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Overall Rating

Awesome: 22.96%
Worth A Look48.15%
Average: 25.93%
Pretty Bad: 1.48%
Total Crap: 1.48%

13 reviews, 57 user ratings

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Boiler Room
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by Hawkboy

"It's Jim Henson's 'Glengarry Glen Ross Babies'!"
3 stars

Remember that movie "Mobsters", with Christian Slater and Richard Grieco playing the great Chicago gangsters? It seemed kinda dorky, didn't it? Well, now imagine a David Mamet play acted out by high school kids and featuring a really terrible rap soundtrack. It's a great script, but you keep waiting for someone's voice to crack.

So, anyways, yeah. Ben Affleck is REALLY believable as Alec Baldwin. Let's get that out of the way.

The ever-important plot summary portion of the review: Seth (Giovanni Ribisi) has a really mean dad who doesn't like the fact that he's running a casino out of his basement because his dad's a judge. So Seth becomes a stockbroker, and his dad's still mad, because stockbrokers are evil. Apparently, the whole "Dad, you should be nicer to me" element of the story was the ONE THING that Paul Thomas Anderson cut out of "Magnolia", and the makers of this opus snapped it right up. So we're given an insider's look at what goes on in a "Boiler Room", where evil stockbrokers say things like "Boo-yah!" and snort cocaine and sell Grandma and Grandpa swamp land in Florida. Seth feels conflicted about all this. Deep down, he'd really rather be running that casino.

The scenes inside the Boiler Room itself are electric; there's something very exciting about males swindling other males. But once the film leaves the safe confines of that room that the film falters; there are scenes in bars where stockbrokers get into fights with other stockbrokers because their suits are tacky or something along those lines. The romantic subplot where Seth and Nia Long are shacking up are well-handled, but don't really go anywhere and the filmmakers ultimately abandon it without resolving their feelings. The scenes with the mean dad are just depressing; there's numerous dialogues about parental neglect which have been handled better in numerous other films.

The performances are decent: Giovanni's a little out of his depth; his various crying scenes are a little suspect. Vin Diesel and Nicky Katt (who was so great in the late, lamented "Suburbia"), as co-workers of Seth, do solid work, but are ultimately made into caricatures - Nicky Katt, in particular, is a tremendous actor who creates real energy in the early scenes but then gets bogged down as the "Jealous Ex-Boyfriend" and "The Wrongheaded Boss". Jamie Kennedy is wasted in a nothing role. Ben Affleck - well, the producers knew he was the biggest star in the flick, despite having a fairly small role, so his best lines are in the commercial.

This movie tries to take a "New Jack City" outlook on movies like "Glengarry" and "Wall Street" - as Wesley Snipes watched "Scarface" again and again, so do these characters with those classics of American greed. But where Snipes' worship of Tony Montana was played for irony (particularily in the scene where Tony's dead body is projected over Snipes bragging that he'll never make the same mistakes), this film just takes the easy way out and says "Hey, those movies rocked."

This isn't a particularily bad movie - it just needs the fat trimmed off. The scenes in the Boiler Room work, but scenes where Seth begins to feel guilty about a guy who got screwed (especially scenes featuring that guy's home life) and especially scenes where we get the stereotypical father-son conflict could have been excised.

And one final thing - what's with the rap soundtrack? Are they trying to market this flick for teens? Yeah, we have a lot of good-looking males in this picture, but they're talking about SEC guidelines, IPOs, Average Down strategies - I saw this movie with my dad, and I needed stuff explained to me. I'm SMART. Teen girls watching this movie will probably spend 90% of the flick thinking, "When's Ben gonna take his shirt off?" The rap music completely negated the ending of the movie:

"I've really grown as a person here."

FADE OUT as music comes up...

"Fuck y'all...Fuck y' your titties...see them titties...nigga nigga nigga...."

An OK movie, but not without some BIG-ASS flaws.

And yeah. Tom Everett Scott as the head of the firm. Uh-huh. He's an American Werewolf in Paris. And Jason Bateman's the CEO! Um...Tom...your voice is cracking.

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originally posted: 02/24/00 16:32:07
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User Comments

12/29/17 morris campbell wall street 4 generation x 4 stars
6/10/06 William Goss 118 ways to sell bullshit and be a yuppie asshole. Meh. 3 stars
5/01/06 R.W.Welch Maybe a tad overdone but at least it's off the beaten path. 4 stars
12/14/05 Indrid Cold Cheesy but good ripoff of "Glengarry" and "Wall Street", both of which it quotes openly. 4 stars
4/18/05 Vince Ribisi totally rocked in this. All in all a solid effort, worth seeing. 4 stars
3/20/05 Tay Great film 4 stars
7/30/04 M If it wasnt for Vin this movie would go down hill.... fast! 4 stars
6/23/04 eivind it's good 4 stars
6/21/04 Rock Hound convinced me to open my own casino 3 stars
5/21/04 Sales God A fresh spin on an old idea. yeah its derivitive but well acted and executed (except Affle 4 stars
4/23/04 sealy Film was great, very fast, great stuff. Could have had more of a ending. 5 stars
2/22/04 s smith Premise is skewed, but characterizations are strong, sad thinly veiled lives. 4 stars
12/25/03 breadman DON"T pitch the bitch. I don't care if Nancy Sinatra calls. 5 stars
12/25/03 Tiffani Boiler Room is cool. It's Just so cool....The testosterone flows beautifully 5 stars
10/14/03 PJ Ribisi is the shit quit bangin on this film, great work by Ben Younger 5 stars
6/16/03 Boiler room guy I wish there were more movies like this. So real and yet not overdone 5 stars
6/09/03 R.W. Welch Stock scam pic has an authentic feel to it and is adeptly acted. Sort of educational too. 4 stars
3/03/03 Jack Sommersby Pretty involving until it piles on the contrivances. Vin Diesel is a standout. 2 stars
11/26/02 Stephen X - EXCELLENT - X 5 stars
10/27/02 MarktheShark6 The way they inserted Wall Street into the film revealed its roots, but it was good anyway. 4 stars
9/04/02 movie guy A GREAT FILM 5 stars
7/27/02 Matt Crav Fuck Vin. Well, hes awesome, but Ribisi is great. Inspirational flick. This movie is great. 5 stars
7/10/02 Interrog8 Great film! Provides a genuine look at the late-90's stock market greed 5 stars
2/19/02 alicia morris any movie with vin in it is worth watching! 4 stars
1/30/02 jessica fowler it's my favorite movie...great acting by everyone! 5 stars
1/18/02 Chrisaidis Georgia It was really cool, not to say for Vin Diesel he is really sexy. 4 stars
11/27/01 Kathleen Greene The only thing that makes this movie viewable is VIN DIESEL. 4 stars
11/25/01 Senor Pescolido Ya know, i really wanted to like it, but it was far too clean and cliche. 3 stars
9/02/01 Butterbean Vin and Ben were hot. The part where they were watching "Wall Street" was stupid. 3 stars
7/31/01 Robert Vin is the man 5 stars
7/15/01 NasTKasT My Favorite Flic of ALL Time. Very pimp movie! 5 stars
6/30/01 such a good movie, def worth watching :) 4 stars
6/17/01 Dominique Dixon Parts with Vin Deisel in it were the only ones worth looking at. Racist jokes sucked!!! 4 stars
3/23/01 Yanick Forget Very good movie, great acting. 5 stars
3/16/01 Gideon If you dont see it you are missing out on a tight ass movie! 5 stars
2/28/01 Soggy Bottom Boy All the ingredients are there: good concept, great actors; they could have done more w/it. 3 stars
2/20/01 joh rich, young white guys use the word fuck a lot. Deisel is a damn cool actor 4 stars
10/31/00 Matt Redmond You do not deserve to review movies. 5 stars
10/05/00 Jed An alright movie funny though a bit laughable. 4 stars
10/02/00 Robin Hot men in suits! Ben Affleck is a major ++++ 5 stars
9/26/00 Sully Ben Affleck is the worst actor of our generation. movie starts fine, ends terrible. 3 stars
9/02/00 jetcat repulsive display of greed and too-skinny men; compelling nonetheless 4 stars
8/02/00 Jed I may need a 2nd viewing but overall it was alright. 3 stars
7/28/00 Davis Intelligent, doesn't pull any punches. Ribisi is a perfect hero. Best Movie of the Year 5 stars
7/18/00 Monday Morning Great drama with comic balance, outstanding characters & dialogue. Ribisi bugged me, tho'. 4 stars
3/24/00 malcolm Nia Long was worth price of admission. Diesel and Affleck kicked ass. 4 stars
3/13/00 Chartsy Giovanni, you've come a long way since My Two Dads, baby! 5 stars
3/13/00 Jim NOT relevant to today's stock market: Internet, online, Wall St. Ben shot cameos in 1 day. 1 stars
3/04/00 jill Ben Affleck can suck my ass. 1 stars
2/27/00 Malbert Pretty cool, I liked it a lot 4 stars
2/25/00 Ben Ryan Worth watching just so you can see the stupidity. 2 stars
2/25/00 Allan Vogt Filthiest soundtrack ever. The secretary was worth the $9.50. Good audience interaction. 3 stars
2/23/00 Charles "Fight Club" in reverse. Loved the secretary! 3 stars
2/22/00 Alexis good acting and a plot that moved along at a brisk pace 5 stars
2/21/00 Jason Kallelis Damn good! Good acting and the plot can suck you in. 4 stars
2/20/00 frank some quality acting, but an average story line 3 stars
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  18-Feb-2000 (R)
  DVD: 04-Mar-2014

  05-May-2000 (15)

  12-Oct-2000 (M)

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