Grosse Pointe Blank

Grosse Pointe Blank is a story with subtle twists and turns and double entendres, just like the title of the movie. John Cusack plays Martin Blank, a professional killer attending his high school reunion and confronting his high school sweet heart who he stood up on prom night and hasn't seen in 10 years.

Blank not only has to deal with his feeling for Debi Newberry (Minnie Driver), but also with the reaction to his opposition to a plan to unionise professional killers (it seems like a satire straight out the Simpsons, doesn't it?). The union is the brainchild of Grocer (Dan Aykroyd) who is sick of embarrassing situations that arise as a result of killers doing different jobs. In retaliation for Blank rejecting his plan, Grocer sics the National Security Agency on Blank. All these characters (and a couple more) converge at Grosse Point, Michigan where the action culminates.

The actors do an admirable job. Joan Cusack, who plays Blank's highly-efficient secretary, is terrific as is Aykroyd, in one of the best roles I've seen in a while. John Cusack is charming and endearing both as a gangster and a romancer. Minnie Driver is aptly cast as his love interest and Alan Arkin's fright at being Blank's therapist is humourous.

I kept expecting Harvey Keitel to turn up to dispose of the body of the assasin Blank kills in front of his old high school locker, but Blank proves adequate for the task. And that pretty much illustrates the general tone of the movie, which mixes some of the Quentin Tarantino's satire and symbolism (the destroying of a Pulp Fiction cutout in a convenience store which was originally Blank's home suggests self-parody) with an old fashioned love story in an effective way. It's definitely worth checking out if you're into such movies, especially those with a happy and clean ending.

Movie ramblings || Ram Samudrala ||