Grosse Pointe Blank (1997) - Rotten Tomatoes

Grosse Pointe Blank (1997)

Grosse Pointe Blank (1997)

Grosse Pointe Blank



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Grosse Pointe Blank Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

Most people have trouble deciding what to say when they're asked what they've been doing with their lives at a High School reunion, but Martin Blank (as played by John Cusack) has a different problem than most -- he has to make his career sound less interesting than it actually is. Martin is a former CIA operative who is now a freelance hit man, making good money for killing people he doesn't know. However, Martin's game has been a bit off lately; he's no longer happy in his work, and both his secretary Marcella (Joan Cusack) and his psychiatrist, Dr. Oatman (Alan Arkin), who is more than a bit nervous about having a hired assassin as a patient, think that Martin should accept an offered assignment in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, his old home town, which would conveniently coincide with his ten year high school reunion. While in Grosse Pointe, Martin discovers that his high school sweetheart, Debi Newberry (Minnie Driver), is still living in town, and still holds a grudge against him for standing her up on prom night. While Martin tries to sort out his past and tie up loose ends with Debi (whom he still loves), he discovers someone in Grosse Pointe is out to kill him; he's also confronted by the highly unstable Mr. Grocer (Dan Aykroyd), a fellow hit man who wants Martin to join forces with him and form a union and isn't keen on taking no for an answer. Grosse Pointe Blank was a pet project for star John Cusack, who co-wrote the screenplay and also served as co-producer.more
Rating: R (For strong violence, language and some drug content.)
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: John Cusack, D.V. DeVincentis, Steve Pink, Tom Jankiewicz
In Theaters:
On DVD: May 19, 1998
Buena Vista Internationa


John Cusack
as Martin Blank
Minnie Driver
as Debi Newberry
Dan Aykroyd
as Mr. Grocer
Alan Arkin
as Dr. Oatman
Joan Cusack
as Marcella
Jeremy Piven
as Paul Spericki
Hank Azaria
as Steven Lardner
K. Todd Freeman
as Ken McCullers
Michael Cuditz
as Bob Destepello
Michael Cudlitz
as Bob Destepello
Benny Urquidez
as Felix La PuBelle
Mitchell Ryan
as Bert Newberry
Barbara Harris
as Mary Blank
D.V. DeVincentis
as Dan Koretsky
Duffy Taylor
as Ultimart Carl
Sara Devincentis
as Doctor Oatman's Pati...
Brian Powell
as Husky Man
D. V. DeVincentis
as Dan Koretsky
Wendy Thorlakson
as Melanie The Waitress
Belita Moreno
as Mrs. Kinetta
Pat O'Neill
as Nathaniel
Steve Pink
as Terry Rostand
Traci Dority
as Jenny Slater
Doug Dearth
as Eckhart
Colby French
as Bartender
David Barrett
as Bicycle Messenger
Sarah DeVincentis
as Dr. Oatman's Patient
Bobby Bass
as Assassin
Pete Antico
as Assassin
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Grosse Pointe Blank

Critic Reviews for Grosse Pointe Blank

All Critics (74) | Top Critics (22)

Despite some early indications from the two Cusacks and Arkin that it's going to be funny, it winds up an unholy mess that becomes steadily more incoherent -- morally, dramatically, and conceptually.

Full Review… | November 6, 2009
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Cusack is charming and assured in the film.

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

For what is essentially a one-joke movie, this has an awful lot going for it.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

[John] Cusack could not possibly have more perfect timing, and [Minnie] Driver could not be a better foil.

Full Review… | March 1, 2015
Antagony & Ecstasy

Quirky mix of laughs, romance, strong violence.

Full Review… | September 14, 2012
Common Sense Media

With its darkly comic sensibilities and morally flawed protagonists, this won't be to everyone's taste, but those who can get on its wavelength will appreciate the savory witticisms and dryly acute observations.

Full Review… | September 13, 2012
Creative Loafing

Audience Reviews for Grosse Pointe Blank

John Cusack at his best. One of the best actors of his generation.

John Manard

Super Reviewer


This sick, twisted little comedy is sweet in many ways and yet demented in all the ways that matter. The premise revolves around John Cusack as a hit man (so believable) going back to his ten year reunion in Michigan, and he gets back together with his ex-girlfriend. I will say that the chemistry between Cusack and Driver is off the charts, and in the end I actually found them to be a very cute couple. Though there's an evolution for Cusack's character, I still didn't see the awe factor in the grand romantic gesture. He is a trained, government employed killer! I don't want quirky, doe-eyed Driver ending up with someone who will be hunted down later in life, their happy ending nothing but a far off mirage in the dust! When it plays into its dark humor, Cusack works incredibly well as an everyman. Still, trying to get us, the audience, to sympathize with you when you've killed how many hundreds of people? That's stretching my imagination a little too thin.

Spencer S.

Super Reviewer


This pet project for star, co-writer, and producer John Cusack follows Martin Blank- a former CIA operative turned freelance assassin. He's generally good at his job, and it pays well, but lately his game has been a bit off, and he's starting to tire of it. Following the advice of his secretary and his nervous psychiatrist, he is urged to take a final job in his old hometown of Grosse Pointe, Michigan. Incidentally, the time of the job coincides with his 10 year high school reunion, and, while he's not exactly excited about it, this gives him the opportunity to tie up loose ends with his past, namely reconciling with his school love whom he stood up on prom night and hasn't seen since. On top of all of that, he's got people out to kill him, and is being hounded by his persistent arch rival hitman who has an enticing business offer, and won't take no for an answer.

Man, for a romantic action comedy, that sure is one hefty plot! Thankfully the film goes down quite easy, and doesn't end up being quite as laborious and complicated as I've no doubt made it sound. It's breezy, funny (sometimes downright hilarious), quite charming, and feverishly entertaining. Yeah, there's a lot of cliched stuff going on here, but it blends together pretty decently, even though the film could have probably found a way to end that didn't involve delving into a typical action movie climax.

It does have a quite snazzy soundtrack though, and the score was done by Joe Strummer, so that's all awesome. John Cusack delivers a typically solid performance full of his trademark mix of charm, likability, and neuroses. His sister Joan is a scene stealing riot as the secretary, Alan Arkin is a lot of fun as the psychiatrist, Dan Aykroyd is wickedly funny as Martin's rival, and then finally we have Minnie Driver as the old flame Debi. A lot of people seem to not like her, but I think she's a decent actress, fairly attractive, and does decently here as the spurned woman with an understandable grudge.

The film really isn't groundbreaking, but it is quite well played and never dull. It's primarily a comedy, but the action is done decently too, with my favorite setpiece being the amazingly funny shootout at a convenience store.

Overall, this is a nice little entertaining gem. It's definitely a quirky 90s movie, and though it is flawed, it's still an enjoyable ride.

Chris Weber

Super Reviewer

Grosse Pointe Blank Quotes

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– Submitted by Emely G (4 years ago)

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