Film Review: THE GO-GETTERS (Canada 2018) ***

The Go-Getters Poster
A deadbeat drunk and a junkie hooker join forces to take on the city, each other, and their own personal shortcomings while trying to scam $98 for bus tickets out of town.


Jeremy LaLonde

THE GO-GETTERS is a pretty nasty movie.  It is meant to be so.  Well, life can be so, but a nasty movie is normally not taken in as well by audiences that feel good crowd pleasers.

According to the press notes, this is the genesis of how it all began.  “Our writers, Aaron Abrams and Brendan Gall, first started writing this as a pissing contest to see who could make the other laugh the hardest,” says director LaLonde (How To Plan An Orgy In A Small Town, Baroness von Sketch Show). “After years of people loving it but saying the project was too risky, it was passed along to producer Jordan Walker, who loves edgy material, and he passed it along to me. It was always written for Aaron to star, and we were lucky to get Tommie-Amber Pirie, who brought her cuss-filled A-game every day.

Owen (Aaron Abrams) is a social non-starter, jobless, homeless, reduced to sleeping on a mattress in the boiler room of his disgruntled brother Kevin’s bar, and down to his last five dollars.  One day, while smoking the remnants of a cigarette he picked up off the street, he meets Lacie (Tommie-Amber Pirie), a hooker still wearing the hospital gown she was given when she was treated for a drug overdose.

She promises him a hand job for a few bucks that he fools her that he has.  When things do not work out, they do still hang around, creating a hate love but mainly hate relationship.  They eventually decide to get enough cash to go to Brockville to to get out of Toronro and take over the house in Brockville currently occupied by Lacie’s grandmother so that they can live there.  But it is not easy for a quarrelling couple who hate each other so much to bring in $49 for the train fare to Brockville.  They argue their way through schemes they have to beg, borrow or steal (but mainly steal).

There are a few good pissing contest segments like the one where the two catch a cab in rider to rob the driver.  A few of the nasty segments like the glory hole scam gets too nasty for comfort.  The audience will likely not take any sides either – the two characters being equally repulsive.  The film has a neat plot towards the end coupled with a cameo by Kids in the Hall’s Scott Thompson.

One last unforgettable film with such a fighting couple is Alex de la Iglesia’s PERDITO DURANGO (DANCE WITH THE DEVIL) which centres on a serial killing couple played by Javier Bardem and Rosie Perez.  The cocaine sniffing Bardem picks up the Perez character in a bar saying: “this is my lucky day.”.  “This sure isn’t mine,” is her reply.  That film reached dizzy heights which THE GO-GETTERS unfortunately does not achieve.

But THE GO-GETTERS aims low and never pretends to be a remarkable film.  A lesson in life is subtly sneaked into the story which lifts the film up several notches.  Nastiness is the aim of this couple relationship story where feel-good and crowd-pleasing are replaced by scramming, shouting and insults resulting in an overall nasty but not necessarily awful film.



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