Search for One-eye Jimmy, The
Reviewed by Jason Coffman
Rating: 9.5 Beans
fter viewing this film, my friend Chris said the following: "I would rather have watched 'G.I. Jane.'" In other words, it's not a very good film. In fact, "not a very good film" is being exceptionally kind. This is unforgivable, especially considering the parties involved.
Les (Holt McCallany) is a film student who returns to his old neighborhood to shoot a documentary. As he's interviewing people, he becomes involved in the story of the disappearance of Jimmy Hoyt (Sam Rockwell). See, Jimmy's got one eye, see, so it's funny. Of course, Les ends up meeting several unusual characters, who are all introduced in exactly the same manner: one character says the other's name, and then they meet the character. Oops.
The cast also features John Turturro ("Barton Fink," "The Big Lebowski," "Box of Moonlight"), Samuel L. Jackson ("Pulp Fiction," "National Lampoon's Loaded Weapon 1"), and Steve Buscemi (also known as "The only reason to watch 'Things to Do in Denver When You're Dead'"). Not surprisingly, their scenes are the only ones that work. If you like Jennifer Beals of "Flashdance," she's in it, too. Nicholas Turturro (currently of "NYPD Blue") is also in it, but his character is a stereotypical Hispanic car thief, and isn't very funny. Worst of all, Lodge H. Kerrigan, writer/director/producer of the brilliant and disturbing film "Clean, Shaven" plays Les' cameraman. His only line is, sadly, just one of the film's endless penis jokes.
That's another big problem with the movie. The humour rarely leaves the bathroom. While interviewing a shady character named The Snake (Tony Sirico), he farts. Another character drinks a lot of beer and belches. The number of sex jokes outnumbers total lines of dialogue. Then there's the characters themselves: Les, the cocky film student; Joe Head (Michael Badalucco), the stupid fat guy; and later, we meet overeager studio executives with ponytails and abstract art on their office walls.
To be fair, "The Search for One-eye Jimmy" does have a few entertaining scenes. John Turturro plays Disco Bean, a guy who dances in a warehouse and tells the story of how Jimmy lost his eye. Samuel L. Jackson plays Colonel Ron, a crazy Vietnam vet who, ironically, is the most lucid and intelligent character in the film. I can't imagine that any of the "name" actors in the film were paid for their work. It seems likely that the film was made by a group of friends who probably think the movie is much funnier than anyone else who happens to see it.
One other thing about "The Search for One-eye Jimmy" is that it looks like it was made for about $10. I have no problem with low-budget films: see Kevin Smith's "Clerks" or Robert Rodriguez's "El Mariachi" and you'll see that low-budget doesn't mean "bad." However, if the script is bad, the film will not work. "The Search for One-eye Jimmy" was shot in 1993, but not released until 1996. And it's no wonder. In fact, I'd say that's about 100 years too early. Avoid this film at any cost, unless you are a die-hard fan of any of the actors in it.
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