Customer Reviews: Zigzag
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on January 2, 2005
I loved this movie from the first time I viewed it. I only wish it would have gotten the recognition it deserved. Too many people have probably missed out on this great flick, and I was lucky to have had it catch my eye at a video store one day. I'm glad I took a chance on it. Granted, it has some raunchy parts and it was disturbing at times, but through all this comes a pretty good story with some touching and insightful moments. It is a film that is well worth a watch and you will not be bored with it. It's intense, powerful and moving.

We enter the world of a autistic 15 year-old boy who goes by the name of "Zig Zag" (played fantastically by Sam Jones III). He is a young man who deals with life by talking in his head most of the time and "hiding his thoughts where nobody else can see them." Even those with disabilities have their strong areas, and Zig Zag's strength is memorizing numbers. It is an eye-opening look into how he views the world.

Wesley Snipes plays a sensational role as David "Fletcher," Zig Zag's angry, fast-talking, abusive, drug thug of a father. Desperate for drug cash, Fletcher threatens to kick Zig Zag out on the street if he does not pay him the apartment rent. A scared Zig Zag takes off to his part-time job where he works as a restaurant dishwasher for his booze-chugging, cigar-smoking, prostitute-craving, arrogant boss they call "Toad" (played nicely by Oliver Platt). Though the workers in the kitchen tease Zig Zag and Toad thinks Zig Zag is a bit dumb, Toad actually has a feeling that Zig Zag is not as dumb as he seems; especially when he catches Zig Zag staring at him as he is opening the safe in his office.

After Zig Zag breaks into Toad's safe and steals all the money, he brings it back to his father who greedily snatches the cash from him and tells him to bring back more. Enter Zig Zag's cancer-stricken "Big Brother" Dean Singer (a magnificant performance by John Leguizamo). After Singer finds out that Zig Zag stole money from Toad, he becomes determined to find a way to help Zig Zag get through the mess he's created and keep him out of harm and trouble; from his father, his boss and the authorities. In the meantime, an investigation is getting underway as to who stole the money from the safe.

While Zig Zag stays with Singer, they enjoy the pleasures of friendship from guitar music, to taking goofy pictures of one another, to chowing on fast food. Zig Zag is free to watch morning cartoons with his cereal and Singer gets the chore of teaching Zig Zag about the birds and the bees. But through all their times of friendship, they must find a way to return the money back secretley to the safe. It is a journey that leads them to a strip joint called the "Monkey Cage," (which involves an intense meeting between Singer and "Monkey Cage" owner, "Cadillac" Tom played by Luke Goss), a plan of action as to how Zig Zag will survive grilling by the investigators, and a heated confrontation with Fletcher.

Along the way, Zig Zag meets up with a kind hearted prostitute named Jenna (played nicely by Natasha Lyonne)who takes Zig Zag under her wing and takes him to a diner for some waffles and a very moving conversation. Later on, Jenna ends up taking care of Zig Zag while Singer is away, and they end up getting caught in a thrilling situation with Fletcher. Jenna is also there to lend support when Singer's cancer gets the best of him and he ends up in the hospital after collapsing. Unfortunately, Singer eventually passes away, but not before an intense conclusion to their problem unfolds.

"Zig Zag" is superb and the acting is very realistic. It's a story about friendship, trust, and getting through the tough times in life through the eyes of a young kid with disabilities. This was a very enjoyable and interesting movie; I bought it not long after I rented it, and I'm now pleased to own it for myself. If you like action-drama that is moving, keeps you on the edge of your seat and your eyes glued to the screen, and you don't mind some raunchy parts, I'd definitely check it out. You won't be disappointed.
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on November 2, 2002
ZIGZAG is the story of an autistic 15-year-old boy named ZigZag, spelled with two big Z's and two little G's (Sam Jones III) who steals money from his boss (Oliver Platt) to provide rent for his abusive father (Wesley Snipes), who uses the money to repay a loan shark (Luke Goss).
Writer David S. Goyer most known for his dark superhero films, ... succeeds with this little drama which in a way is also about a superhero, only this superhero is a 15 year old autistic child.
Young actor Sam Jones III absolutely made me fall in love with ZigZag. .. While I know he won't even be considered come Oscar time he should be the winner. Watch out for this kid. He can truly act. John Leguizamo (MOULIN ROUGE; COLLATERAL DAMAGE), who usually comes off rather annoying to me, also shines as Singer, the big brother character of ZigZag.. The chemistry between Leguizamo and Jones is brilliant and lights up the screen.
The other performances make stnd out as well. Oliver Platt (THE THREE MUSKETEERS; LIBERTY STANDS STILL) revels in a wonderfully rich and funny supporting role. Natasha Lyonne (AMERICAN PIE 1 and 2) delivers a rich performance as a hooker with a heart and Wesley Snipes (LIBERTY STANDS STILL; BLADE) casts is beleivable as a crack-addicted abusive father. .. He knows how to act and what he's doing. But when it's all said and done, its Sam Jones III who is the heart and soul of the film, and ultimately why we care to see it unfold.
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on January 13, 2003
Louis (Sam Jones III) aka ZigZag is a 15 year-old autistic boy, who lives with this physically-abusive, and drug-addicted father, Fletcher (Wesley Snipes--Blade, Blade 2, Passenger 57, Jungle Fever). He works a low-paying job washing dishes at a local diner, where he is often ridiculed by the alcoholic manager, Mr Walters aka "The Toad" (Oliver Platt--Don't Say A Word, Liberty Stand Still) with racial epithets and remarks about his condition in general. His only friend is Dean Singer (John Leguizamo,--Carlito's Way, Empire,) who acts as a Big Brother to ZigZag, despite his illness. When ZigZag's father (who is also in debt to the Mob) threatens that ZigZag needs to give him $200 for the rent or he is homeless (ZigZag understands this as "two-zero-zero-"), ZigZag devises a plan to steal some money from the safe at work to give to his father. ZigZag steals the money, (all $9,241 of it) and gives it to his father--who takes ALL the money, leaving Zig with nothing. Soon an investigation starts, and Zig doesn't know what is going to happen to himself. Singer's condition worsens when he collapses at the job. He wakes up at the hospital to find that his testicular cancer has spread to his lungs and stomach, and he only has months to live. Zig is once again left to fend for himself. Zig meets a prostitute named Jenna, (Natasha Lyonne--American Pie 1 and 2) who takes pity on him, and they form a friendship. I won't give away the whole story or the ending, but this is one movie that you won't want to miss. Brilliant acting was done by Jones, Snipes, Leguizamo, Platt, and Lyonne.
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on December 15, 2003
Sam Jones III, plays Louis Fletcher(or ZigZag), he's this boy with problems, one being that he has an abusive father, played by Wesley Snipes(havent's seen Snipes this badassed, but its not in a good way). ZigZag has a job and he works for Oliver Platt, or the Toad(bastard in this movie) and then ZigZag steals money from his vault and tells Singer(John Lequizamo who is absolutely great) who is diagnosed with cancer. so ZigZag is spiraled into a world of tricks and he's trying to fit in the world and Singer is rying to help him. written by David S. Goyer(writer of Blade and Blad II) you can note that Snipes plays Blade in both of them and also the an who plays Cadilacc Tom(Luke Goss), the owner of the strip club, played Jared Nomak in Blade II. some disturbing moments but also a good drama and you feel for this boy. other actors: Abraham Benrubi, Natasha Lyonne,Sherman Augustus, Miguel Nunez, Michael Greyeyes and Elizabeth Pena
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on July 19, 2002
I saw ZigZag at the SXSW Film Festival in March 2002. I was sad to see that this film did not get released because the story and cast were intriguing and fresh. Sam Jones III who plays ZigZag gives an amazing first performance. I can't wait to buy the DVD so I can catch all of Oliver Platt's little sayings - his performance is one not to be missed.
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on April 25, 2015
This movie is really great! A teenage autistic boy, ZigZag, steals to help his drug addicted father so that his father won't put him out on the streets. I wasn't sure that I was going to like the movie at first, but it turned out to be great.
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ZigZag (David S. Goyer, 2002)

Somewhere in the guts of ZigZag is an awe-inspiring movie waiting to get out. Goyer is a brilliant writer (Dark City, Batman Begins); however, his directorial skills need a bit of polishing. (He followed this up with Blade: Trinity. Now, you tell me if this was a fluke.)

ZigZag (Smallville's Sam Jones III) is an autistic fifteen-year-old. He has a job as a dishwasher working for the Toad (Oliver Platt) and lives with his drug-addicted, abusive father (Wesley Snipes). His only friend is Singer (John Leguizamo), a social worker. ZigZag's father hits him up for a large sum of money he owes a loanshark, and the resourceful ZigZag steals it from his boss' safe, which puts Detective Hawke (Sherman Augustus, recently seen in Thr3e) on his trail, while the Toad's convinced it's one of the wait staff. ZigZag feels guilty and wants to return the money, so he and Singer try to devise a way to get it back from his father while appeasing the loanshark, Cadillac Tom (Blade II's Luke Goss).

There's a lot going on in this movie, and Goyer's script gives all of its various facets ample time to work. He's assembled a strong cast with which to deliver it, as well, and all of them perform at their usual levels. Put a really talented director on this and it would probably have been a smash, but Goyer took the helm himself. While he may end up distinguishing himself with projects he hasn't made yet, his first two films make a strong argument that as far as his directorial skills are concerned, there's little place for Goyer to go but up. A lot of the really strong lines in the movie are badly timed, the cuts are often choppy, and the whole often straddles the line between a treat and a chore to watch. Unfortunately, it slips its toes over that line once too often for it to be the movie it could have been. ** ½
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on December 27, 2007
This was a wonderful movie. It will pull at your heartstrings. Wesley Snipes played an abusive father who badly abused his son. ZigZag was slow but was very bright.
He was smarter than his father thought. John Leguizamo played the part of a mentor to ZigZag and they had a great relationship. Leguizamo believed in ZigZag, but died suddenly leaving ZigZag to fend for himself alone.
Leguizamo is my favorite actor, so I will go to see anything he is in. But he does a lot of low budget films, he is just honing his craft. I loved him in the movie "Too Wong Foo" and "Empire"
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on April 2, 2015
Deeply touching and inspirational movie.
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on October 22, 2013
Two very short cameo appearances by Snipes at the beginning and end and that's it. Want a sickish sweet do-good documentary? Then this is for you!
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