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Laramie Movie Scope: Get Shorty

A funny, smart mobster-Hollywood comedy

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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November 6, 1995 -- ``Get Shorty'' is a very funny and entertaining film starring John Travolta. The characters in the film are off-beat and interesting. The dialogue is a pleasure to hear. The dialogue comes direct from the book by Elmore Leonard, which reads almost like a screenplay.

Reportedly, Travolta was the one who insisted that the original lines from the book be put back in the screenplay, which earlier had been dumbed down, Hollywood style. Travolta plays Chili Palmer, a mob bill collector who dreams of making movies. Travolta plays a character who is as smart as his character was dumb in ``Pulp Fiction.'' He's self-assured, cool and seems entirely at ease in the role.

Palmer ends up in Hollywood on one of his debt-collecting jobs and likes the place so much, he decides to stay. One of the reasons he likes the place is that he realizes he is smarter and tougher than than any of the successful people he meets, and he knows he can be a player in the movie business.

Gene Hackman turns in another gem of a performance as sleazy film director Harry Zimm. Dennis Farina, who usually plays heavies, turns in a great comic performance as dim-witted crime boss ``Bones'' Barboni. Delroy Lindo also turns in a good performance as another hood in the story.

The plot has plenty of twists and turns. Some of it isn't very believable, but it sure is fun to follow. This film rates an A.

Click here for links to places to buy this movie in video and/or DVD format, the soundtrack, books, even used videos, games and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Copyright © 1995 Robert Roten. All rights reserved.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.
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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)