Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|2 Days in the Valley|
Actors: Teri Hatcher, Jeff Daniels, Danny Aiello, Charlize Theron, Greg Cruttwell
Director: John Herzfeld
Genres: Action & Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Mystery & Suspense
In a sleepy bedroom community of LA's San Fernando Valley, the murder of a professional athlete by two hit men sets into motion a chain of events that puts the mundane lives of a dozen residents on a collision course. This... more »
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THIS is a romantic comedy?
Dennis Littrell | SoCal | 08/21/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Yes. You've seen "grunge on the run" romantic comedies--Wild at Heart (1990), Natural Born Killers (1994) come to mind, and poor waitress/crazy old man romantic comedies, e.g., As Good As It Gets (1997)--well, this is a mousy secretary/aging hit man romantic comedy.
Somewhat. It's also a tongue-in-the cheek satire on all things that Hollywood thinks movie-goers crave: cute dogs, sexy women, good-hearted underdogs winning out, dumb cops, the ugly rich (Greg Cruttwell's wormy Allan Hopper fits the bill), shoot-outs, blood, dead bodies (enough to grace a Shakespearean stage) and that favorite of testosterone males everywhere: a good old-fashioned cat fight.
Charlize Theron and Teri Hatcher provide the eye appeal as they slap and toss each other around; and to be honest I have to say they are definitely worth watching. Excellent support comes from James Spader, as an amazingly clean-shaven (what does he use--Nair?) psycho-sickie with a stopwatch.
But Danny Aiello is the real star. He plays Dosmo Pizzo, the over-the-hill hit man (currently moonlighting in embarrassment at the local pizzeria). He loses his hairpiece, finds redemption, true love, thirty thousand Big Ones, and presumably lives happily ever after on the lam with his unlikely moll (Glenne Headly) in this clever plot by coincidence from director and scriptwriter John Herzfeld.
(By the way, what's with Hollywood and its perverse love affair with sympathetic hit men? A new genre? The hit man as the underclass hero? I just saw Grosse Pointe Blank (1997) which stars John Cusack as a "cute" amoral murder artist. What next? The lovable terrorist? Knowing Hollywood, I think we can count on it.)
Anyway, Spader's character is not so lovable. He kills without the slightest qualm and takes a great delight in blowing people away. Charlize is his girl friend and they have lots of you-know-what together. Teri Hatcher is an Olympic class skier with a loser boyfriend. And the Valley of course is the San Fernando Valley just north of L.A., onetime home of the Valley girls, now best known as the porn capital of America.
Jeff Daniels and Eric Stoltz play Valley cops (who are not as smart as L.A. cops--one of the jokes in the movie, ha, ha, ha). Both do a great job. Daniels is street wise and quick on the trigger and a bit of a prude while Stoltz is naive and a wanna-be homicide inspector. There are half a dozen cameos by not so well-known but talented people like veteran Austin Pendleton who does a killer sarcastic monologue on the directorial failures of suicidal Teddy Peppers (Paul Mazursky). One-time "Goodbye Girl" Marsha Mason has a modest part as a sweet and realistic nurse, and she is excellent. And there are dogs. You gotta have dogs.
However what makes this work is some clever dialogue and some satirical plot ideas, but mainly it is a tour de force of acting by a talented and highly professional cast. This is one of those movies in which every actor is a threat to steal the show at any time one way or the other. In a way it's a parade of cameos cleverly stitched together and then nicely edited.
But see this for James Spader whose skill playing nerdish weirdos is on fine display."
An Underrated Ensemble Drama / Crime Thriller.
Bradley Tobin | Penrith, Sydney NSW Australia | 04/18/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Many people put this in the "Quentin Tarantino Rip-off" pile, but it really owes more of a debt to Robert Altman than it does to Tarantino. Sure, it has Crime Thriller elements, but at its Core it is an Ensemble Drama akin to "Short Cuts" and "Magnolia".The Star-Studded Cast includes Eric Stoltz (as a discontent vice cop), Jeff Daniels (as Eric's hard-nosed partner), James Spader (as an ice-cold hit man), Danny Aiello (as a washed-up hit man), Charlize Theron (as James' accomplice/girlfriend), Teri Hatcher (as a murder witness) and Glenne Headly (as a Hostage). They, and Everyone else in the film, give Fitting, Seasoned Performances.Stoltz and Spader give the Best performances, both Funny and Real. Especially Spader, he virtually Carries the Film. Charlize Theron, in one of her first films, is Very, very Attention-Grabbing, through her Looks and her Abilities. Daniels and Hatcher appear too Infrequently to be Memorable. Aiello and Headly give equally Likeable performances that become the Moral Centre of the film.The film, like all the ones mentioned above, follows a Series of Unconnected stories that somehow Intersect with each other at the climax. To explain How would spoil the fun of Watching it all Unravel Yourself. Writer/Director John Herzfeld smartly resists the temptation to Modernize and Spice up his Direction, allowing the Actors to tell the tale."
Underrated but Amazing
mugentyper | Canada | 10/27/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"2 Days in the Valley is a great movie for anyone. If you like interesting story lines accompanied by amazing performances by very talented actors/actresses then you should watch 2 Days in the Valley. This movie packs a lot of star power with names such as Charlize Theron, Teri Hatcher, Eric Stoltz, Danny Aiello, Jeff Bridges and James Spader.
The story revolves around the events surrounding different characters, all unrelated. The movie has many sub-plots and develops them all independantely until they all merge together and we get the big picture. Throughout the movie, we learn important details that are all leading up to a great finale.
2 Days in the Valley isn't one of those mediocre films with a few good scenes here and there, it is packed with quality moments throughout. This allows you to watch it over and over again, enjoying it each time.
2 Days in the Valley is both funny with its wit as well as engaging with the ensuing drama. There is no great purpose or lesson to be learned from 2 Days in the Valley; it's just a fun movie that is sure to entertain.
As far as the DVD special features go, since it's an older movie the special features are pretty ghetto and consist of trailers but hey, what can you do.
I definately reccomend it to anyone willing to try new things.
Two Days in the Valley
wallacekelly | America | 04/02/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is a really good movie, with an unbelievable cast and a brilliant plot! The music soundtrack is also very good, and there is not a bad scene in the movie! I just can't understand why nobody has seen this film! Here we have a variety of bizarre characters (highlights were Danny Aiello, James Spader, Charlize Theron, and Jeff Daniels) who stumble into each other's lives. The director threw in a lot of little interesting quirks, such as the murderous assassin smirking as he watches a cop sight down the barrel of a watergun, or a spiteful old man who we came to hate earlier slinking out of a Japanese pleasure house in the dead of night. (Another interesting thing for me about the movie is to watch for the manner in which every character's name is given as the plot unfolds. ALL of them are named at least once somewhere in the film!) The movie is very well written and very interesting, and if there is any problem whatsoever, it would have to be that at times the dialogue becomes a bit laborous and unrealistic. (Sometimes, it appears that the characters are explaining what's going on to the audience, rather than conversing with the other characters.) Nevertheless, this is a trite point, and distracts none at all from the movie's enjoyment. And although Two Days in the Valley has been called a "Tarantino rip-off", I think this is because, like in many Tarantino films, we get to see famous actors playing in roles that we are not accustomed to seeing them in."