Welcome to Collinwood
WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Five down-on-their-luck half-wits hear of a "sure thing" caper and soon start planning the perfect heist. The only snag is that they are the unluckiest bunch of suckers in the Cleveland suburb of Collinwood.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
This is one of the most entertaining comedies I’ve seen in a long time. It’s sweet, genuinely funny, it’s got a talented and comical cast, fast pacing, a fun score, very unique and well chosen songs, wonderful atmosphere and if that wasn’t enough...George Clooney delivers in one of the funniest cameos I’ve seen an actor do in ages! The story isn’t especially original or intricate; in fact, it’s similar to the first half of Woody Allen’s SMALL TIME CROOKS (dumb crooks muck up an easy job!), but these poor schmucks are so likeable and sweet that you can’t help but root for them and even feel sorry for them and their predicaments. These are just poor, working class guys, each stuck in a bind and willing to stick their necks out to score some dough. In fact, each has a very heart-warming reason for needing the money and that’s why it’s so easy to get attached to these dim-bulbs. The only problem I had with this film was its 86-minute runtime since I actually wanted to spend more time with these sad saps and their even more pathetic city of Collinwood.
I’ve got to mention the cast here because they absolutely make this movie what it is. The crooks are, William H. Macy (always good, also played a dumbass in FARGO), Michael Jeter (usually annoying, but great here), Sam Rockwell (can’t say enough about him, can pick great scripts, charming son-of-a-bitch-- and I’ll forget about CHARLIE’S ANGELS), Andrew Davoli (relative newcomer with tons of potential) and my favorite character Leon played by Isaiah Washington (shows us that he can be a riot in comedies!). Luis Guzman is also in there as the completely incompetent thief who lets this plan slip through his fingers and has got one of the funniest lines in the entire movie (he repeats it constantly during the film*) Gabrielle Union, Patricia Clarkson and Jennifer Esposito (with an adorable accent) round out the cast as “mostly” love interests. In the end, I got the most laughs from the co-producer of this film: George Clooney. You should watch this movie if only for his scenes, which I watched over and over again and they got funnier each time. George Clooney is one hilarious bastard! * see extra features
A fun and “informative” feature entitled “Definitions and Etymologies” involves an explanation to many of the crime lingo used by the losers in this film. This will help clear up some questions you may have while watching the movie. It paints an insightful and quirky picture of the origins of such terms as “Bellini”, “Kupuchnik”, “Mullinski” and others. The theatrical trailer of the film and a very basic cast & crew menu are also thrown into this mix. There are also enhanced features for your DVD-ROM PC. Then there is probably one of the most entertaining features I’ve ever seen…Welcome To Collinwood: Uncensored.
Top 5 reasons to watch this 12-minute feature are:
1) Sam Rockwell pretends he’s a reporter (Guy Storm) and interviews the cast & crew. I thought this guy was funny and charming before I saw this...now I just love him!!
2) George Clooney plays basketball with cast & crew and kicks some serious ass. The man can do no wrong. He sinks jump-shots like Dr.J. I’ve never admired a man more (as a straight guy!) than I do Mr. Clooney. God bless you, sir!
3) Sam Rockwell does his best (or worst?) Chris Walken impressions.
4) The “Your Mother’s a Whore” indie music video. Cast & crew freestyle rap to Luis Guzman shouting constantly “Your Mother’s a Whore”. Jesus, I almost wet myself!
5) Once again, two words: SAM ROCKWELL!
You’ll be denying yourself a hell of a good time if you don’t rent or buy this comedy. No matter what mood you’re in, this’ll do the trick for you anytime. The extras pay off as well, although some audio commentaries would’ve made my day. I loved it, end of story. Oh yeah, I almost forgot: “Your mother’s a whore!”