Running Time: 107 mins.
Premise: When Chechen goons force Bob, a barkeep (Tom Hardy,) and his boss (James Gandolfini) to receive a bundle of cash on Super Bowl Sunday, a series of increasingly dangerous and violent events unfold.
Behind-the-Scenes: This is Gandolfini's last film role. Screenwriter Dennis Lehane adapted his own short story. Lehane also wrote the books that served as the basis for Gone Baby Gone, Mystic River, and Shutter Island.
The Good: Tom Hardy. That man can act. He inhabits each character completely, and each one is different than the last. His portrayal of Bob is a study in subtle character shadings and caged fury. Hardy's interactions with a pit bull puppy and, to a lesser extent, Noomi Rapace, are super cute. There's a delicate and unique tone to the movie, veering back and forth from dark comedy to heist thriller to mob drama. The end twist is not a complete surprise, but still satisfying. Great to see Gandolfini go out on a relatively high note, with a character tailor-made for him.
The Bad: The lax pacing and unorthodox storytelling can drag at times. If you're looking for a thriller, there's not much in the way of genuine thrills here. The movie is funny, sure, but can sometimes be a little goofy for its own good.
Should You See It?: Worth a rental, but no need to run out and see this one in theaters.
Star Rating: *** out of 5 stars.
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