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Awesome: 30.23%
Worth A Look67.44%
Just Average: 2.33%
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4 reviews, 19 user ratings

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by Todd LaPlace

"Hollywood Lesson One: Don’t piss off Harvey."
4 stars

There’s something deliciously ironic about that fact that “Overnight,” the documentary that follows the rise and fall of bartender-turned-director Troy Duffy, got a larger and longer theatrical run than Duffy’s much lauded first film “The Boondock Saints.” Granted, the premise of “Overnight” is probably not going to spark the cult following the latter has enjoyed since it’s video release, but that isn’t going to stop it from being a fantastic film about the dos and especially the don’ts of becoming a Hollywood power player.

Everyone has heard the story of Lana Turner being discovered at a drug store counter, and then being turned into one of early Hollywood’s brightest stars. The validity of the story notwithstanding, Hollywood is littered with similar stories of nobody film fans being whisked from their ho-hum lives and thrown in front of the spotlight.

But what was once the dream of instant celebrity may have been in killed in one quick swoop by director/writer/guitarist/singer Troy Duffy, the one-time bartender that is the subject of “Overnight.” Harvey Weinstein, one of the founders of Miramax, shelled out a pretty penny for Duffy’s gangster script for “The Boondock Saints,” a movie hailed as the new “Pulp Fiction.” Duffy was the newest Hollywood It Boy — he was given the director reigns of his film, a $15 million budget, final cut on the film, part ownership of the bar where he worked and his band, The Brood, was hired to do the soundtrack.

It’s hard to fault Duffy for having trouble adapting to his immediate success. It can be easy to try and lead a normal life when you appear on the cover of USA Today. So Duffy starts doing the same celebratory things anyone would; he drinks, he swears, he flashes his new bankroll, and he does all three every chance he gets. The problem is he kept doing those things for months following his deal. He had everyone tripping over themselves to make deals with him (Maverick, Madonna’s record label, called Duffy to sign the band unseen and unheard), so Duffy’s workload was pretty much stuck at zero. What he did seem to do well was have drinks with every male member of the supporting actor elite — John Goodman, Mark Wahlberg, Matthew Modine, Patrick Swayze and Vincent D’Onofrio among them — and yell into his phone about how he despised Ethan Hawke and Keanu Reeves.

Then came the turnaround. Miramax stop fielding Duffy’s phone calls and Maverick backed out of The Brood’s record deal, despite the band’s self-described “deep cesspool of creativity.” With the speed at which Duffy achieved fame, it’s easy to spend the rest of the picture just waiting for this huge fall from grace. It’s actually a little disappointing that you never get the huge crash of Troy Duffy. Instead, you have to slowly watch the self-important jerk alienate everyone in his life and reach the point of utter ruin, which, as it turns out, is way more satisfying. It’s easy to question whether Duffy deserves to come across as such a pompous jackass or whether he is the victim of vindictive editing. Mark Brian Smith and Tony Montana, the documentary’s two directors, were able to capture so much behind-the-scenes footage because they were once a part of Duffy’s inner circle, a group affectionately called the Syndicate, but part of the footage captured by the duo is Duffy’s explosion at them for wanting a cut of a record deal because they were designated as the band’s managers. But like any good reality junkie knows, it’s rarely possible to edit an evil persona without the footage to back it up, and Duffy supplies plenty of jackass moments to support an accurate labeling.

Perhaps the saddest part of the whole drama is Duffy actually did get all of the perks Weinstein promised him, just not with Miramax. “The Boondock Saints” was filmed in 1998 with Willam Dafoe, Billy Connolly and Ron Jeremy, and it did get a theatrical run a year later (five theaters for a week does count as a run). Under a different name, The Brood recorded the film’s soundtrack, which went on to sell just shy of 700 albums before being pulled from stores. The film has even managed to achieve enough cult clout on video to merit the announcement of a sequel. For Duffy’s sake, let’s hope this shoot goes smoother than the last one, or at least that he doesn’t get his inevitable yet gratifying implosion captured on film again.

Troy Duffy was once the toast of Hollywood. Then he badmouthed Jon Bon Jovi and lost it all. Coincidence? Probably, but you shouldn’t talk bad about the man behind of “Livin’ on a Prayer” and “Always.” Those are good songs.

link directly to this review at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=8556&reviewer=401
originally posted: 07/03/05 18:43:10
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OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Sundance Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Sundance Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2003 Seattle Film Festival. For more in the 2003 Seattle Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Los Angeles Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Los Angeles Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Edinburgh Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Edinburgh Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Starz Denver Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Starz Denver Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Minneapolis/St.Paul Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Minneapolis/St.Paul Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Boston Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Boston Film Festival series, click here.
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2005 Victoria Independent Film & Video Festival. For more in the 2005 Victoria Independent Film & Video Festival series, click here.

User Comments

11/03/09 K. Sear A complete hatchet job. 3 stars
1/08/09 Shaun Wallner Thought this was a good film. 4 stars
5/01/07 BoyInTheDesignerBubble Single handedly ruined it for all new talent hoping for a break! 5 stars
11/30/06 Charles Tatum If Duffy had put half his energy into getting his film made... 4 stars
11/07/06 BertRito Freakin' awesome. Compelling from start to finish. 5 stars
6/22/06 Jack Dunning Schadenfreude's finest hour 5 stars
4/28/06 OrangeCrush I am a rubbernecker, so I loved to see this train crash..... 4 stars
2/05/06 Gungywamp Watch the career of a minimally-talented retard begin and end right in front of you! 5 stars
1/29/06 Rocky I loved watching this asshole crash and burn...immensely enjoyable 5 stars
12/21/05 stacy klein like getting pissed off at morons? you can't get any better than this! 5 stars
9/17/05 ktos duffy's a fuckin' irish asshole 5 stars
8/06/05 Cass BOONDOCK PUSSIES was more like it, Duffy's a no-talent hack... 5 stars
6/05/05 y2mckay Troy Duffy is a talented writer/director who also happens to be a huge douchebag. 4 stars
10/25/04 Blade my inspiration 5 stars
10/18/04 Fungo Troy Duffy is a no talent splooge monkey. And he's right where he belongs... nowhere. 5 stars
7/30/04 Jenna Burgi Funny and well cast but sometimes weak in the script. 4 stars
5/25/04 julian kaye Smith and Montana are "true filmmakers." They exposed Troy Duffy for who he really is. 5 stars
4/22/04 Jon Stewart Makes "Project Greenlight" look like an "Afterschool Special." 5 stars
4/11/04 Hilarium Great fun. Watch an egomaniac burn everyone around him, then burn himself out of a career. 5 stars
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  DVD: 28-Jun-2005



Directed by
  Mark Brian Smith

Written by

  Troy Duffy

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