MOVIE REVIEW: Jon Bon Jovi – Destination Anywhere – The Film (1997)

Vintage review from the archives.

JON BON JOVI – Destination Anywhere – The Film (1997)

Directed by Mark Pellington

I bought this on VHS when it first came out. I watched it once, put it away for a decade, and finally sold it at a garage sale for 50 cents. Why? Because this is one of the most boring pieces of vanity projects ever foisted upon the loyal. You can see all the JBJ fanboy-esque reviews on Amazon:  “The Destination Anywhere film is perfect…something to have if you are a true Bon Jovi fan. Good movie plot too…enjoy!”

True Bon Jovi fans need not apply except for “the collection”.  Let’s please be objective.

This vanity project was very loosely based on the Jon Bon Jovi solo album of the same title. As such, the music from that movie acts as the soundtrack. The music is the best thing about this film. Sure, the actors are all great — Kevin Bacon, Whoopi, Demi — but there’s no script here worth filming.

Jon Bon (“Jon”) and Demi Moore (“Janie”) are struggling with alcoholism and the death of a child. A dark film, Destination Anywhere mostly just follows Jon around town while he tries to figure things out. The characters he runs into offer various pieces of advice, but there are no epiphanies. The film sadly falls flat, sitting there purposeless, and smelling like something that Jon thought would elevate his movie career. It didn’t, and I think that’s the proof in the pudding.

1/5 stars. Boring as hell.

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26 comments

  1. I know i have seen this but cannot remember anything about it. Loved the album though. Not about to go searching for it either. The actual album got me through difficult break-up and thus is important to me.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I remember buying the VHS when it came out and wondered if I could hold my head up high enough and get enough courage together to return in to the shop… I couldn’t. I can only remember that the film was really depressing and that it took itself REALLY seriously, as JBJ was at that time (and still is if you’ve sat through “When We Were Beautiful”).

    Seriously, JBJ has probably earns more money per year than Europe (the place, not the band… steady, Mike!) and a long career, yet he always comes off as even more miserable than Morrissey. Shame… I liked Happy Jon better.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It’s a shame he could never reconcile the JBJ everyone adored with the Superman denim jacket who sung about Tommy and Gina with the JBJ he wanted to be that was the artiste. Respectability was always going to be a problem for a man in his position and from his background and it’s a pity he couldn’t do it without losing himself.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Well said. I’d be perfectly fine with the Bon Jovi we had on These Days. That’s a great album. Almost every song. And it still sounds great today.

          A few readers here will tell that they haven’t liked the band since Such left!

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Yeah, that seems to be a common opinion. I really like some of These Days and the bits I didn’t really like seemed to be the bits where they sounded like they were trying too hard to be Bon Jovi.

    I don’t think that the loss of Such really had that much of an effect. It was always JBJ’s band with him as the star and if rumour is true, then Hugh McD was always in the picture somewhere when it came to studio performances, so poor ol’ Alec was always going to have to know his place. Although I’m sure that after he signed his JBJ Gag Order and took the cheque, he was fine.

    I suppose the loss of Such was the symbol that showed that JBJ had really pulled it altogether and stamped his authority on the organisation though and this breaking of “the brotherhood” JBJ was so keen to portray was a betrayal of what people believed in with the band.

    I’m rambling now…

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Great posts and pretty fascinating stuff. The legend at the time within my circle of pals was that AJS had got sacked for being a shithead and a crap bass player and had disappeared off to open a motorcycle shop. I’m sure the arrangement was very business-like back in the day and that the severence pay was generous. AJS doesn’t sound too bitter and comes across as a good guy. It was great to see the photo of him at the R&R HoF though.

        JBJ grew up wanting to be famous and he worked to get it by any means possible. I’m not defending anything that he has done to get there, but the AJS episode (as well as the infamous Skid Row adventure) just adds to the legend and gives more distance to JBJ as he is to how he was originally presented.

        It does make you wonder though. JBJ was the star of the band. Rich Sambuca was the foil that the star needed to shine. Davey B was the old mate who possibly knew where JBJ had buried the bodies and then there was the rhythm section. Tico had the reputation as being a nasty bastard whilst drunk, which could have been most of the time back then and could possibly be a bit intimidating to little JBJ AND I think his contributions to the music are always way under-estimated and under-valued. Meanwhile, AJS just painted the picture of not giving a fuck, so he was possibly the one to fire (after Doc) to show that no one was as valuable to Bon Jovi Incorporated and JBJ?

        I’m putting way too much thought into Bon Jovi history, aren’t I?!

        Like

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