Clay Pigeons

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Clay Pigeons ★★½ 1998 (R)

Bodies are mysteriously piling up in a sleepy Montana town after strange cowboy trucker Lester (Vaughn) shows up. Clay Birdwell (Phoenix) finds himself a prime suspect after a series of bizarre twists stemming from his affair with his best friend's wife. After crossing paths, Clay and Lester quickly become best buddies. When they discover a body while fishing, Clay begins to link unsolved murders elsewhere in the state to his new pal. Problem is, the FBI has just shown up to investigate the disappearance of Clay's best friend and his wife, while Lester has disappeared, leaving Clay to take the heat. Features outstanding performances by Phoenix and Vaughn. Vaughn is given free reign, and goes near, but never over, the top. Second half is slower and less fun than the first half. Still, the original story and clever twists keep it interesting. 104m/C VHS, DVD . Vince Vaughn, Joaquin Rafael (Leaf) Phoenix, Janeane Garofalo, Scott Wilson, Georgina Cates, Phil Morris, Vince Vieluf, Nikki Arlyn, Monica Moench, Joseph D. Reitman, Gregory Sporleder; D: David Dobkin; W: Matthew Healy; C: Eric Alan Edwards; M: John Lurie.