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Drama - Gangland

True Romance (1993)

Duration1h 59m
RatingsUK: 18, USA: R, Denmark: 15, 
Source of storyAn original screenplay
DirectorTony Scott
Writers/ScriptQuentin Tarantino
StarringChristian Slater, Patricia Arquette, Dennis Hopper, Val Kilmer, Gary Oldman, Brad Pitt, Christopher Walken, Bronson Pinchot, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Rapaport, Saul Rubinek, James Gandolfini, Tom Sizemore,   
RatingsIMDb: 7.9/10 by 221,287 people.  Rotten Tomatoes: 93% by 55 reviewers. Review2view: 8.5/10.

Elevator Pitch: Clarence Worley (Christian Slater), a comic book store assistant, is watching a film in a movie theatre when a young woman hits on him, and they go back to his place where they have sex. She admits she is a call girl and that she was a birthday present for Clarence paid for by the store owner, but that she has fallen in love with him. Clarence goes to the brothel from which the girl, Alabama (Patricia Arquette) works and kills her pimp. He also takes a suitcase which he assumes contains Alabama’s clothing, but is actually full of cocaine. Losing no time Clarence visits his father (Dennis Hopper), an ex-cop for advice and then takes off for LA where his friend Dick Richie (Michael Rapaport) lives. They are on the track of a buyer for the cocaine, but the mob are on their heels.

Content: There is sex but not really any nudity, even when they do it in a phone box in the middle of the day. We see the villainous Drexi Spivey (Gary Oldman) shoot people and steal the suitcase full of cocaine, which later Clarence takes, after he and Drexi fight and the latter is shot. Clarence’s father lives in a trailer next to a railway line and is visited and killed by the mob boss Vincenzo Coccotti (Christopher Walken). In LA Clarence makes contact with producer’s assistant Elliot Blitzer on a roller coaster. Alabama fights with Virgil (James Gandolfini) and kills him with a shot gun. The police get in on the act. The mob arm themselves for a showdown.

A View:  I have seen a lot of movies but had no idea about this one, which although well thought of by the critics, was a box office failure. It has since developed a cult following. I had no idea what to expect and so was pleasantly surprised,  if that is the right expression for a pretty typical Tarantino ultra-violent outing. It now has a cult following. If you are a Tarantino fan, essential viewing. 

Here are a few other films which are now credited with a cult following: Vampire in Brooklyn, Hardware, Highway to Hell

Additional Info: There is a mass of additional info available about this movie. Here’s one item. The majority of the graphic fight between Virgil and Alabama was removed from the Uk version to allow it to get an 18 classification. 

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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