It's a hot summer day in 1933 in South Philly, where 12-year old Gennaro lives with his widowed mom and his ailing grandpa, who sits outside holding tight to his last quarter, which he's ... See full summary »
Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio,
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 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Alan Arkin turned down the film twice because he didn't like the character he was being offered; he thought Aaronow was an inherently unlikable and stupid character. However, upon reconsideration, Arkin created a backstory for Aaronow - he hadn't been a sales man very long, he was a teacher by trade, but the school in which he worked had got shut down, and he needed a job to support his family. Arkin says that he played Aaronow as an innocent rather that the usual stage depiction of him as a weak willed bumbler. See more »
After the Alec Baldwin character harangues the sales force, the Ed Harris character shakes his head and mumbles "incredible." The Baldwin character confronts him and asks "What's the problem pal?" The Harris character replies: "You, Moss..." Which is incorrect because Ed Harris plays the character Dave Moss, not Alec Baldwin. See more »
The first time I saw this movie my jaw was hanging down and my mouth wide open from start to finish. I was gripped.
This movie has no sex, no violence, no car chases, no action - but absolutely the most powerful acting I have ever seen. Uncompromisingly realistic.
Having said that, I can understand why so many people do NOT like it - you have to like dramas, and especially one centered so much around desparation and conflict, and NOT around action. It is adapted from the stage play, and I appreciate the way in which it was shot, retaining so much of the raw appeal that can only be felt at the theatre, as opposed to the cinema.
This movie is a veritable who's who of acting, with Al Pacino, Jack Lemmon, Ed Harris, Alec Baldwin, Alan Arkin, Jonathan Pryce - not to mention a then-relatively-unknwon Kevin Spacey.
If you can appreciate powerful acting, films based on dialogue with few scene changes, and can withstand an absolute barrage of foul language (which I must add is perfectly suited to this film), then this movie will blow you away.
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