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I'm a HUGE Helen Mirren fan, and I loved the DVD version of Director Taylor Hackford's film "Ray", so I was anxious to see this film, directed by Hackford and starring Mirren (his wife). Before watching the film, I clicked on the "bonus features" and watched the six-minute "Introduction" by Hackford and Mirren. It looks like it was filmed in their living room with home video camera. Hackford was doing most of the talking and Mirren looked like they had just woken her up. Not a good start.
Then I played the film. It is based on the life of Reno's famed Mustang Ranch brothel in the 1970s and owner Joe Conforte and his wife. The "R" rating appears at the beginning and the explanation is "sexual situations and strong violence". Hmmm...... a film about a whore house with no nudity? Strange. Well, as another reviewer pointed out, for the first 45 minutes of the film, it looks like Mirren is sleepwalking through her role, and the hairdo she wears looks like a cheap wig (it isn't). Co-star Joe Pesci reprises his standard "Good Fellas" persona with the F-word being more than half of his dialogue (I'd love to have seen his dialogue portion of the script.). But after that 30-40 minutes, things change and we get real acting from Mirren. You'll know when that starts because she loses the curly hair and for the rest of the film its her standard straight hairstyle. (Was this symbolism that Hackford was giving us?).
Anyway, if you looked at the cover art, you'd never know that this is a film about boxing, yet a good portion takes place in the ring with Hackford trying to make the fight scenes look like "Raging Bull" - though in color!Read more ›
The Confortes become the Bontempos for LOVE RANCH (aka Mustang Ranch of history) and Joe Pesci as Charlie Bontempo is an ex-con with a potty mouth who married Grace (Helen Mirren) 20 some years ago, and together they have built the world's largest brothel - the first legal one in Nevada. Grace at first is cheap and tacky, walking with a cane and constantly reminding Charlie of her importance: her character changes a it when she is diagnosed with terminal cancer by her doctor (Broadway singing star Harve Presnell in a tiny and last role; he died in 2009) . Charlie beds all the women who work at Love Ranch and Grace is aware of it.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I did enjoy this movie despite of my star rating. It was interesting. I was glad to see Helen Mirren's character coming out of her husband's (Joe Pesci) shadow and starting a new... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Retroplore
Interesting story, based on real events, with some artistic liberty taken.
Helen Mirren is always good, rest of the cast is also good in this movie.
I love this movie I've been waiting to get a hold of it thank you so much and it came in excellent condition other than it looks like the picture cover had gotten wet and dried. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Terrylee Warren
movie is just ok, they could've done a much better job with the story they hadPublished 11 months ago by LoneWolf
I ordered this mainly because I was a dealer for Harrah's from 1963 to 1982 and dealt craps to Joe Conforte numerous times. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Solisto
I think Helen Mirren is a great actress but the amount of profanity in this movie from Joe Pesci really turned me off. I did not finish watching the movie.Published 17 months ago by C. Johnston