October 11th, 2012: Out of Sight (1998)


Cast and Crew:  Danny DeVito (Producer); Barry Sonnenfeld (Executive Producer); Catherine Keener, Dennis Farina, Isaiah Washington, Luis Guzman, Michael Keaton, Nancy Allen, Samuel L. Jackson, Viola Davis

What It’s About: Jack Foley (George Clooney) breaks out of prison with the help of his partner Buddy (Ving Rhames).  Unfortunately, as he’s busting out, Federal Marshall Karen Sisco (Jennifer Lopez)is dropping off-and the men end up kidnapping her.  Hiding in the trunk, the two improbably hit it off, but Karen is not going to stop being a Marshall, so soon she’s convinced the pair’s third partner,  Glenn Michaels (Steve Zahn), to drive off without them.  The hunt is on, but Foley and Buddy have a big score planned, and soon everyone is in Detroit.  The score connects back to the trio’s time in prison, and brings in more characters, including psychotic ex-boxer “Snoopy” Maurice Miller (Don Cheadle) and white-collar criminal Richard “Dick the Ripper” Ripley (Albert Brooks).  Sisco manages to get on the task force that’s hunting Foley, and the pair continue their romance through a few key “time outs” in their roles as a cop and robber, while Foley and Buddy try to outmaneuver the cops and their fellow crooks.  Read the whole review here.

Why Watch it Today?:  Frequently adapted for the screen author Elmore Leonard turns 87 today.  Out of Sight is one of the best crime movies to come out of the 1990s, featuring a heist, a prison break, a great soundtrack, wonderful supporting cast, and the unexpectedly great pairing of Clooney and Lopez, all under the stylish eye of director Steven Soderbergh.

Other Choices: Leonard wrote, among other things, previously featured Jackie Brown.

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