His ex-wife asks the unsuccessful gambler and inventor Harrison for a small favor: to get her a parcel from a friend's apartment - without telling him what's in it. Suddenly he finds himself assaulted by villains and shortly after even under suspect of murder. The inexperienced P.I. Rachel is hired by an unknown party to rid him of the parcel - but soon befriends him. Together they try to figure out what kind of game is being played. Written by
Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>
During the production, veteran stuntman Victor Magnotta drowned while performing a car stunt in which the auto was driven off a Hoboken NJ pier and plunged into the Hudson River. Vic's untimely death (in his early 40s) was the result of several miscalculations. The car was supposed to run off the end of the pier, flat-splash in the Hudson, and sink slowly, but the vehicle had been stripped of all excess weight, including the gas tank. There was a small canister tank under the hood with just enough fuel to pull off the stunt, because environmental laws prohibited fuel leakage into the river. This made the car abnormally nose-heavy. Vic was strapped inside in a five-point harness, and had a "pony" air bottle w/regulator close at hand. For whatever reason, it was decided to replace the car's glass windshield with with one made from a sheet of plexiglass. When the effects crew screwed down the new windshield, the torque on their portable drills was apparently set too high, and the screws stripped out their holes. Vic drove off the end of the pier, but the car had the weight of the engine in front, and very little weight in the rear. Instead of "pancaking" into the river, the car immediately nosed over, and hit the surface grille-first. The onrushing water hit the windshield, ripped out the screws, and wrapped the plastic strip around Vic. He couldn't even get to his air bottle. Safety divers responded immediately, but before they could unwrap him from the failed windshield, he was gone. The actual sequence (not the aftermath, of course) was used in the film. See more »
Rachel and Harry are locked in a bathroom trying to escape from Titus. The place is illuminated very brightly but when the two run away through a window in the next shot no lights appear in the place, it's all dark. See more »
"The Squeeze" is one of those movies that sadly doesn't work. Keaton's colorful performance can't save a convoluted script that tries to juggle wild comedy with thriller elements. There is a line in the climax that oddly summarized the film in a nutshell.
"Its seems like your imagination has finally outpaced reality," one character says.
It was so uncanny how well this phrase described the film that I began to think the writer, Daniel Tiplitz, was making a reference to himself! "The Squeeze" is a film with a realistic grounding, but is stuffed with outlandish, completely far-fetched ideas. Watching the film felt like viewing a dream of seeing the movie itself (if this makes any sense at all). I realized this when I tried describing scenes of the film and found it was much like describing a dream.
It starts out pleasant enough with a shady poker game where Michael Keaton hilariously tries to bluff the other guys at the table, but doesn't manage to be the least bit convincing. It was an acceptable beginning, but things were thrown completely off course when he gets home to his apartment that has a large rhino made out of TV screens sitting in it!
Anyway, Keaton gets mixed up with a young PI (Rae Dawn Chong) who uncovers lottery corruption. They try to piece a muddled mystery together, but the film is so out-there that the deeply buried story becomes lost. This isn't exactly a problem, however. I had an enormously fun time viewing the film, no matter how much it descends into bomb territory.
Unfortunately, nothing can stop the fact that this is pretty bad movie. It has a confused story, needless characters and some overly-violent scenes. There is some fun to bad had here, and Michael Keaton is a riot as usual, but it simply doesn't work.
(2 out of 4)
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