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Second Best

3.3 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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(Jul 27, 2006)
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Editorial Reviews

Elliot Kelman (Joe Pantoliano, The Matrix, Memento) is a failed publishing executive who can't get back into business. He supports himself selling suits at the local mall and relies on hand-outs from his mother, ex-wife, and son. He also self-publishes a weekly newsletter on the perils of self-delusion. Afraid his writings will be rejected, he hires a high school kid to post them on supermarket bulletin boards and stuff them under windshields in his New Jersey hometown. After he meets the sexy Carole (Jennifer Tilly) and his newsletter begins to find an audience, things start looking up for Elliot. However, the return home of his oldest friend Richard, a prominent movie producer, and the only one of his friends to have found success, brings Elliot's feeling of inadequacy and squandered potential back to the surface. With Richard in town, the competitive tensions rise, and once Carole takes an interest in his friend, Elliot must confront his envy of Richard's success and his disenchantment with his own failure. Second Best is a dark comedy that offers insight into men's expectations of success, financially, sexually and otherwise, and provides a glimpse into what men actually talk about when women aren't around. This is a film that explores how a generation of men who were expected to achieve their dreams can ultimately overcome the reality of falling short of them.

Special Features

  • Commentary by director Eric Weber and actor/producer Joe Pantoliano
  • Still gallery

Product Details

  • Actors: Joe Pantoliano, Boyd Gaines, Bronson Pinchot, Jennifer Tilly
  • Directors: Eric Weber
  • Writers: Eric Weber
  • Producers: Joe Pantoliano, Anthony Katagas, Callum Greene, Doug Torres, Pamela Hirsch
  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: IMAGE/THINKFILMS
  • DVD Release Date: July 27, 2006
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000B5XP2O
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #245,767 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Second Best" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I really enjoyed the movie. Here is this dysfunctional loser that reminds me a little of me, of my firends, there are very real feelings wrapped into this movie, he screws up, tests of friendship. I enjoyed the journey.
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This fabulous out take in time is shot through with ripe language and the visual images they leave behind. Men are men and we all know that but this film shows the visceral vulnerability that the latter stages of life, bring to the table, when careers go bad and health fails.

A perfect encapsulation of life and especially men and their attitudes towards themselves, their buddies - and what remains of their worlds. It is a keeper of a film and never got the notice it definitely deserves.
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Second Best is a five star - just trust me. It is painfully, but touchingly poignant and in a rarely seen way. If you don't like any of the above adjectives then move along. If you do - just trust me, it's well worth your time.
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Format: DVD
My grandmother, God rest her soul, used to tell it like it was. If you were losing your hair, she pointed it out. If you were putting on weight, she told you so. My moustache made me look short, and she told me so every time she saw me. Having no tolerance for the little lies people tell themselves and their loved ones to make life more bearable, she had no patience for the insistence of friends and relatives to the effect that their commonplace sons, daughters, grandchildren and/or siblings were talented. "If they had talent," she used to maintain, "they'd be making money." Without money as testimony, anything else one might do, according to Grandma, was just a knack. A parlor trick...a dime a dozen.

Watching the 2003 movie "Second Best," I could not help but think that Grandma's spirit had visited and provided inspiration, if not editorial assistance, to writer-director Eric Weber. Weber is merciless in the honesty he brings to the portrayal of a bunch of reluctantly self-admitted losers in a Bergen County, New Jersey that could have stood in for almost any neighborhood in New York, Chicago, Boston or Phillie. Life does indeed have its ups and downs; and these guys, whatever their ups might have once been, are now on a fairly steady diet of downs with little or no relief in sight.
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