Watching Diamond Men is like sitting through an episode of The Price is Right where an agreesive frat boy has just invaded Bob Barker’s stage in search of Blinko chips. Director Dan Cohen’s first feature has Robert Forster’s aging Eddie Miller showing Donnie Wahlberg’s oversexed Bobby Walker the ins and outs of diamond-selling after a heart-attack threatens his future. The geriatric Diamond Men is a bit too twisty for its own good but it’s short-story quaintness brings to mind Barbara Loden’s Wanda. It’s a deeply personal film that’s mindful of the loneliness that often comes with aging. Forster is so good that he makes the film’s ham-fisted metaphors easy to swallow (the character makes obvious associations between character flaws and the imperfections in diamonds). Bobby is the poster boy for the slacker movement: he thinks he’s hip but he’s patently uncool (see his leopard-skinned underwear). Still, Bobby knows a good whorehouse when he sees one. Eddie’s wife is dead and Bobby thinks he can juice up the widower’s libido by taking him to the local “massage parlor.” Tina (Jasmine Guy channeling Chuck Woolery) hooks Eddie and Bobby up with a string of young prostitutes. Katie (Bess Armstrong) is an ex-whore-gone-Buddhist with a fondness for charging her chakras. You could say that she’s a diamond in the rough. Forster doesn’t instantly escavate his newly-found piece of womanly coal when Katie asks where he would like his massage—Eddie replies sadly and softly with “it doesn’t matter” (it does, he just doesn’t know it yet). Forster is simply remarkable here and while the film looses itself to a minor subplot involving Eddie’s stolen diamonds, the film remains O. Henry huggable. Additionally, it’s respect for the aging process is both refreshing and certainly humbling.
- Panorama Entertainment
- 100 min
- Dan Cohen
- Dan Cohen
- Robert Forster, Donnie Wahlberg, Bess Armstrong, Jasmine Guy, George Coe, Kristin Minter, Glenn Phillips, Nikki Fritz
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