30 November 2005 | Red7Eric
If you like the jargon and swagger of "Guys & Dolls," you should enjoy "Bloodhounds of Broadway," another collection of Damon Runyon stories pieces together to make an ensemble film, without quite as much music. This one unfolds much like a three-act play. The first act takes place during the day on December 31, 1928. The second rings in the New Year and the third shows our characters meeting their (mostly) happy endings the next morning. The fact that 1929 will not be universally kind to all of them adds a bittersweet note to the final frames. Madonna has a small role, and it's not her finest performance, but saddled with the clichéd "showgirl with a heart of gold" character, she does well, and her final moments with co-star Randy Quaid are charming. Quaid himself gives a marvelous performance, as does Julie Hagerty as a "society dame" who'd rather be a gun moll, and Rutger Hauer as a dying gangster in an effective and underplayed morality story.