Even as the raving lunatic mobster in Sexy Beast, Ben Kingsley was still an interior actor – the rage bubbled up from deep within.
Humor, however, is largely an exterior enterprise, which is why Kingsley seems like such a misfit in this hit-man comedy. The movie is confused enough as it is – director John Dahl can’t decide if he’s making a farce, a crime drama or another one of his modern noirs (Red Rock West) – without its mismatched star.
Kingsley plays Frank Falenczyk, an alcoholic assassin for a Buffalo, N.Y., crime outfit who is sent by his superiors to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings in San Francisco. There he meets a grumpy handler (Bill Pullman), an understanding sponsor (Luke Wilson) and the most unlikely of love interests (Tea Leoni, ridiculously Kingsley’s junior but at least a comedic actress).