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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I’m baa-aack!

When I received an email stating this domain was coming up for renewal, I made a choice… I’m keeping it. I’ll start writing again this week.

There will also be a companion YouTube channel this time around. Some things are just better expressed in video, rather than text alone.

King of the Hill

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Now, we come to one that is definitely in my top 10 of Adrien’s performances.

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My overall score: 8/10
Brody performance score: 9/10

Cast: Jeroen Krabbe’, Lisa Eichhorn, Karen Allen, Spalding Gray, Elizabeth McGovern, and Jesse Bradford as Aaron (featuring: Adrien Brody, Amber Benson, Katherine Heigl and Lauren Hill)

Written by: A.E. Hotchner (memoir), Steven Soderbergh (screenplay)

Produced by: Barbara Maltby, Albert Berger, Ron Yerxa

Directed by: Steven Soderbergh

Genre: Drama, Biography/History

Running Time: 1 hour, 43 minutes

Rated: PG-13

Released: 1993

King of the Hill is, to use an overused phrase: a powerful film.

It gives you an unflinching look into The Great Depression (a time of great economic hardship in the 1930s) from a young man’s perspective.

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The Boy Who Cried Bitch

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Adrien in the film

pardon the Dutch subtitles


My overall score: 5/10
Brody performance: 7/10

Cast (opening credits order): Harley Cross, Karen Young, Dennis Boutsikaris, Adrien Brody, Gene Canfield, Moira Kelly

Written by: Catherine May Levin

Produced by: Louis Tancredi

Directed by: Juan Jose Campanella

Genre: Drama, Thriller

Running Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Released: 1991

Rated: Not rated (would be “R”)

Full disclosure: The first time I watched this movie (last November), I basically watched Adrien Brody’s scenes. The second time (this summer), I skimmed through to get the gist of it. This time, I figured I needed to really pay attention to the entire film if I was to review it. So I did. Also, I don’t own this film (I’ve never found an official release), I watch it via YouTube (a VHS rip with Dutch subtitles).

In all honesty, this is a very unsettling and dark story and is hard to watch at times. It is almost a cautionary tale about being a more involved parent (and seeking help for your own issues, lest you pass down worse ones).

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New York Stories: Life Without Zoe

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My overall score: 3/10
Brody performance:
cannot be rated

Opening credits read: “Starring Tally and Giancarlo and introducing Heather. Co-starring Don, Jenny and Jimmy as Jimmy. Written by Francis and Sofia. Produced by Fred and Fred.”

Closing credits elaborate: Talia Shire, Giancarlo Giannini, Heather McComb, Don Novello, Jenny Nichols and James Keane.

Produced by: Fred Roos & Fred Fuchs

Written by: Francis Coppola & Sofia Coppola

Directed by: Francis Coppola (credited minus the Ford)

Genre: Short film/”family”

Run time: I believe it’s 35 minutes for just the “Zoe” segment

Released: 1989

Rated: PG

Discussing Adrien’s performance in this one is all but impossible. He doesn’t speak and is only seen in the background of a poorly-lit room. Continue reading

Home At Last

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My overall score: 6/10
Brody performance score: 6.5/10

Cast (in opening credits order): Frank Converse, Caroline Lagerfelt, Sasha Radetsky, and Adrien Brody as Billy.

Producer: Chris Brigham

Written & Directed by: David deVries

Genre: A family drama about farm life and values, similar in tone to say, “Old Yeller” or “Where the Red Fern Grows.”

Running time: 59 minutes

Released: 1988

Rated: unrated, but I’d say it’s a “G”

Billy is a tough troublemaker from New York, trying to fit in with a Swedish immigrant family on a farm in Nebraska. There are some bumps along the way, but the story of Billy’s transformation plays out nicely in the film’s short run time.

As we start out, a prologue (black screen, white text and a voice over) provides some background to the story. “From 1853 to 1929,” the voice explains, “over [150,000] homeless orphans were sent west to new homes and new lives on ‘orphan trains.'”

We then open on New York City, 1882. There, we are introduced to Billy (Adrien Brody), who is petting and speaking to a carriage horse named Susie. He then greets customers boarding a carriage, who fail to place a tip in Billy’s outstretched hand.

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