Grosse Pointe Blank DVD
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Here's the killer comedy hit that's loaded with outrageous fun! For Martin Blank (John Cusack -- SERENDIPITY, HIGH FIDELITY), a hit man stuck in a career rut, attending his 10-year high school reunion is about the last thing he's in the mood for. But when the prospects of rekindling an old flame (Minnie Driver -- GOOD WILL HUNTING) and pulling off one final job convince him to go, things are looking up ... that is, until Martin's arch rival (Dan Aykroyd) shows up aiming to blow the competition away. For hilarious comedy entertainment that's packed with action, GROSSE POINTE BLANK is a surefire knockout!
Hit man Martin Q. Blank (John Cusack) is in an awkward situation. Several of them, actually. He's attending his high school reunion on an assignment; he's got a rival hit man (Dan Aykroyd) on his tail; and he's going to have to explain to his old girlfriend (Minnie Driver) why he stood her up on prom night. This amiable black comedy, cowritten by Cusack and directed by Jonathan Demme protégé George Armitage (Miami Blues), has the feel of Demme's Something Wild and Married to the Mob--which is to say its humor is dark and brightly colored at the same time. Cusack and Driver are utterly charming--as is the leading man's sister, Joan, who plays his secretary. (Ms. Cusack received an Oscar nomination for her next role, in In & Out.) Alan Arkin is also very funny as Martin's psychiatrist. --Jim Emerson
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During this period of spiritual blight, Blank gets an invitation to his high school reunion, which also happens to be near where his next job should be. Since he disappeared right before his senior prom, he knows that there will be some fences to mend, in particular with his abandoned prom date, played by Minnie Driver.
This is all brilliant comedy, as Blank tries to reunite with his old love and think about a more legitimate life, all the while pursued by government agents and other killers. There are a lot of great lines and funny moments and this is a showcase for Cusack, who, while always a great actor, particularly shines here. His sister Joan, playing Blank's assistant, is also exceptional in her limited role.
Too bad the DVD isn't up to par. It has next to zero extras. But even that could be passable if the picture was good. First of all, the movie is non-anamorphic. That doesn't make a difference unless you have a 16x9 television, it'll look the same on a regular tv, it's just a pet peeve of mine. But, the transfer we did get is just pathetic; it looks like a (bad) laser disc transfer. The picture is grainy, and there are some definite compression artifacts to been seen.
Bottom line: this DVD is worth buying for the movie, no doubt... and since this is the only version available, it's this or nothing. Just don't expect a really terrific picture.
What's a conflicted hit man to do? Why go to his tenth year high school reunion in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, of course. There, "Marty" plans to do his final hit and hook up with his high school sweetheart, Debi Newberry (Minnie Driver), whom he unceremoniously stood up on prom night, ten years earlier. Once he gets there, however, things do not go according to plan, and "Marty" is in store for a few surprises.
John Cusack is terrific as the hit man, playing him with just the right blend of sangfroid cool and, at other times, with all the charm of the boy next door. Dan ackroyd is funny as the unlikely, rival hit man. Alan Arkin is excellent as the shrink who does not want "Marty" as his patient. Minnie Driver is the least compelling of those cast in this film, as she adds very little to its success. Joan Cusack, John Cusack's real life sibling, more than makes up for the gap left by Driver, however, as she infuses the role of Marcella, "Marty's" gal friday, with enough pizazz to shore up the film.
All in all this is a surprisingly entertaining film. Unfortunately, the DVD offers next to nothing by way of special features. Do not, however, let this deter you from buying this funny and unusual film.
The film follows the high school reunion dilemma of Cusack's character, Martin Blank, who has to balance his desire to return to his home town of Grosse Point and meet his old girlfriend, with his unconventional dayjob of professional hitman. Minnie Driver plays the love interest, and the other cast members provide able support - and yes, this even applies to Dan Ackroyd!
The movie works so well because we like most of the characters in it! Cusack's character is obviously disfunctional, and the early scenes with his adopted psychiatrist Alan Arkin are hysterical. The scenes with his real-life sister Joan, all held over the phone, also are played mostly for laughs, as she arranges his next 'job' as if it were the most normal thing in the world. And yet at the heart of this there lies a story of unrequited love, and therin lies its soul.
The violence in the film is slickly done, and not over-glamourised, apart from the action-comedy fest that is the store shoot-out scene, where the store attendant plays out his fantasy violence on a video game while behind him all hell is breaking loose for real. It also features quite possibly the most realistic martial arts fight scene ever committed to celluloid as Cusack has to fight for his life in the corridor of his old school with a rival hitman sent to kill him. Joe Pesci's imaginative use for a pen in 'Casino' is re-visited here, so be warned!
However the film as a whole is more than the sum of it's parts.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
One of my favorite movies! I suppose it is dark comedy, but the discussion of what one has done at a High School reunion is classic!Published 10 months ago by Thomas Schultz
I love this movie from the first time I saw it many years ago .... watched it twice already ..Published 12 months ago by Angelo M.
I just love this movie.a must see John Cusack is terrific in this movie great cast funny and lots of action.Published on April 9 2014 by Dion
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