Glengarry Glen Ross 2.0 stars

Glengarry Glen Ross movie poster
  • Rated R

David Mamet's Broadway prize-winner, with something approximating a dream cast: Al Pacino, Jack Lemmon, Ed Harris, Alan Arkin, Kevin Spacey, and briefly, bringing in an expensively scented whiff of prosperity, Alec Baldwin. All men, no women. The first five of them play, respectively, the preening tomcat, the drowning rat, the whipped dog, the squashed bug, and the squirming worm employed at a real-estate office under the flag of Premiere Properties, a misnomer if ever there was one. The vision of life is Kafka for the working stiff. The "leads" are everything to our hard-pressed sales corps, each member of which is dealt two of them per day. But the choice leads, the hot leads, the attractively ribbon-wrapped Glengarry leads, are held back for "closers" only — who by definition don't need them. The unseen but often-mentioned "Mitch and Murray" — never just Mitch or just Murray — oversee the operation from some far-off "downtown." And as added incentive, they have declared a contest in which the top two salesmen at the end of the month will receive a car (First Prize) and a set of steak knives (Second Prize); the rest will be awarded pink slips. All of this, in less capable mouths, might have become gaggingly pretentious, and is still sufficiently pretentious as is. Director James Foley has attempted to heat up the action — which could flatteringly be spoken of in terms of a caper, a detective investigation, and a surprise-twist ending — with Expressionistic color and lighting, but he hasn't liberated it from the stage or from staginess. 1992.

Duncan Shepherd

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