Starring:
Steve Buscemi (“Fargo”, “Youth in Revolt”)
Romany Malco  (“Baby Mama”, “The 40 Year-Old Virgin”)
Sarah Silverman (TV’s “The Sarah Silverman Program”, “School of Rock”)

Directed by: Hue Rhodes

Rating: 5 out of 10
Recommendation: Maybe Rent

A slight take on Dante Alighieri’s Inferno, Saint John is the story of an ex-gambler (Steve Buscemi) working at an insurance claim settlement firm in New Mexico.  As the story goes, his life is an utter mess, the girl he loves (Sarah Silverman) doesn’t even notice him and nothing seems to be going right for him until he is given the opportunity by his boss to move up in the world.  His new job, if he so chooses, is to travel with Virgil (Romany Malco) to investigate a possible fraudulent insurance claim in the mecca of gambling temptation, Las Vegas.  Along the way, John and Virgil run across a motley crew of strippers, carnies, naturalists, and conmen, each a different piece of the puzzle that he must try to solve all while trying to keep his sanity, his new found love, and his money.

This was a fascinating but dark and wry film.  Having read Dante’s Divine Comedy, it was interesting to see some of the characters and the theme of temptation that stood out throughout the movie.  Much of the cast is fairly big as well, with funny performances by Peter Dinklage, Tim Blake Nelson, Howard Cho, and Emmanuelle Chriqui.  But although there are some good cameos, the movie drags along at many points and new characters are unneccesarily introduced into the story to give depth.  If you’re into independent films or dark comedies, then you may want watch this, otherwise you may want to put this in the back of your queue to rent if you’re bored.