In spite of my appreciation for actor Kevin Bacon, I never actually managed to see “Quicksilver.” Even when it was on television, I always actively made a point of not watching it. It just never interested me. Thankfully now with the advent of Kevin Bacon’s 1986 thriller now on Blu-Ray, I’m happy to discover that “Quicksilver” is an entertaining and somewhat underrated action thriller where Bacon thrives once again.
Surely, it has its silliness, what eighties movie doesn’t? But deep down there’s a very unique and memorable meshing of genres that balance out a very memorable story about a character named Jack Casey. Bacon plays Casey, a high ranking stock broker enamored with bike messengers. He loves their profession but has spent most of his early years trading stocks and building up a fortune. When he gets a bad tip on a stock, he loses his entire fortune including his parents own. Broken and beaten, he becomes a bike messenger to make ends meet and becomes a part of the unwritten brotherhood of San Francisco bikers that take their jobs very seriously. With keen supporting performances by Paul Rodriguez, Jami Gertz, and Laurence Fishburne, “Quicksilver” is able to competently balance out action, thrills, and drama.
Focusing on Jack’s intent on getting back in to stock broking, he must confront his past failure while trying to regain his manhood once again. Losing his fortune left him impotent and clinging to the bare essentials to avoid losing his entire life again, and this has made him complacent. When his best friend Hector seeks to begin opening his own hot dog business, Jack does whatever he can to help him build it up. Especially when crime bosses begin seeking business from the bike messengers to deliver their goods. After witnessing a murder, Jack learns that the messengers are being hired by drug pushers to deliver goods, and Jack tries to do whatever it takes to save his friend Terri from getting in the same business.
She is at high risk of becoming another casualty, all the while Hector in a bout of desperation, begins turning to gangsters to build the funds for his business. While Jack’s own re-emergence in to trading stocks is more of a dramatic journey, it directly affects his friends, all of whom begin turning to crime. Their fates may soon rely on Jack’s own courage to begin building his life up again, and Jack has to become the inadvertent savior for everyone around him. Filled with tight editing, great action set pieces, and a tight grip on its dark sub-plot, “Quicksilver” is one of the many eighties outputs from Kevin Bacon worth an audience; it still holds up well and entertains thoroughly. The new Blu-Ray release comes with a restored picture, but zero special features.