1 item from 2001
Winner of a Special Jury Prize at the Seattle International Film Festival, "Viva Las Nowhere" is just funny and well-executed enough to rope in savvy audiences in the mood for a country music black comedy.
Highlighted by Daniel Stern's three-dimensional portrayal of the hapless lead and Patricia Richardson's dual role as twin sisters, the low-budget Franchise Pictures project is directed with economy and verve by Jason Bloom ("Bio-Dome").
With a comically on-target and abruptly mood-shifting screenplay by Richard Uhlig and Steve Seitz, "Viva" is set in the geographical center of the country, where Stern's would-be songwriter-singer Frank Jacobs owns a motel that has few customers.
When he helps a boozy and attractive singer (Lacey Kohl) after she has been dumped by her partner (James Caan) -- a sleazier veteran of the music scene -- Frank starts down a dark road that leads to several intentional and accidental fatalities, and many suspicious customers showing up at the motel.
Richardson ("Ulee's Gold") makes for a great de facto antagonist as Frank's viciously skeptical and jealous wife, and then later as that character's duplicitous twin. With a Willie Nelson-like mane and echoing some of his hard-hearted characters from the past, Caan is in top form.
But it's Stern who brings the movie to full life with an enthusiastic but unshow-offy performance.
VIVA LAS NOWHERE
In association with Samaha Prods.
Director: Jason Bloom
Screenwriters: Richard Uhlig, Steve Seitz
Executive producers: Elie Samaha, Andrew Stevens
Director of photography: James Glennon
Production designer: Alexander Hammond
Editor: Luis Colina
Costume designer: Robert Moore
Music: Andrew Cross
Casting: Elizabeth Marx
Frank Jacobs: Daniel Stern
Helen Jacobs/Wanda: Patricia Richardson
Julie Mitchell: Lacey Kohl
Marguerite: Sherry Stringfield
Roy: James Caan
Running time -- 97 minutes
MPAA Rating: R »
1 item from 2001
IMDb.com, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.See our NewsDesk partners