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This movie is hilarious. Ray Ramano plays a Michael-Scott-esque character masterfully. Sure, the humor is stupid- but so is it stupid in beloved shows like "The Office" or "Parks & Recreation". I couldn't believe it scored so low here. I've never disagreed with a rating on this site until now! I would say it at LEAST deserves like 70%! Personally, I give it 5 stars in hopes to boost the rating at all. Truly goofy, silly movie with multiple laugh-out-loud moments. Crude language but most movies have that these days anyway. Woody Harrelson is great & believable in this role. & while the cast is full of caricatures & exagerrated personalities (as the aforementioned beloved TV shows that are critically acclaimed do,) they are acted VERY well by the cast. Great movie, don't believe the 40% rating!
Mockumentaries can either be dull with jokes that I don't get at all, or can be quirky with interesting and very amusing characters. This was definitely the latter. It certainly helps when you have a stellar cast led by the always awesome Woody Harrelson. My biggest gripe here would be the severe under utilization of Judy Greer and Tommy 'Tiny' Lister(aka DeeBo from Friday), but it was cool seeing Gabe Kaplan aka Mr. Kotter. Not a big fan of watch poker on TV or poker in general, but this was nice. I liked it.
Perfectly acceptable little picture with a stellar cast. Fun, quirky and grounded.
This is awesome this is a Hillarious mockumentary of the World Series of poker I found this movie to be humorous intelligent and very
Funny fans of poker should see this film
A VERY funny mockumentary in the great Christopher Guest tradition. Even appearing was a Christopher Guest alumn, Michael McKean. Along with a host of other favs; David Cross (featured in Guest's "Waiting for Guffman"), Cheryl Hines (oo-lala!), Judy Greer (my hot Jewish princess!), Chris Parnell (whose character was strangely very reminiscent of the one he played in the hilarious "Evil Alien Conquerors"), Richard Kind (how often does he play a dentist?), Hank Azaria (Moe, Wiggum and Apu, Comic Book Guy, etc), Jason Alexander, Dennis Farina, etc. You get the idea, I am tired of typing. Watch it.
Funny but just seems like a Christopher Guest poker movie. I didn't see Zak Penn's other mockumentary "Incident At Loch Ness" but I hear that's a stronger movie. Nothing away from him, I think he's great screenwriter. With mockumentories or fake documentaries are either hit or miss. This one's just in the middle. There are some funny moments this movie. Chris Parnell is down right hysterical in this and the other cast-members give great improvised performances. I don't know, maybe I'm not into poker and gambling to really get into it but it's worth a watch. If you like "The Office" or Christopher Guest movies than you'll like this.
A very likable cast but this one just doesn't come together.
Nifty little mockumentary set in the poker world. Thanks to full blown improv comedy it comes off refreshing and unpredictable. The cast works well together and we get a lot of cameos from other comedians as well as professional poker players. Some of the laughs work great while others ehhh not so much. If you're looking for something inspiringly different go and see it.
So... Zak... Uh, buddy... Dude, the film's not really funny. Lacking the heart and hilarity of Christopher Guest. I think the star power kinda hurt it cause not everyone here is good... <.<
The Grand (Zak Penn, 2007)
It is damned tough to make a good movie about poker. Many have tried since the poker boom hit. None have succeeded; the only truly great poker movie, Rounders, was made five years before that. But that doesn't stop folks from trying, and let's be honestâ"while a poker player is going to be able to comment on the ridiculousness of the final hands in movies like The Cincinnati Kid, Maverick, or (the worst case of poker egregiousness in history, to date) Casino Royale, maybe the general public won't notice. Or, at least, that's what I'm figuring the writers of these movies say to themselves when trying to pitch themselves on writing scenes that require one's suspension of disbelief to stretch farther than the Overseas Highway. The Grand's isn't quite that bad, but the errors that plague the movie's poker are of the even-more-egregious variety, and Penn and co-writer Matt Bierman decided to try to pair the poker movie (already an ill-fated venture) with the improv comedy movie. That as much of it succeeds as it does is a minor miracle.
Plot: One Eyed Jack Faro (Woody Harrelson) is the wastrel son of a casino owner who finds himself in desperate need of cash to save the family legacy, which a robber baron (Michael McKean) wants to buy and turn into a million-dollar-per-night hotel/entertainment extravaganza. Thus, he does what any enterprising young man in need of cash would doâ"enter a major poker tournament that will win him enough money to pay off the casino's debts, as long as he can outlast such poker-playing lights as Deuce Fairbanks (Dennis Farina), Linie Schwartzman (The Ugly Truth's Cheryl Hines), Fred Marsh (Ray Romano), Yakov Achmed (Jason Alexander), Reggie Marshall (Mike Epps), and the mysterious player known only as The German (Werner Herzog in a rare trip in front of the camera), along with a few other guys you may have heard of like Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Laak, Phil Hellmuth...
When the movie stays on point, it's quick, it's funny, and as long as the writers aren't attempting poker analysis, it's reasonably intelligent. The poker profiles, a la the WSOP filler material on ESPN, range from the amusing (Ray Romano's skit) to the downright hilarious (every time the Schwartzmans are onscreen). Michael McKean, as usual, is gold every time he gets in front of a camera.
And then there are the downsides, which start with every time the movie attempts to show poker being played. I'm amazed Phil Gordon, who plays the poker commentator announcing the tournament for TV, didn't smack people upside the head with the script for all the stupidity they send spewing out of his mouth. The improv comedy bits... well, some of them work (see previous bit about the Scwartzmans), but most fall flat; the only other character who really works 100% of the time is The German, and that's because Herzog plays him straight, with an air of menace that does not fit at all with this movie, and yet it works. Which should be an indicator right there that something is failing, but somehow it didn't raise any alarm bells.
Short answer: if you're in the mood for a poker movie and you've watched everything else on the subject you own, give this a go. The parts that work make it worth your time, and hey, it's a helluva lot better than Lucky You. ** Â 1/2