Go

Go

directed by Doug Liman

Sony/Tristar

Director Doug Liman ( Swingers ) takes on the rave scene with a gaggle of Generation-Y television stars? It sounds like predictable fodder for the shopping mall set, but this film is full of surprises. In the tradition of Pulp Fiction , Go follows the alternately thrilling and hilarious antics of a group of teens and twenty-somethings over the course of 24 hours.

The ride begins in Los Angeles with Ronna (Sarah Polley), a supermarket clerk who is one day away from eviction and desperate for rent money. She agrees to take the shift of her co-worker Simon (Desmond Askew), who goes bounding off to Las Vegas with a group of his buddies. It turns out that Simon is the local Ecstacy source for small-time television stars Zack (Jay Mohr) and Adam (Scott Wolf), so Ronna seizes the opportunity of his absence and tries to make a deal herself. With stubborn resourcefulness, she convinces drug dealer Todd (Timothy Olyphant) to sell her the goods, but things go terribly wrong when she goes to make the sale.

Meanwhile, Simon is having problems of his own, as he sets a hotel room on fire while having tantric sex with two bridesmaids, shoots a bouncer at a strip club, steals a Ferrari, and is caught up in a car chase with his three buddies. Zack and Adam pop up again as they try to avoid the suspicious advances of a married couple (played by Contact ‘s William Fichtner and Ally McBeal ‘s Jane Krakowski). Everything collides at the Mary X-mas dance party, where the techno and drug-saturated excesses reach their peak.

The pace of Go is relentless, but Liman expertly adds touches of reality that lend depth to the characters. The talented, young cast is diverse and energetic. Polley, who shone in The Sweet Hereafter , strikes a perfect balance of vulnerability and gritty determination as she finds herself over her head in the world of narcs and drug deals. Katie Holmes, as Ronna’s reluctant accomplice Claire, handles herself quite well among the lunacy. Mohr and Wolf’s comic banter and Askew’s blissfully bumbling incompetence, with friend Marcus (Taye Diggs) trying to rein him in, are ripe with laughs.

With a cast of talented actors, a vigorous soundtrack, and a series of carefully calculated twists, Liman’s frenetic, visually pleasing film expertly captures the outrageous fun of being young and living life on the edge while you still can.

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