I watched this filmi because a friend who unlike me is a practicing anthropologist, but who like me shares direct knowledge of the later years of Soviet regimes insisted. He had a point.
If you don't share that latter trait, if stakhanovism and socialist realism mean nothing to you then watching this is probably a waste of time. For the undoubtedly many that do remember the story of the rise and fall of the Soviet empireii (and undoubtedly see it unwind on the other side of the Bering straight nowadays), this little stupidity is quite metainteresting.
The hero, a youth, fights with the pressures of burgeois society (represented by a well to do girlfriend lawyer and probably Jewish at that). To find himself, he applies himself to "the lower labour". When his boss tries to promote him via shenanigans he quits, and goes to fulfill his destiny as a... pool hustler.
The film is really a horrible Rounders ripoff, except pool rather than poker (which practically means ten truly bland and repetitive seconds of cue-on-ball interaction repeated like thirty or so times throughout), what appears to be a mentally retarded stone golem to replace Matt Damon (perhaps a defensible choice), a gaping, screaming absence of Edward Norton and third grader tricks like the "I bet I can drink these two beers before you can drink those two shots but don't touch my glass" promoted as 100 dollars' worth of hustler amusement. Seriously.
As the character itself says, "this shit should be illegal". It should be, it's too stupid.
I didn't finish it, because I got interrupted by the news that the US Government is suing Standard & Poor because it hacked Feedwire. I guess it's time someone sends our square jawed friends a nice 100 foot tall statue of Brejnev to replace that worn down whore the French gifted them a while back. Everything rusts eventually.———
- Poolhall Junkies, 2002, by Mars Callahan, with Christopher Walken, Chazz Palminteri. [↩]
- Yes, there was a rise. The Soviets put the first satellite in orbit, and for most of the 50s and 60s the only reason Allied forces still maintained a tenuous grasp in continental Europe was simply that the Red Army didn't bother to push them out. Other than for that both the tactical and strategic realities of the field were unmitigatedly grim for one of the sides of "democracy". [↩]