Directed by: Harvey Kahn | 107 minutes | drama, crime, thriller | Actors: Christian Slater, Selma Blair, Robert Loggia, Colm Feore, Angie Harmon, John Heard, Kevin Tighe, Philip Granger, Françoise Yip, Jim Thorburn, Paul McGillion, Christine Lippa, Jennifer Clement, Mike Dopud, Vyacheslav Vinnik
In “The Deal”, the United States is at war with the Middle East. Not as it is now in reality against terrorism, but in a war for oil. Oil prices have soared and in a country where every little errand is done by car, this is a drama of the first order.
These are golden times for Hanson; he senses his opportunities by accompanying a merger between two oil companies. The synopsis seems as simple as that, but that turns out not to be the case. In “The Deal” most is wrong with the script. The film jumps from one subject to another. Irrelevant storylines receive just as much attention as the plotline. Many men in suits who all look alike who all look dollar signs in the eyes do not make the viewing pleasure and convenience any greater. Worst of all, no emotion is paid attention to. When Hanson’s best friend is murdered, he talks about the cows and calves at the funeral and the widow receives an obligatory hug. And so it is with everything that happens to Hanson. He is framed, but he does not flinch. He has to dump his girlfriend, it doesn’t seem to matter to him. Only once do we read an emotion on actor Christian Slater’s face: when he finds a bloody heart in his refrigerator.
Now there is no honor for the actors either. “The Deal” is nothing more than a sequence of the different scenes. No time is taken to deepen the characters or create a credible environment. Oil – and therefore gasoline – is priceless, but in the meantime every character drives a car or can be driven in taxis. Visualizing a gas station once with the “No Gas” sign does not give the viewer any insight into the world without gasoline. And worst of all, the film is not exciting at any point! And that expectation is created with the names of (medium) large actors and the storyline. Missed opportunity.