Here we have a movie you may or may not have heard of. Poolhall Junkies which is directed and stars little known Mike Callahan as Jhonny, a very talented young pool player who leaves the game of pool when he realizes his manager played by Chazz Palminteri, (Mulholland Falls, Faithful) has been holding him back from becoming a pro to benefit his own greed. Jhonny soon finds himself playing again when his younger brother becomes involved with his former boss Joe. Johnny who has never considered himself a hustler must with the help of his brothers friends help his brother get out of trouble before he gets hurt.
This movie does not appeal to a gigantic audience but sure knows how to please the audience it does have. Pool players alike are happy to see real life pool shark Mike Massey (former world trick shot champion) play a small role in the movie. For the non pool players we are treated to a small role played by Christopher Walken. The movie does not take itself too seriously though as there are jokes abound and a few tricks you will probably want to try on your friends next time you hit the local pub.
Of course, the movie leads up to one final showdown between Jhonny and a pro circuit player who calls himself Brad and is of course managed by Jhonny’s former manager Joe. Things are a little tough though because Jhonny has his arm broken by Joe for an incident early in the movie. Unlike “The Hustler”, the game of pool in this movie is played very quickly and we are treated to some fantastic pool playing which includes a lot of difficult shots that most of the time, would not come in a real game. We don’t care though, because it’s so darn cool to watch.
With plenty of jokes and a cast that worked very well together, you are sure to get more than enough enjoyment from this film on a Friday night. This will certainly be a pool player favourite right next to “The Hustler” but for different reasons which is why this movie works. Poolhall Junkies reminds people just how cool the game of pool is.
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