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Genre: Drama
Starring: Morgan Freeman, Paz Vega, Jonah Hill, Anne Dudek, Bobby Cannavale
Director: Brad Silberling
Rating: NC-16 (Some Coarse Language)
Year Made: 2005






Languages: English
Subtitles: English/Chinese
Aspect Ratio: 16x9
Sound: Dolby Digital
Running Time: 1 hr 21 mins
Region Code: 3
Distributor: Scorpio East




Once the center of Hollywood, an aging actor finds that his failure has made his career dry up and he's now forced to consider a role in a small independent movie. While researching for the role, he stumbles into Scarlet, a spitfire check out clerk at a Latino community market. The two begin a trek through Los Angeles finding richly unexpected situations, chance encounters and personal revelation that neither character could ever have anticipated.


I think before watching 10 Items or Less, please be warned that this is not so much so a film but rather a compilation, an observation of a day’s worth of events. That is to say that it doesn’t exactly have a beginning or end – or a tangible plot to begin with, and it’s more or less like watching a continuous flow of randomness and uneventful surprises. To put it simply: it’s like watching an edited, secretly taped clip of, let’s just say, a brother’s day in school. In other words, slice of life.

Well, I am making it more boring than it actually is, and it is actually a pretty interesting film. Of course, the only catch is that unlike your brother, the main character, Morgan Freeman (as himself) is an out of work actor, and has been so for the past four years. Which technically brings him down to being one of the normal folks like us, but I should stop digressing and go forth.

So the film starts off with Freeman, ex-superstar, on a truck having a playful conversation with his driver, and it is then that we find out that he has been offered a role in… an indie movie, directed by a first-time, and possibly inexperienced director. He is on his way to Archie’s Ranch Market to do some research on his next role, in fore-mentioned film, as a supermarket’s manager. There, he meets the beautiful Scarlet (Paz Vega), a moody and begrudged cashier who is upset with her work environment (her co-workers are either lazy or old) and current status in life. And oh, she’s in charge of the “10 Items or Less” lane.

When Freeman’s driver fails to come and pick him up after his research is done, he tags along with Scarlet after she finishes her shift, and… that’s when the ride begins.

Of course, in reality, Freeman is still moderately popular and has had roles in recent blockbuster films like The Dark Knight and Evan Almighty. Therefore, the concept that Freeman has been out of a job for four years is very interesting, and I do enjoy good movies about an alternate world as it lends a fresh perspective to how people normally perceive things.

The best thing about the 10 Items or Less is that it’s obvious to anyone that Freeman thoroughly enjoyed making the movie, enjoys acting in general, and that’s enough for me to be sold.

While it might not be the most entertaining movie (normal strangers meeting each other in a chance encounter and having a connection), gains points for innovativeness and creativity. Also, the movie flows very naturally and I strongly suspect that the leads did a couple of scenes with spontaneous and impromptu acting on their part.

Do stay on even when the movie has ended, because there are some interesting outtakes.


Almost nothing given, save for two trailers of movies The Mist and Halloween.


Nothing out of the box in the audio and visual department except the usual Dolby Digital and Anamorphic Widescreen presentation.


(Pretty much … a day in an out-of-work actor’s and down-on-luck cashier’s life)


Review by Casandra Wong


Other titles from Scorpio East:

. Halloween

. 1408

. There Will Be Blood

. The Nanny Diaries

. The Magic Gourd

. Death Proof

. Dead Air

. A Tale of Mari and Her Puppies

. My Wife is a Gambling Maestro

. Fatal Move

. An Empress and the Warriors

. Ah Long Pte Ltd

. Talking Cock The Movie

. 2 Faces of My Girlfriend

. Lust Caution

. 881

. Brothers

. Ratatouille

. The Invisible

. The Lookout

. Alone

. Bar Paradise

. China Vampire

. Hooked On You

. Underdog

. Keeping Up With The Steins

. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

. High School Musical 2: Extended Edition

. Pixar Short Films Volume One

. Who Slept With Her?

. The Jungle Book

. Disney Princess Enchanted Tales

. Meet The Robinsons

. Goal II: Living the Dream

. Hanna Montana

. Meet The Robinsons

. Wild Hogs

. Breaking And Entering

. Jump In

. Primeval

. Forest of Death

. The Fox and the Hound 2

. The Fox and the Hound

. Dumbo

. One Last Dance

. Protege

. The Curse of the Golden Flower

. A Battle Of Wits

. Rain Dogs

. Heavenly Mission

. Exiled

. Operation Undercover

. Diary

. Fatal Contact

. Singapore Dreaming

. Rob-B-Hood

. On The Edge

. The World's Fastest Indian

. Dragon Tiger Gate

. Unarmed Combat

. Crazy Stone

. Election 2

. We Are Family

. I Not Stupid Too

. The Shoe Fairy

. 2 Becomes 1

. 49 Days


. Dragon Eye Congee

. A Chinese Tall Story

. Perhaps Love


. Election

. The Myth

. Wait 'Til You're Older

. The Maid


This review is made possible with the kind support from Scorpio East


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