The wickedly engrossing crime thriller Good Time – brimming with manic energy, suffused with nihilism and packed with frenetic urban grunge – helped the Safdie Brothers leapfrog from the Indie circuit to prestige space, and also served as an apt preamble to their gleefully outrageous next film Uncut Gems. It rests on the fidgety shoulders of the smartly etched Connie – a small-time hoodlum who lives on the edges, has a disdain for authority, and is glibly oblivious of the repercussion of his self-serving choices on those around him – magnificently brought to life with chameleon-like brilliance by Robert Pattinson, and made further compelling by the filmmakers’ absolute refusal to either judge or denounce his broken moral code. Set largely over the course of a single day (and night) – but for the remarkably sedate opening and closing sequences – it burst into action when Connie impulsively drags his mentally disabled brother Nick (played by Benny himself) out of a therapy session which had just started going well. When a botched bank robbery leads to Nick’s arrest, he must find a way to get hold of a load of money by the next morning to secure the huge bail bond while also evading the cops. And thus begins a mad dash of crafty hustling, crazy conniving and old school survival that involve his emotionally unstable older girlfriend (Jennifer Jason Leigh), a surprisingly level-head African-American teenage girl (Taliah Lennice Webster) who he briefly befriends, and a wounded guy (Buddy Duress) arrested for drug offence who he mistakenly gets out of police cover from a hospital. The film’s pulsating beat was amplified by the neon-lit visuals and the mesmeric electronic/synth score by Oneohtrix Point Never.
Director: Josh & Benny Safdie
Genre: Thriller/Crime Thriller