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Film / Bulletproof

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A 1996 American action comedy film.

Archie Moses (Adam Sandler) is a small time street thug for a large drug importer and car dealer Frank Colton (James Caan), who is befriended by an undercover cop named Rock Keats (Damon Wayans). The latter is naturally seeking evidence against Colton. During a raid on Colton's warehouse, Archie accidentally shoots Jack in the head but he miraculously survives and makes a full recovery. Archie then flees the state, and is subsequently arrested later. Jack is assigned the task of returning Archie to testify against Colton.

Not to be confused with the 1988 action thriller starring Gary Busey and the 2018 British Cop Show. If you came here looking for a trope, you want Immune to Bullets.

Tropes include:

  • The '90s: This movie is so mid-90s through and through. The soundtrack is mostly hip-hop-influenced with alot of boom-bap style instrumentals. Keats/Carter and Moses both wear super baggy clothes with heavy work boots, and Keats even rocks the Michael Jordan style gold hoop earring with a sideways leather cap.
  • Bald Head of Toughness: This goes for Carter and Bledsoe. They are the out-front fighters for the good guys and bad guys, respectively. Both rock a cleanly shaven dome.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Keats utters some basic Spanish when he's introduced to some gangsters of various ethnicities. They give him a cold stare.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Traci, Carter's physical therapist when he's recovering from his gunshot wound. She quickly becomes his love interest, but it turns out she's working for Colton and sets Carter up to be killed.
  • Book Ends: At the start of the movie, Keats saves Moses from the gigantic muscular boyfriend of the woman Moses was trying to hit on. At the end, Keats saves Moses from the three gigantic muscular boyfriends of the women Moses was trying to hit on.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Colton gets one right in the forehead.
  • The Brute: Bledsoe. The man is a giant, plain and simple. He takes little to no physical damage from anything or anyone until Carter headbutts him in the nose repeatedly and then shoots him, repeatedly.
  • Bullying the Disabled: After stealing a car, Keats decides to troll a street cop and ask for directions to Disneyland. He calls Moses his 'retarded friend' and makes him mimic a speech impediment by saying Disneyland out loud repeatedly, and pretending to be disabled.
  • Bullying the Dragon: Moses has a habit of doing this to bigger, tougher guys like Bledsoe and "Daddy Dipshit" at the bar. He's smart about it though, and does so knowing that Keats will come along and bail him out of trouble.
  • Cranial Plate Ability: Jack Carter, who is shoot in the head (accidentally) by his friend Archie. He uses the steel plate on Archie when he's pissed. Later he uses it as a surprise weapon against bad guys.
  • Crossing the Desert: After their chartered plane to Los Angeles crashes, Keats and Moses are stuck trekking on foot over arid Southwestern terrain.
  • Dodgy Toupee: When Carter and Colton are having their final showdown, it is revealed that Colton wears one. Colton removes it himself in preparation for the fight.
  • Double Standard: Rape, Male on Male: When Moses is briefly in the jail cell after getting hauled in by Carter, he's being petted and fondled from behind by a larger inmate. It's obviously a potential Prison Rape situation, yet Played for Laughs.
  • The Dragon: Bledsoe (played by Robert Swenson) is Colton's bodyguard and go-to thug.
  • Don't Tell Mama: Keats goes along in lying to Archie's mother in order to help reassure her.
  • Heroes Love Dogs: Although he's a career criminal, Moses isn't a cold blooded guy and Keats knows it. When Moses threatens to shoot a dog as a bluff, Keats immediately calls him on it: "No you won't; you love animals."
  • Hidden Wire: The first time Carter/Keats is suspected of wearing one, he is searched and found out to be clean. The second is when he actually is wearing one, and is inadvertently exposed by Moses who still fully trusts him and moves to reassure the others by lifting Keats' shirt. Major Oh, Crap! moment for Agent Carter.
  • Hollywood Silencer: The Coconut Effect is used in this context. As is typical with many movies, the suppressed firearms seen here are almost completely silent, like thin cable whipping through the air. Guns Do Not Work That Way.
  • Hospital Hottie: Carter awakens from his gunshot-induced coma to find himself the patient of Traci, his physical therapist who will help him recover. She's a knockout, and the two immediately hit it off. Carter doesn't realize she's a Bitch in Sheep's Clothing.
  • I Never Told You My Name: Moses proves the two FBI agents work for Colton when he says one of their full names outloud despite never hearing it.
  • Intentional Mess Making: After Moses tries to escape through the window of the shower of the room they rented for the night, Carter handcuffs him to the toilet and deliberately takes a dump on it without flushing beforehand as additional insult. Moses is unable to sleep knowing that if he does, his head will fall on that.
  • Irony: The most ironic part of the movie is that the criminal, Archie Moses, ends up being one of the only honest characters and by extension, the only guy the policeman, Jack Carter, can really trust.
  • Large and in Charge: Bledsoe, Colton's enormous bodyguard. Played by the 6'4", 400lb Jeep Swenson, this guy looks like he could eat a normal sized adult male, let alone beat one up. It eventually ends up taking almost a full clip of bullets to bring him down.
  • Licked by the Dog: Played for laughs when Archie claims that a dog must like him because it keeps licking his face:
    "He don't like you, he just licked his balls and wants to get the taste out of his mouth!"
  • Megaton Punch: Jack Carter is the bigger, stronger fighter when paired against almost anyone else in the movie. The truly massive Bledsoe, however, easily ragdolls him with only a short punch. Luckily for Carter, he equalizes things with a gun before Bledsoe can really lay into him.
  • Moe Greene Special: Moses shoots one of Colton's guards right through his sunglasses, and follows it up by saying "Gross, right in the fucking eyeball!"
  • Non-Action Guy: Moses may be a street thug, but he's definitely a brains-not-brawn type of thug.
  • Odd Couple: Keats (a cop) has to spend much of the picture protecting Archie (a criminal) and bringing him in to testify.
  • Oh, Crap!: One of Colton's henchmen correctly suspects that Carter is an undercover cop, but doesn't have any proof yet. That is, until Archie Moses comes to his defense and lifts up Carter's shirt to convince the others there's no Hidden Wire. Of course, there is, and pandemonium ensues.
  • Parody Archie singing the song from The Bodyguard here.
  • Pretty Little Headshots: Colton catches a midsize pistol round to his forehead, killing him instantly. There is only a neat hole with very little blood, and Colton looks almost uninjured and asleep rather than dead.
  • Queer People Are Funny: Charlie, the clerk at the bungalow motel. The photo of his cross dressing wife is obviously meant to be humourous, as well as the ridiculous sexual come-ons from Moses. Proves himself to be Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass later on.
  • Rugged Scar: Carter has a big one, at a mean angle above his eye on his forehead, where he was hit with a stray bullet accidentally fired by Archie Moses.
  • Run for the Border: Carter's and Moses' plan for their lives after all the dust settles from the plot climax. The last scene is of the 2 of them, as well as Moses' pot-smoking mother, at a small cantina in what is presumably Mexico. Moses is getting himself into another bar fight like earlier in the movie. The Adventure Continues...
  • Secret Identity: Damon Wayans' character is an undercover policeman named Jack Carter, but he is known to Archie Moses and others as Rock Keats through most of the movie. Moses still calls him Keats a couple of times after he learns his real name is Carter.
  • Shipped in Shackles: Archie Moses is kept on a chain leash and in handcuffs for a large part of the movie as Keats' prisoner, while on the way to serve as a key witness against Colton the drug lord.
  • The Stoner: Moses' mom's fondness of marijuana is a running gag through the movie.
  • Tap on the Head: Bledsoe interrogates Charlie at gunpoint to find out the room where Keats and Moses are. After Charlie talks, Bledsoe KOs him with a pistol whip to the head.
  • Undercover Cop Reveal: After already fully vouching for Keats, Moses grabs Keats' shirt and pulls it up so the other cartel henchmen can see that Keats isn't a cop and isn't wearing a wire. Except, he is. The undercover operation is blown wide open on the spot, and Keats starts arresting Moses to his outrage.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Rock and Archie spend the entire movie alternating between saving each other's lives, hurting each other, fighting, cussing each other out, and getting into one tense situation after another before pretty much always ending up admitting they're friends and trust each other. 'The Rock & Archie Show' as they call it more than once.