The Last Shot


Comedy / Romance

IMDb Rating 5.6


Downloaded 387 times
12/3/2019 3:34:14 AM

90 min
P/S 0 / 0

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by gradyharp 7

THE LAST SHOT is best viewed with a bit of info to let the patient viewer understand what is coming. The opening titles are clever, dealing with movie paraphernalia that serve as matrices for the stars and production staff names and should give a sense of what is to come. But it isn&#39;t until the first 20 or so minutes into the film that the significance of the movie can be appreciated.<br/><br/>Based on an apparently true news article, THE LAST SHOT takes a pot shot at not only Hollywood, but also organized crime, production magnates, the FBI, and little people with big dreams lost in the elusive utopia of fame.The plot is well outlined on these pages. Suffice it to say that the FBI sends Joe Devine (Alec Baldwin) to Hollywood to pose as a producer to lure the underground crime lord Tommy Sanz (Tony Shalhoub) to surface and be caught. Devine needs a script as he discovers from the gross Fanny Nash (Joan Cusack at her hilarious best) and gradually encounters Steven Schats (Matthew Broderick) who with his pathetic brother Marshall Paris (Tim Blake Nelson) has written an unmarketable, non-salable script called &#39;Arizona&#39;. Devine grabs on to the project, making Schats the director (his dream come true) and casts the film with has-been actress with box office draw Emily French (Toni Collette who looks terrific and adds yet another priceless cameo to her brilliant repertoire) and Valerie Weston (Calista Flockhart) who just happens to be Schats&#39; squeeze.<br/><br/>The process of film-making and the infectious delirium of Hollywood affects everyone in this film - even the FBI and especially Devine who softens into a man who wants to provide the &#39;littleman&#39; Schats with his dream. The humor is broad, WAY over the top, crude, and slapstick and in so many ways this movie mimics all of the intangible oddities that make Hollywood what it is. The performances by Baldwin, Broderick, Cusack, Flockhart - and, well, all of the inserted cameos - are excellent. Once you get the premise of this film it moves from being inane to being a really terrific parody with some sensitive metaphors. Grady Harp

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Reviewed by tributarystu 7

I suppose I went to this movie for the actors: enigmatic Alec Baldwim, charming Matthew Broderick, turned-sardonic Tony Shalhoub, mafia man Ray Liotta (who resembles a &quot;cappo di tutti cappo&quot; even as the director of the FBI) and thin Calista Flockhart. In the end I came to like it because of what it actually is: a frank story about goodness and dreams and not &quot;another&quot; cover up story for a gang heist.<br/><br/>So you&#39;ve got undercover agent Joe (Baldwin) who is so dedicated to his job, that he lets someone cut his finger off, just in order to get a longer sentence. Then there&#39;s Steven (Broderick), a want-to-be film director, who&#39;s still searching for his pot of gold...ah, luck. The rest of the characters orbit gently around these two propellers, spawning a genuine web of film-making personnel. Joe and Steven get to know each other when the detective plans to frame a certain low-ranker of the notorious Gotti family (in this particular case, Tommy Sanz, played by Shalhoub) and decides to pose as a film producer in order to fulfill his assignment. He meets Steven, the fate less anonymous screenwriter and the cameras start rolling...well, more or less.<br/><br/>The film proves to be a productive comedy - as in you&#39;ll get plenty of chances to prove your laughing capabilities - and is also dubbed by a layer of &quot;sensfullness&quot;, meaning it&#39;s a smart comedy. Not all the time,I have to admit, but often enough. If I were to compare it with, let&#39;s say, &quot;Get Shorty&quot;, a rather similar movie, I think I&#39;d go for this one simply because its got more juice to squeeze. Director/screenwriter Nathanson efficiently parodies a lot of wacko attitudes of Hollywood, even though some of these particular scenes did seem to have been forced into the film. All in all, I&#39;d say it&#39;s worth your time! <br/><br/>And one more thing...the intro credits are simply brilliant!

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Reviewed by BrandtSponseller 9

The Last Shot is a quirky, enjoyable art-house comedy based on the true story of an FBI agent, Garland Schweickhardt, who was in charge of an elaborate operation named &quot;Dramex&quot; to nab mob influences in the film business.<br/><br/>The Schweickhardt character in the film is named Joe Devine (Alec Baldwin). After a brief character establishing scene and an amazing title/opening credits sequence (featuring movie theater objects) that&#39;s one of the most creative and cute ones I&#39;ve seen yet, Devine is transferred to the Providence, Rhode Island FBI office and learns of Tommy Sanz&#39; (Tony Shalhoub) illegal mob dealings with the local teamsters. He figures that the best way to bust Sanz is to set up a fake film shoot and try to get him to make a deal to avoid having to use (and more importantly pay for) union truckers. So Devine, who knows next to nothing about the film business, poses as a producer and heads to Hollywood.<br/><br/>He gets a crash course in the industry from insider Fanny Nash (Joan Cusack in a hilarious extended cameo), and he begins his search for a script and director. Enter struggling screenwriter Steven Schats (Matthew Broderick), who has a day job as a ticket taker at Mann&#39;s Chinese Theater and who lives next to a noisy (of course) dog kennel, a fact that profoundly annoys his struggling actress girlfriend, Valerie Weston (Calista Flockhart). Schats has been shopping his script, &quot;Arizona&quot;, for a number of years to no avail. Devine sets up a meeting with him and immediately offers him a deal, including casting power, final cut and points. Of course Schats jumps on the deal.<br/><br/>There&#39;s only one problem. The script calls primarily for location shots in the desert, including Hopi Indian cave scenes. It&#39;s integral to the story. But Devine insists that they shoot in Rhode Island. The bulk of The Last Shot hinges on a few different conflicts, including the FBI&#39;s reservations about Devine&#39;s plan, which keeps snowballing and turning into a more far reaching lie.<br/><br/>Although it&#39;s not every day that the FBI sets up a bogus film production, director and writer Jeff Nathanson uses his debut film as a helmer to comment on various levels of the typical craziness of the movie business. Devine&#39;s FBI superiors function as executive producers who are regularly perplexed about where their money is going, but who are easily enough talked into furthering their support as Devine pitches additional time and resources they need to acquire. On a more literal level, Nathanson is also able to spoof agents, directors, actors, and many processes, such as location scouting and casting. Much of this material is hilarious, and viewers do not need to have any intimacy with the film industry to &quot;get it&quot;, or to get that there is probably a lot more truth to these scenes than is usually admitted.<br/><br/>The cast is excellent, including Baldwin and Broderick. They may not be the first two names many cineastes would think of when they imagine an art-house film propelled by humorous but poignant performances, but The Last Shot just shows why such conventional wisdom views are off the track. A lot of sizable stars take roles with far less screen time than normal--including Shalhoub, Flockhart and Ray Liotta, but this is a well-written script that turned out to be well directed, so it was a good move for them.<br/><br/>At the same time that Nathanson enables a somewhat sarcastic, cynical view of the film-making process, there is a parallel plot featuring Devine that emphasizes a much more romantic view of the lure of the business. It becomes increasingly clear as The Last Shot unfolds that Devine is no longer concerned with just or even primarily nabbing mobsters. He&#39;s trying to plunge deeper into making his &quot;fake&quot; feature because he&#39;s falling in love with the idea of film-making. There&#39;s a particular line of dialogue delivered by one of Devine&#39;s superiors in the FBI, having to do with continuing Devine&#39;s project, that is not only a hilarious line in context, it&#39;s virtually the climax of the film. Devine has triumphed. The sham has become not what he tells Schats, but what he tells his supervisors. The subsequent conclusion of the film is thus heartwarming and a bit melancholy/tragic at the same time. It&#39;s a nice change of pace from more stereotypically &quot;Hollywood&quot; endings.<br/><br/>This is a very good, near-excellent film that has not received the attention it deserves. Although there is an art-house atmosphere to it, it&#39;s really more of a mainstream film that should have opened wide in multiplexes with a big publicity campaign. I never even noticed the film on its theatrical release, and I live in New York City and usually pay attention to what&#39;s playing the art-house theaters. I only noticed the DVD through my weekly scouring of release schedules to make sure I don&#39;t miss anything. Give it a chance and make sure you tell a friend or two about it.

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