Aside

Sweet Spot

Well, ladies and gentlemen, we are now approaching a “sweet spot” in Adrien’s career, where several films in a row are really good (or at least his performances).

  • Restaurant
  • Oxygen
  • Summer of Sam
  • Liberty Heights
  • Bread & Roses
  • Harrison’s Flowers
  • Love the Hard Way

This will be a fun batch for me to write, so my pace should pick up some.

The Thin Red Line

Cast: Jim Caviezel, Sean Penn, Nick Nolte, Elias Koteas, Ben Chaplin, Woody Harrelson, John Cusack, Adrien Brody, Miranda Otto, John C. Reilly… it’s a very large cast, so I’ll just stop there.

Written by: James Jones (novel), Terrence Malick (screenplay)

Director: Terrence Malick

Released: January 15, 1999 (U.S.)

Summary: An adaptation of James Jones’ autobiographical novel of the same name, focusing on the battle at Guadalcanal during World War II.

Overall score: 7.5/10
Brody score: I can’t score him, because the editing chopped his performance to bits!

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The Undertaker’s Wedding

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Cast:
Adrien Brody, Jeff Wincott, Kari Wuhrer, Burt Young, Holly Gagnier, Ralph George

Writer: John Bradshaw
Director: John Bradshaw

Overall score: 4/10
Brody performance: 6/10

Release: February, 1998

The title alone should tell you this one is a comedy. The Undertaker’s Wedding is definitely just for laughs, there’s nothing overly deep or meaningful going on. If you’ve seen films like Mafia! and Corky Romano, you’ll have some idea of what to expect here. It’s a semi-slapstick comedy about an undertaker named Mario Bellini (Brody) who gets most of his work from mafia killings.

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The Last Time I Committed Suicide

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Starring: Thomas Jane, Keanu Reeves, Claire Forlani, Gretchen Mol, Adrien Brody, Cristine Rose, Marg Helgenberger, John Doe

Written by: Stephen Kay, based on a letter by Neal Cassady

Director: Stephen Kay

Overall score: 7/10
*Brody performance score: 7/10

*Adrien doesn’t have enough screen time in this one for me to fully analyze the role, but he’s delightful when he does appear.
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Six Ways to Sunday

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Arnie is basically half the guys I went to college with.

Cast: Norman Reedus, Deborah Harry, Elina Löwensohn, Peter Appel, Holter Graham, Adrien Brody, Jerry Adler, Issac Hayes, Clark Gregg

Writers: screenplay by Adam Bernstein and Marc Gerald; based on the novel “Portrait of a Young Man Drowning” by Charles Perry.

Producer: Jonathan Demme

Director: Adam Bernstein

Released: Made in 1997, released in the U.S. in 1999.

Rated: R

Overall score: 6/10
Brody score: 6/10

I’m going to level with you: this is a strange movie. Dark comedy mixed with gangster flick. Disturbing, violent, dark and somehow funny. If you’re a fan of films by the Cohen Brothers (such as Fargo), then you might dig this. In spite of the bloodshed and off-putting subject matter, this film is actually not bad.
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Solo


Writers: Screenplay by David Corley, based on the novel “Weapon” by Robert Mason.

Director: Norberto Barba

Starring: Mario Van Peebles, William Sadler, Barry Corbin, Adrien Brody, Seidy Lopez, Abraham Verduzco, Farnecio de Bernal…

Rated: R
Released: 1996

Overall score: 4/10
Brody performance: 7/10

I’m going to be straight with you, my dear readers: this movie is not great. It has its impressive moments, but overall… it’s kind of cheesy. As with Bullet, though, I think it may have impressed me more upon its release in 1996. 
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Bullet


Cast: Mickey Rourke, Tupac Shakur, Ted Levine, Adrien Brody, John Enos III, Jerry Grayson, Suzanne Shepherd… Donnie Wahlberg has a small role, also.

Written by: Mickey Rourke (as “Sir Eddie Cook”) and Bruce Rubenstein

Directed by: Julien Temple

Released: Film credits state 1995, IMDb states 1996. So I’m guessing there was a release delay.

Rated: R and “unrated” versions

Overall score: 5/10

Brody performance: 6/10

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Ten Benny

also known as Sweet Jersey, occasionally known as Nothing to Lose

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Overall score:
6/10
Brody performance: 7/10

Cast: Adrien Brody, Michael Gallagher, Sybil Temchen, Tony Gillan, James E. Moriarty, Lisa Roberts Gillan, Frank Vincent.

Written & Directed by: Eric Bross

Released: 1995
Rated: R

Screen cap gallery: right here

Ten Benny is one of those films that is kind of hit and miss. It comes close to greatness many times, but comes close to cheesy nearly as often.

On paper, our main character, Ray (Adrien Brody) is… well… an a**h***. The relationship with his long-suffering girlfriend, Joanne, is a troubling one. He seems to have little to no respect for his father (although that changes some), he fails his friends at every turn, and he basically uses his job as a way to make connections for his gambling addiction. Continue reading

Rebel Highway: Jailbreakers

Angel and Skinny

A positive thing I can say about Jailbreakers is that Adrien’s character, “Skinny” (that’s the only name he’s ever given) appears right away. So… it has that going for it.

My overall score: 2/10 (that’s generous)
Brody performance score: 5/10

Cast: Shannen Doherty, Antonio Sabato Jr., Adrien Brody, Sean Whalen, Adrienne Barbeau… and what amounts to a cameo from Charles Napier.

Written by: Debra Hill, Gigi Vorgan

Produced by: Lou Arkoff, Debra Hill, Willie Kutner, Llewellyn Wells and Amy Grauman Danziger (associate producer)

Directed by: William Friedkin

Genre: Made-for-TV drama

Running Time: 1 hour, 16 minutes

Released: 1994

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Angels in the Outfield

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My overall score: 5/10
Brody performance score: 5/10

Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Milton Davis Jr., Danny Glover, Brenda Fricker, Tony Danza, Christopher Lloyd, Dermot Mulroney, Taylor Negron, Adrien Brody, Matthew McConaughey… it’s a big cast.

Writers of the original (1951): Dorothy Kingsley, George Wells, Richard Conlin

This version: Dorothy Kingsley, George Wells, Holly Goldberg Sloan

Director: William Dear

Genre(s): Comedy, Family, Fantasy

Running time: 1 hour, 42 minutes

Released: July, 1994

Rated: PG

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