THE GOODS: LIVE HARD, SELL HARD(15, 89 mins) 1/10
GREED is good in Neal Brennan’s raucous debut feature about the exploits of four car salespeople in the California town of Temecula.
Everything else in this foul-mouthed comedy from the creative forces responsible for Talladega Nights: The Ballad Of Ricky Bobby and Step Brothers is excrement.
If ever there was a compelling case for bringing charges against screenwriters who commit crimes against good taste, The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard is it.
Andy Stock and Rick Stempson’s script leaves us shaking our head in embarrassment and dismay almost from the opening frame as Jeremy Piven’s stripper-loving head honcho uses his powers of persuasion to orchestrate a pot-smoking orgy on a domestic air flight.
Characters are crass and unlikeable and their filthy-minded dialogue is, by turns, racist, sexist and homophobic.
Don Ready (Piven) is the leader of four hard-nosed trouble-shooters, who move from one city to the next, helping ailing auto dealerships to shift the cars on their lots.
Don’s colleagues, sex siren Babs (Kathryn Hahn), number cruncher Brent (David Koechner) and retired professional athlete Jibby (Ving Rhames), share his sell-at-all-costs mentality, eschewing sentimentality if it means one more sale.
The feisty quartet answer a distress call from small town dealer Ben Selleck (James Brolin), whose business is in dire straits.
Don and the team swoop into action and attempt to motivate Ben’s emotionally unstable sales force.
The outsiders soon fall victim to the petty rivalries of small town life.
The central premise – Don and co must shift 211 cars from the lot in three days to save the business – is resolved with tiresome predictability and producer Will Ferrell cannot resist a humourless cameo as an old friend who discovers the perils of skydiving.
He takes about 30 seconds to hit terra firma and perish with an almighty thud. Brennan’s film manages it in half that time.