This adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s novel explores the murky world of Hollywood’s links to organised crime.
John Travolta plays Florida gangster Chili Palmer, who arrives in Tinseltown to collect a bad debt from sleazeball movie producer Gene Hackman and decides to stay, importing his strong-arm methods into movie production.
Made in the wake of Pulp Fiction (1994), Get Shorty was the first attempt by a major studio to cash in on Quentin Tarantino’s style.
The performances by the impressive cast are exquisite: the jowly Travolta has tremendous charm but also considerable menace; Danny DeVito plays a movie star to perfection, and Hackman is a sheer delight as the purveyor of schlocky monster movies.
Add Rene Russo and unbilled cameos by Bette Midler and Harvey Keitel and you have a snazzy treat.
Ray “Bones” Barboni