Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Harold Becker|
|Produced by||Daniel H. Blatt|
|Written by||Ben Stein
|Music by||Stanley Myers|
|Edited by||Maury Winetrobe|
|Distributed by||Hemdale Film Corporation|
Lenny Brown is a real-estate hustler looking to strike it rich. He is married to Linda, a paralegal and amateur dancer. The two are poor in money but rich in love. Linda vows to stick with her husband until she "falls off the earth." He moves to California and goes to work for a prosperous businessman, Max Sherman, selling lucrative investments in tax shelters.
Everything is suddenly first-class for Lenny and his wife. But when the tax laws abruptly change, they find themselves $700,000 in debt.
They become increasingly desperate, made worse by the fact that a friend, Joel Miller, turns them on to cocaine for "a boost." Lenny and Linda both become addicted. They lose their home, car and jobs. Linda becomes pregnant, but falls and suffers a miscarriage after using cocaine.
Lenny's life unravels little by little as the drug habit gets the better of him. He gets straight temporarily for one last great business opportunity, but he can't pull it off. This culminates in Lenny severely beating Linda and putting her in the hospital. At this point, Linda decides enough is enough and seeks help. She later falls for the doctor who is treating her.
As the end credits roll, we see Lenny still using cocaine in his filthy apartment, reduced to a babbling shell of himself.
- James Woods as Lenny Brown
- Sean Young as Linda Brown
- John Kapelos as Joel Miller
- Steven Hill as Max Sherman
- Kelle Kerr as Rochelle
- John Rothman as Ned
- Amanda Blake as Barbara
The Boost earned mixed reviews from critics. Roger Ebert gave the film three-and-a-half of a possible four stars in a Dec. 28, 1988 Chicago Sun-Times review, calling the film "one of the most convincing and horrifying portraits of drug addiction I've ever seen." Leonard Maltin was not so kind, however, giving the movie only one-and-a-half of a possible four stars: "A misfire that's on the screen for 30 minutes before you even realize that it *is* anti-drug...As with Jack Nicholson in The Shining, it's hard to distinguish the 'before' Lenny from the 'after'."
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