Swimming with Sharks
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Swimming with Sharks
Originally screened at Telluride as The Buddy Factor, Swimming With Sharks is an uneven but engrossing picture, and a possible warning to anyone with plans to break into the motion-picture business. When Guy (Frank Whaley), a recent film-school graduate with big ideas, takes a job as assistant to major studio executive Buddy Ackerman (Kevin Spacey), he believes his ship has finally come in; little does he know it's a slave ship, for his boss is indeed worse than a slave driver. Buddy delights in abusing his boy-toy (exemplified by the scene in which he forbids Guy to go to the bathroom as… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 80%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"The picture's raison d'être has to be Spacey's 'loud and nasty' performance: he's the sort of actor who grabs you by the throat and beats you about the head without ever lifting his feet from the desk."
‑ Geoff Andrew, Time Out
"To outsiders, all this rage and gnashing of teeth may seem silly and self-absorbed."
‑ Peter Rainer, Los Angeles Times
"Despite some sharp dialogue, this is a nasty, derivative film, sort of a cross between Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs and Altman's The Player."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"Dazzling and subversive satire on boss-employee relations."
‑ Rob Thomas, Capital Times (Madison, WI)
"A criminally underrated film, featuring one of Spacey's best performances."
‑ Larry Carroll, Countingdown.com
"Mr. Spacey's Buddy is a caricature so dazzling that even Buddy might have to say something nice about it: cool, withering, studiously suave, and spurred by impulses that might seem peevish even in a 2-year-old child."
‑ Janet Maslin, New York Times
"Sharks is a one-joke movie, and the joke wears thin less than halfway through."
‑ Mary Brennan, Film.com
"...Spacey delivers one of his most memorable performances..."
‑ David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews
"One of the best film's of the 90's...Spacey and Whaley are staggeringly good!"
‑ Clint Morris, Moviehole
"I came away from this film unsure of what it was trying to say, unsure of how to classify it, and definitely unhappy with the ending."
‑ Michael W. Phillips, Jr., Goatdog's Movies
"This excessively talky, incoherently plotted, would-be film noir is not very good."
‑ Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail
"[Huang's] plot may be overwritten and the ending may be less than satisfying, but his eye and ear are right."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"It's darkly hilarious, smoothly entertaining, and almost sinfully cruel. And the finalé packs a real stinger."
‑ Scott Weinberg, DVDTalk.com
"ascerbic but missing something"
‑ Karina Montgomery, Cinerina
"Overrated and somewhat derivative, Swimming with Sharks is a reasonably good time but honestly doesn't have a whole lot to say."
‑ Christopher Null, Filmcritic.com
More reviews for Swimming with Sharks on Rotten Tomatoes