They say crime doesn’t pay, but it can be pretty lucrative.
Employee of the Month (Mitch Rouse, 2004)
This was interesting. What exactly is Employee of the Month? Romantic comedy? Cynical black comedy? Journey through despair? Buddy flick? Crime thriller? Or something else entirely. I wasn’t sure until it was over, and I don’t want to give anything away but it was good. It seems muddled until act three at which point I saw everything clearly, realizing that nothing was muddled except my own expectations, as it hurtled towards a strange and satisfying conclusion.
On the surface it’s about a loan officer (Matt Dillon) who loses his fiance and his job on the same day. He seems like a good-hearted decent guy, but maybe he’s not. Whatever he is, he’s having a pretty bad day. Or maybe everything is going perfectly. Check it out.
Be Cool (F Gary Gray, 2005)
I hardly remember anything about Get Shorty, but that doesn’t matter in this sequel about the further exploits of goodfella turned Hollywood player, Chili Palmer since it works as a stand-alone film.
When Be Cool opens, Chili (played by John Travolta basically doing a more likable version of his Pulp Fiction role) has grown bored with the film business and wants to make it in the rough and tumble music scene. Naturally his background helps him navigate a world of thugs, playas, gangstas and wannabes as he tries to break an up-and-coming young singer and help her get a good record deal. It’s a good-natured and at times wickedly funny movie that’s worth the watch.