Myles Connell

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The Opportunists Review


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Christopher Walken is a great choice to work with any first-time director/screenwriter, as he can "sell" any character put in front of him. From a sword-swinging headless horseman in Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow to a wristwatch smuggling Air Force Captain in Tarentino's Pulp Fiction, Walken breathes an air of believability into any persona, which is hardly something that every actor can do. Because of this, the films he is in always seem to be at the very least entertaining, and The Opportunists is no exception to the rule. Set against the backdrop of the Sunnyside, Queens neighborhood of New York, The Opportunists is the story of a man who can't seem to do the right thing, no matter how hard he tries.

Walken plays Victor Kelly, an ex-con turned auto mechanic struggling to be a responsible man, earning an honest living in the hopes of redeeming himself for the lifetime of trouble he has brought down on his small, fractured family. Add to the mix a young man named Michael (Peter McDonald) who appears at his doorstep, claiming to be a cousin from Ireland. Ironically, Michael has come to America to learn from the man he believes is a successful mobster - as legend back home tells it. What he actually finds in Vic is completely different. Vic is a proud man with some heavy financial headaches. Too bullheaded to accept help from his girlfriend (Cyndi Lauper). Vic soon realizes his skills as a mechanic are not nearly as marketable as his safe-cracking skills, and he reluctantly finds himself risking everything for one last shot to save his business and his family.

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