IMDb > Second Best (2004)
Second Best
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Second Best (2004) More at IMDbPro »

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Second Best -- Jealousy overwhelms a group of friends, particularly struggling writer Elliot, as they prepare for the homecoming of their old friend, a wildly successful L.A. producer.

Overview

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Genre:
Tagline:
Losing sucks, but it doesn't necessarily kill you.
Plot:
Jealousy overwhelms a group of friends, particularly struggling writer Elliot, as they prepare for the homecoming of their old friend, a wildly successful L.A. producer. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
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User Reviews:
An Honest Look at Baby-Boomer Male Bonding See more (23 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Directed by
Eric Weber 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Eric Weber 

Produced by
Callum Greene .... producer
Pamela Hirsch .... line producer
Anthony Katagas .... producer
Paul Mayersohn .... executive producer
Joe Pantoliano .... producer
Doug Torres .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
John Leccese 
Tom O'Brien 
Joe Weber 
Nathan Wilson 
 
Cinematography by
Chris Norr 
 
Film Editing by
Craig Cobb 
 
Casting by
Lina Todd 
 
Production Design by
John Nyomarkay 
 
Art Direction by
Mila Khalevich 
 
Set Decoration by
Ethan Tobman 
 
Costume Design by
Kitty Boots 
 
Makeup Department
Brian Abbott .... assistant makeup artist
Ryan McKnight .... makeup artist
Leo Won .... key hair stylist
Leo Won .... key makeup artist
 
Production Management
Matt Christensen .... post-production supervisor
Louise Fenton .... production supervisor
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Kara Doherty .... second assistant director
Kimberly Metsch .... second second assistant director
Curtis Smith .... assistant director
Doug Torres .... second unit director
 
Art Department
Alida Jung .... property master
Gary Kroytor .... set dresser
Alanna Levy .... assistant property master
Shane Rasco .... lead man
 
Sound Department
Joshua Anderson .... boom operator
Antonio L. Arroyo .... sound designer
Antonio L. Arroyo .... sound editor
Eric Offin .... sound mixer
Eric Rolnick .... foley mixer
 
Visual Effects by
Jennifer Russomanno .... title designer
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Manuel Billeter .... first assistant camera
Ethan Borsuk .... assistant camera: second unit
Hilary Craven .... still photographer
Jon Delgado .... director of photography: second unit
Jonathan Healey .... still photographer
Marcus Lehmann .... best boy electric
Chris Reynolds .... first assistant camera
Noah David Smith .... additional cinematographer
David Stern .... key grip
Steffen Unger .... gaffer
Andy Westbrook .... best boy grip
 
Casting Department
Meredith Jacobson .... extras casting
Anthony Serignese .... casting assistant
 
Editorial Department
Michelle Botticelli .... additional editor
Sarah Flack .... additional editor
Paul Leonardo Jr. .... post-production coordinator
Trevor Ristow .... additional editor
Larry Schmitt .... on-line editor
 
Music Department
James Flatto .... music editor
 
Other crew
Laura Danese .... production office coordinator
Steve Faughnan .... location assistant
Peter Pastorelli .... location manager
Matthew Rodbard .... production assistant
Carl Schel .... location manager
Andrew Vona .... office production assistant
Sharon Watt .... script supervisor
 
Thanks
Mike Spera .... thanks
 

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
MPAA:
Rated R for language and sexual content
Runtime:
86 min | Canada:90 min (Ontario)
Country:
Language:
Color:
Certification:
Canada:14A (Ontario) | USA:R | USA:TV-MA (cable rating)

Did You Know?

Quotes:
Elliot:[reading from his printed leaflet] That was right about the time my beautiful wife Paula was leaving me for the architect who designed the house we could no longer afford. A handsome, athletic man with a six-figure income and a pleasant, respectful manner.
[pause]
Elliot:I know I'll never get over loving her for the rest of my life.
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FAQ

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
An Honest Look at Baby-Boomer Male Bonding, 9 June 2005
Author: noralee from Queens, NY

"Second Best" shows what the guys from HBO's "Entourage" may be like 40 years from now, so Mark Wahlberg might want to see it as a cautionary tale.

Like "American Splendor," it features a self-deprecating, self-proclaimed loser who turns his life into art, here as rants that he prints up himself and distributes everywhere around his suburban New Jersey home town.

But "Elliott" is not a loner or a misanthrope which is what saves him, as played by Joe Pantoliano, from being insufferable or pitiful like "Marty." He is very much a part of a network of friends, family and community, and he is even on tolerated terms with those who have moved on with their lives, including his re-married ex-wife and son (who might be the first handsome gay dental hygienist ever portrayed in film).

The actors are very comfortable at showing middle-aged, male camaraderie of long time friends, as an unusually expressive self-reflective bunch who talk about more than sports. Though their weekly dinners could put the men's movement back a bit as "Elliott" becomes increasingly lacerating in criticizing his friends' lives, that disruptive nastiness becomes an equalizing set-up when the only alpha male from their group, in a sympathetic three-dimensional performance by Boyd Gaines such that Jerry Bruckheimer should be very grateful this is his alter-ego, comes back to visit the old neighborhood with his own existential crisis.

Until writer/director Eric Weber stoops to the standard male competitive reflex of jealousy over women ending in fisticuffs, which, frankly, just doesn't make sense for these guys despite the Cyrano analogy, he does present an articulate examination (with a lot of Yiddish phrases) of coming to grips with aging, from their own health problems to the mother's nursing home (though Barbara Barrie seems much more spry than the other residents). That more depressing side of aging baby boomers was left out of "Sideways," though this film also has plenty of funny one-liners, sometimes with easy targets like Hollywood and books, to compensate.

While the women's tolerance of their men's quirks is saintly, at least they are not portrayed as total bitches, though this is a somewhat cynical reunion for Pantoliano and Jennnifer Tilly since "Bound."

While "Elliott" got laid off from his publishing job for not being in touch with the market, he is in touch with today's world enough to begin to simultaneously post his rantings as columns on a web blog, and the film's inserts of reactions he generates both in the neighborhood and online from around the country are amusing, keep the film contemporary-feeling and move along the leisurely pace.

The Bergen County, NJ locales are used very well in creating the feel of a neighborhood.

Tom O'Brien's score is lovely.

I don't know if it was the fault of the projectionist or the director that the tops of heads were cut off in so many blurry scenes.

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