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The Gristle
The Gristle
Actors: Lyssa Aruda, Kris Andersson, Orson Bean, Al Berman, Regan Burns
Director: David Portlock
Genres: Comedy, Drama
UR     2003     1hr 33min

Two struggling L.A. medical assistants think they've finally caught their big break when they're hired to deliver black-market human organs to a wealthy U.S. Senator. But another criminal drop off involving thousands of do...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Lyssa Aruda, Kris Andersson, Orson Bean, Al Berman, Regan Burns
Director: David Portlock
Creators: Ryan Folsey, Carsten Norgaard, Geno Taylor, Jill Silverthorne, Mychal Wilson
Genres: Comedy, Drama
Sub-Genres: Comedy, Drama
Studio: Warner Home Video
Format: DVD - Color - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 07/29/2003
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 33min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 2
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

The Gristle is a "Can't Miss-le!!!!!"
Matthew C. Stelly | Milwaukee, Wisconsin | 10/25/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I don't want to spoil this movie for those who I hope will go and rent it. I was channel surfing and came across it and once I started watching it, I realized that this was a great "find." In the first place, the wife of one of the lead characters was a full-figured black woman. THis is when I knew the movie was "for real." IN the day of the Vanessa Williams-Michael Michelle-Irene Cara light-skinned age of beauty, it is good to see a movie casting a sister that looks like most of the women we know and love.

These two brothers are tight, and they share ideas. They talk about more than just run of the mill crap. They want to make movies that uplift the black image, they understand the power of racism and want to do something about it. In other words, they care about their people. The hustle they pull is designed to free themk from their jobs as orderlies, where they find htemselves washing the scrotum of a crusty old white man who teases them and uses the "n" word every chance he gets. So the two embark upon an "assignment" and have plans to spend their money on their movie idea.

What is good about "The Gristle" is that the white character and a black character are also very close. They are both killers and both very intelligent. The white guy, being foreign, doesn't like to hear or use the "n" word,although his friend does. The white man is the black man's conscience because he cannot understand why the brother cracks on his race hte way he does. An important point that could generate some seroius discussion.

Issues of race permeate the movie, from the two Latino brothers who come in to purchase some dope, the two black men who are on their way to deliver a kidney, and the white-black killer team who are there to sell some dope. This is the way to deal with such an emotional issue in a society that is too gutless to face it head on. There is NO romance in this movie, which opens it up to concentrate on the racial discussions that each of these dyads has as separate groups, and then when they meet and interact together.

"The Gristle is a "Can't Miss-le!""
The Gristle - hilarious and so much more
FitFan | WI | 01/19/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This movie is so funny. Carsten Norgaard, who is way under-rated, was a shining star here. It takes more than one time to watch it, to get how funny it is. Of course, it does address the topic of racial issues and is done in such a clever way. You don't even really realize that this is the entire focus and theme. The characters develop and grow in a way you just don't see anymore. No shoot 'em up stuff, special effects, only great quality dialogue and interaction. The scene in the motel is nothing short of hilarious. Norgaard's appearance here is worth watching period. This movie is worth it's weight in gold. It received critical acclaim for good reason. Watch it, you'll be glad you did."
About race without getting cynical -- funny, fast
Jeri | Chicago | 12/01/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"HBO picked this up and has played it several times this past month. It was kinda uncomfortable at first; but the more I watched it, the funnier it got. I've seen it about four or five times now, and now I am cryin' laughin so hard at some bits. Dorn is really good in it. One acquaintance said it's politically incorrect and correct at the same time. The characters say some pretty outrageous things that you can only get away with in indy films. The point is that in spite of the fact that they are all walking cliches, no one is really what he seems to be or what the other guys expect him to be. He loved when they're in the club trying to figure out weather cubans are black, white or something else. It's one of the frankest films about race in a long time and without getting cynical too. Here's a bit of trivia: The Gristle is the one and only movie ever partly financed by a U.S. Small Business Administration loan. It was a program put forward to attempt to stem the flow of moviemaking going to Canada. The location for the movie is L.A. The program was cut by the current administration; but also the SBA office said the only banks willing to participate in the program were the ones right around Hollywood. There might have been increasingly more banks willing in other places had the pilot program gone on successfully, though, they said.If you look in the credits for the movie, they show the SBA loan and its officers in L.A. and the two banks in L.A. and their loan officers. It's kinda cool."