Haven (a fine and engaging performance by Michael Shannon) becomes a cardsharp to win back the pension funds that investment banker Geary (a sturdy portrayal by Don Reid) gambled away. Cleaver (robustly played by Ernest Borgnine) helps Haven out by posing as his gambling buddy.
Director Robert Douglas keeps the engrossing story moving along at a steady pace. Harold Livingston's smart script provides several moments of welcome and amusing humor, with Haven speaking like a Damon Runyonesque tough guy type coming across as especially amusing and inspired. Moreover, the banter between Cleaver and his loyal, but fed-up partner Bundy (an excellent John Amos) is likewise pretty sharp and funny. Moreover, Joan Collins contributes a deliciously sly turn as alluring and elegant, yet merciless con woman Eve Di Falco. The high stakes poker games makes for a gripping set piece. Howard Schwartz's polished cinematography and J.J. Johnson's funky score are both up to par. A nice show.
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