This insider's view of Tinseltown gets off to a promising start, then devolves into a standard-issue, shaggy dog caper story. Once upon a time, journeyman actor Tom Greener (Tom Berenger) plied his trade steadily and profitably. During his heyday, Tom tried unsuccessfully to sell a screenplay written by his then-wife, Paula (Jacqueline Kim). That was seven years ago, and a lot has changed since Tom blew town. Now thoroughly washed up, Tom returns to Hollywood hoping to interest once-celebrated agent Robbie Kant (Kay E. Kuter) in peddling Paula's script. In the midst of pitching the concept, Tom runs into two contemporaries, Kage Mulligan (Burt Reynolds) and Floyd Benson (Rod Steiger), whose phones no longer ring off the hook. Then a speeding car hits Kant: Tom sees his last chance at the brass ring go up in smoke. During a self-pitying pilgrimage to the Hollywood sign, the three actors ruminate about their hard luck and stumble upon a corpse. Floyd, who's now a surveillance expert/burglar alarm installer, recognizes the stiff as Mafioso Tino, and remembers the dead man from a security installation at the mansion of mobster Rodney Di Giacomo (Al Sapienza). In an odd twist of fate, Paula has become the accomplice of Rodney and his two thugs. The trio put Tino's corpse on ice so they won't be linked to the murder, then spy electronically on Rodney's gang, who are in the process of splitting the proceeds from an $8.7 million robbery. The histrionic hams decide to try and get closer to the cash, but endanger their lives in the process. This comedy, which features one of Steiger's last performances, benefits from the scenery chewing rapport of all three leads. Its insight into hangers-on and has-beens is fresh; its replay of a casino rip-off scenario is stale.
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- Released: 2002
- Rating: R
- Review: This insider's view of Tinseltown gets off to a promising start, then devolves into a standard-issue, shaggy dog caper story. Once upon a time, journeyman actor Tom Greener (Tom Berenger) plied his trade steadily and profitably. During his heyday, Tom trie… (more)