Albino Alligator

Kevin Spacey’s directorial debut (1996) is obviously the price we’ve had to pay for his Oscar for The Usual Suspectsitself part of the price we’ve been paying for the success of Quentin Tarantino. Honoring his constituency, Spacey directs a script by Christian Forte designed to put us into a Tarantino frame of mind. Three desperate robbers (Matt Dillon, Gary Sinise, William Fichtner) fleeing from a failed heist hole up in a New Orleans bar significantly known as Dino’s Last Chance, a holdover from prohibition, where Faye Dunaway, Viggo Mortensen, Skeet Ulrich, and M. Emmet Walsh as hostages get to act their hearts out while Joe Mantegna as a cop on the outside tries to get in. The set decor is more intricate than any of the characters, the mise en scene fancy but gratuitous, the story strictly standard issue. (JR)

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