The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard

The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard is a 2009 American comedy film directed by Neal Brennan, produced by Adam McKay, Will Ferrell, Kevin Messick and Chris Henchy, written by Andy Stock and Rick Stempson and starring Jeremy Piven, Ving Rhames, James Brolin, David Koechner, Kathryn Hahn, Ed Helms, Jordana Spiro and Craig Robinson.[2] Originally titled The Goods: The Don Ready Story, the film was theatrically released on August 14, 2009 in the United States by Paramount Vantage and was released on DVD as a rental only with no special features November 17 and for sale December 15. The film received mostly negative reviews from critics and grossed $15.3 million against a $10 million budget.

The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard
Goods live hard sell hard.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byNeal Brennan
Produced byAdam McKay
Will Ferrell
Kevin Messick
Chris Henchy
Written byAndy Stock
Rick Stempson
StarringJeremy Piven
Ving Rhames
James Brolin
David Koechner
Kathryn Hahn
Ed Helms
Jordana Spiro
Craig Robinson
Music byLyle Workman
CinematographyDaryn Okada
Edited byMichael Jablow
Kevin Tent
Distributed byParamount Vantage
Release date
  • August 14, 2009 (2009-08-14) (United States)
Running time
90 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$10 million[1]
Box office$15.3 million[1]


Ben Selleck's car dealership, in Temecula, California, is failing and he is forced to hire a mercenary, Don Ready. They have 211 cars to sell over the 4th of July weekend. Don's team of Babs, Jibby, and Brent promise Ben that they will make the dealership a profit after the weekend.

On the first day the crowds gather outside for hot dogs and other gimmicks. Don notices that the naturally talented salesman, Blake, could be his son (he was in the town before and had a brief fling while there). The sales team sells the cars by any means necessary and finish the day selling 71 cars. Before they can leave the lot, Stu Harding and his son Paxton from the opposing dealership offer to purchase the lot. Since Paxton is marrying Ben's daughter, Ivy, he is trying to put his future father-in-law out of business. Paxton only wants practice space for his "man-band", Big Ups, and eventually wants to take them worldwide. Ben is about to finalize a deal with Stu but Don promises to sell every car on the lot.

The second day starts off poorly with a dishonest commercial that Ben is dying of testicular cancer. When it is time for Eric Bice, Bo Bice's brother to take the stage he backs out at the last minute and Don takes the stage. The crowd riots when they find out Don is an atrocious singer. Taking advantage of all the cameras on the lot from the riot, the team starts a sale for 20% off to the police.

Don is taking stock in his life when Ivy questions him about one of his jobs in Albuquerque. Don tells her that he killed his best friend and team DJ, McDermott (played in a flashback by Will Ferrell), by giving him a bag with sex toys instead of a parachute. Don was more focused on having sex with his customer than selling cars. He then reveals to Ivy that he is falling for her and it is all happening again. That night Ivy comes to Don's hotel room and they have sex.

Ivy reveals that it was a one-night stand and is not breaking up with Paxton. Don is furious and storms out yelling that he only trusts cars after what he's been done by Ivy. The team searches but cannot find Don, they get pumped up to sell the 105 cars left on the lot without him. While wandering the desert Don sees the deceased McDermott with two angels. McDermott tells Don that everything is about the team, people you love, and that he should get off the road and settle down. In the time it takes Don to get back to the dealership the team sells every car on the lot.

Don parachutes onto the lot but Stu and Paxton inform him the "bandit car" (an expensive prop that was used in the Smokey and the Bandit films) is not sold and the dealership is theirs. Don convinces Paxton to buy the bandit car, which saves the lot, and Paxton leaves Ivy to tour with his band. Don announces that he is going to get off the road so he can care for his friends and family more. Don marries Ivy and adopts Blake (despite the fact that Blake knows he is not, in fact, Don's son) but they get divorced two years later. Neither Don nor Ivy wants custody of Blake after the divorce.



Originally titled, The Goods: The Don Ready Story. Adam McKay acknowledges similarities between this film and the Robert Zemeckis directed, Steven Spielberg produced film Used Cars, which he thinks the "regular people have forgotten about", and he compares this film to a funny Glengarry Glen Ross in tone.[3]


Theatrical releaseEdit

The film was theatrically released on August 14, 2009 in the United States by Paramount Vantage.

Home mediaEdit

The film was released on DVD as a rental only with no special features November 17 and for sale December 15.


Critical responseEdit

The Goods: Live Free, Sell Hard received mostly negative reviews from critics. On the film review website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a rating of 27%, based on 101 reviews, rating with an average score of 4.1/10. The site's consensus reads, "Despite the talent in front of and behind the camera, The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard largely misfires, proving a squandered opportunity for all involved."[4] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 39 out of 100, based on 23 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".[5] On a more positive note, notable film critic Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film three stars out of four, saying "the screenplay moves at a breakneck pace. If a gag doesn’t work, another one is on its heels".


On August 17, the Japanese-American Citizens League demanded an apology due to a scene depicting the mob beating of an Asian American man, as well as the usage of the racial slur "Jap" in the movie.[6]

Box officeEdit

The film opened at #6 in 1,838 theaters making $5,642,137 behind District 9, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, The Time Traveler's Wife, Julie & Julia, and G-Force. The Goods stayed in the theater for seven weeks only staying in the top 10 for its first two weeks. The film has grossed $15,122,676 domestically and $19,895 abroad for a total of $15,142,571 so far. This has placed it at number 97 for all films released in 2009.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard (2009)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2009-11-06.
  2. ^ "he Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved April 11, 2016.
  3. ^ "Adam McKay Talks The Goods: The Don Ready Story". 30 October 2007. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  4. ^ "The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard". Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  5. ^ "The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard". Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  6. ^ Japanese-American group outraged by film Japantoday Accessdate:18 August 2009

External linksEdit