Buster is part romantic comedy, part crime thriller and part moral tale, but more importantly it features a charismatic big screen bow by popster Phil Collins in the title role.
Pic opens in London of 1963 with self-proclaimed smalltime ‘lucky thief’ Collins and Julie Walters blissfully happy. Collins gets involved in a scheme to rob a Royal Mail train of £2.6 million, and when the gang pulls off the raid, hailed as The Great Train Robbery, they find themselves regarded as folk heroes.
Collins, wife Walters and daughter Ellen Beaven go into hiding, but police pressure mounts and the family is forced to go on the run to Switzerland and finally Acapulco. In Mexico, the Collins-Walters marriage is stretched.
Buster can’t seem to make up its mind what sort of film it is. It plays as a romantic comedy to begin with, then switches to a caper pic before ending with domestic drama. Helmer David Green directs all aspects well, adding nice insights into the characters, especially when in Mexico, but there is an overall feeling that the pic is slightly disjointed.
1988: Nomination: Best Song (‘Two Hearts’)