Mediocre, but it has its moments
J. Weaver | FL USA | 10/03/2004
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is not the best movie ever made in this genre, but it has a sort of pathetic realism which makes it worth seeing. It is not a true comedy, though some of the scenes are humorous, such as when Meg Tilly seeks to seduce Mantegna after getting married to another man, breaking up their affair which was held during Mantegnas' own marriage. It's Angellos' (Mantegna) 50th birthday and things are not going well. His father has ordered him to hit a rival mob members relative, but nobody knows exactly who it is they are supposed to "whack". Faced with the dilemma of killing a noncombatant and the problem of finding a person to accomplish the task with only 5 hours to get the job done, things slide downhill rapidly.
Pollack turns in a fine performance, as does most of the cast. The pacing drags at times, and the flashbacks to Angelos' childhood sometimes distract the viewer. The main problem with the movie is that it's not funny enough to be a comedy, and not deep enough to be a drama. The movie would have been better if it was more over the top as a comedy, or explored the relationship with the father more as a drama. While it raises some interesting ethical questions, loyalty, revenge, ect., it never seems to get around to exploring their meanings. However there is enough here to make the movie worth viewing at home, with breaks to run to the kitchen during some of the slower parts. A good movie for those times when nothing new has come out on video you want to see."