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[Short Reviews]

DIAMOND MEN

Put a couple of guys in a vehicle, let them bond and chew the fat as they pass through their work routine, and youíve got the makings of what passes these days for independent film. Joining the overrated Spring Forward, the underrated Lakeboat, and the audacious but ultimately disappointing mainstream hit Training Day is Daniel M. Cohenís debut.

The first scene bodes well. Decked in a dark suit and tie like one of the gang in Quentin Tarantinoís Reservoir Dogs, itinerant jewelry salesman Eddie Miller (Robert Forster) struts over to his Lincoln Town Car and keels over with a heart attack. Months later, heís back on the road, but only to train his replacement ó the newly corporatized firm wants to can him as uninsurable. And as if that werenít bad enough, the new guy, Bobby Walker (Donnie Wahlberg), is an asshole.

What follows traps this mismatched pair in confined spaces like cars, coffee shops, and motel rooms (kind of like Jon Favreauís Made without the laughs), with a heist and a bit of romance appended like baubles. Wahlberg continues to annoy, as his character transforms from obnoxious to adorable, but Forster, of course, shines, putting in a performance that is, true to the title, polished and multi-faceted.

BY PETER KEOUGH

Issue Date: October 18 - 25, 2001