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Allan A. Goldstein
The bar in an old Pennsylvania steel town, housed with many of life's losers and disillusioned men, is the main setting for this slice-of-life film. Michael Madsen is the bar owner, who is deep in debt to the town's book-maker and loan shark Burt Young. Chris Penn is one of the bar's main inhabitants as he hides from his failing marriage to Mary Stuart Masterson. The bartender's sister (Virginia Madsen) is about to be married, and her former fiancé (Tom Sizemore) shows up in town, after leaving her at the altar years before. Con man James Belushi runs a con on Perry to steal the money for the wedding caterer. As every plot in this multi-layered story seems to be at its worst, things look up because of an unlikely hero. Written by
John Sacksteder <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When I first heard about The Florentine, I figured it would be some violent crime thriller. After watching it I was surprised to find out that its a character-driven drama which strikes your emotions. The film has several different storylines featuring intersecting characters all of whom know each other and spend time together. As with all films with several different storylines, some are better than others. The best storyline in the film features Tom Sizemore (Saving Private Ryan, Bringing Out the Dead) as the man who left town and his girfriend and has come back just before her wedding. Sizemore gives the best performance of the film. He especially brings a level of pathos to his character. The scene between him and his ex-girlfriend's caring brother, excellently portrayed by Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs, Donnie Brasco) is the best of the film. Other than Sizemore and Madsen, the cast includes good turns by Jeremy Davies (Saving Private Ryan, The Locusts), James Belushi (K-9, Gang Related), Chris Penn (One Tough Cop, Rush Hour), Luke Perry (The 5th Element, Normal Life) and Hal Holbrook (Hush, The Bachelor). Highly recommended.
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