Friday, April 13, 2012

Suckers (2001)

Director: Roger Nygard

Starring: Daniel Benzali, Louis Mandylor, Lori Loughlin, Joe Yanetty, Jake Johannsen, Eli Danker, BT

More info: IMDb

Tagline: Whatever You Do, Don't Buy Your Next Car Without Seeing This Movie!

Plot: In this eye-opening comedy, nice guy Bobby Deluca (Mandylor) -- who's in hock to loan sharks for a tidy sum and needs to earn some quick cash -- reluctantly takes a job at a car dealership run by a surly megalomaniac (Benzali). But little does Bobby know that his chrome-domed new boss is using the vehicles on the lot to smuggle contraband.

My rating: 7.5/10

Will I watch it again? YES!!! "Don't FUCK with me when I'm thirsty!"

Two things initially sold me on watching this flick, seeing Daniel Benzali's mug on the cover (I knew I liked this guy but couldn't recall anything I'd seen him in) and the subject matter. As someone who's been in sales for a number of years, I've always been fascinated, yet repulsed, by car salesmen and their techniques, much like how casinos are designed to take your money. Then I find out that Jake Johannsen and Tim Thomerson are in it, albeit small parts. I had no idea this would be as much fun and biting as it was. Very nice! Don't go strictly by the sub-par trailer, it doesn't do the film justice at all.

How did those slip in? Don't question such things, just accept them.

Most of the movie takes place at a car dealerships, seeing how the salesmen lie to their customers at every turn. I was pleasantly surprised that they didn't do this just in the beginning but were able to keep it interesting until the finish. The subplot about drug smuggling was a bit much (especially the resolution at the climax of the film) but it wasn't that distracting. I would have preferred it left out altogether in lieu of something less Hollywood-y.

The performances are very solid from the entire cast. I'd be hard-pressed to pick the weakest link but the standouts are Benzali as the ruthless, yet charismatic and funny, general manager, Reggie, in charge of the dealership and Eli Danker as one of the top salesmen, Mohammed. He was fantastic. There's a scene where he tells another salesman about his sister that about squeezed a few drops out of my eyes. And then again when he shows up unexpectedly at the end. Wow! Great job, this guy. I've only seen one of his pictures and that was nearly 25 years ago, WANTED: DEAD OR ALIVE (1986). That reminds me, I need to watch that one again. I digs me some Rutger Hauer.

I started listening to the commentary with the actors and I enjoyed what little I took in (i.e. I laughed my ass off). Time keeps me from the rest of it but I'll definitely throw it back on at some point. If this sounds remotely interesting or if you've ever bought a car (or are going to), you need to see this. It's a great flick that's sure to make you feel like walking into a car dealership and punch the first person you see right in the throat.

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