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Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)

 -  Drama  -  2 October 1992 (USA)
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 60,220 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 353 user | 110 critic | 14 from Metacritic.com

An examination of the machinations behind the scenes at a real estate office.

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Title: Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
...
...
...
...
James Lingk
...
Larry Spannel
...
Detective
Paul Butler ...
Policeman
Lori Tan Chinn ...
Coat Check Girl
...
Barry Rohrssen ...
Assistant Detective (as Barry Rossen)
Leigh French ...
Additional Voices (voice)
George Cheung ...
Additional Voices (voice)
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Storyline

Times are tough in a Chicago real-estate office; the salesmen (Shelley Levene, Ricky Roma, Dave Moss, and George Aaronow) are given a strong incentive by Blake to succeed in a sales contest. The prizes? First prize is a Cadillac El Dorado, second prize is a set of steak knives, third prize is the sack! There is no room for losers in this dramatically masculine world; only "closers" will get the good sales leads. There is a lot of pressure to succeed, so a robbery is committed which has unforeseen consequences for all the characters. Written by Patrick Dominick <ptd@ccadfa.cc.adfa.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Stock Brokers steal money, but it's not your fault, it's theirs See more »

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 October 1992 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Glengarry Glen Ross  »

Box Office

Budget:

$12,500,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$10,725,228 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

David Mamet's screenplay considerably expanded his script for the play, providing more context for the pressure placed on the salesmen. Notably, Alec Baldwin's introductory speech was added as well as Jack Lemmon's phone calls to clients and the hospital, plus his sales call to the man with the fishing rod. Many consider the screenplay to be superior to the text for his Pultizer-winning stage play. See more »

Goofs

Blake, played by Alec Baldwin, is the hotshot giving the motivational speech, yet his name is on the leader board. Blake is well above these characters and it is unlikely he would, making $900,000 last year" be on the board with the other characters. Also, Ed Harris calls him "Moss." (You, Moss, you're so rich...etc.) See more »

Quotes

Ricky Roma: You're fuckin' shit.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Homer the Father (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Prelude to a Kiss
Performed by The Bill Holman Orchestra
Written by Duke Ellington, Irving Mills and Irving Gordon
Used by permission of Mills Music Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Death of a f#ckin' salesman.
1 May 2005 | by (Omaha, NE USA) – See all my reviews

I cannot believe this film has been out there all these years and I just now saw it for the first time this week. I rented it on a whim and I've watched it four times since Monday.

Glengarry Glen Ross is the story of a failing real estate office in which four agents are told they'd better get some property sold quick, or they'll be out of a job. By the end of the month, the top seller will win himself a Cadillac, the guy who finishes second will win himself a set of steak knives. The other two jokers will be out on the street. The problem is that the good leads are locked away in a filing cabinet in the office manager's room. They won't be distributed until the end of the contest. The guys are left with only leads that likely won't pan out at all.

The four salesmen are each very memorable individuals. Al Pacino plays the best of the bunch. He's smooth and confident, and he seems to be the only guy making any good sales recently. Jack Lemmon is the old lion of the bunch. He's a good talker, but he's been on a stretch of terrible luck both professionally and personally. It's looking like he is now obsolete, and could be one of the guys let go. Ed Harris is a brooding; scheming character also on a streak of bad luck. His plan is not to make sales, but break into the office and steal the good leads. Alan Arkin is a meek fellow who cannot even dial the right phone number or carry on any type of meaningful conversation. Each actor has their character down perfectly.

The story unfolds in less than a 24 hour period. Alec Baldwin is a hotshot salesman from "downtown" who shows up at the beginning of the film and lets the guys know how worthless they are. He lays down the terms of the contest in some very colorfully profane language that sets the tone for the rest of the script. Profanity can be monotonous and gratuitous, but not here. Mamet's script is like a piece of art formed by interlacing all the fine swear words in the English language together with a touch of ironic gloom. And how often do you hear the word "c*cksucker" said with the articulate dignity of Jack Lemmon? We see each character for what they are, and each actor is allowed to show us why they are so famous. I believe this film to be a landmark piece of cinema for this generation. As much as 12 Angry Men was in its own time. How often do you see such a cast get together with such a fine script? Not often enough, I'd say.

The Kevin Spacey character has a special place in my heart. I also work at a job where I have to deal with a bunch of pompous salesmen. I suppose it comes with the job, but salesmen always seem to think they are more important than they are. What they don't seem to understand is that different people can be hired to sell the same goods and services. More often than not, it is the company that retains or loses customers. That said, sales is a ballsy profession, and it does take genuine skill and luck to be successful at it.

For those out there who either are salesmen or like them, then this film will also be a treat. There is one beautiful scene in particular when Jack Lemmon has just made what he thinks is a huge sale to break his slump. He bursts into the office and happily demands his sale be noted on the board with everyone else's. Nobody but Pacino seems interested (Harris for example acts jealous and spiteful) in hearing the details. Pacino comes over and sits by Lemmon and listens to how the old master was able to pull it off. The camera subtly backs off and lets the two share the moment together. That was very well-done.

Due to all the profanity in this film, it is basically not possible to show it on network television. This may be the primary reason the film has slipped through the cracks over the years, and not made many top 100 lists and so forth. If you want to see some great actors doing what they do best, then DO NOT MISS THIS FILM!

10 of 10 stars

the Hound.


63 of 72 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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what do you think lingk was going to say to roma? devilsplaythang
Would you guys let your bosses talk to you like that? DoubleRD77
Alec Baldwin should have gotten an oscar nomination rmtg
Pacino or Lemmon? kag2-1
FU that's my name. Why it's such a great line. StevenSmithNYC
Painful Watching Shelly Try to sell alexjx
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