Here's another gritty independent film that tries to invade Tarantino territory by casting Christopher Walken--that most reliable of indie-film actors--as a Mobster who gets chummy with a group of preppie-like young men an... more »d becomes the victim of a kidnapping scheme. One of the kidnappers (Henry Thomas) has a sister who's been abducted by another group of kidnappers, and they've bagged Walken for his Mob connections and negotiating power. What follows is a game of psychological strategy in which the desperate group of guys slowly lose their advantage to the smarter, more experienced gangster--even though they've got Walken tied to a chair. The situation turns volatile when the young men start to doubt the wisdom of their strategy and suspect betrayal within the group, and Suicide Kings turns into a talky, repetitious thriller only partially redeemed by Denis Leary's cagey role as Walken's Mob lieutenant. The movie's a showcase for its cast of rising talent (including Jay Mohr, Jeremy Sisto, Johnny Galecki, and Sean Patrick Flanery), but not even Walken can hold it all together. What's best about the film is Leary's sinister presence in a peripheral role and Walken's trademark villainy, here toned down to a steady, simmering menace. --Jeff Shannon« less
Nancy W. from CHARLOTTE, NC Reviewed on 1/11/2011...
Great movie. Many times my mouth dropped open and I was at the edge of my seat the entire time wondering why these rich kids thought they could get away with this! Very entertaining and I'd certainly watch it another time!
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An Overall Excellent Film
E. M. Hodge | Virginia Beach, VA | 10/30/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Looking for a mob movie that doesn't star Robert DeNiro or Al Pacino? Neither am I, but, hey, sometimes you need a little variety in your repetoir, right? Suicide Kings is, in my opinion, this variety. Starring Christopher Walken and backed-up by Dennis Leary and a cast of up-and-comers, Suicide Kings succeeds remarkably at creating a dark and twisted tail of revenge, betrayal and getting in over your head.
Walken plays Carlo Bartolucci (also known in the movie as Charlie Barret), a mob boss recently returned from prison and having a night out on the town. During this he is joined by a group of college-aged kids also seemingly celebrating. As the night continues, these youngsters kidnap him.
After a few turns the kids motives are revealed: They're going to use Charlie's ransom money to pay off ANOTHER ransom, that of one of the kidnapper's girlfriends. What follows is a beautifully political example of Stockholm's Psychology as Walken's mob boss systematically turns each of the conspirator's against the other, all the while contacting his right-hand man, played by the fabulously energetic Dennis Leary.
Though this picture has many strong points, including a great plot, excellent scripting and superb acting, it has a few flaws that warrant a four-star rating rather than a five-star, in my opinion. First is the pacing. At times, the movie drags in places where it seems as if the writer wasn't sure what to do next. Though it swiftly recovers from these moments, they still occur enough to bring an impatient sigh or two.
Some of the cinematography is lacking as well, speaking characters are slightly blocked or transitions a bit questionable. There isn't any shaking camera or bad panning, just a few places where I think it could have been done better. In the end, though, the effect is negligible and barely detracts from the movie as a whole.
All in all, this is an excellent film. Walken and Leary are on target as always, and the plot has just enough turns to keep it interesting without being confusing. The best thing about the picture is probably the script, though. Some of the quotes are just brilliant. I heartily recommend this film to mob-movie afficionados and psych-thriller junkies alike."
One of the Most Interesting Films in a While
MIKEBENNER | Philadelphia, PA USA | 08/07/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"While this film did not get much attention elsewhere, it certainly has mine. Suicide Kings is a movie about a group of spoiled rich kids in a tight bind with some criminals. To help gain some leverage in the ordeal, one of them has the bright idea to kidnap a NY mob boss (Walken). A guessing game of who betrayed who ensues and it will keep you wondering. This movie is hilarious, smart and interesting. It's full of great acting, funny dialogue, and interesting plot twists. Christopher Walken, in my opinion one of the greatest movie bad guys, shows his range in an outstanding performance. He's funny, dramatic and intense, all while being taped to a chair for most of the movie. Other notable performances are Dennis Leary, who plays Walken's right hand man in classic Leary style, and Jay Moore as the hard nosed, stubborn leader of the preps. The film has a very independent feel to it and is gritty at some points. While feeling this way, however, it does not feel un-professional ever. Basically, if you want a funny film with great performances from great actors, a good plot (which is often scarce nowadays), and a cheap price ...!!!, you have no excuse not to buy Suicide Kings."
A surprise hit!
MIKEBENNER | 10/16/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I picked up this DVD on a whim, not having seen nor heard any information on the title. I relied on the strength of the cast to not let me down. I was glad I followed my hunch. This is without a doubt one of the best dark comedies I have ever seen. The cast works together well, and the script is well written. Sure, parts are a little predictable, but there are still sufficient twists and turns to keep you interested until the film's conclusion. The DVD is packed full of extras too that make it a worthwhile purchase."
Not a Tarantino, But It's Walken!
Daniel R. Sanderman | Portland, OR United States | 12/16/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The only reason I ended up watching "Suicide Kings" was that I saw the DVD on sale for $6 at a major electronics dealer. I figured I should give it a shot-the cast was worth the price tag and I knew that I would drop at least $4 to rent it anyhow. I am glad I did. "Suicide Kings" is an intelligent mobster movie that, as many viewers have commented, follows in the shadow of Tarantino's films. The unpredictable violence of the film, particularly on behalf of Denis Leary, keeps you on the edge and in a state of tension. Christopher Walken's performance holds the entire movie together. To witness how he perfectly plays his unfortunate situation is like watching a master at work. By the end of the film, every one of his kidnappers is ready to buy him a drink-and I am as well. On top of Walken's performance, I was really impressed by Johnny Galecki, who had me laughing in every scene he appeared. A few criticisms. While the dialogue in this film is pretty good, there is absolutely no plot. In movies that employ these devices, the dialogue must be absolutely top notch. I was never bored during this film, but the script could have used a bit more "oomph." Additionally, the editors did not seem to know how to end the film. There are many twists in the plot in the final moments of the film (as one might expect), but there is one too many in my opinion. Due to this fact, the film feels extremely rushed and incomplete in the final five minutes. I would say more, but I would give the film away. You'll have to see for yourself. I suggest you get "Suicide Kings" if you enjoy other films in a similar genre. The price of the DVD is extremely low and is worth a viewing."
foi_na_cruz | my house | 03/16/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is one of my favorites; Christopher Walken's brooding Christopher Walken...ness, Denis Leary's comic relief so to speak, the superb acting from Jay Mohr, Jeremy Sisto, Sean Flannery, and blah blah blah...basically I think this is an excellent story conveyed with impressive acting, and I'm suprised at how this movie gets no real recognition. In any case, good stuff. I wonder if this is where Mohr picked up his Walken impersonation... or was it SNL? ah, who cares."