The Deal (DVD)

The Deal is a film (based off an early nineties work by Peter Lefcourt) that has been floating around the nether for over a year before Peace Arch graciously picked it up and gave the masses of humanity a better chance to be able to find it. The movie surrounds Charlie Berns (William H. Macy) as a lost, both mentally in eir family life and where exactly ey wants eir career to go throughout the rest of eir life. Without anywhere to really turn to, Charlie ultimately finds a sort of salvation in eir nephew (Lionel Travitz, played by Jason Ritter, acting as a relation of Macy’s extraordinarily well) who is in possession of a script that cannot be beat.

However, the studio heads (personified here by Meg Ryan as Diedre Hearn) feel that the script is a little too “high brow” and push Charlie into making an action-adventure film (as the original script is based off of the life of Benjamin Disraeli, the new film is titled “Lev Disraeli: Freedom Fighter”) With the reworked script including a high-level actor (LL Cool J), Charlie and eir nephew set off to make the film. Everything seems to be on the slow boat to easy town until their star (Bobby Mason) gets eirself kidnapped, which leads to a series of events that has their production on the cusp of being shut down. After Diedre starts to warm up to Charlie, the possibly-cancelled film turns into a film that is closer to Lionel’s original view.

This is done by moving the production to Prague, and ignoring all the changes that the studio wanted to the script. What happens at the end is too great to miss, so make sure to pick up a copy of The Deal. The bonus features, which include interviews with Ryan, LL Cool J and Macy eirserlf, provide further context and highlighting for some of the movie’s best parts. For those with iPods, Peace Arch has included a digital copy of the film, while the “Making the Deal” featurette shows how much work was done in the creation of this film. Pick this film up and see one of the best comedies this side of Mel Brooks.

Rating: 8.9/10

The Deal (DVD) / 2008 2008 Peace Arch / 100 Minutes / http://www.peacearch.com

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