FBI director Jack Devine always sets up his brother Joe as undercover to trick mobsters. His latest cover is as movie producer Joe Diamond, to get Tommy Sanz for Teamster racketeering. His cover requires a script - the one movie theater manager Steven Schats and his brother Marshall 'Paris' wrote, supposedly a cancer biopic. So Steven is hired as director, his greatest dream, even if producing an Arizona desert drama on Rhode Island is far from ideal. When a former Oscar nominee volunteers to star, the cover gets out of hand till everyone believes in it, even the FBI brass- or not? Written by
The play Matthew Broderick's character references, "Your Arms Too Short to Box with Moses" is an obvious tongue-in-cheek reference to the hit Broadway musical, "Your Arms Too Short to Box with God." See more »
The movie is set in the mid 80's. When Agent Devine is sitting on a bench asking people for script ideas, a green VW New Beetle passes by. See more »
Going from the sublime to the ridiculous makes for laughs and fun
This is a brilliant small budget movie that deserves much more buzz and play that it has received. It is similar in plot structure to Joseph Heller's Catch 22.
Both start out with an odd but "realistic" beginning. Each progresses in small steps to more and more outlandish and unbelievable situations with a blurred line between possible and "this can't really be happening."
In Catch 22, the story begins with an odd but possible situation in the European theater in World War II. At the end of the story Milo Minderbinder, an American officer, is contracting with both the Germany and the Allies to bomb the other's military installations.
In the Last Shot, the story begins Baldwin, an FBI agent trying to make a name for himself, voluntarily allowing the bad guys to cut of one of his fingers so that he can charge the bad guys with more serious crimes.
The plot progresses with Baldwin setting up a façade of making a movie to trap other Mafia types. Obviously, no one expects that the movie will ever be made. It then progresses to a point where Baldwin and his superiors at the FBI are making what appears to be a real deal for a "three picture deal" and negotiating over marketing rights.
That progression, together with some wonderful side trips,cameos by Joan Cusack and Buck Henry, caused something that is rarely heard in multiplex theaters with relatively small audiences-outright loud laughter and even a bit of applause as the movie ended.
This movie is not Gone with the Wind or Citizen Kane. It is just good fun with laughs enhanced by the progression of not likely but possible to outright absurdity. The kicker is that the movie, according to the producers was based on a true story. If so truth may really be stranger than fiction.
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