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Poolhall Junkies (2002)

R  |   |  Drama, Thriller  |  28 February 2003 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 8,308 users   Metascore: 36/100
Reviews: 112 user | 40 critic | 15 from

A talented pool hustler who has stayed out of the game for years, must go back to his old ways when his little brother gets involved with his enemy, the very man who held him back from greatness.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brad (as Rick Schroder)
Toupee Jay
Mike Massey ...


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 <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

money | hustler | jail | beating | revenge | See All (127) »


Some people get all the breaks. Others just get broken. See more »


Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 February 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Biliárd életre-halálra  »

Filming Locations:

Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$301,856 (USA) (28 February 2003)


$562,059 (USA) (21 March 2003)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The band scene was filmed at the Dead Goat Saloon in the Arrowhead Plaza in Salt Lake City, Utah. The only differences between the movie version and the real saloon are the drapes behind the band and that the dance floor does not have round tables. See more »


When Nick is talking to Johnny after Tara kicks Johnny out of the apartment, one shot of Nick is flipped. This is obvious by the New York Yankees symbol on his hat and his jacket. See more »


Johnny Doyle: Whoa. What are you doing?
Brad: I'm taking my shot.
Johnny Doyle: No. See, I just paid five-thousand dollars for your shot. Now it's my shot.
See more »

Crazy Credits

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 »


Referenced in Littleman (2006) See more »


Poolhall Junkies Theme
Written & Performed by Jeff Gross
© 2001 (ASCAP)
See more »

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User Reviews

"Do you ever watch those nature shows?"
15 March 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Poolhall Junkies is one of those little sweet pieces of film that can hold your attention throughout, get you to grin even when a joke isn't that funny, and let the viewer know debut filmmakers, such as Gregory "Mars" Martin, can still serve a purpose in a widening scumish movie season.

Martin plays Johnny Doyle, a poolroom hustler who after being controlled by a gangster (Palminterri) for fifteen years, breaks away in a sudden movie to go for bigger money. Unfortunately, his movie isn't helped by his cocky little brother (Rosenbaum) and friends who try to hustle the money for themselves only to get in deeper trouble with a semi-pro player.

The story and twists may have been seen in similar poolhall movies, yet the quick wit and even quicker style is on the mark. Lest I not forget, Steiger and Walken turn in two grand performances - Steiger, in his last film, as a weary poolroom worker, and Walken, who is very often both creepy and exceptional, gives fans a treat with a monologue that can only be compared to the one he gave in Pulp Fiction. Not everyone may follow this film, and it'll probably be out of theaters very soon, however it remains a treat for those who like quirky indie gangster movies. A-

21 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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