Sunday, June 1, 2014

Streaming tip: Fans of Peter Facinelli and/or oddball rom-coms will want to watch LOOSIES

The hunky and talented actor Peter Facinelli, a Queens boy, has had quite a nice career: more than 50 film and TV appearances in less than 20 years. Yet the stardom, which many of us expected would be his, seems to have so far eluded him. Still, he manages to appear in lots of interesting films, the least interesting but most successful of which would have to the Twlight saga, in which he portrays Daddy Vampire. He also made some waves in movies like the delightful Can't Hardly Wait, the ill-fated (but still fun) Supernova, and the recent rom-com-cum-chase-movie, LOOSIES, which he wrote, co-produced and in which he plays the leading role.

As directed by Michael Corrente (shown at left: American Buffalo, Outside Providence), the movie plays fast and relatively well, while the screenplay -- though not always super-believable (are cops really this stupid?) -- works decently enough to engage us in both the love story and the action /chase aspects of the film.

Facinelli (on poster, above, and below) plays Bobby, a pickpocklet and petty thief who manages to sustain himself and his mom via his clever fingers and fast thinking/action. Under normal circumstances, we might find it difficult to root for a guy like this, so the movie provides Bobby with a backstory "out," which we learn a bit of, and then more of, as the film progesses.

Romance is provided by the lovely Jaime Alexander (below) as Lucy, a girl with whom our "hero" had a little fling, which now comes back to haunt and entice him all over again.

The bad guys (except they're not, really) are cops played by Michael Madsen, whose police badge Bobby has stolen and uses from time to time, and his boss William Forsythe, below, both of whom have some fun with their roles.

The real bad guy is the crook to whom Bobby is "indebted," played with his ususal relish by Vincent Gallo (below, right). There's a subplot about Bobby's mom (a nice job by Marianne Leone) and her new romance with a fellow played by the always amusing Joe Pantoliano, and this is worked nicely into the film's focus and climax.

That's about it. Loosies turns out to be a feel-good fluff piece that will easily pass an hour-and-a-half of your time -- particularly if you're already a Facinelli fan. If not, the movie might turn you into one.

You can stream Loosies now via Netflix and elsewhere. It's also available on DVD and Blu-ray (the latter under the title, Love Is Not a Crime).

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