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Reviews & Ratings for
Knockaround Guys More at IMDbPro »

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22 out of 24 people found the following review useful:

Better than expected, underrated!

Author: Thomas Jolliffe (supertom-3) from Marlow, England
25 February 2003

With the negative response from critics for this movie I was concerned that this would be rubbish, especially when it was released straight to video in my country (UK). As a Diesel fan I had high expectations for this film but was aware he had a supporting part.

However I was actually pleasantly surprised that the film was actually fairly enjoyable. The story is basic, about a mobsters son (Barry Pepper) who has grown up disparaged by the life of crime his family are involved in, but in his adults days he is unable to get the sort of legit career he wants, as a sports agent, because no-one will hire him for the simple reason that he is related to Dennis Hoppers character. Anyway he resigns himself to the fact that he can't go legit and that working for his dad is the way forward, but since his father only has enough faith in him to pick up his sandwiches, Matty is frustrated and begs his father to give him some more responsibility, he gets support here from his uncle Teddy played by John Malkovich. He gets his responsibility of course but things go awry, by fault of Matt's friend Marbles played by Seth Green. Half a million pounds has now gone missing in a small town, with some fairly clichéd hicks. Matty takes two of his friends over to assist Marbles in getting the money back, and on ensures a tale of deception and murder, with dirty cops, double dealing mobsters, and unwelcoming locals.

It's a fairly simple film that is nicely placed and very well acted. There are comical moments and some moments of character depth, particularly with central character Matty. There are really any surprises in this flick but it is on the most part entertaining. Barry Pepper is very good in the central role as is Vin Diesel as his best friend Taylor, who offers support and advice as well as muscle when it's needed. John Malkovich and Dennis Hopper are good in their small roles although they are cruising really but it is Tom Noonan who steals the show in a delightfully seedy role as the bent small town sheriff Decker.

All in all this is worth a rental, if you're a fan of Diesel like me you'll appreciate his performance in a role that has more depth to it than XXX. 6/10

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25 out of 30 people found the following review useful:

Can A Mafia Story Be Funny? Yes

Author: ccthemovieman-1 from United States
7 April 2006

This is another of those films I thought was great the first time, so-so on the second. Overall, it got high marks - at least on the first viewing - because it's an entertaining film that doesn't overstay its welcome at 92 minutes.

Four young guys get involved in their first Mafia-type adventure. One is asked to do a simple job of picking up a bag of money out west and bringing it back home to Brooklyn. However, troubles ensue big-time when the bag is stolen at the little airport out West. His three friends have to come out and help him get the money back and all kinds of problems develop.

There is some black humor in here which helps spice up the film, which then turns very serious about halfway through with a few shocking twists near the end.

There are two famous veteran actors in here - Dennis Hopper and John Malkovich - and four young ones who becoming better known these days as well: Seth Green, Vin Diesel, Barry Pepper and Andrew Davoli.

The only problem I had with the movie is Pepper, who played Roger Maris, the famous baseball player in the film '61." He looks so much like Maris that I can't believe him as anyone else! To us baseball fans, Pepper will always be Maris and nobody else.

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26 out of 36 people found the following review useful:

Watch Your Back

Author: siciliangirl_02 from Illinois
25 April 2003

Patience is the key element in watching a mafia movie. "Knockaround Guys" didn't require any patience for me, and I was hooked at the first scene. This movie gives a formal description of friend and enemy. Who exactly is the real "bad guy" in a mafia movie? In most mafia movies it is quite obvious who the bad guy is, but this one will keep the viewer guessing. Berry Pepper plays the son of a well-known gangster. He, however, does not want to follow in the footsteps of his father. Peppers character's name is Matty Demaret, and he wants to be a sports caster. He has no luck finding a job because people know of his father's past. So, after a bombing interview , Matty decides that working for his father may be the only way for him to make a living, but Matty's father and uncle beg to differ. They believe Matty doesn't have what it takes to be in the mafia. After he convinces his father that he's got what it takes, his father gives him a job. Matty tells his father that he and his friend Johnny Marbles (Seth Green) will go out on their mission to collect money. Marbles flies planes, so he will be able to fly to collect the money. He was given strict orders to come straight back to Matty with the cash, but Marbles gets side tracked. He stops to get gas at a small airport, and leaves the bag unattended. The bag ends up getting into the hands of the sheriff, and he wants to keep the money for himself. Matty then calls his other two friends in to help. Chris Scarpa (Andrew Davoli)who is a sweet talking mob wanna be, and Taylor Reese (Vin Diesel) is the only one is the whole movie who actually looked and acted like a real gangster. The four boys travel to a small town in hopes of finding the money. Matty knows that if he doesn't get that money back, his father will be dead, and he will be a failure. This movie makes the viewer not want to take their eyes off the screen. I was very surprised at who was the real bad guy behind the plot. I think that anyone who watches this movie will be shocked at all the twist and turns. I would recommend this movie to anyone, because it was very easy to follow. I enjoyed this film.

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13 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Mobsters sons wish for the freedom & glamorous lifestyle their fathers had.

Author: becktribe ( from RI, United States
12 September 2004

Loved this movie! It's the type of movie you'd want to see more than once; so much of the humor is so subtle that it's easily missed. Deals w/ the next generation of baby mobsters, & how much has changed since "back in the day". Performances by Pepper, Davoli & Green have a surprising depth; their characters are so immediately recognizable that it's almost scary. As a strong Diesel fan, I have no complaints at all about the Taylor Reese character. Diesel's moody acceptance of his position in life & his lack of options, is gloomy, but believable. The strong point of the film is the loyalty & love the characters have for each other. It gives a true nobility to characters who mainly live outside the law.

See it twice. No, three times!

rating: 8 out of 10 (Okay, I really mean 9!)

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13 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

an enjoyable rip-off

Author: Coventry from the Draconian Swamp of Unholy Souls
14 June 2003

You can feel about two ways when you're watching this movie. Either you make yourself very angry about all the stuff this film steals shameless from other classics in the genre...or you can just sit back and enjoy and don't bother about all the rip-off elements. When I saw it, I was in a 'sit back and enjoy'-mood so my thoughts on this are rather positive. This film is well made and contains all the elements you expect. Like I said, some things are stolen obviously ( the execution GoodFellas-style, the True Romance shoot-out at the end...) but there are at least as much good things to tell about it as well. This film may count on a class A cast. Especially the older generation is great. John Malkovich, even when this guy is acting half as good as he usually does ( like in this movie ) he is still very entertaining. And naturally, Dennis Hopper and Tom Noonan are good as always. There's also a lot of talent in the younger generation: Barry Pepper, Seth Green. And this is even Vin Diesels best film ( besides Saving Private Ryan, but I'm not counting that one) Vin doesn't have too much lines, so that's positive. Overall, this film will be forgotten soon, but it's enjoyable while it lasts

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15 out of 21 people found the following review useful:

a Great Time! rent or but this movie

Author: Meltdown53098533 ( from london, ont.
18 March 2003

Knockaround guys tells the tale about four guys wanting respectfull work from a mob. Matty (Barry Pepper), Taylor (Vin Diesel), and Marbles (Seth Green) are the main and interesting ones who end up losing $500,000 of the mob's money and must find the money within 2 days or the mob is in huge trouble. All the performances are greatly acted and the story (although a bit slow at times) is exciting. Vin's tallent is showing that he's going no where, but up! Barry Pepper delivers a surprising performance as the mob's son. Seth green is funny as always and a good character to add to this 2 hour ride of near garenteed enjoyment. shouldn't have rated this 5.9 out of ten because this movie deserves much higher, almost an 8. Watch this movie if you're a fan of crime dramas, comical action flicks or Diesel fans and you'll truely get a kick out of this flick. 7.2/10- my movie pro rating

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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Nice movie. Worth watching.

Author: Streetwolf
31 December 2002

Almost all of my recent reviews have been very negative, but this movie is worth watching if you are a Vin Diesel fan.

Summary: Matty is the son of Benny, a mobster and he is as bad as they come. As a kid he is put to the test of killing someone, but fails, therefore his father keeps him away from the life of a mobster, but now as a grown up, Matty can't get a job anywhere due to his father's reputation, which gets on his last nerve. So he decides to talk to his father about letting him work for him. Benny puts him on a task, to collect some money in a bag and to come back with it. Doesn't sound so difficult. Matty meets up with his childhood friends, Scarpa, also a son of a gangster, but trying hard to concentrate on his restaurant, his cousin Marbles who has always been the screw up and Taylor, the guy that everyone brings in when they need to scare the heck out of someone. So Marbles has a plane, he gets the money, but in Montana he lands for gas, only there are 2 hillbilly cops there, that intimidate Marbles, as he feels they are on to him and during his panic he puts down the bag of money with other luggage that is being put on another plane. Only he is too late to retrieve the bag so he calls upon his friends to help find the missing bag, which didn't make it to the other who took the bag?

Seth Green plays the messed up Marbles, who wants responsibility, but doesn't know the meaning of the word. Vin Diesel was great in this movie as a tough guy Taylor, he played his part perfectly. John Malkovich was the ruthless right hand of Benny and he was great! As for the roles of Matty and Scarpa, they were ok. The plot was a little weak, but got better after the first 20 minutes or so.

I rate this movie 7/10.

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12 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

below average story benefits from good casting

Author: Special-K88
11 October 2002

Born the son of a powerful and fearsome crime boss, wannabe mobster Pepper recruits low-rent pals Diesel, Green, and Davoli to make a routine delivery, impress his old man, then finally go into business with him. Unfortunately for the young man and his pals, they get stuck in a bleak little town where violence, mayhem, and every other thing that can go wrong eventually does. It's no Goodfellas, but this watchable, well-crafted little mob story is easy to take, and goes a long way on its appealing cast and dark, profane sense of humor. The only major let down is the film's story which—while interesting—lacks momentum and builds toward a familiar conclusion. A not bad showing from the film's young and old cast alike, especially Pepper and Diesel. **½

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11 out of 17 people found the following review useful:

* * out of 4.

Author: Brandon L. Sites ( from USA
12 October 2002

The son (Barry Pepper) of a mobster (Dennis Hopper) and his best friend (Seth Green) lose half a million dollars that they were sent to pick up for Pepper's father. If Pepper is not able to get the money back, his father will be killed. So Pepper sends out for his friends in a desperate search of the money. However, the money is somewhere in a small very southern town and the towns citizens aren't exactly excitied about Pepper and company presence. Routine crime caper offers no surprises and features many situations that just simply don't make any sense and some rather horrid dialogue. Saving it from the pits are performances that are much better then the film deserves.

Rated R; Violence and Profanity.

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8 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Vin speaks

Author: David Ferguson ( from Dallas, Texas
14 October 2002

Greetings again from the darkness. After seeing a few of the chick flicks that are currently dominating the cinema, I was looking forward to a little testosterone. Relative newcomers Brian Koppelman and David Levien co-wrote and co-directed this little mob film. Barry Pepper ("Saving Private Ryan" and "61") does an admirable job in his first attempt at carrying a movie. He does get some nice assistance from Seth Green ("Austin Powers" movies) and Vin Diesel, Tom Noonan, Dennis Hopper and John Malkovich. Vin Diesel is surprisingly impressive in the second half of the film where he actually gets to act. Tom Noonan ("Manhunter") provides another creepy character for his resume. Dennis Hopper has very little screen time, and thankfully, the directors keep his close-ups to a minimum. John Malkovich provides some veteran acting stability, but at times, seems to dare Pepper to stay in the shot with him. Overall, interesting, though simple, story that supposedly addresses the lack of loyalty among friends - even in the mob world.

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