Winter 1988. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania is Russ Richard's oyster, there where he is the popular weatherman for WTPA Channel 6 News. That popularity allows him many perks in the city, especially at his local Denny's. Things start to go off the rails for him as this winter is unseasonably warm and not white, meaning that no one is buying from his snowmobile dealership, and none of his usual sources are willing to advance him any money to tide him over this rough business patch. In turning to Gig, a slightly shady acquaintance who operates a strip club and bar, Russ decides to turn to illegal activities to get the money he needs. After one failed attempt at that criminal life which has its own negative consequences, Russ instead decides on a lottery scam, his partners in crime being Gig, and Crystal Latroy, Russ' colleague at WTPA as the Pennsylvania Lucky Six Lottery girl - the lottery numbers which are drawn live on air during WTPA's supper hour news - and his sometime lover. Crystal is also sleeping with her and Russ' married boss, WTPA manager Dick Simmons, in an effort to get ahead in the world. Russ, Gig and Crystal are able to devise a plan to win the next jackpot, worth $6.4 million. As they enact the plan, which requires the assistance from a few others, the plan also potentially starts to go off the rails as those in the know and those who think that they know something about the fraud want what they believe is their fair share which, if Russ would agree, would get him further in the hole than he was before going into the venture. But as things get more and more dangerous and potentially lethal, Russ, Crystal and Gig begin to have diverging views on how to get out from the increasing mess based on their own tolerance of the risk for the potential reward. —Huggo
Not great, but good for a few laughs
Do not go into this movie expecting sheer hilarity. Do not go into this movie expecting character development. Do not go into this movie expecting realism or a positive portrayal of Harrisburg, PA and its residents. If you can do that, you might be able to enjoy this for what it is- an unrealistic situation comedy with a couple of surprises and laughs. Think "Disorganized Crime" with more humor. Travolta is actually fairly low-key, Kudrow is not as annoying as I expected, and decent cameos/supporting performances by Ed O'Neill, Darryl Mitchell & Bill Pullman (as good cop/bad cop), Michael Moore (!?!), and Tim Roth. Set your expectations low and you should enjoy it.
- Feb 28, 2001
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