Andrew Garfield, Mahershala Ali, Ruth Negga, and five others received their first-ever acting nominations for 2017. While these actors are new to the Academy Awards, you may recognize them from their earlier work.
Obsessed by the world of pool, Johnny (Mars Callahan) could be one of the best. But his mentor and "trainer" Joe (Chazz Palminteri), a shady hustler who decides how and who Johnny plays, is holding him back from his dream. When the day finally comes, Johnny breaks from Joe, which leads to only one thing -- violence. Joe is beaten up by some of Johnny's buddies as a sign to leave him alone, and with this final act of freedom, Johnny leaves the world of pool-sharking. After an ultimatum from his girlfriend Tara ('Alison Eastwood'), Johnny finally commits to a "real" job in the construction business, but is soon miserable there. He finds himself spending most of his time with his younger brother Danny (Michael Rosenbaum) who it seems is following in his footsteps on the road to a life Johnny left when he broke from Joe. As for Joe, he is bent on revenge for the beating he took, and soon he has a new protégé Brad (Rick Schroder) who is just as good if not better then Johnny. And he's got ... Written by
Ryan Mcintosh <firstname.lastname@example.org>
There were no camera tricks or special film editing used for any of the billiards shots in the film, although many of the special "trick shots" (other than the one above) were performed by billiards legend 'Robert LeBlanc', who appears as professional "Bobby LeBlanc" in the film. See more »
The indoor scenes of Johnny's local pool hall "Hard Times" is shot at Hard Times in Sacramento and has no windows. The exterior shots are of a Salt Lake pool hall which have many noticeable vertical windows. See more »
You beat them, you take their money, you call them names to their faces... and they love you. I don't know how you do it. I never saw anything like it. Beating a man out of his money, that's easy. Anybody can do that. But beating a man out of his money and making him like it... that's an art. That's an art of a true hustler.
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During the end credits, a brief scene is played where Danny and Max bet Chris and Tang that Scarlet's breasts are fake. See more »
Poolhall Junkies exhibits a breathtaking spectacle of pool brilliance. It leaves nothing out - Jump shots, masse shots and superbly illustrated draw and bank shots.
First and foremost, it is a sports film, though fundamentally incorporates certain genres like romance and action so as to not alienate the movie going audience. However, unlike the hustler - which many perceived was a love story with a Pool backdrop, and the Color of Money - which put more emphasis on money and gambling than on the sport of pool itself, Poolhall Junkies displays Pool in all its unadulterated beauty.
It failed to be a smash hit, I dare say, as there were no huge names in the film unlike the above mentioned two which had Tom Cruise and Paul Newman. Nevertheless the casting is excellent. Mars Callahan does a great job playing Johnny - the talented and cocky hustler with an inherent deep regret of not being a pro, and Rick Shroder plays the great steely eyed and fierce opponent, with, lamentably, a not so terrifying name, Brad. Furthermore Christopher Walken adds tremendous spice to the film as Johnny's stakehorse, with an exultant presence, inspirational philosophies and a few wickedly innovative pool shots to boot.
Some bits seem derivative from the Hustler and/or the Color of Money, especially the clichéd hustle dialogue, but they work well, it's part of what makes a hustling film, and adds to its comedic value! I would rate this 8 out of 10, overall, but if a definitive Pool film is what you want, look no further than this.
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