Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Elias Koteas, Laure Marsac, Jay Leggett, Bruce Ramsay, Kevin J. O'Connor
Director: Steven Shainberg
Genres: Drama, Mystery & Suspense
Sonny a frustrated & lonely bellhop at the lackluster stilwell hotel stumbles onto the illicit schemes of the corrupt hotel management. With his newfound knowledge & a little prodding from his friend del. Sonny becomes inv... more »
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Edward Lee | 07/16/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"A reasonable attempt at noir, HIT ME -- photographed far too lustrously to be true noir -- packs a few punches after the first twenty minutes (questionable editing) but is hanging off the ropes by the last, dizzying round (even more questionable editing). Like any good fight, the film works best in the middle -- dodging and jabbing and poking with a learned freshness -- and what an exciting tale it weaves.In the end, HIT ME plays out much like a Coen Brothers production (BLOOD SIMPLE, FARGO, etc.) only heavily watered down.Elias Koteas plays Sonny, a bellhop at the long-dying Stillwell Hotel. He's too old to start thinking about his future, and he's not quite young enough to remember the lessons of his youth. He lives in the moment, which the director (SECRETARY's Steven Shainberg) displays at great length with Sonny's closeups of rehearsing his room service delivery skills while riding the elevator. Still, one scheming friend and a tryst with a beautiful Canadian hustler later, Sonny finds himself wrapped up in the middle of a heist, stealing money from patrons holed up at the Stillwell for an annual poker game.Adapted from Jim Thompson's novel, "A Swell Looking Babe," Denis Johnson makes some curious choices with the screenplay that probably wouldn't have found wider success in Hollywood unless he had incorporated a happier ending. That's one of the plagues of Thompson's books: don't expect a rosy ending, and HIT ME follows suit with more than its fair share of twists and turns. After all, the beauty of noir is that nothing -- even the most perfectly hatched sting -- goes off without a hitch. The film manages to keep the viewer guessing -- up to a point -- but the formulaic pacing could've packed a stronger jolt in the climax.Still, what director Shainberg learned from HIT ME he puts to far greater use in SECRETARY: in that film, the underdog is allowed moments of glory, and characters are allowed to blossom into their own personal level of happiness, albeit slightly perverted. Here, within the oft-traveled hotel corridors and Sonny's filthy living room set of HIT ME, the greatest obstacle the story presents is the duldrums of Sonny's life: come the film's conclusion, he's in a far worse place than when the whole affair began."
HIT ME is a miss
David Group | Buffalo, NY | 07/23/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I love Jim Thompson novels, and I love a good film noir, so I was doubly disappointed when I saw this movie. The direction, while technically proficient, sets the wrong tone, wavering uneasily between brutal violence and goofy antics. The annoying soundtrack was no help, as it seemed at times like it was intended for a light comedy. Elias Koteas' one-note performance portrays his character as if he was totally clueless, making him look as if he had just graduated from the Blue Lagoon School of Acting (Some day I'm going to count how many close-up shots there are of his dumbstruck face. There seemed to be quite a few.). When you find some of the supporting characters are more interesting, you know the movie is in trouble."
Fun film, but a little too long.
John La Rocca | San Jose, CA United States | 04/26/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I rented this movie cause it it had an interesting story. A bellhop in total mess. Its fun and chilling at times, but this movie is little longer then it should be. Elias Kortas is simply a great actor. He makes this movie. He is such a young Robert Dinero. This film was done in 1998, but just released on video/DVD cause it was done by the director who did "Secretary." This film I wouldn't put in "Film Noir" class like the back of box says, but I guess in the new genre of sorts: Post-Tarantino. This movie is perfect for a rental. Instead of picking the usual Hollywood BS, you should give this one a shot. William H. Macy has a very small role so be warned when you see him on the cover."
ByronsFoot | Los Angeles, California United States | 11/18/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Great writing and characters, powerhouse performance by Koteas, deftly directed by a man with a vision - had a great time watching this!"