Posted October 5, 2007 in Film

Salesman Ted (Michael Keaton) rakes in more cash for the struggling Bindview Corporation then everyone else in his division combined and doubled. Which gives him license to act like a real asshole. Strutting down the cubicles like Sinatra, Ted doesn’t say hello, he barks “Suck my cock.” Was he beaten as a child?  “God I hope so,” vent his cowed coworkers. But when bright-eyed Jamie (Brendan Fraser), the top salesman from Ohio comes on board, Ted’s alpha dog swagger gets majorly tamed. Not by Jamie’s sales figures—the guy’s an awkward doofus—but by his lithe fiancé (Oklahoman supermodel Amber Valetta), who shares Ted’s softer side passions for Oscar Wilde and tropical fish. Cue Randy Edelman’s soap opera score and a lot of preposterous nonsense. As the floundering and miserable Jamie grows increasingly unhinged, Ted wrestles with allowing himself a conscience, only writer-director Michael Caleo’s cynical thriller can’t get any emotional traction from Valetta’s passive performance—she’s less a siren than a tar pit with great legs. Paradoxically, Caleo’s aiming for a moralistic screed about capitalism, but only when Keaton unleashes his fangs do we sit up and watch. (Amy Nicholson)



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