Prince of Bel Air

Prince of Bel Air (1986-01-20)

Comedy | Romance |


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  • Status: Released
  • Runtime: 95m
  • Popularity: 4.32
  • Language: en
  • Budget: $0
  • Revenue: $0
  • Vote Average: 5.2
  • Vote Count: 6

  • Wuchak

    _**Quality Southern Cal drama with Mark Harmon and Kirstie Alley**_ Robin Prince (Mark Harmon) owns a pool maintenance business that serves the well-to-do citizens of Bel Air, California. He’s handsome, charismatic, in his early 30s and enjoys the side-fruits of his labors, i.e. attractive housewives desperate for attention. While mentoring the teen (Patrick Labyorteaux) of a rich client (Robert Vaughn), he meets their stunning relative who challenges his playboy lifestyle (Kirstie Alley). Although “Prince of Bel Air” debuted on ABC in the USA in January, 1986, it was released theatrically in Europe with the extra inclusion of a top nudity scene, as well as a little cussing. The ensuing video version is the R-rated Euro version, not the TV version. I point this out because “Prince of Bel Air” shouldn’t be written off as "just a TV movie.” It’s actually a quality drama/romance about coming of age, not just for the kid (Labyorteaux), but for Harmon’s character too. He’s 32-33, but still living like a freestyle frat boy and needs to grow up. In addition, the script throws in some insightful bits, like how Robin (Harmon) wisely changes his approach towards his unprofessional employees. Sharp Kirstie Alley was certainly in her voluptuous prime; she has a stunning scene at the pool in a one-piece bathing suit. There are a handful of other beauties, including Katherine Moffat as Kelli and Deborah Harmon as a desperate housewife. Four of the cast members (Harmon, Alley, Labyorteaux and Dean Cameron) would appear in “Summer School” the following year. It features the same general locations (the coastal Los Angeles area) and a romance between Harmon and Alley, but the stories are very different. This one came first and is a drama akin to "Lifeguard" (1976) whereas "Summer School" is more of a high school dramedy in the mold of "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" (1982). Lastly, this movie has nothing to do with the ensuing 1990-1996 sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, but I’m sure the creators of that show were inspired by the title. The film runs 1 hour, 35 minutes, and was shot in Los Angeles. The Bel Air district, by the way, is located just north of UCLA and northwest of Beverly Hills. GRADE: B