Follow TV Tropes


Film / Gone Fishin'

Go To

A 1997 comedy film directed by Christopher Cain, written by Jill Mazursky-Cody and Jeffrey Abrams (better known now as J. J. Abrams), and starring Joe Pesci and Danny Glover in their only pairing outside of the Lethal Weapon franchise.

Joe Waters (Pesci) and Gus Green (Glover) are lifelong friends and fishing enthusiasts. They go on their annual fishing trip together, and whatever can go wrong does go wrong. They soon wind up crossing swords with a dangerous con-man and killer after he steals Joe's prized vintage Barracuda, and they pursue him, leaving comic chaos and destruction in their wake.

The film did poorly in theaters, making nearly $20 million on a $53 million budget. The film fared even worse with critics, but has gotten a second life on video.



  • Big Bad: Dekker Massey.
  • Brick Joke: Early in the film, Gus reads an article about alligators describing them as being extremely vengeful and willing to chase the object of their wrath to the ends of the earth. At the end of the film, the alligator the duo beat up can be seen swimming in the New Jersey river they're about to take a dip in.
  • The Cameo: Willie Nelson as in-universe fishing legend Billy "Catch" Poole.
  • Chase Scene: Between Joe/Gus and Massey on airboats in the Florida Everglades.
  • Cool Car: Joe's 1968 Plymouth Barracuda.
  • Crowbar Combatant: See No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
  • Disaster Dominoes: While staying at a fancy hotel, a sleepwalking Gus startles Joe, who drops a lit cigar onto his pillow, which starts a fire. He fills a bucket from the bathtub to put it out, which leads to the tub overflowing, which leads to Gus leaving, which leads to Joe following, which leads to the revelation that the fire isn't out completely. That coupled with the gas being left on leads to... well... you know...
  • Advertisement:
  • Evil Brit: Dekker Massey.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Joe and Gus.
  • Lightning Can Do Anything: Joe is struck by lightning, but instead of dying, the bolt charges up his crappy memory and causes him to remember the map to Massey's stash.
  • Made of Iron: Joe and Gus. Joe gets hit by lightning and it only benefits him.
  • A Minor Kidroduction: The film opens with a scene of young Joe and Gus fishing, and accidentally causing a blackout with a lit cigar.
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: Because according to legend, they (or rather, alligators) are "vengeful creatures" that "become obsessed with their target, not resting until they have successfully unleashed their retribution."
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Joe very nearly does this to Massey with a crowbar when he and Gus find Joe's car, which he stole, at a gas station. However, he sees him loading a handgun in the restroom stall and thinks better of it.
  • Race Against the Clock: The climax of the Chase Scene above. Joe and Gus must catch Massey as he's chasing down his escape plane.
  • Salt and Pepper: Joe and Gus.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: The duo catch Massey and collect the $100,000 reward. However...
    Gus Green: So after we paid for the Ranger 250C, replace our boat, fix the Barracuda... Joe, do me a favor.
    Joe Waters: Yeah, Gus, I'd do anything for you. You know that.
    Gus Green: I know that. Stop smoking. I want you to stop smoking. For me, your wife, your family, everybody. We love you, man. Okay?
    Joe Waters: Okay, Gus.
    (Gus proceeds to throw cigar away)
    Gus Green: (puts out the cigar and continues reading off the list) Yeah, pay for the resort fire, our gear, and food, clothing, flight home... we have a grand total of $42 profit.
  • Sleepwalking: Gus has this problem when he eats steak.
  • Walking Disaster Area: Whenever Joe and Gus travel, insurance adjusters start quaking in fear. They manage to catch the Big Bad after a harrowing chase scene and get the reward, but they lose it all by paying for the repairs of the various disasters they caused throughout the movie.