You know how on “30 Rock” Tracy Jordan is working towards his EGOT to prove that he’s an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony winning quadruple threat? Well writer and director David Mamet is working on it, too. He won a Pulitzer Prize and received a Tony nomination for “Glengarry Glen Ross.” He’s been nominated for an Oscar for “The Verdict” and “Wag the Dog.” He worked on Emmy winning television show “Hill Street Blues” and, well, surely he’s working on a Grammy, too.
Mamet is a modern Hollywood Renaissance man with turns as a writer, actor and director under his belt. His films range from “About Last Night” (Rob Lowe! Demi Moore! Jim Belushi!) to “Uncle Vanya” and almost everything in between. Today at 1:45 p.m. ET we are showing his film “State and Main,” starring William H. Macy, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Alec Baldwin as a film crew who wreaks havoc on a small Vermont town. The film got us thinking about Mamet and his work and we decided to make a list.
Here are five David Mamet movies we love:
1. “The Spanish Prisoner.”
This 1997 film written and directed by David Mamet centers on an elaborate confidence game. Mamet constructed a labyrinthine plot laden with twists and turns that keeps viewers guessing even after the lights go up.
2. “State and Main”
After its leading man’s love for teenage girls gets them banished from their New Hampshire location, a film crew relocates to the small town of Waterford, VT, to finish shooting. They wreak havoc on the town, the inhabitants and themselves during production.
3. “The Untouchables”
While Brian de Palma directed this gangster flick, Mamet wrote the screenplay of the film that stars Kevin Costner as government agent Eliot Ness in his efforts to bring Capone to justice during the Prohibition era.
4. “Wag the Dog”
This politically-minded black comedy, written by Mamet, stars Robert DeNiro as a Washington spin doctor who, days before a presidential election, distracts the electorate from a sex scandal by hiring a Hollywood film producer (Dustin Hoffman) to construct a fake war with Albania.
5. “Glengarry Glen Ross”
As a group of salesmen battle for their livelihoods in a real estate office, the men are prepared to engage in any number of unethical, illegal acts–from lies and flattery to bribery, threats, intimidation and burglary–to sell undesirable real estate. The film features great performances from Al Pacino, Jack Lemmon, Ed Harris and an incredible bit of acting by Alec Baldwin.
“State and Main” Wednesday, Nov. 2 at 1:45 p.m. ET and Saturday, Nov. 26 at 7:45 a.m. ET