof vest). Anyway, she's an awesome femme fatale (in a series that didn't have too many of them) and is played remarkably by Beatie Edney.
  • After MacGyver pushes Natalia to the ground, he just turns his back on her and continues turning the switches to the off position.  Did he really think she would just give up at this point?
  • Wait a minute, she armed the bomb?  I didn't realize she was willing to go down with the ship. Reminds me a little of Goldeneye and the British agent 006 who is actually anti-England. 
  • Whoa, MacGyver drops Natalia with an uppercut -- makes me think of The Escape when he tells Sarah, "I've never hit a woman before but you come real close."
  • Beautiful shot of the London sunset with Big Ben in the background as MacGyver and Elise walk by the Thames.  Hard to believe that this is not only the final moment in the series but also the last scene for "The MacGyver Project."  I'm ready to do a cheer and shed a tear at the same time.  "I salute you...from the bottom of my heart," my wife cleverly comments.

Final Analysis:
Wow!!  That was outstanding, much better than I had imagined.  There are many elements that make up a great MacGyver episode (recently summarized nicely in a guest post on this blog) such as an international setting (check), sterling production quality (check), heightened threat level (double check), and strong villains (check), and this movie has all of those qualities in spades along with darkness levels that would make Season 4 seem like a beach vacation.  The action was end-to-end, and the plot was exciting and had some twists that I saw coming and some I didn't.  The acting was great, the music solid, and the locales and sets tremendous.  I wouldn't have wanted the whole series to be this dark and gritty, but this movie is the perfect time to change things up a little with the darker interpretation in an international location.  It's a very rewatchable movie and one that's light years better than Atlantis.  Where does it rank in the list? For now I'll put it between Faith, Hope & Charity (#30 on the updated rankings) and Pirates (#31). That may be too low, but I need to see it a few more times to feel better about moving it up too much higher.

3/13/16 Update: Was rereading this post and can't believe I ranked this so high.  Perhaps I had such low expectations and was surprised that it was half decent, or maybe I had hallucinated or inhaled too many fumes.  I did enjoy it, but I shouldn't have had it ahead of some of the episodes that it was ahead of.  I'll have to watch it a second time to get a more accurate read, but in the meantime I've slotted it in the 60's.

So where do we go from here now that there are no more episodes or movies left?  I'll have a farewell post later in the week which will wrap-up MacGyver and talk about the future direction of the blog.  


  1. Well I offered the caveat at the outset that there's a confusing 10-15% segment of the fan base that liked this one. I never understood it then or now as I ate a lot of crow in my junior year of high school hyping the "new MacGyver movie on Thanksgiving night" to anyone in the hallway who would listen back in 1994 and then facing the music Monday morning when most, including myself, agreed it was one of the worst segments ever associated with "MacGyver". But even among the few people I've talked to over the years who liked this one, I don't recall anyone approaching it with the magnitude of glee that you have! I've heard a few others mention the "darkness" of this film, but even looking as objectively as possible, to classify this darker than "Deadly Dreams" or "The Challenge" makes me wonder if I have fundamentally misunderstood the entire concept of darkness....as the only thing about this movie that struck me as "dark" was all the unlit scenes in the tunnel where I couldn't see what was going on on my parents' old TV!

    We agreed on nearly everything about "Atlantis" plot-wise but the only thing I can come close to agreeing with you on here is the "best" part of the movie was the first 20 minutes. Ken Harrison's British music as MacGyver drove through London and the backroads of England was excellent, but even that had to be cheapened by those hammy flashback scenes of MacGyver and Paul hanging from the mountain in the snowstorm. Beyond that, the funeral homage to Paul was touching and nicely done, although I instantly knew as soon as it was revealed that Elise's face was "battered beyond recognition" that she was still alive. And bullet point #1 in the headache-inducingly incoherent exposition was why Paul couldn't have told MacGyver this news of his brother's nuclear terrorist ambitions ANYWHERE ELSE than at the birthday party at the brother's estate with his brother 10 feet away!!

    I guess I'll concede that Natalia's introduction made her seem intriguing, but I could never have imagined they'd take the character down such an insufferable path over the course of two hours until her final motivation of a "Communist comeback" was revealed in a laugh-out-loud-it-hurts-so-bad moment during my original viewing. Not sure I liked that MacGyver punched her as it left a bad taste in my mouth but I definitely sympathized with the impulse. She's right down there with Mama Lorrainne in terms of characters I liked least on this series, but Natalia got my bile raised in just one outing what took Mama three so perhaps that means Mama is only worthy of the second-place ribbon!

  2. Back to picking this apart chronologically, there was just so much going on in the middle hour that hurt my head trying to comprehend. As I tried to make sense of it, I felt just like MacGyver waking up the morning after the tunnel gas attack....only without the luxury of waking in the arms of a beautiful woman who "nursed me back to health". Just scratching the surface of the plotholes, why was Frederick nudging Natalia to help MacGyver with his investigation when Frederick and Natalia were in cahoots and Natalia clearly didn't want MacGyver to investigate and get to the bottom of it? What was the point of Natalia "discovering the evidence" MacGyver missed inside Paul's bunk which she could easily have just ignored and thus not given MacGyver the clue that got him one step closer to her and Frederick? I still to this day don't understand the significance of the Graves and Capshaw catfight. Far as I can tell, it led nowhere towards explaining why MacGyver was framed for killing Graves. And we saw Natalia get shot in the chest by....whoever those unidentified villains who shot at her and who chased MacGyver into the subway were. But 15 minutes later we see her alive inside Frederick's castle. Would it have killed Considine to elaborate on how she survived a gunshot to the chest (MacGyver even checked her body and walked away...he wouldn't have done that if she was still alive!) and explain the motives of the invisible hit men who shot her in the first place?!?!?!

    I either cringed or yawned through most of the action scenes. MacGyver taking on Joseph's team of goons was not good, hammed up even more with the goofball line "I thought I was dealing with professionals here...not a bunch of suicidal punks!" I didn't like the first sewer scene much with that weird underwater nightmare you cited, but the second one was worse where the screen went black and whatever measure of suspense was supposed to be built by MacGyver....taking his shoes off!!.....was rendered null and void. The exploding red car was pretty much "meh"! The subway scene had good music that built a bit of intensity but it lacked any measure of originality....and was MacGyver hiding behind a mirror really the best they could come up with?!??! And while I like footage of English castles as much as the next guy, did we really have to see five minutes worth of MacGyver turning the corners and dodging guards on his way inside? The entire two hours I kept telling myself "NOW it's gonna start getting better".....but I kept drifting further away from it. Finally at the big revelation point that Frederick was running the nuclear lab, I decided to just give up....and by doing so I was at least able to enjoy the unintentional comedy of that deplorable final act....

    MacGyver's interactions with Frederick and especially Natalia seemed more like an Austin Powers-style spoof than something I was something supposed to take seriously with MacGyver climbing around on pipes with tinfoil gloves and channeling his inner Oscar the Grouch with comments like "you're just another cheap crook!", "my butt!", "knock it off!", and my personal favorite, asking Natalia to hold off shooting him and triggering a nuclear holocaust just long enough for him to tell her "you're a real phony!" At this point, it was a little liberating to be able to enjoy a couple of good belly laughs with my mom, having finally conceded what a howler this thing was.

    1. "did we really have to see five minutes worth of MacGyver turning the corners and dodging guards on his way inside? " <- yes this! Is this about the same time as the long winding drive? or the same thing? b/c OMG so much time spent on non-plot-moving things in this 'episode'.

    2. Even on a TV movie budget they had limitations on what they could spend and must have decided that since they had the cool castle setting they'd take advantage of it by showing it in the background as much as possible, even with inconsequential scenes of MacGyver bouncing around corners at the castle. With this movie though, quiet scenes of MacGyver playing hide and seek with guards may have been a better option than listening to more of the cringeworthy dialogue!

    3. I'll take Brian Blessed yelling as the good professor from Atlantis over the snooze-worthy game of hide-and-seek in the sewers... *yawn*. Atlantis was far-fetched, sure, but it was at least fun to watch. This one? Nope.

  3. And before I get to the ultra-lame resolution, I think it should be said that MacGyver's ingenuity was really lacking all around in this one. While I could shrug off the lack of clever MacGyverisms in some of the episodes of the series, especially if they had a good story, I felt like they should have some good ones in the movies given that the MacGyverisms were what defined the franchise. The best we got here was MacGyver using his belt as a rope to climb a pipe, using a rag full of mud to reduce his ingestion of the knockout gas, and taking his shoes off in the sewers so that the bad guys couldn't hear his footsteps. But surely--surely!--Considine had something ingenious up his sleeve for MacGyver to defuse a nuclear weapon with one minute to go right? Right? After a couple minutes of randomly flipping circuit breakers the way my grandma randomly flips buttons on her remote when it doesn't work, he proceeds to find a random tennis racket in the nuclear lab. Huh? Now had it been established at some point during the two hours that either Frederick or Natalia were tennis fanatics (would that have been too much to ask?!?!?), this resolution would have had the faintest hint of narrative resonance. But since it wasn't, I hold this up there with "mixing stuff" from "High Control" as the laziest MacGyverism of all time.....and given the stakes, the audience deserved much, much more from that resolution even discounting how bad the rest of the movie was.

    I still don't get what went so very wrong here. I know not everybody loved "Good Knight, MacGyver", but Considine proved he was capable of a very tight and well-crafted script with that one. This film was just an absolute, incoherent mess for me and I'm always fascinated that it has fans amidst its more plentiful detractors. "Atlantis" had its problems but it seemed like "Citizen Kane" next to this steaming pile! While I have rated three "MacGyver" episodes as worse than this one in my rankings, this one is the hardest to slog through when I review the entire body of work given that it's twice as long, and I sometimes skip it entirely as I'm always depressed when it's over that the "MacGyver" legacy ended with such a listless combination of boring, lazy, and campy. I rank it #138 and hopefully Nick doesn't banish me from the blog for my sour counterpoint!

    1. Why don't you tell us what you really think about this movie! We've made it through 137 of these reviews thus far, so I don't think I'll banish you on the last one! It's funny because if I wouldn't have known your ranking beforehand, I would have guessed that you would have really liked this one. You raise some valid points about the plot holes -- perhaps if I watched it a few more times I'd notice more of that type of thing, but it didn't bother me much the first time around. I'll have to watch it a few more times before I can give it a proper rating, but it really was fun for me to watch -- maybe that was partly due to the extremely low expectations I had.

      And as president of the Mama Lorraine fan club, I'm very glad to hear that Mama is not your least favorite character in the series!

    2. The story idea did intrigue me....but to be honest I wasn't loving the ads I saw in advance of the broadcast. Still, I told myself it had to be great. It was "MacGyver". I knew Atlantis was supposed to air in May 1994 but had just heard that the second movie was gonna air the following season, and I didn't follow up on it. I was in the library in my junior year study hall in November 1994 looking through the TV Guide when I saw "Trail to Doomsday" was airing on Thanksgiving night. I remember making a grid on the back of my notebook ticking off the hours until it aired. That particular study hall was an odd snapshot in time generally, where I somehow found myself the alpha male (not usually my role!!!) for whom attention was doted on by rivaling factions of freshman and senior girls trying to make each other jealous. Never would I have expected my nerdy eccentricity over "MacGyver" would find such a receptive audience among comely young gals, but I sure made it work for me that year. Of course I lost some ground when we returned from Thanksgiving break on Monday morning and they all hated it. If nothing else, I helped the warring factions of freshman and senior girls find some common ground in the fall of 1994 with their dislike of the "MacGyver" movie.

    3. And while "Atlantis" ranked 58th for its week in May 1994, it was considered a modest success given its horrible Saturday time slot. But when "Doomsday" got the more plum Thanksgiving night slot and rated almost identically (it came in 59th), it pretty much killed the chances of ABC requesting any more "MacGyver" movies. ABC originally offered six but RDA said "let's just do two". He said he was open to doing more given the right circumstance but the offer was not made.

    4. Your study hall story is one of a kind -- glad to hear that the warring factions of high school girls were able to make peace over this movie even if you lost some credibility.

      I didn't know that there were a potential of 6 movies -- too bad that didn't come to fruition, though given your feelings on this one maybe it wasn't a bad thing from your perspective.

    5. It really was wild. The librarian occasionally had to split them apart from me. I was getting Christmas and Valentine's gifts and the whole nine yards. I was a pawn in their rivalry and I was perfectly fine with that arrangement. After study hall ended, I don't think any of them spoke to me again.

      And yes the original offer was for six MacGyver movies. RDA understandably wanted to move on and didn't want "MacGyver" to typecast him the way "Columbo" did with Peter Falk, so he agreed to two with the possibility of doing more. I remember he went on Leno the week "Doomsday" aired and said it would be the "last MacGyver". Jay didn't believe him and placed a wager. Looks like RDA won that one. And while I'd certainly be counting down the hours in my notebook in 2015 just like I did in 1994 if another MacGyver movie were to come out, it felt to me like the creative oxygen got sucked out of the show at some point in season 6 and has proven very hard to restore. Neither of the movies lived up to the best of what the series routinely did week after week while the "MacGyver" reboot on WB was arguably worse than "Doomsday". It may have been best for the "MacGyver" legacy that the four additional movies never came to be.

    6. I watched the first few minutes of that WB reboot a while back when Highlander linked to it and that was much worse than even the worst episode of MacGyver.

    7. I finally broke down and watched the whole thing a couple of months ago. The first five minutes was the best part!

    8. That is a most ringing endorsement, Mark. =)

    9. Highlander, are you referring to my overall review of "Doomsday" or my quip about WB "MacGyver"?

    10. Your quip about the "Young MacGyver" movie.

  4. I had a big problem with 2 elements in this: Mac shooting a gun and Mac punching Natalia.

    The thing about Mac and guns is that he doesn't like them... and not once (save the pilot ep) during the season does he *fire* one at a person - he even has an issue w/ his friend firing the pistol at a bird in "Blood Brothers", so to have him firing a weapon in a semi-reckless manner bothers me. He had no way to know - even as brilliant as he is - that none of those bullets from that Uzi would hit someone. No matter how/where he aimed that thing. That was a very un-MacGyver thing to do and he could've achieved the same result via other means.

    As for punching Natalia - absolutely not necessary. Also - out of character. MacGyver has that chivalry bone and I really don't see him being violent toward women. It's not the 'hitting a woman' part that bothers me, it's 'MacGyver punching a woman when he never has in the history of the series'. Every time he's hit someone, he's been pushed to it for self-defense reasons. Hitting Natalia was just to get her out of the way. He could've accomplished that in a dozen other ways. Adding a few extra seconds to the countdown would've let him tie her up with duct tape or something, THEN the countdown could be 10 seconds, or whatever the skin-of-his-teeth duration should be.

    The rest of this one is just so mind-numbingly slow, I can't watch it very often.

    1. Those are good points. The guy in the movie does feel like a different character in some ways.

  5. I’m with Nick in preferring this to the Atlantis movie and I agree that the first part was generally quite good. I too, liked the opening with the sports car and the Handel- like music and arriving at a quintessentially English church. The car is rather flashy for MacGyver and then we learn that he didn’t choose it, Paul did
    Enjoyed MacGyver’s amusing attempt at a posh English accent with his ‘happy birthday Paul’. The ‘all hell breaks loose’ party scene is pretty dramatic and, of course, MacGyver rescues the little girl but its noticeable that he has to practically wrestle her to the floor because her dress is so big!
    After this I find the plot gets very confusing, especially the police inspector’s relationship with Tony whom he apparently blames for involving him in an over –the- top interrogation. This is not Alun Armstrong’s best role; There are again some worthy British actors who seem to be hampered with poor script and confused plot. Interestingly, Beattie Edney has recently been on our screens in a very different role; as a slovenly 18th Century Cornish servant in ‘Poldark’.
    Why are we told the attackers are ‘terrorists’ – surely it needs a bit more explanation than that? I enjoyed MacGyver discovering the poisoned pen and knowing all about them - although how he knew it was one is amazing - it just looks like a pen to me. MacGyver is often uncharacteristically fierce in places as he demands explanations and doesn’t trust anyone. I too, thought the warehouse test scene was ok apart from the script. After winning the fight MacGyver traces a line of bullets around the outline of the leader; pretty good shooting for someone who never uses a gun. I’m ok with the gun; he is undercover and has got to look convincing.
    Enjoyed Tony’s ‘’I’m experienced in these matters’ and MacGyver’s ‘so am I’ - he’s right there! It all gets very confusing from here but there is some good suspense in the sewer when the rat jumps out and there’s a clever but simple MacGyverism to use the coal as a carbon filter against the gas. (how is MacGyver an expert on the London sewer system – I’m sure its not marked on the A-Z like the map he finds in the flat). I suppose the strange dream sequence is him going under the effects of the gas.
    The following bed scene is bizarre, I agree, especially the innuendo that things happened after his’ fever broke’… hmmm. The plot also becomes more bizarre from here on.
    Enjoyed MacGyver going to the ’London Library’ and researching and I too, liked him borrowing the specs. He was lucky to park so close –you can rarely do that in London. The ensuing explosion was spectacular. I don’t understand why Graves is killed but thought the scenes were exciting as MacGyver escapes the police by hurtling through the window and landing in the dustbins. Not sure why the police don’t radio ahead as he goes into Knightsbridge station – good scenes on the tube and the platform -as you say it adds a very London feel although the station is a lot quieter then usual!
    Really don’t understand the plot now and why Natalia saved him in the first place; MacGyver is getting quite despondent (for him) and is clearly as confused as the viewer although he’s suspicious and has to remind Natalia that she’s ‘ex-KGB’. The following sewer scene is quite suspenseful and the ‘morning gents’ as the workers open up in the morning is amusing. To be continued..

    1. Just a note, whether or not anyone else mentioned, the music was Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Movt 1, by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - I am in fact playing it on YouTube right now. It is also interesting that in the episode in 1990 with Tamsin Kelsey, she plays Movt 2 ( Romanze ) on the Stradivarius. This tune was also played in a 90's movie about the James Gang with Bill Paxton. I would like the know the names of all who acted, especially the woman on the stairs, and wonder if it was MacGyver looking at her, if he thinks that way, or what, but it seems only speaking parts normally get credited, and sometimes even some of them get missed out in the Credits. Chris Lilly.

    2. Another thing about MacGyver, which I like generally, but not all the things Mac believes in or doesn't, but I noticed that at the end of the Episode it was reveal Angus had a son, Richard announces at the end his thanks for us watching for the past 7 years, as if that was meant to be the last ever episode, yet there is one after, where he goes to that Mountain place that has the Fountain of Life. So were the two episodes unintentionally swapped ?

    3. Thanks for the comments, Christopher. "The Coltons" episode was filmed during Season 6 but aired during Season 7, so "The Mountain of Youth" ended up getting temporarily shelved (it is sometimes called the lost episode) because they had met their episode quota for the season with The Coltons. But after the series finale they decided to air it anyway, so that's why in some places it is out of order.

  6. The scene with the biker is fun - the writers obviously felt they had to throw some Cockney rhyming slang in although not sure it made any sense for Plato to refer to the police at the road block as ‘Ices’- ice cream freezers – geezers. It looked like RDA did the jumping on the bike stunt himself – cool.
    He’s at Arundel Castle! It’s hard to believe when I went round it, years ago, that beneath the feet of that coach party of elderly ladies in beige cardies there was a dastardly nuclear weapons processing plant! You’d have thought they would have noticed the armed guards on the roof too. Enjoyed MacGyver climbing the drain pipe and the creeping around the castle scenes and there are some good plot twists like the doctor being in on it, but MacGyver knocking him out with a tap from a book was a little unlikely. After this I’m afraid it all goes downhill with poor script, MacGyver flicking switches all over the place, and lots of guff about ridiculous motives. Its very convenient that Natalia tells him he needs a trivet wrench to disarm the bomb. It is perfectly believable that there’s a tennis racket lying about in an English country house but not in the nuclear bunker under it! Didn’t enjoy MacGyver punching Natalia and frankly, although she knifes him, by now there’s no other villains left and she doesn’t seem that much of a threat. Nice ending scene with Westminster in the background – they did find some classic locations for some of the shots.
    All in all, some very good and exciting scenes but altogether too confusing and culminating in a preposterous ending. I’d rank it higher than Atlantis around 100 or so.
    So ends the last MacGyver review - what a fun experience!

    1. Great to hear the official English perspective on this one! I've never heard of Arundel Castle but it looks like an awesome place that would be fun to visit.

  7. In either of the two movies, did the writers mention where Mac's kid was? Or was that just a final plot development to be ignored?

    1. Apparently, poor Sam fell off the face of the Earth after his one and only appearance. I don't know whether Dalton James just wasn't available or if no one wanted to write him into the movies. But, the least they could've done was had someone ask after him so Mac could say 'oh, he's off on assignment in [location]' or something.

  8. That's too bad, it would have been nice to see more father-son interaction between the two. The kid just found his dad and he's being written off already. Poor Sam indeed! :(


  9. Well, I just saw the movie again (I think it is the second time I've watched it). And I have to say, I liked this one more than The Lost Treasure. So you can scratch what I commented in my other post. This one feels more like a MacGyver episode to me, besides, I've never been a fan of those treasure hunting episodes. I like the more realistic/good cause episodes. And for me, this one is closer to what MacGyver is.

    I dont see why it was necessary to bring Natalia's character back after the shooting scene. For me, it would have been better if they just kept her dead, that way, you left the fans with the impression that she died as a reivindicated person trying to do something good. I completely agree with the fact that the punch was completely unnecessary, and I am more suprised that RDA agreed with that scene. Completely out of character. But as he said when he was promoting the movie in Live with Regis and Kathie Lee show and that particular scene was presented: "you know is the last MacGyver when I popped a girl".

    One last comment, that pinky finger had suffered enough, no more MacGyver for RDA, for the sake of his finger. He is using a band aid on the same finger, again. I know that the movies were filmed back to back, I am wondering if that was literally or if they filmed both movies simultaneously. The band aid on his finger makes me thing that it could have been simultaneously, otherwise, poor finger, seriously!! 😊