Owning Mahowny

Director: Richard Kwietniowski
Year Released: 2003
Rating: 2.0

Canadian banker gambles with money that he swipes from some accounts at the company he works at, losing an unholy sum until he goes to Vegas and takes in millions - explanations for this obsessive behavior or any reasoning are not given (chalk it up to whimsy, I guess). In the wake of the better casino films to come out, this simply will not do - it is both unapproachable and distant, and try as he might, Philip Seymour Hoffman can't make up for a script consumed with its own vagueness. John Hurt (as the casino manager in Atlantic City) gives one of his worst performances - his 'meanness' is shown by how he hires, fires, rehires, etc. a young black man on 'whim' alone - and the sets are unconvincing (the scenes were not shot in New Jersey or Las Vegas). Minnie Driver's sole purpose is to whine - in her 'best' Canadian accent - about how she's neglected by Hoffman.