Love or Money?
Release Date: June 03, 2005
Starring: Christian Slater, Selma Blair,
John Heard, Angie Harmon,
Kevin Tighe, Colm Foere, and
Genre: Action Thriller/Political
Distributor: Deal Street Pictures,
Inc./Front Street Films
Director: Harvey Kahn
Executive Producer: David Leuschen, Mark Shafir,
and Christian Slater
Producer: Chris Dorr, Ruth Epstein,
Harvey Kahn, and Robert Lee
Writer: Ruth Epstein
Address Comments To:Front Street Films
1620 Broadway, Suite E
Santa Monica, CA 90404
Phone: (310) 264-1400
Fax Phone: (310) 264-6688
THE DEAL stars Christian Slater as Tom Hansen, an up and coming investment banker who stumbles on to the deal of a life time and gets much more than he bargained. After the mysterious murder of his close friend in the oil business, Tom becomes a key player in a $20 billion takeover bid for a Russian oil company. Tom finds himself in an ethical dilemma when he discovers that the deal is not only dishonest, it’s illegal.
Selma Blair plays Abbey, a young new associate straight out of grad school and Tom’s new love interest. Idealistic and out to save the world, Abbey stumbles onto the secrets of Tom’s deal. The two protagonists put the pieces of the dangerous puzzle together simultaneously though independently of each other.
Tom and Abbey find themselves in too deep and unable to back out when threats, kidnapping and murder become a part of negotiations. It is no longer a choice between right and wrong, love or money, but life and death.
THE DEAL is generally a good story if clichés can be avoided. Regrettably, the movie is somewhat of a giant cliché in and of itself. Guy meets girl and upsets the wrong people, and then threats, car chases and gunfights ensue with some colorful language thrown in for effect. To be fair, even the most stereotypical action thriller can bring entertainment and escape to many viewers, but this movie doesn’t commit itself enough to the action genre to qualify. What viewers are left with are an hour of watching a banker going to work and then another hour of quasi-action that’s too predictable to be a thrilling mystery. On a more positive note, the acting was above average and very believable.
The slow and detrimental pace of the film is born from a fairly good idea. Make Wall Street and all its lingo and practices understandable to the common viewer. This effort makes the movie feel very realistic and even more disturbing than your average thriller, especially once people started dying. However, it makes for an uneven picture and a somewhat tedious experience.
THE DEAL has a good message about ethics in business, the violence is not too graphic nor is it glorified, and the protagonists are fighting for a good cause, but the foul language makes this movie difficult to accept. Also, the movie portrays fornication as a normal and decent affair, which goes against traditional moral values and God’s moral principles. Finally, the movie’s mixed worldview contains a strong anti-capitalist message depicting Wall Street as a “den of snakes” where oil and money automatically equal crime, with a slight shading of anti-American sentiment.
THE DEAL is somewhat cliché with a tendency to drag. The idea is clever and comes at an appropriate time, but the story’s pace is lackluster. THE DEAL has a good message about ethics in business, the violence is not too graphic nor is it glorified, and the protagonists are fighting for a good cause, but plenty of foul language makes this film difficult to accept. Also, the movie portrays fornication as a normal and decent affair, which goes against traditional moral values and God’s moral principles. Finally, the movie’s mixed worldview contains a strong anti-capitalist message depicting Wall Street as a “den of snakes” where oil and money automatically equal crime, with a slight shading of anti-American sentiment.