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Best Seller (1987)

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Hit man Cleve approaches writer/cop Dennis about a story for his next book: How Cleve made a living, working for one of the most powerful politicians in the country. To get the story right,... See full summary »

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Title: Best Seller (1987)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Cleve
...
Dennis Meechum
...
Roberta Gillian
Allison Balson ...
Holly Meechum
...
David Madlock
...
Graham
Anne Pitoniak ...
Mrs. Foster
Mary Carver ...
Cleve's mother
Sully Boyar ...
Monks
Kathleen Lloyd ...
Annie
...
Cleve's Father (as Harold Tyner)
E. Brian Dean ...
Taxi Driver
Jeffrey Josephson ...
Pearlman
Edward Blackoff ...
Thorn
...
Longshoreman #1
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Storyline

Hit man Cleve approaches writer/cop Dennis about a story for his next book: How Cleve made a living, working for one of the most powerful politicians in the country. To get the story right, they travel around the country to gather statements and evidence, while strong forces use any means they can to keep the story untold. Written by Lars Skogan <si2_ls92362@debet.nhh.no>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If words could kill... See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 September 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bestseller  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$4,278,150 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The movie very clearly states that the main action takes place in 1987. Meechum is given an invitation from Madlock to an afternoon party on "Saturday, April 22nd at noon". April 22nd fell on a Wednesday in 1987. See more »

Quotes

David Madlock: [Lt. Meechum is admiring his collection] First editions, every one of them.
See more »

Soundtracks

PERFECT ENDING
Words and lyrics by Lamont Dozier
Performed by Ben E. King
Produced by Lamont Dozier
Executive producer: Joe Regis
See more »

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User Reviews

Decent thriller with excellent star duo.
14 November 2011 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Writer Larry Cohen concocts this interesting, entertaining movie that mainly hinges on the often antagonistic relationship between two strong personalities. Brian Dennehy stars as Dennis Meechum, a cop who also writes books based on true crime stories, who is approached by Cleve (James Woods), a professional hit-man for an unscrupulous businessman, David Madlock (Paul Shenar). The hit-man feels inadequately compensated for his years of service, and is now an incredibly disgruntled ex-employee, enough to approach the cop / author to propose writing a book that reveals all the ugly details of the businessman's rise to the top. Capably directed by action specialist John Flynn ("Rolling Thunder", "Lock Up", "Out for Justice"), "Best Seller" tells a pretty good story in slick enough fashion, with some effective moments of very nasty violence. It also has very strong subtext about portraying a dark side to capitalism and corporations, as well as Cleve's own very dark version of The American Dream. It's well paced, with some potent scenes that establish what kind of man Cleve is. Yet, for a man who most of the time comes off as pure scum, he has definite intelligence and a real presence, and in the end does have a redemptive quality; it's the kind of role meant for an actor of Woods's abilities, and he plays it for all it's worth. But Dennehy is equally his match as the dedicated cop both disgusted with and intrigued by his new associate. Appealing Allison Balson plays Dennis's daughter, although supporting players Shenar and Victoria Tennant ultimately end up with not that much to do, and Shenar's character is not what you'd call subtle. Other fine players in the movie include George Coe, Anne Pitoniak, Mary Carver, Sully Boyar, Kathleen Lloyd, and Charles Tyner, with a too brief, uncredited appearance by Seymour Cassel as one of the bodyguards. Reasonably engrossing, with an ending that at least isn't 100% predictable, although some viewers may not find it terribly satisfying. But the interplay between two experienced and reliable movie stars makes it all worthwhile. Seven out of 10.


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