User Reviews (20)

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  • In Belfast, the criminal Mad Dog Flynn (David O'Hara) cannot have a baby with his girlfriend. The gambler Jimbo (Martin McCann) has a baby and owes five thousand dollars to Mad Dog. The gangster proposes to exchange the debt for the baby and Jimbo decides to heist the Fish Market with his friend Sox (Conor MacNeil) using an automatic weapon from the IRA that belongs to Sox's grandfather. Meanwhile, the American Joe Maguire (Brendan Fraser) flees from his wife, whose father is a powerful mobster in Boston, and comes to Belfast to run his cousin's antique business. Joe dates his neighbor Sophie (Yaya DaCosta) and notes that Jimbo is frequently staring at him on the street. The clumsy Jimbo steals a suitcase from the Fish Market without knowing that it belongs to Mad Dog. However his escape plan fails and he runs to Joe's store. However he accidentally shots his gun and the police puts the place under siege. When Jimbo tells to Joe that he might be his son, the American sympathizes with the hoodlum and decides to help him negotiating with the police.

    "Whole Lotta Sole" is a corny comedy lost in many unnecessary subplots. The story has a funny beginning and good gags but in a certain moment becomes boring and mawkish. My vote is five.

    Title (Brazil): "O Negociador" ("The Negotiator")
  • Most reviewers gave a high score to this film and with a good reason, this is a good comedy, but the score displayed is around 4, that is simply put, ridiculous.

    If you enjoyed good British comedies like walking ned divine, holly water and saving grace you will surely enjoy this one and Brendan fits very well in it as the American in ireland caught in the middle of good mess.

    Don't miss it because one person had a low opinion of this film, there are those who will find the eiffel tower, the grand canyon, the beatles and mozart to be horrible and worthless.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Im no great fan of movies from my home country. Usually grim or trying to be funny when they're not. But this little movie has charm and wit a plenty although some laughs may be lost on you if you're not from Northern Ireland. There are many scenes of Belfast and the little street where the antique shop is situated was filmed in Downpatrick. There were a few laugh out loud scenes for me, where one of the gypsy children gets his head stuck in a window and Brendan Fraser uses soap to get him out and he doesn't know what it is. Or the scene where fish get shot in St Georges Market and they put flags on them to mark the bullet holes including a crab which has a hole in it. There are many nods also to the current peace here which was done in a light hearted way. All in all i truly enjoyed this movie and it was nice to see a film made about NI which didn't portray Belfast as grim and humourless. It certainly seems now that Northern Ireland has become big business for the movie industry as we enjoy regular film crews coming to our (mostly) untapped locations. Long may it continue.
  • "We were robbed, he got the brown bag. Yes, that brown bag." Jimbo is a young father who has a gambling problem. When he gets in deep to a local mob boss he has one choice. Pay him back or give him his son. With his back against the wall he decides to rob a fish market, but for a non-criminal things don't always go right. This first and foremost is a really funny comedy. Just seeing the events unfold on its own is really funny and entertaining to watch but when mixed with the dialog it makes it that much more fun to watch. This movie combines the best of British crime movies with American comedy. While this movie won't win any awards it is one of the most entertaining movies that I have seen in a while and I recommend this. The type of movie you can just put in and not really have to think about, just watch and enjoy. I liked it. Overall, very entertaining and very much worth seeing. I give it a B+.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Reminded me a bit of Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. A debt to the mob, a botched robbery and everything that could go wrong does. Crime drama and comedy in one. Brendan Fraser is under rated as an actor. I love him. Very authentic in what he does. Colm Meaney as always is an absolute treat as the lead detective charged with sorting everything out. Worth the watch for sure. Can't speak to the authenticity of the accents. There are a couple unexpected reveals and twists that keep it interesting. The music included was wonderful. I rated this 8 of 10 - feel it is not being given a fair shot. I don't know why the title of Stand Off was used in the US as opposed to "Whole Lotta Soul" (which I like better). I watched this via On Demand Comcast/Xfinity.
  • About ten minutes into this film l, like others before me l am sure found myself making an association with Guy Ritchie's seminal Brit crim films. That is no bad thing. However instead of looking for more parallels, l was instead transported into other areas by the film, which for all its comic elements, manages to hit a number of other bases as well. Director Terry George, while giving a nod to Lock, Stock etc, in passing decided to move into other, unexplored territory. So while there is some comedy, there is also drama and even suspense in places. The plot in places may seem too far fetched for some, but it is all tied together fairly neatly. There are also some references to 'the troubles' and even a family that is divided between Protestant and Catholic. Some critics will point out that the film is making light of a serious subject but anyone who has seen Four Lions will know that a little laughter in such situations can go a long way to relieving the tension. Brendon Fraser gives a solid performance as an American hiding out from a domestic disaster that has mob implications. The characters he finds himself among are a diverse group, which shows how cosmopolitan many European cities have become over the last twenty years. Lurking in the background is of course a menacing gangster with sinister intentions, a hapless victim or two and a crusty copper played with great aplomb by Colm Meaney, who steals most scenes. There are a couple of cases of mistaken identity that help add a layer or two of confusion, some cardboard cutout characters, plenty of incompetence and lots of differing family values. After about ten minutes l stopped trying to make associations with other films and simply settled back to enjoy this engaging little caper.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    From start to finish an impossible to believe story, a title that really has nothing to do with the plot, bad accents, worse acting and really poor direction from Terry George.

    The lines delivered are almost forced, when Jimbo is trying to cajole the babysitter with "Twenty-five pounds", delivered straight out of a speech and drama school, it's as though they were ashamed of being from Belfast. Very poor editing, Jimbo runs around a corner from the antiques shop on a sunny Downpatrick afternoon into a deary Ormeau Road.

    Just really awful stuff, an hour and a half of my life that I'm not going to get back.
  • Despite the low rating, I watched this because the storyline sounded interesting. Northern Ireland, crime, SAS...and a comedy. The plot is simple and you can work out most of what happens during the film. However, the script is entertaining, with a few laugh out loud lines. Colm Meaney plays his usual role, a dry, cynical detective. He has some of the better lines and generally carries the film. Brendan Fraser is fine but his role could have been developed further. Without giving things away, his background could have had more of an impact. He probably deserved to have more funny lines as well. Negatives - quite why the SAS are there I don't know. This could have been made into more of a story. Either make them contribute to the organised chaos, (making things worse or better, I don't mind), or omit them from the film entirely. This is probably more a British film than one for everybody. Perhaps the review which criticises the film is more the latter. I would give this about a 7/ 7.5 to be honest, watchable, enjoyable but not great.
  • STAND OFF is an atrocious black comedy from Northern Ireland. It's supposedly a spoof of the popular heist genre, featuring hard-knuckle gangsters, a stand-off with police, and various plot intrigues between the characters. It feels as though the guys who wrote it swallowed a whole load of cinema including plenty of Tarantino and then simply tried to emulate it themselves.

    The result? An abject failure; STAND OFF is embarrassingly bad, never more so than in the random spaghetti western spoof moment which is excruciating. The characters are underdrawn and I didn't laugh once at any of the supposedly quirky humour. The only thing I can say about this film is that the cast is semi-professional so it's a shame they're wasted in such a production. Brendan Fraser has never looked more desperately out of place although Colm Meaney is reliable as always in a stock part and David O'Hara is effortlessly imposing as the gangster mastermind. Conleth Hill (Varys from GAME OF THRONES) and Tom Hollander cameo.
  • I have always been a fan of Brendan Fraser, who excels at playing gauche clunking heroes.

    The rest of the cast, though unknown to me turned in great performances. My congratulations to all involved.

    I am Irish and I appreciated the humour and dialogue in this movie.

    The plot kept me guessing to the end.

    Acting and direction were perfect. There are plenty of LOL moments for those with healthy humour glands.

    This film's quality revived my drooping spirit.

    I will keep this director on my watch list-I also enjoyed Hotel Rwanda.
  • paaskynen8 September 2013
    This film is an attempt to make a British crime comedy for an American audience. It gets off to a promising start (if we disregard the wholly unnecessary exposition explaining why Brendan Fraser's character left the United States). The three main story lines are introduced and succeed in raising interest in the protagonists, but as more and more superfluous side characters are drawn into it, the plot starts to unravel. Yaya Dacosta turns into a cardboard cutout placed in the scenes to present stock reactions in the background. What little chemistry existed between her and Fraser evaporates in the silliness of what are supposed to be plot twists. Fraser and McCann had no spark to begin with. Really, this film is carried between Colm Meaney and Michael Legge.
  • Enjoyed this light comedy heist. It is kind of like an old screwball comedy. It is fast moving film with a lot of twists and turns to the plot. There is no gritty realism and very little black humor. It is filmed in Northern Ireland with a very likable cast including Brendan Fraser, Colm Meaney, and Yaya DaCosta.
  • It's as simple as that: take your classic heist movie, an Irish context, lots of unexpected situation and a real Murphy's law rampage.

    The movie is fine, entertaining, with a handful of punchlines that made me laugh.

    Acting is more than good, with veterans alongside young, very young and child actors all doing a great job.

    This is not a masterpiece nor will never become a cult, it's just a nicely made funny wee movie you won't regret watching.

    Have a pint, sit back and enjoy it.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    What a piece of crap! A kind of indie-film. A movie that doesn't makes the viewers enjoy each scene. Does not have an effect on viewers. Seriously, I almost fell asleep while watching this one. Only Brendan Fraser acts good above all of them. The gangsters doesn't exactly looks like a real gangster. That boy who robbed the shop has an awful acting skills. Plus some of the scenes has no significant to the story. It's as if the story can go on without those scenes. Like those three stooges who acts as a side-kick of the angry big woman. What the hell did they do? Except for selling the sofa to the antique shop, I think they could go on with filming without them being in it.
  • kosmasp13 October 2013
    Whole Lotta Sale or Stand off, whichever title this is being released (Germany was the former), I think will define the expectations of people watching it. I can not account for that, off course. Stand off does sound more intriguing, which can be seen in the main picture, but maybe says too much, while Whole Lotta Sale does not say anything at all, about the movie as it is.

    Brendan Fraser has a nice little role, but it's the supporting cast, that makes the movie. There are some refreshing and funny takes on things (being Scottish vs. the Rest, Family issues in general and more). If you can dig those little things, you might come to like this movie more than the rating suggests on IMDb
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Brendan Fraser wasted his talents with this piece of junk movie. If it was meant to be funny, It's not. Whoever wrote the screenplay needs to go back to college to take a few more writing courses. Plain and simple. This movie sucks. Brendan's career has been with ups and downs with he is a very good actor. The movie companies haven't given him credit for his talents. But in this movie his talents were used in a very wasteful manner. He is better than that. Again, wasted talent in the part of Brendan Fraser. He needs to choose his roles better. I am glad this movie was on DVD and not on the theaters. It would have been a waste of money. Again, Brendan Fraser is a great actor but his role in this movie sucks.
  • If there's one actor that barely anyone hears about anymore it's actor Brendan Fraser. What now seems eons ago, Fraser was the top man after the hit action movie The Mummy (1999) was released. Not only did it showcase Fraser as a worthy candidate for action movies but it also made him very popular. Then about a decade later, he dropped off the face of the earth. As stated in his filmography, he's still making movies but for the most part it's voice work or live action films but with very limited releases. It's sad because Fraser is a very talented actor. Making things even more melodramatic is this small budget thriller that has trouble keeping everything together.

    The story is about a struggling father (Martin McCann) who is looking to pay back a crime boss who lent him money. And like most situations that end up like this, they can't make the payment and are threatened by the boss to pay up or suffer dire consequences. In this case, the threat is the boss taking his son away. This particular plot isn't anything new but it works. And this movie would work out totally fine if that's the only plot that it stuck to. Unfortunately, that's not the case. Terry George the director and writer, along with Thomas Gallagher (another writer who only has one other credit) included a number of other subplots that were not necessary to have. And it's not like Terry George is a bad director, he also headed Hotel Rwanda (2004) which many people favor.

    But it's the writing that really takes away the possibilities to this movie. Along with the crime boss plot, there's a subplot about a character being a father and not knowing about it (and in the end that isn't clearly resolved), a character has relations to a mob and tries to flee from their troubles (and that isn't clearly resolved either), and there's also subplot dealing with having to keep a secret from a person they care about. It's just too many stories in one situation and this makes this hour and a half minute thriller feel longer than it's supposed to be. What may confuse viewers though is the genre that this movie is putting itself into.

    Here, it is labeled as a comedy and drama. But after viewing it, the audience may consider it more of a thriller and drama. There are a couple of scenes that may have people chuckle but it's questionable whether those moments were intentional or not. I didn't laugh very often because there didn't seem to be anything too funny to laugh at. I can certainly look back and recall the scenes that were supposed to be funny but they didn't carry much charm to them to make the audience laugh. They were very weak attempts. There was definitely drama though, because of all the subplots. And although the subplots were jumbled together, the story line did have some interesting character development. Of course, the effectiveness dropped when the subplots weren't resolved however. The movie may also feel long because the title accurately portrays the majority of the running time. The conflict is presented as a stand off hostage situation.

    With this kept in mind, it will be obvious to viewers that Mr. Fraser will not be doing much of his action work he did in the past. The main plot doesn't even focus on him which is kind of sad considering he is what would grab people to see this film. As for acting goes, it's alright. Fraser does his best but again because he's not the character of main focus, the audience may feel cheated leaving a disappointed feeling. What was different to experience though was the slew of Irish actors in the cast. Colm Meaney (Law Abiding Citizen (2009) as the detective did have some charm. Also actors Martin McCann (Clash of the Titans (2010)) and David O'Hara (Hotel Rwanda (2004)) were interesting to listen too as well. Even Yaya DeCosta (a Siren from Tron: Legacy (2010)) gave a unique performance as an African refugee.

    Every other element to the story was decent too. Because the setting takes place in Ireland, it's nice to see a different set of scenery than always in New York or some other American city. That's credit to Mr. Des Whelan. He also works the camera for many other films recently such as Thor: The Dark World (2013) and The Expendables 2 (2012). Foy Vance's musical composition to the film was OK. Nothing that stands out, considering much of the time it was absent or replaced by what seemed to be Irish folk music. This seemed out of place for the scenes they were inserted into. But there were also some dramatic scenes that did work with his music. That's why my opinion is on the fence for his score. Overall, it's watchable but it can feel cluttered.

    Although it includes Fraser in the cast list, his presence feels wasted, even though all the actors have less star power. Along with a script stuffed with numerous subplots, the film may feel longer than it's supposed to.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I tend to mark more grudgingly than the IMDb average. Personally I would rate this film no higher than a 6, but it is as good as many 7s on IMDb so I was moved to write my first ever review here and give it 7.

    It is a black comedy, but more comic than black. The tone lies somewhere between "Lock Stock" and the old Ealing comedies.

    Lots of different characters and comic themes are introduced but not made the most of. I guess the problem was lack of time rather than lack of budget, a large slice of which presumably went on Brendan Fraser's salary. I suppose the sad reality is that every movie needs at least one name well known to US audiences to get funded but he is certainly not needed in this film.


    In fact the whole back-story of his US mafia links was an unwanted intrusion.

    ****END OF SPOILER***

    Terry George has a solid reputation as a writer (two Oscar nominations) and as a Director (he won an Oscar for best short "The Shore" and directed "Hotel Rwanda"). His talent is obvious here, but it all seems to need a rework and final polish. Some themes needed to be either further developed or excised (Fraser's new girlfriend, Meaney's son, the SAS, etc). As things stand, they are just distractions.

    Those who struggle with the Irish accents might appreciate subtitles, as the score sometimes intrudes, blurring the dialogue. The latter alternates between dryly humorous and banal, as if George had let someone else complete the screenplay.

    Well worth a watch, but narrowly misses being a much better film.
  • nathan-clarke26 September 2013
    I was an extra in this film and have been waiting for ages for it to come out, I have just ordered it off Amazon. In some of the scenes I was standing right beside David O'Hara as he was talking to his crew and the camera. It was a great experience and I got my photograph taking with so many characters from the film. If you live in Northern Ireland go to you might get a spot in Game Of Thrones, Dracula or any of the other great shows filmed here.

    The whole experience was great, I was looking for the film Whole Lotta Sole which was the original title, until I came across its new title Stand Off...

    so I'm hoping I will see myself.... cant wait...

    The trailer looks great !
  • leonblackwood7 September 2013
    Review: This movie was bloody terrible. I got completely tricked by the poster. I thought that it at least be funny, but it wasn't even that. Brendan Fraser's movies have gone really downhill and as for the rest of the cast, they were just as bad. It just turned out to be a hostage situation that goes wrong, but its no Dog Day Afternoon. To be honest, I wasn't expecting that much from a Brendan Fraser movie because most of his films are rubbish, but this was really bad. I'm not surprised that it went straight to DVD. Avoid!

    Round-Up: If you look at Brendan Fraser's previous movies, its surprising that he is still getting roles, and this movie will definitely be forgotten pretty quickly. Brought to you by the director who made movies like In The Name Of The Father & The Boxer, I'm surprised that this movie was so bad. I can't really remember what happened in the film because my brain switched off halfway through so don't bother to put this in your DVD list.

    I recommend this movie to people who like there movies about a hostage situation that goes wrong. 1/10