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Can Miller stretch out his money-mirage scheme long enough to close the deal?
Just as we’re settling into the fun of watching Richard Gere act benign and silky-smooth on the surface even as he telegraphs the jangled nerves he’s concealing, we find out that he’s got other, tawdrier problems: a high-maintenance mistress who throws fits if he’s 15 minutes late, and then…that car accident, which he tries to cover up.
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Opening a film simultaneously in movie theaters and as a cable and online video-on-demand offering isn't for the faint of heart. Some of that resistance might begin to change, though, in the wake of Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate's multiplatform rollout of the Richard Gere financial thriller .
' Our thought was no, since it is a somewhat dark story, with Richard playing the antihero," says Cohen.
"We made an estimation that it would be a good movie for the VOD model because people would scroll through the offerings and see a thriller with Richard Gere and Susan Sarandon in it.
With the blessing of Lionsgate, Cohen and his Roadside team committed to a major advertising spend to prove to theater owners that they were serious about the theatrical run -- and they also budgeted for an awards-season push for Gere, who scored a Golden Globe nom.
Nonetheless, Roadside still had to pay some exhibitors upfront to carry the film, which is not the norm.
He lies and sleeps around, he commits major financial fraud, he slinks away from a car accident that was all his fault — and the film makes no apologies for any of this behavior.This stuff could almost be a movie of its own, but the way Jarecki’s sharply structured, tautly written drama keeps overlapping Miller’s dilemmas, tightening the screws to make him (and us) squirm, really works.That the film isn’t all high-end jargon and number crunching makes it seem less insidery than digs into how money, when there’s this much of it and it’s traded this abstractly, tends to breed duplicity, and how that dynamic spills from the financial into the personal.Yet we’re torn between wanting to see him pay for his transgressions and get away with them.That, as Hitchcock knew well, is the way a true thriller works: It creates moral urgency by making the audience complicit in what it knows is wrong.