April 21, 2018

In my misspent youth, I burned more than my share of hours in bars shooting pool for money. I shot all over suburban Chicago and in a little Greek greasy-spoon under the "el" tracks by Loyola that isn't there any more. On particle-board cheapo tables with a topography like the Grand Tetons in morgue-lit bowling-alley-adjacent pool halls, and on the good slate and manicured felt at Southport Lanes. I was a regular at the Gingerman (in the very room on the very tables where Paul Newman, Tom Cruise and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio ran the Two Gentleman and a Stranger scam in "The Color of Money") and on the venerable century-old tables at Ten Cat.

I love the game and, over the years, it will come as no surprise that I became a big fan of the sub-sub-sub genre of pool movies.

Tonight is a charming little example from New Zealand, directed by Hamish Rothwell called Stick Men: three lads who play for fun and a little money at their favorite bar and are drawn into a very dangerous, high-stakes game for which they are not prepared.


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