Romancing the Stone / The Jewel of the Nile Robert Zemeckis / Lewis Teague

The ’80s were dominated by the rom-com and one of the biggest couples of the decade was Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner. Though they’ve lost that sparkle with age (check the extras to see what I mean), 20 years ago there wasn’t a more dominant and likable couple on the silver screen. Evidence can be found in Romancing the Stone and its sequel, The Jewel of the Nile — a double doozy set that lifted each actor, as well as Danny DeVito, onto Hollywood’s A-list. Stone may be the stuff that lonely, Harlequin Romance-reading housewives dream up, but the rom-com-actioner is surprisingly just as fun today as it was 22 years ago. Turner plays Joan Wilder, a romance novelist in need of some adventure. Luckily, her sister is kidnapped in Colombia and she sets off to pay the ransom and rescue her, meeting an adventurer named Jack Colton (Douglas) along the way. The pair gets involved in a triangle that involves saving Joan’s sister, finding the stone and of course, falling in love. You know the rest. It might be written off as a fluff film but look closer and you’ll see a rare occurrence — both Douglas and Turner share the heroic duties. Yes, no Schwarzenegger or Stallone figures here; it’s Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner fighting Colombians and wrestling crocodiles hand in hand. And let us not forget DeVito’s Ralph, who provides some valuable support with absurd comic relief. Jewel followed a swift one year later and though a sequel was a great idea, it feels like a rushed project (possibly because Stone screenwriter Diane Thomas wasn’t onboard). This time they go to Morocco, where Joan is swept away by a (dangerous) stranger to end her writer’s block. Jack and Ralph follow close behind and action and romance ensues. Unfortunately, the sense of adventure isn’t as urgent. Where Stone feels like a pleasurable whirlwind, Jewel is more of a sufficient light gust of wind. Both DVDs are filled with featurettes: there’s a "look back” at each film with exclusive cast and crew interviews; a ridiculously quick chat with Douglas, who shares his fond memories; the three stars relive their favourite scenes; and more. Jewel offers up a commentary with Teague, who is enjoyable to listen to. He has great personality, some worthy memories and best of all, he’s not afraid to shut up for a whopping ten minutes straight and actually watch the film! Nice. Plus: deleted scenes. (Fox)