Rat Race (2001) [English (MPEG Layer III, 163 kBit/s, 48 kHz, Stereo)]
Genre: Comedy
Length: 1h 52m 0s
Director: Jerry Zucker
Tagline: 563 miles. 9 people. $2 million. 1001 problems!
Plot outline: A group of billionaires led by a Las Vegas casino owner (John Cleese) search for things to bet on. They decide to pull a group of six strangers together to race from Vegas to Silver City, New Mexico to retrieve $2 million hidden in a locker. First one there gets all of the money. The first team are two addled brothers (Seth Green and Vince Vieluf, who talks indecipherably because of a newly pierced tongue). When they cannot catch a plane, they plot to destroy an airport control tower in a very funny sequence. Their antics carry them into a hot air balloon chase that catches a cow with a dangling rope and into a monster truck competition. The second team is an estranged mother (Whoopi Goldberg) reunited with her daughter (Lanai Chapman), who is struggling to start a business. They face an insane squirrel-selling woman (Kathy Bates) and steal a rocket car scheduled for a land speed record attempt. A hated NFL referee (Cuba Gooding, Jr.) is stranded in the desert by an irate cabbie (Paul Rodriguez) and hijacks a busload of Lucille Ball look-alikes on the way to a convention. The Jewish family man (Jon Lovitz) on a family vacation joins the race without telling his wife (Kathy Najimy) why they are rushing across the country. When his daughter insists on stopping at a Barbie museum, it is without realization that it is the Klaus Barbie Nazi Museum. The escape from that location involves the theft of Hitler's personal touring car and culminates with Lovitz having his tongue burned and accidentally crashing into a WWII Veteran's convention. A narcoleptic Italian (Rowan Atkinson in his best Mr. Bean-like manner) gets a ride with an ambulance driver (Wayne Knight), who is carting a human heart for a transplant. Through various ineptitude, the heart ends up flying out of the truck's window and the two have to recover it from a playful dog. The final race member (Breckin Meyer) is a straight-laced future lawyer who at first declines to participate in the race, but re-thinks his position after he meets a smart, beautiful woman (Amy Smart) who is flying a helicopter to New Mexico. He quickly finds out that she is unbalanced after she flies over her boy friend's house and starts an attack on the boy friend when she sees him in the pool with an ex-girl friend. An air pursuit results in the crash of the helicopter. Dave Thomas also appears as Cleese's humorless attorney. Summary written by John Sacksteder {jsack@ka.net} Donald Sinclair (John Cleese) owns the biggest, snazziest, flashiest, high rolling-est casino in Las Vegas. And to entertain some of his wealthiest patrons, he's staged the most original high stakes game that Sin City has ever seen! The contestants? Six teams. The jackpot? Two million dollars stuffed in a locker hundreds of miles away. The odds of winning? One in six. The rules? Well there's only one--get there first! What the racers don't know is that the tycoon and his rich buddies are betting on the outcome and are tracking every move the teams make. It's only a matter of time before they figure out who really stands to win the most before switching course to look for a different kind of pay-off. Summary written by Sujit R. Varma {sujit_varma@hotmail.com} A betting-obsessed casino mogul and his group of just as bad billionaire associates, sets up a new kind of gamble in a race for $2 million hidden away in a locker. They enlist the aid of eight people who happen to be residing in his casino at once. A clean cut lawyer, a disgraced NFL referee, two inept brothers, a determined mother and daughter, a narcoleptic Italian immigrant, and a desperate father embark on a series of misadventures to obtain the money regardless of what it takes. Summary written by MonkeyKingMA
Comment: Spoilers herein. Two interesting things about this. I am a strong believer in there being seven types of people. Or rather that human group dynamics define seven stereotypes around which people invent themselves. Here's a test to see which you are. There are seven types of comedy here: the six competitors/teams, and the betters. The strategy with films like this is to shuffle between types of comedy to keep the pace moving. The full range of comedy cannot be accommodated, but there are seven different types here. Same as Mad, Mad. My own favorite is Cuba and his Lucies, including the explanation of why he needed the uniform and leading up to the big W: `You wuined our wacation.' Its because it is mildly self-referential: a busload of comic impersonators -- and because Gooding's acting is an odd take on comedy. He plays it straight, but straight in a dizzy world where everything is pushed into Wiley Coyote territory (just like Lucy): his comedic acting is noncomic acting pushed past the limit. In a real sense, he is goofing (in a friendly way I'm sure) on the professional comics. The only two old pros here: Goldberg and Cleese, are the least funny of the bunch, which just emphasizes the point. The other interesting thing for me was the producer's icon for the new Fireworks productions (new to film anyway). These are the often annoying snippets that are shown before you start to get your money's worth, being a sort of letterhead of sponsoring organizations. They are representative of that sponsor, their approach to quality and often some philosophy about the business. Dreamworks is one everyone knows: a combination of Normal Rockwell and mystical magic, strictly visual. Some of the others are absolutely dreadful. These are like a printer's brochure, or an architect's office -- they should be done well. This one is done well. It is visually stunning and gets the message across cleanly and quickly. There is a fireworks effect done with bombs punctuating `ordinary' bursts. The bombs establish a cadence long enough for it to register on your senses. Then it smoothly accelerates in a way you can track. Then it outpaces your ability to recognize a pattern and breaks into seeming chaos. (Developed by BoomBoom Bamboni if I have it right.) Thrilling, because you know it was all planned, that it affected you through that plan, but that you couldn't comprehend the order of it all. This is conveyed in the Fireworks clip in about ten seconds. Fireworks is a group to watch.
IMDB Rating: 6.7
Country: USA
Subtitels: No ()
CDs: 0
Quality:Video (?x? @ ?.?? [[unknown] ?kb/s])

Audio (?Hz ?bit ? chan. [[unknown] ?kb/s])
IMDB address

Breckin MeyerasNick Schaffer
Jenica BergereasHotel Clerk
Lanei ChapmanasMerrill Jennings (Baker) (as Lanai Chapman)
Cuba Gooding Jr.asOwen Templeton