Friday 28 November 2008

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead [2007]

Veteran American director Sidney Lumet has always been a searing critic of the “American Dream”, most notably in two of his most legendary movies – 12 Angry Men and Dog Day Afternoon. And his latest movie is a masterly study of the complex interplay between seemingly easily definable characters, on the backdrop of a disastrous jewellery store heist. The movie, through its grim and severely claustrophobic narrative, and through terrific usage of flashbacks and shifting perspectives (point-of views), presents a distressing picture of an urban landscape where dysfunctional families, misplaced loyalties, vacuous sense of ethics, unforgiving modes lifestyles, and a twisted sense of natural justice, are the unfortunate orders of the day. Phillip Seymour Hoffman as a cocky and seemingly successful career-man with a sultry trophy wife, Ethan Hawke as his intellectually and monetarily challenged brother, and Albert Finney as their surprisingly dogged and ruthless father, have given remarkable performances to present a rapidly decaying social and moral structure, filled to brim with such elements as lust, betrayal, frustrations and at times downright idiocy, in this dark, distressing thriller.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Genre: Crime Thriller/Psychological Drama/Family Drama/Heist Movie
Language: English
Country: US

No comments: