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  • 1991movierewind

Episode #89: Dutch

Listen to Episode 89 of the Podcast here while you enjoy the show notes.

SUMMARY - In Dutch, Doyle Standish (played by Ethan Embry) was planning to come home from boarding school to see his dad for Thanksgiving. When the dad cancels due to a business trip, Doyle’s mom’s new boyfriend Dutch Dooley (played by Ed O’Neill) offers to go down to Atlanta and drive them both back to Chicago. After a violent introduction to each other that sees Dutch beat up by the snobby Doyle, they hit the road for an adventure with unintended pit stops.

Screenplay by John Hughes; Directed by Peter Faiman; and released on July 19, 1991.


The movie is first and foremost about class. Doyle's mother doesn't buy into the world of her ex-husband

But Doyle does. He's super snooty and entitled and downright mean to people that have less than him.

Dutch comes along and provides some "tough love."

It's hard to imagine that a lot of the scenes in the movie would be shot today, but the "violence" is over the top and cartoony enough that it's easy to not take seriously

But, the movie does take the class discussion seriously and it does it in an interesting way.

There are few discussions about blue vs. white collar. The movie does it by showing and there are also plenty of non-verbal sequences

The score was sometimes obnoxious in these parts. We didn't need the circus music

But there are a couple of good, real moments where Dutch talks to Doyle as an adult which is something that isn't done enough in film.

We didn't agree with all the hard knocks life lessons though. Why did Dutch allow this to go down?

As the movie progresses, they lose more and more. Even when they think they run into kind people, it comes back to bite them.

But Doyle eventually learns to care more as a result and befriends this homeless family when they're all in a shelter.

Meanwhile, it would have been great to see more scenes with the mom played by JoBeth Williams.

The casting is great in this movie and although many were up for the role, Ed O'Neill is perfect as Dutch

We understand that this movie didn't do well and isn't well-received, but even if there are similarities with "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" the biggest obstacle was likely releasing this Thanksgiving movie in the middle of summer next to T2.

Awards Talk: At the Young Artist Awards, Ethan Embry won the Best Actor in a Feature and the movie itself was nominated for the Best Family Motion Picture - Comedy


This week we don't have any true crime to talk about so we jump right into music by talking about Elizabeth (E.G.) Daily

Best known for her voice acting career (she's the voice of Tommy Pickles in Rugrats, among many others), she also had a music career in the 1980s and went on The Voice.

The Voice Audition (2013)

Shake It Up (1983) on Soul Train (Rosie Perez appears at the 2:23 mark)

Mind Over Matter Video (1985) for the movie Summer School

One Way Love (1985) for the movie Better Off Dead


Nikki 1-5 star scale - 3 out of 5

Jon 0-4 star scale - 3 out of 4

Would you watch it again? - We understand that it may be compared to "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" but we think that this is an underappreciated hidden gem in the John Hughes library. It may not necessarily be a yearly holiday classic but it would be great for an occasional change of pace since it has several good worthwhile scenes and great lead performances.

If you want to watch Dutch, as of this recording in November 2022, it’s available on VHS, DVD. Check your local listings.


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Join us next time for Curly Sue available on Digital Rental, VHS, DVD

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