Matt Zorzi’s review:
Used to LOVE this film as a teenager. Hurt to rewatch. It has some of the worst (in a bad but good sort of way) dialogue ever written. Every character speaks in cliches and none of the actors are particularly convincing, save for Palminteri and Walken. Thankfully, when the character's aren't speaking, the pool montages provide some awesome respite. Plenty of bank shots, masse shots, and jumps made with pinpoint accuracy. I'd say it's done more convincingly than "the color of money" in this regard.
Still, it's very watchable. This can be linked to how accessible the story is and the excellent set-up at the start of the film. The story follows writer-director Mars Callahan at a critical point in his career as a pool hustler. He's giving up his pool cue and trying to settle down with his girlfriend. That is to say he's trying to give it up. After taking on a few jobs unsuccessfully, Callahan gets roped back into hustling after his younger brother has a run-in with Palminteri, Callahan's former backer. This all culminates in a final game of 9-ball, a match between good and evil, for some big dollars.
All in all, this film will always have a place in my heart as a cult-y type favourite; so bad, it's good.