A drug dealer with upscale clientele is having moral problems going about his daily deliveries. A reformed addict, he has never gotten over the wife that left him, and the couple that use ... See full summary »
Jesse has to get out of Las Vegas quickly, and steals a car to drive to L.A. On the way he shoots a police man. When he makes it to L.A. he stays with Monica, a girl he has only known for a... See full summary »
Keen young Raymond Avila joins the Internal Affairs Department of the Los Angeles police. He and partner Amy Wallace are soon looking closely at the activities of cop Dennis Peck whose ... See full summary »
A psychiatrist (Gere) has an affair with his patient's sister (Basinger) who is married to a Greek mobster (Roberts). The mobster is a tyrant over his wife. The psychiatrist wants her to ... See full summary »
Eddie, a Chicago cop on the edge, goes undercover as hitman. A man and a mysterious woman want him to kill a merciless New Orleans criminal kingpin. The sting goes sour and Eddie's partner is killed. All Eddie wants now is revenge.
Julian makes a lucrative living as an escort to older women in the Los Angeles area. He begins a relationship with Michelle, a local politician's wife, without expecting any pay. One of his clients is murdered and Detective Sunday begins pumping him for details on his different clients, something he is reluctant to do considering the nature of his work. Julian begins to suspect he's being framed. Meanwhile Michelle begins to fall in love with him. Written by
Ed Sutton <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When Julian Kay is at the police station being questioned, Lt. Curtis from Palm Springs tells Julian that he parked his Mercedes about 50 feet from the Rheiman house on the night of the 22nd (the night of the murder), Julian actually parked his Mercedes in Rheiman's driveway right outside the house. See more »
Why me? Why did you pick me?
Because you were framable. You've stepped on too many toes. Nobody ever cared about you. I never even liked you much myself.
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"American Gigolo" really is slick and stylish. As slick and stylish as any film could be, so you really wonder whether this is Schrader's film or Jerry Bruckheimer's? If you look solely at the screenplay, it almost fits into the typical Schrader exploration of any given 'seedy underworld'. You could even argue that Julian and Michelle are in a way similar to Travis and Betty. Looking at the final product, however, I see a slick Hollywood mystery-thriller that's actually far more interesting for its romantic sub-plot than for any of the suspense parts.
Don't get me wrong, in places "American Gigolo" is a quality character study, and the romance is as well-written as you could ever expect from a major, mainstream Hollywood production, but the suspense thriller portion is just so banal, expected, and predictable that it really takes away from an otherwise very good film. Perhaps most worthy of praise here is Richard Gere who gives one of his best performances here, and I certainly cannot even begin to imagine John Travolta in the lead role.
It sounds like I'm criticizing how stylish this film is, I'm really not. It's pulled off pretty darn well in comparison to how many films of this sort have ended up, and you have to admit Gere's wardrobe is impressive. The film is well-shot and well-acted and for the most part quite well-written (although this is far, far from Paul Schrader's best work as a screenwriter). My comments on the film's slickness are really just a natural reaction to this film coming right after "Hardcore". Indeed, it seems like this film is a signpost for the early 80's (the dud of a score proves it) where in Hollywood even homicide cases with a Gigolo as the main suspect are glamorous rather than gritty.
A lot of people hate this film, but it has also gained a large cult following and a respectable following from film critics and aficionados, even landing a spot on the 'They Shoot Pictures, Don't They?' top 1000 list, and I can't really understand why anyone would have such extreme feelings about a film that is just watchable and entertaining. I don't think Schrader did his best work here, but it's not his worst either and the film as a whole is so unimposing and forgettable that I find it hard to believe it has so many fans and so many detractors.
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