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20th Century Fox


Starring:  Nick Nolte, Tcheky Karyo and Nutsa Kukhiandidze


Director: Neil Jordon (who was also screenwriter and one of the gazzillion producers normally found attached to movies these days)


This movie also has Ralph Fiennes in it (although he receives no credit for it) and between him and Tcheky (you know that Tcheky and Nutsa did not change their names for Hollywood) the movie is kind of worth watching.  In my opinion, adding Nutsa who plays a 17 year old who parades around in underwear all the time, throws this movie over the top and into enjoyment.


Nick Nolte was almost perfectly  cast.  The part was made for him…. TWENTY YEARS AGO!!! Still, he did a good job of playing essentially what I figure is his drugged up and gambling self.  I have had a soft spot for the huge headed Mr. Nolte since at least 48 Hours and even forgive him for movies like The Hulk.  Still, he is getting on in years and it showed in this movie. I could believe the confused character Nutsa played falling for Nolte in his older man-ness, I just couldn’t really believe it.


The movie as a whole was kind of slow and for this I blame the director who highlighted the lethargic pacing with these artsy freeze frames at the end of most scenes.  The freezes were very distracting to me and pulled me out of my suspended disbelief nearly every time.  There was only one freeze that seemed even useful when the camera pulled Tcheky out of a crowd as he tried to catch up with Nick.


The acting was, for the most part, superb and Nolte’s character had a lot of depth.  I would have liked to have seen more depth with Tcheky’s character and would have just liked to have seen more of Ralph Fiennes.  Nutsa was pretty boring except to look at and her part could have been played reasonably well by a curvy stick.  The plot itself was tired and two tiered with a cop and robber head to head between Tcheky and Nolte that relied on stereotype rather than substance and a robber plot that failed to carry the characters as well as it might have.  In my opinion, the director/screenwriter mistakenly sacrificed to what the director probably thought was the development of Nolte’s character but was really just a series of well acted scenes.


All in all I would not advise watching this movie on anything other than a stormy Sunday afternoon and then only if you are a big fan of watching Nick Nolte be himself.  No, maybe you could watch it if you have seen everything else at the video store.  No, you can watch it.  Really. It wasn’t bad.  It just wasn’t good (but parts of it were).

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