When killing for a part is the audition: a review of "Frogs For Snakes"

Frogs For Snakes (1998)
     When killing for a part is the audition.
Director: Amos Poe.
Starring: Nick Chinlund (Iggy), Robbie Coltrane (Al), David Deblinger (UB), Harry Hamlin (Klensch), Ian Hart (Quint), Barbara Hershey (Eva), John Leguizamo (Zip), Lisa Marie (Myrna), Debbi Mazar (Simone), Ron Perlman (Gascone), Mike Starr (Crunch), Justin Theroux (Flav), Clarence Williams III (Huck).
     This movie is about a group of off-off Broadway actor wanna bes who moonlight as illegal money collectors.  One of their crew (Hershey) wants to leave and start a new life with her young son.  Unfortunately, her ex-husband (Coltrane) is the theatre impresario/loan shark who pulls the strings of everyone's ambitions.
     A very unusual vision of the gangster comedy theme.  It takes the generalized neuroses and psychoses of actors (ego, ambition, narcissism, paranoia, etc) and runs the gamut from somewhat healthy to psychotic.  People alternate from friends, lovers, and assasins at the turn of an audition announcement and will begin monologues from plays and movies with little to no warning (this will be fun for theatre/movie buffs).  The plot, unlike some movies, actually requires attention and a large cast (most of whom are one to two sceners) delivers excellent performances all around.
     FYI: has some scenes of graphic violence. 
     Worth a rent/buy used.  Due to its singular style, I would suggest renting first, as it will not be everyone's cup of tea.
     First published in 2004 on The Perlman Pages.

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