Stars: ** 1/2
Rating: R for excessive violence
Run Time: 1 hour, 28 minutes
It’s not easy to pigeonhole this quirky comedy/thriller/noir mob piece that falls into place too little and too late.
eminently watchable John Cusack stars as under-the-radar attorney Charlie
Arglist, who insures himself a merry Christmas by embezzling a cool $2 mil from
While the money lies in wait Charlie dreams of skipping town with sultry businesswoman Renata (Connie Nielsen), the sharp-as-nails owner of the Sweet Cage strip club. As a steely ice storm envelops Wichita Falls Charlie makes plans to woo Renata while watching the back of his plastered drinking buddy Pete Van Heuten (Oliver Platt).
notable for its lack of a linear theme. Charlie deals with the sticky
situations standard for a cold and fateful night but his intentions are vague
at best. A bloody run-in or two with the local underbelly and an unfortunate
encounter with Vic pepper the action but as the plot subtly solidifies the end
credits roll on this
always chew up the scenery and
Nielsen is a bust; a classy gal horribly miscast as a quasi-cheap strip club seductress. The violence is surprising and unexpected, gratuitously pushing the envelope for a black comedy. A mixed bag with saucy highlights.