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(2008 - USA) Nat (Walken) is a man who enjoys taking advantage of life. He revels in his ability to win daily prizes from radio station contests (then cash them in), drink complimentary coffee from hotel lobbies, and drive the pink and white Sweet N Low car that he won free use of for a year (with gas!). Nat is a hustler, and a good one too. Hes able to attain almost everything he wants and needs, all for a measly $5 a day. The one thing that Nat doesnt have, however, is what he desires most of all: a closer relationship with his son, Flynn (Alessandro Nivola). But Flynn has problems of his own: hes just lost his job, his girlfriend is leaving him because of his secretive personality, and now Nat is calling to say that hes dying (which Flynn doesnt believe is true). With nowhere else to turn, Flynn reluctantly agrees to drive his father to New Mexico for experimental treatment, and nothing short of hilarity ensues.

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Cast

  • .Christopher Walken................Nat Parker
  • Alexandro Nivola....Ritchie Flynn Parker
  • Amanda Peet..................................Maggie
  • Peter Coyote...........................Bert Kruger
  • Sharon Stone......................Dolores Jones

Credits

  • Directed by ..............................Nigel Cole
  • Screenplay by...................Neal and Tippi Dobrofsky
  • Cinematography...............Peter Donahue
  • Running time............................98 minutes
  • Premiered..................... September 6, 2008 at the Toronto Int'l Film Festival
  • Released on DVD & Blu-ray on August 24, 2010
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    Production Notes:

    In a project that dates back to 03 with the likes of Nick Cassavetes and John Curran to direct, Nigel Cole was ultimately chosen to helm this road pic.. Written by Neal and Tippi. Dobrofsky, the film was produced by Carol Baum, Jane Goldenring and Kia Jam with financing by Capitol Films. Shooting began in New Mexico and Atlantic City, NJ in September 2007. In an interview with the director, Cole admitted he had turned down the script the first time he read it, but several years later it crossed his desk again after being re-written and this time he loved it. Sam Rockwell was originally slated to play Flynn, only to drop out to make room for Nivola; however, Walken was one variable that remained unchanged.

    For Cole, an Englishman working in America, one of the biggest challenges he faced was in getting the little details right, ensuring that a movie that was mostly shot in Albuquerque, New Mexico with another two days in Atlantic City actually looked like a cross-country journey. "It was tough," he admits, "but we had an idea that wherever they go, the road looks the same. The stops along the way look the same. Every place has a Chevron, a Howard Johnson's and an IHOP."

    Reviews:

    "At its core, '$5 A Day' is a film about the reconstruction of a fractured bond between father and son. Walken and Nivola play their parts to perfection, slowly building their characters and then giving the audience ample opportunity to love them, laugh at them, and most importantly, care for them. Director
    Nigel Cole does a wonderful job in setting up the films story and then guiding his actors through scenes on the strength of their chemistry. $5 A Day may follow the story of two hustlers, but its depictions of love and family are genuine, a true celebration of the exuberance of life."   ...J.D. Mcnamara, Cinema Blend

    "Director Nigel Cole has infused '$5 a Day' with a genial, low-key sensibility that certainly complements Neal Dobrofsky and Tippi Dobrofsky's amiable screenplay, with the easy-going vibe cemented by the two leads' thoroughly ingratiating performances. The film's road-trip structure is primarily employed as a springboard for a series of oddball interludes, with Nat's penchant for chicanery landing the two characters into one overtly goofy situation after another."  ...David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews

    "Christopher Walken is the man known for his eerie and tough roles, and his trademarked pauses between words... Hes also a  trained dancer. Hes taken on Shakespeare. Hes stared down guns in Russian Roulette. And now in Nigel Coles latest film '$5 a Day', he gets to pull together the best of both worlds the dynamic pull of his talents with the classic Walken weve all grown to love." ...Monika Bartyzel, Toronto Film Festival

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