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HTF REVIEW: "4 Dogs Playing Poker"

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#1 of 2 Ronald Epstein

Ronald Epstein

    Studio Mogul

  • 39,336 posts
  • Join Date: Jul 03 1997

Posted December 08 2001 - 11:20 AM

Posted Image

4 Dogs Playing Poker

Now that all the big titles are out for the
fourth quarter, the studios are now hoping that
you will take a look at some of their lesser-known
releases that will be making their way to store
shelves over the next few weeks.

I received a small handful of Warner titles that
I had never heard of. They all seem to be sleeper
titles that although did not play wide theatrically,
they received some sort of critical acclaim. One
such title, 4 Dogs Playing Poker, seems to
have been showing at a few film festivals and
receiving small critical praise.

I took a chance and spent the evening watching
this 92 minute film that stars a relatively new
cast of talents working with veteran actors
Forest Whitaker, Tim Curry and George Lazenby.

To tell too much about what happens in this
film will ultimately spoil the surprise. I can
tell you that four friends owe a crime lord $1
million. These four friends devise a scheme where
they will take out a $1 million life insurance
policy, draw a playing card, and pending on the
outcome one of the four becomes the victim and
another the killer.

The film was pretty darn good and should keep
your interests throughout. As a viewer, you are
kept in the dark untill the very end as to who
the victim and killer really are, as you go through
interesting plot twists that are sure to keep
you entertained. The cast of newcomers that
include Stacy Edwards, Balthazar Getty and
Daniel London all give terrific performances.
Of course, it's great to see Curry, and
Lazenby round out the cast. Special note goes
out to Whitaker who plays a tough Crime Lord
not willing to negotiate.

It's unfortunate that this entertaining release
is marred by inferior transfer quality. Picture
is very grainy throughout, and at times, looks
like a VHS transfer. Though presented in Dolby
Digital 5.1, I found the sound to be lackluster
with minimal action in the surround channels.

There are no extras on the disc other than the
theatrical trailer.

This is the sort of film I would recommend as
a rental only. It's one of those films you
should select when you browse the aisles looking
for something a little different. You can then
take it home, watch, and decide if the title
will be worth purchasing.

Release Date: December 11, 2001

Ronald J Epstein
Home Theater Forum co-owner


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#2 of 2 Rollie


    Stunt Coordinator

  • 218 posts
  • Join Date: May 30 2000

Posted December 09 2001 - 04:09 AM

Thank you Ron!

This is a movie I've been wanting to check out for a while. I was reading about some of Lazenby's movies on IMDB, and I ran across this one. However, it didn't have any video information. I'll definitely be picking it up come the eleventh.
"Some people play hard to get, I play hard to want."