Most people will probably recognize the guy on the poster, star/writer Peter Facinelli. If it’s not from the Twilight films, then it’s probably from Nurse Jackie or Can’t Hardly Wait. Facinelli is what people in Hollywood would call a “journeyman” actor, because he kind of takes roles here and there, and you kind of see him pop up everywhere, yet, his star seems to still not grow. I think that is a conscious choice on Facinelli’s part, I’m sure he could be getting bigger studio film roles, but instead of doing that, he spends his time pursuing projects of his own. While he has directed a few short films, in the past year he has been writing a lot more, and this is where we arrive at Loosies, which Facinelli wrote.
Facinelli is Bobby, a coy pickpocket that spends his days traversing the streets of New York City, stealing what he likes from the passersby on the street and on the subway. Bobby’s freewheeling days quickly end when he bumps into a girl named Lucy (Jaimie Alexander) whom he had a one night stand with. She tells Bobby that she’s pregnant, and then he finds out his mother is moving in with her new boyfriend, whom Bobby doesn’t know. Meanwhile, he’s still $100,000 in debt to Jax (Vincent Gallo), after taking on his dead father’s gambling debts, and a detective (Michael Madsen) is hot on his trail to retrieve the NYPD badge he stole from the detective.
Desperate, and running low on options, he wedges himself into Lucy’s life as much as he can. On the surface, Bobby is a superficial asshole with few redeeming qualities. Below the surface, he’s a mama’s boy with a heart of gold, a man that just wants to take care of the people he loves, if only he could admit he loves them. Bobby’s biggest problem is commitment, as Lucy points out, he can’t even stick with one brand of cigarettes, always buying singles, or “loosies”, to get him through the day.
The city of New York is one of the only places this story really works. Due to the hustle and bustle nature of the city, Bobby can use it to his advantage and easily escape a situation if it gets sticky. When he can’t get into his apartment because the police are posted outside it, he drifts through the city, unnoticed. There’s a reason Bobby likes the city, it’s so big and moves so fast he can exist in his own little world where he shuts out the noise and uses the city as his own concrete jungle gym on a daily basis.
When things really start to heat up, Bobby starts to panic, the cops know his every move and when he’ll make it and where. He happens upon a meeting between Jax and the police, so he goes to confront Jax when it’s safe, but not before striking a deal with his mother’s boyfriend, Carl (Joe Pantoliano), a jeweler, for insurance.
This movie isn’t a big flashy movie, it’s a small indie drama with a few cool chase sequences, and a simple, but effective, plot. The film is well shot, doing a good job of portraying New York City as an endless concrete jungle with plenty of escape routes. Bobby hides in the city to keep away from responsibilities, until he realizes that running from everything is what is making him unhappy. Not for everyone, but it’s not a bad way to kill 90 minutes, and it proves Peter Facinelli can indeed be a charismatic lead man.