An investigative journalist gets hooked on the subject of his inquiry - professional gambling.An investigative journalist gets hooked on the subject of his inquiry - professional gambling.An investigative journalist gets hooked on the subject of his inquiry - professional gambling.
Investigative sports journalist veteran Steve Taggart is working on his latest story - an inside look at professional gambling. The subject of his piece is a man he calls Mr. Green, a degenerate gambler who indirectly ruined his family and yet still can't stop gambling or betting. His editor loves the story but what he doesn't know is that Mr. Green is actually Taggart himself. In order to get more inside info about his topic, Taggart visits various gambling venues and interviews several people including a friendly casino manager and his top cocktail waitress Flo, who was once a gambling addict herself. However, Taggart has bigger problems than dealing with his addiction and finishing his assignment, since his loan shark is threatening to harm his little daughter, who lives in a nice boarding school, unless he pays up his growing debt. Taggart tries to deal with everything his own way - with more gambling. Eventually, writing the article becomes a form of personal catharsis for desperate Taggart and helps him finally decide to try to face his problems, but the story takes an unexpected turn at the end.
One of the most psychotic of all latter-day studio movies
From the Thomas Dolby music that kicks it off--an eighties synthesizer dweeb's variant on Rat Pack swagger--through the many gratuitous jumbo-cleavage shots, from the super-surly acting-against-type of arch villain Chad Everett to the climax, which involves Ryan O'Neal rolling around in a garbage can full of mustard, this picture suggests that the very respectable director Richard Brooks, in his waning phase, was a couple of Schlitzes shy of a six pack. (For a double bill of wackness, put this on after Brooks' homage to Sean Connery's toupee, WRONG IS RIGHT.) The thing you'll take away from this film, aside from Catherine Hicks' attempts not to appear embarrassed in the role of Ho with Heart of Gold, is that insane Dolby score, which suggests the fanfare that would greet Jack Klugman as he impresses the nanas by cleaning up at an old-age home's craps game.
- Jul 29, 2001
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