Rufio, the best character in 'Hook,' comes to Orlando to capitalize on '90s nostalgia



It's been 25 years since Dante Basco donned a black-and-red mohawk for his iconic performance as Rufio in Hook, and '90s-kid nostalgia makes him a welcome presence at this week's themed anniversary party for the film.

Upon rewatching our childhood favorite, we realized that the movie is a little stranger than we remembered. We're not doctors, but we've read plenty of Psychology Today articles, and this flick has more crazies in it than the Florida Legislature. Peter Pan's negligent mother is so busy discussing his future at Oxford that she doesn't notice his baby carriage rolling down a hill away from her forever. Captain Hook uses revenge kidnapping to cope with the decades-old trauma of losing his hand to an alligator. And Hook's conversations with Peter's son, Jack, read like a how-to manual for giving someone Stockholm Syndrome.

Amidst the psychological wreckage, Rufio is one of the few characters who exhibits any ability to problem-solve, resolve conflicts, and lead a group without resorting to torture tactics, which is probably why he doesn't make it to the end of the film alive (oops spoiler). It's a huge testament to Basco's acting and screen presence that out of all the major movie stars in Hook's cast, his character is the one people are still chanting for after all these years. And according to his social media accounts, he's more than happy to relive the film's heyday with willing fans. 

8 p.m. | Copper Rocket Pub, 106 Lake Ave., Maitland | $5-$10; proceeds go to St. Jude Children's Hospital

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