The Minus Man (1999)

Trailer: The Minus Man Trailer

Starring: Owen Wilson, Sheryl Crow, Dwight Yoakam  – Directed By:  Hampton Francer

Running Time: 1hr & 51 mins – Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery


Big JD (Host)

Before I start this review I would like to drop a statistic for you.  From 1980-2008 there are a reported 185,000 unsolved homicides in the United States.  Scary to think huh?


Vann is a simple man.  Simply not all there but trying to figure out where he is going in the world.  After the death of his father he takes it upon himself to travel the US and find somewhere that he feels that he belongs.  He wants to be a normal person, with a normal job, with normal friends.  The growing death rate that follows him has him troubled but not worried.

“If they let me get to wherever it is I’m goin’ I’ll make a pact with myself. Guess I’ll know where that is when I get there.” – Vann Siegert


Owen Wilson is fantastic in this Mysterama-Crime flick.  I remember the first time I saw it and Owen Wilson became my favorite actor of all time.  I even named my son after him.  I just wish he wouldn’t have flopped so hard in the recent years.  I mean c’mon!  He would do awesome in serious movies.  I don’t want to see anymore comedies from him.  Give me psychopath killer all the way!  Yeah, so Owen was good in this film as my opinion is strictly stated.  Brian Cox is good in everything he does.  I love when actors play the slightly crazy.  I don’t know if it is something I relate to or just infatuated with.  Mercedes Ruehl was an innocent bystander in this whole crazy story.  She played a good mom.  Someone that deserved to see her daughter open presents on Christmas day.  Maybe, it’s just me relating with her mom character from “Big” but whatever.   Janeane Garofalo played an excellent drunk.  Although I tend to think she has some untouched mental issues as well.  The booze just conceals it some.  Just a little.

I’ve loved this movie for a long time.  It does have it’s problems but they are individual issues that you may have or may not have.  I believe that it depends heavily on how you watch it the first time.  1.  Don’t think this is a funny movie.  2.  Pay attention to what he is saying at all times.  3.  The movie is slow-moving so stop and feel the mood created for you.  If these rules are followed this may be a pleasurable experience for you.  If not, then you get to see Owen Wilson do something different from just a comedy role.  The soundtrack in this movie is subpar to say the least but I wouldn’t trade it for anything because it helps define the movie.  Maybe, I’m just use to it.  The only thing that I would have changed in this Owen-flick is that the ending was unsatisfying for me.  I get that the movie ends like it begins (with the left/right choice of action) but it makes the viewer feel like that they have gone nowhere.  It was a nice trip but I didn’t get a souvenir.  I didn’t want him to get caught, but I would have liked to discover more about the character with the ending closing the story for good.  Because, well it’s not often that a movie that only makes 368k domestically will ever get a sequel.  Too bad too.

The dialogue in this film shows the uncomfortable conversations that Vann has with others.  It turns out that these “others” are fairly Looney too.  Ferrin (Janeane Garofalo) played the uncomfortable situations very, very well.  Vann himself seemed to be a nice guy that could take your life anytime he wanted.  He would ultimately allow you to choose the time (from his viewpoint) and that is frightening to me.  The teddy bear that will grow horns and cast you into the fiery depths of hell.  But he was a pleasure while it happened.  I also, liked the story of his landlords and how their daughter went missing.  If you ask me I think the father had something to do with it.  “F*ck her and her mother she rode in on”.  What are the odds that Vann would stumble onto Doug, another murderer different from him but in some ways… the same.  But he’s not Doug.

Comic book Connection:  Brian Cox:  X-men 2 United, Red, Red 2 – Eric Mabius: The Crow: SalvationJaneane Garofalo: Mystery Men

Nudity Bonus:  N/A




 This was quite a movie, It was a slow starter for me it felt like the whole time at the beginning he was washing his truck after killing some people however that wasn’t it at all, What I did like about this movie was that it gives you a person who feels it’s his duty at the time to kill people whom he thinks needs to be killed, but not really in a “I AM GOD” kind of way but more like a “Oh your life sucks, here let me help you with that…” kind of way.
As time goes on he gets a little more aggressive and out of line.

It was kind of a unique story to tell which is what I did like about it, but the awkwardness and slow pace kept me wondering why JD picked this movie. Surprisingly it relatively kept my attention. The acting was done well, and the casting was amazing pick Sheryl Crow although she was a small part didn’t really play a junkie too well for me though.  Not really showing track marks looked pretty, had all her teeth, didn’t really show signs of junkie more like a free spirit who likes to “Get high.”

Owen Wilson and Janeane Garofalo play very weird characters that really fit well together until you try to choke her out and beat her. Owen Wilson playing a psycho that takes it upon himself to “fix” everyone, and plays it like Lenny from “Of Mice and Men” were to have slight intelligence and sympathy to fix people s sufferings.

Brian Cox plays a very nice Crazy person himself, actually his acting I think was done the best but that’s a personal choice.

Story line was original and different side of things then just killing people you kind of learn most of their stories and why they are possible choices to be targets for Van.

Overall I felt like I didn’t like the movie but actually looking back it wasn’t bad, but it is a slow moving movie and you need to keep focused or you lose what you thought you know. It’s not really a psychological thriller but it’s pretty interesting Drama. Smart Pick on Owen’s half.




This movie was…um…different at best. I can honestly say I have never watched another movie quite like this one.  It seemed to kind of drag on and jump from one thing to another. Maybe it was meant to mimic the awkwardness of the main character Vann.

What I liked the most about it was the fact Owen Wilson plays a character different from his normal hyper, in your face, slightly crazy goofball. It was neat seeing him play a chill, if some what deranged, man.  Even though he is a quote/unquote psychopath, he is a rather likable guy. He views his killings as mercy killings that need to be done for one reason or another. He does get rather reckless when he moves into a new town. He breaks two of his rules that could make his life difficult. But ironically through no fault of his own, he has to leave town.

I have to say my favorite quote of the movie is,”I never make a plan. Like a comet shooting across the sky, it just happens.” It seems to me this is how he justifies what he does, but it is still an awesome quote.

The music was ehh this time. Not much to hold my attention or any one part that stuck out.

So if you have time and want to see a different side of Owen Wilson, totally watch this movie. For that alone it is worth it.



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