Grosse Pointe Blank

8 out of 10

I saw the trailers for Grosse Pointe Blank and wondered what this movie could possible be about. And I think most people felt the same. The trailer does the movie no good. Grosse Pointe Blank is a movie that cannot be easily categorized. There is no a single genre that can describe Grosse Pointe Blank.

Martin Q. Blank (John Cusack) is a professional hitman. He is going through a life crisis. He is tired of his profession and is unsure of what he really is. By coincident, his next hit job is in his hometown and this tenth high school reunion also being held. Blank insists that he not go to the reunion. But with a little convincing from his office manager (Joan Cusack) and his fearful therapist (Alan Arkin), he agrees to do the hit job and to attend the reunion. Blank’s hesitation to go to the reunion stems from what happened ten years ago during his senior prom. He left his girlfriend, Debi stranded, and unable to go go to the prom. Debi is played by the beautiful Minnie Driver. A funny subplot about a competing hitman trying to start a Union for hitmen unfolds during the movie.

The meat of Grosse Pointe Blank is a love story, and to a point, redemption story. Blank wants to get redemption from that one night when he stood Debi up. But she wants him to earn it. Along with this love story is a comedy that includes Dan Aykroyd as the opposing hitman trying to start the Hitmen’s Union, two FBI guys, a therapist who feels threatened by Blank, and all of the people of Grosse Pointe. At one point Blank tells Debi’s father that he is a professional hitman, the reply he gets is, “Good for you, growth industry.” Then there is the action, and at times highly violent, portion of the film. I found this portion to be as well done as the previous two, but some may find this portion to be a turn off. With all of these different genres in the same film, the obvious question would be: Do the work together well? Yes, they work really well.

John Cusack, who is one of the four writers of this movie, gives a good performance of Martin Q Blank. Blank, who is the only sane character in this movie. Minnie Driver, although good in the movie, gives a flat dull performance as Debi. I enjoyed the performances of Dan Aykroyd as the opposing hitman, and Alan Arkin as the threatened therapist. Dan Aykroyd looks to be having the time of his life in this movie. Arkin gives a wonderfully off-beat performance.

A special mention for Grosse Pointe Blank is it’s soundtrack. The soundtrack is filled with 80’s music and is a real joy. The soundtrack fits in well with the movie.

Grosse Pointe Blank is a quirky movie the defies categorization. It has a great mix of attitude and quirky dialog. This makes for a fun movie that is enjoyable and well worth the money to see.