Garcia is allowed free rein as NY 'scalper' (tout) Gary Starke, a bumptious, philanthropic charmer in slanted pork-pie hat and Ratso Rizzo sneakers (and mannerisms). He might come on like cock of the walk with his gang of associates and hangers-on in Tony's Bar, but he feels impelled to get a social security card - and a life - by reuniting with old flame and aspiring chef Linda (MacDowell, muted). The plot turns on his efforts to raise funds for a restaurant lease, borrowing over his head to buy black market tickets for the Pope's upcoming Yankee Stadium visit. The Diner-esque banter is enjoyable, thanks to a rich list of character actors (notably Bradford as the protagonist's pal, lonely ex-boxing coach Benny, whose tearful flurry of hurt, anger and confusion at a diatribe from Gary provides the film's best scene). Garcia himself, in a screen-hogging role, is a little stretched: his De Niro-style set pieces - selling a TV to an unwilling customer, helping Linda cook for a snobby English tight arse - jar against his subsequent low life lethargy.
Cast and crew