5.5/10
11,296
63 user 68 critic

Play It to the Bone (1999)

Two best friends and former middleweight contenders travel to Las Vegas to fight each other for the first time.

Director:

Ron Shelton

Writer:

Ron Shelton

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Antonio Banderas ... Cesar Dominguez
Woody Harrelson ... Vince Boudreau
Lolita Davidovich ... Grace Pasic
Marie Park ... Waitress in Cafe
Tom Sizemore ... Joe Domino
Lucy Liu ... Lia
Robert Wagner ... Hank Goody
Richard Masur ... Artie
Willie Garson ... Cappie Caplan
Cylk Cozart Cylk Cozart ... Rudy
Jack Carter ... Dante Solomon
Aida Turturro ... Mad Greek Waitress
Louie Leonardo ... Freddy Green
Slade Barnett Slade Barnett ... Vegas Cop
Cameron Milzer Cameron Milzer ... Vegas Paramedic
Learn more

More Like This 

Tin Cup (1996)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A washed up golf pro working at a driving range tries to qualify for the US Open in order to win the heart of his successful rival's girlfriend.

Director: Ron Shelton
Stars: Kevin Costner, Rene Russo, Don Johnson
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A gang of ex-cons rob a casino during Elvis convention week.

Director: Demian Lichtenstein
Stars: Kurt Russell, Kevin Costner, Courteney Cox
Comedy | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Black and white basketball hustlers join forces to double their chances of winning money on the street courts and in a basketball tournament.

Director: Ron Shelton
Stars: Wesley Snipes, Woody Harrelson, Rosie Perez
Money Train (1995)
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A vengeful New York City transit cop decides to steal a trainload of subway fares. His foster brother, a fellow cop, tries to protect him.

Director: Joseph Ruben
Stars: Wesley Snipes, Woody Harrelson, Jennifer Lopez
Action | Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

UN's secretary general uses covert operations to help diplomacy along. Shaw's called back 6 months after one such operation. He witnesses the murder of Chinese UN ambassador at UN, NYC, chases the assassin and ends up a suspect.

Director: Christian Duguay
Stars: Wesley Snipes, Anne Archer, Maury Chaykin
The Body (2001)
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A crucified body dated back to the first century A.D is uncovered at an ancient cave in Jerusalem. Trouble ensues as word spreads.

Director: Jonas McCord
Stars: Antonio Banderas, Olivia Williams, John Shrapnel
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A woman discovers a tragic love letter in a bottle on a beach, and is determined to track down its author.

Director: Luis Mandoki
Stars: Kevin Costner, Robin Wright, Paul Newman
The Gunrunner (1989)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.9/10 X  

1926. The Chinese Civil War. Drifter Ted Beaubien is captured and forced to witness his girlfriend's execution. He finally escapes and vows to avenge her death by taking on a deadly mission... See full summary »

Director: Nardo Castillo
Stars: Kevin Costner, Sara Botsford, Paul Soles
Futuresport (TV Movie 1998)
Action | Sci-Fi | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  

In 2025, Futuresport is the organized sport of the planet. But someone else is getting organized and their game is war.

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson
Stars: Dean Cain, Vanessa Williams, Wesley Snipes
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Gwyn Marcus has always wanted a marriage like her parents. She has just accepted the proposal of her boyfriend Matt, but she has misgivings about their future together. Her fear of ... See full summary »

Director: David Frankel
Stars: Sarah Jessica Parker, Mia Farrow, Antonio Banderas
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

As they visit New York City, a pair of cowboys have to become unlikely heroes when their friend is kidnapped.

Director: Gregg Champion
Stars: Woody Harrelson, Kiefer Sutherland, Dylan McDermott
The Fan (1996)
Action | Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

An all star baseball player becomes the unhealthy focus of a down on his luck salesman.

Director: Tony Scott
Stars: Robert De Niro, Wesley Snipes, Ellen Barkin
Edit

Storyline

Two aging fighters in LA, friends, get a call from a Vegas promoter because his undercard fighters for a Mike Tyson bout that night are suddenly unavailable. He wants them to box each other. They agree as long as the winner gets a shot at the middleweight title. They enlist Grace, Cesar's current and Vinnie's ex girlfriend, to drive them to Vegas. On the trip, we see flashbacks to their previous title shots, their competitive friendship, and Grace's motivational wiles. (She has her own entrepreneurial dreams.) The fight itself is historic: ten rounds of savagery and courage. Who will win, who'll get the title shot, who gets Grace, and where will she find venture capital? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

No one hits as hard as your best friend. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Sport

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for brutal ring violence, strong sexuality including dialogue, nudity, pervasive language and some drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Reunited Woody Harrelson with Writer and Director Ron Shelton after White Men Can't Jump (1992). See more »

Goofs

During the drive when Vince is telling the story of how he was robbed they show him in a fight where the tattoo on his back says Grace. Later, when he and Cesar are fighting the tattoo on his back says Peace. See more »

Quotes

Cesar Dominguez: I thought we were not supposed to get laid for a couple of weeks before a fight.
Vince Boudreau: Says who?
Cesar Dominguez: Everybody knows that. You know, it's an energy thing...
Vince Boudreau: All the great ones got laid before they fought! I mean, the more the better, man.
Cesar Dominguez: You never told me that!
Vince Boudreau: Yeah, well, I thought you knew, man. The words go together: Champion and pussy. Champion, pussy. Just think about it. It's a natural.
Cesar Dominguez: [Starting to laugh] Oh, Jesus Christ!
See more »

Alternate Versions

Italian and German theatrical release are approx. 15 minutes shorter than the original US version, removing one sex scene and some dialogue. See more »

Connections

Featured in At the Movies: The Worst Films of 1999 (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

No Money
Performed by Martin Blasick
See more »

User Reviews

 
Good boxing, weak characters
20 June 2000 | by FlickJunkie-2See all my reviews

‘Play It To The Bone' is really two movies. One is a movie about boxing and the other is a comedic character study of the boxers. As a boxing film it succeeds nicely. As a comedy it has its moments. As a character study it hits the canvas hard.

The storyline was sort of ‘Rocky' times two. Two washed up middleweight boxers Vince and Cesar (Woody Harrelson and Antonio Banderas), who are also best friends, get a last minute chance to fight in Las Vegas on the undercard of a Mike Tyson heavyweight bout when the two scheduled fighters are unable to fight. They are promised that the winner will get a chance to fight for the championship, but they have to be in Las Vegas tonight. The trouble is, they have to fight each other.

So they climb into a car with Cesar's girlfriend (and Vince's ex-girlfriend) Grace (Lolita Davidovich) and drive from L.A. to Las Vegas. Most of the rest of the movie is about the drive followed by the fight.

Director Ron Shelton has had quite a few sports oriented success stories to his credit (Bull Durham, White Men Can't Jump and Tin Cup). The best part of the film was the boxing. The boxing was well choreographed and both actors were athletic and fought like real boxers. Shelton was also excellent at creating the feel of a boxing match. Anyone who has ever watched an HBO bout will recognize ring announcers Jim Lampley, Larry Merchant and George Foreman. Mike Tyson made a cameo as well as numerous celebrity boxing fans (Kevin Costner, Rod Stewart, Wesley Snipes and a host of others). The makeup for the cuts and puffiness was also very realistic.

Unfortunately, the rest of the film was not as good as the fight. Shelton spends a good deal of time developing the characters, but it is all for naught because they have no substance. They are two hapless jocks, obvious mental lightweights, who spend most of the trip to Las Vegas fighting over Grace, cutting up and strutting around like peacocks. Shelton takes great pains to try to make us love these characters equally by making them equally pathetic. But that doesn't work because it leaves the audience without anyone to pull for in the fight. The ending is utterly predictable and the film whimpers off into the sunset with no more than a stagger.

Banderas and Harrelson both gave journeyman performances. They had good chemistry and some decent comedy between them, but there was nothing special here. The best performance by far was by Davidovich who transcended her normal sex kitten role and took command of the entire film with a character that was a flaming bitch on wheels. She was smart, tough sexy and manipulative and dominated every scene. Once again she shows that she is talented as well as attractive, which makes me wonder why she has never gotten more substantial roles.

This is a tough one to rate because it does some things very well and other things poorly. I gave it a 6/10. It had some good comedic moments, but not enough of them. It had some excellent boxing scenes, but a disappointing outcome. And the character study simply failed due to vacant characters. If you like boxing, Harrelson, Banderas or especially Davidovich, you will enjoy this film. Otherwise, enter at your own risk.


15 of 19 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 63 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 January 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Play It See more »

Filming Locations:

Baker, California, USA See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$24,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,366, 26 December 1999

Gross USA:

$8,434,146

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,678,812
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (DeLuxe)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed