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The Pest

Where to Watch The Pest


The Pest is a zany and off-centre, 1997 comedy film directed by Paul Miller and co-written by David Bar Katz and John Leguizamo, who takes on the main role. Being a versatile actor with a reputation for unforgettable characters, Leguizamo proves his worth in this madcap portrayal of a Miami-based conman. In a supporting cast that includes Jeffrey Jones and Edoardo Ballerini, they form a collective that takes audiences through a roller coaster of fast-paced action and humor.

John Leguizamo takes on the title role of Pestario 'Pest' Vargas, a fast-talking scam artist with quite a reputation in Miami. He's a character who, in any given situation, relies on impersonation, improvisation and quick thinking to get out of tight spots. Pest's relentless energy and unpredictability keep the audience guessing about his next move.

His adventures take a more dangerous turn when he's eventually targeted by a wealthy German businessman, Gustav Shank, played by Jeffrey Jones. Shank's character is ruthless with a creepy calmness that stands as a stark contrast to Pest's manic energy. His twisted enthusiasm for big game hunting gives a darker turn to the comedic setup. The plot takes off when Shank hunts for human game, setting his eyes on Pest.

Working alongside Pest is his best friend Chubby, played by Aries Spears. The pair shares a chaotic but heartwarming bond, working together to keep Pest away from Shank's crosshairs. On the other hand, Edoardo Ballerini portrays Himmel Shank, the effeminate son of Gustav, contributing to the comical absurdity and rounding off an eclectic cast of characters.

The Pest blends a sort of slapstick humor with elements of satire and parody. Even though its humor veers towards the outrageous, the film is meant to capture and capitalize on the essence of its primary star – the inimitable John Leguizamo. It serves as a commentary, albeit exaggerated, on racial and societal stereotypes, making fun of them through the array of personas adopted by Pest.

The film can be categorized as more than just a comedy. It blends elements of the action, adventure, and thriller genres, which not just reflects in the deadly ‘cat and mouse’ chase, but also in the frantic pacing of the screenplay, filled with different set pieces designed to thrill as much as it tickles the funny bone. In many ways, The Pest can be akin to a live-action, outlandish cartoon due to its loud, vibrant, and irreverent style. The humor is a little overboard, that it borders on ridiculous at times, but this is key to understanding the film's charm.

The Pest also stands out due to its creative visual style. The cinematography captures the bright, sun-drenched mood of Miami, which is reflected in everything from the characters' colorful wardrobes to the eccentric locales. The frenetic editing and lively music add to the overall comedy and absurdity of the narrative. One of the film's most memorable sequences involves a particularly humorous shower scene featuring a creative use of music.

The setting of Miami plays a pivotal role, adding to the film's eclectic character. From using various locations in the city to show off its beauty and vibrancy, the movie also relies on the rich multicultural history that Miami has to offer.

Whether or not you enjoy the film, The Pest largely depends on your taste in comedies, particularly those on the absurd side of the spectrum. The movie serves as a showcase for John Leguizamo's versatility and comic timing. However, it's not just about him. It also comprises a strong performance from the supporting cast, especially Jeffrey Jones who equally provides an engaging performance. Edoardo Ballerini also manages to steal a few scenes in his role.

In conclusion, The Pest is an outrageous comedy fueled by wacky energy. Mixed with heady thrills and unpredictable humor, it is a wild ride set against the flamboyantly colorful backdrop of Miami. An ode to the comedic talent of John Leguizamo, The Pest is definitely a film that offers an unusual yet entertaining cinematic experience.

The Pest is a Action, Comedy movie released in 1997. It has a runtime of 84 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it mostly poor reviews, with an IMDb score of 4.8..

How to Watch The Pest

Where can I stream The Pest movie online? The Pest is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Tubi TV, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD, Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent The Pest for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

Paul Miller
John Leguizamo , Jeffrey Jones, Edoardo Ballerini, Freddy Rodrguez Tammy Townsend Joe Morton
Also starring Jeffrey Jones
The Pest is available on .