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Glengarry Glen Ross

Glengarry Glen Ross
Al Pacino, Jack Lemmon, Alan Arkin, Ed Harris, Kevin Spacey and Alec Baldwin

Rated: R For profanity.
Reviewed by: Chris  
Release date: October 2, 1992 Released by: New Line Cinema

Playwright David Mamet (Homicide) wrote the screenplay from his Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name.

The all male cast stars Al Pacino (Ricky Roma), Jack Lemmon (Shelley Levine), Alan Arkin and Ed Harris as salesmen and Kevin Spacey as their office manager. They work for a New York based company that sells properties in Arizona.

It's set in an unattractive, dark office on the second floor of an old building. A big shot (Alec Baldwin) from the downtown office comes in and after insulting all of them tells them that the end of the month sales figures will determine that the top salesman wins a Cadillac and low man will be fired. This sets up the need to produce in a final frantic 24 hours.

Shelley is the smooth talking veteran who is in a slump, replaced by the younger Roma, who's on selling hot streak. The added pressure of losing their jobs makes the men stoop to new lows. Where they were once fast-talking hustlers, they now consider theft and bribery.

Even though you would never want to get friendly with any of these guys, you can't help feeling sorry for them. The acting is terrific, especially Arkin as a quietly defeated yet dignified man and Lemmon, who though slick and unprincipled is still worthy of sympathy.

It's unfortunate that their acting is overshadowed by the language. Manet has seen fit to bombard the audience with continual obscenities. Each character's dialogue is interchangeable, because they all talk exactly alike, ranting and raving at one another in a barrage of four letter words. People don't usually speak and react in exactly the same way. It's a pity to have such great acting and so much emotion expended and nothing coming out, but the save dialogue over and over again.

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