Grosse Pointe Blank: Hitmen, Romance and John Cusack – Film Review
When you get into the work of a particular actor, it’s almost obligatory to start to trawl through their back catalogue in order to check out what’s worth watching in their old performances, films and TV series. And once you’ve done that, you are very likely to completely ignore any conclusions you have come to, because when you're really into the work of a particular thespian, then at some point you've worked through all their decent films and TV series. And after that it's all downhill, but if you've got the compulsion then you just have to check it out anyway! (Although when you get to the point of even watching stuff for the sake of a thirty second bit part, and not a cameo role after they were already famous at that, then you officially have an actor crush. Oh no, the dreaded actor crush! Next stop de Clerambault's Syndrome!)
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Do you consider yourself a big, or perhaps a newbie John Cusack fan? This is an actor with, already, quite a long and distinguished career behind (and in front of) him. The older readers amongst us will no doubt remember him from such teen vehicles as Say Anything, and Thirteen Candles, amongst many others. (Many of these teen flicks being the work of the late great director John Hughes, unfairly maligned as a lightweight during his lifetime. Look at the Breakfast Club, still beating the test of time. Who's laughing now?)
Later in his career he has produced work, it is fair to say, of greater weight and maturity, including such dark gems as The Grifters. (A great movie. But a very long way from a cheerful one. Think twice before watching if you're feeling even a little low.) High Fidelity, an adaptation of the Nick Hornsby book, is also a warm but intelligent classic. And also close and faithful to the original work, as well as a bunch happier than The Grifters for those of a delicate and melancholy disposition.
Grosse Pointe Blank is my particular favourite out of all the films John Cusack has made. It features Cusack as Martin Blank, a CIA-trained hitman for hire without conscience, but complete with emotional needs and depression. His terrified psychiatrist attempts to help him come to terms with his lifestyle and career, as well as a fixation on the high school girlfriend he split up with years before. Will Blank carry on with his murderous nine to five? Will he get the girl? Will his nervous secretary have a breakdown? Check out this classic DVD and find out!
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