Tag Archives: A Most Violent Year

A Week In Film #451: Rewind

Resurrection Man
Something of a missed opportunity to capture the terror generated in 1970s Belfast by the murderous Shankill Butchers gang, with Eoin McNamee adapting his own novel for director Marc Evans. Whilst there are some nice touches, it never really hits the mark. Cast includes Stuart Townsend, John Hannah and James Nesbitt.

A Most Violent Year
JC Chandor’s excellent drama set in early 1980s New York, where small heating oil company boss Oscar Isaac and his wife Jessica Chastain are desperately trying to survive in the face of hijackings, shady competitors, investigation by the authorities and business deals which fall away. Chandor declines at almost every turn the impulse to throw in the overfamiliar action or suspense tropes, and the work benefits – giving more space to the actors to instead simply act.

A Week In Film #324: Down to the bone

The Rainmaker title screen
The Rainmaker
Perfectly diverting legal potboiler, Francis Ford Coppola directing from John Grisham’s book, with Matt Damon a young lawyer teaming up with boisterous paralegal Danny De Vito to… Erm… Can’t remember – it’s that sort of film. But definitely not terrible.

The Lady Vanishes title screen
The Lady Vanishes (2013)
Not the Hitch version of Ethel White’s pre-war European mystery novel The Wheel Spins, so not as much fun, but Tuppence Middleton (Cleanskin) and Tom Hughes The Game) have a fair crack at it in a BBC TVM directed by journeyman Diarmuid Lawrence.

Funeral In Berlin title screen
Funeral In Berlin
I prefer a game with a better chance of cheating.

A Most Violent Year title screenA Most Violent Year
Excellent, low key period piece from JC Chandor (Margin Call) about a struggling businessman (Oscar Isaac) and his wife (Jessica Chastain) trying to stay clean in grimy, gritty early eighties New York.

The Wolf Of Wall Street title screen
The Wolf Of Wall Street
Flashy, silly, fun (and in parts highly objectionable) based-on-a-true-story nonsense about boiler room bastards in eighties New Jersey; Scorsese pastiches himself, with Leonardo Di Caprio and Jonah Hill meeting him halfway from typical Judd Apatow territory.