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The Grand

Painfully funny poker fanatics
By ELIZABETH FLOCK  |  April 2, 2008
3.0 3.0 Stars
BAND OFLOSERS: But which one will win the poker game?

Zak Penn shifts his mock-documentary focus from the cryptozoology of Incident at Loch Ness to the equally strange denizens of the world of professional poker. The Grand follows six players who reach the final table in a high-stakes tournament, throwing in not-so-supportive spouses, costumed opponents, and overzealous commentators. The eclectic ensemble includes narrator Woody Harrelson and comedic vets Ray Romano, David Cross, and Cheryl Hines; there’s also an enigmatic performance by director Werner Herzog. Glimpses into the private lives of these poker fanatics are painfully funny, with Penn’s humor alternately subtle and over-the-top. The Grand starts to unhinge as more characters are introduced, Penn trying to save it with Christopher Guest-like finale. Yet having followed this band of winners and losers as they sort out their cards and their problems, you may just find yourself caring who wins in the final showdown. 104 minutes | Kendall Square
  Topics: Reviews , Zak Penn , Cheryl Hines , Christopher Guest ,  More more >
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