This gritty film follows the Bondurant brothers, who start running moonshine ever since prohibition fell upon the USA. Things get rather rough though as the local law enforcement start cracking down on them. A psycho special deputy from Chicago, Charlie Rakes(Guy Pearce) comes into town and is not afraid to use violence and murder to stomp out moonshiners. The film is directed by John Hillcoat who brought us The Road, he adapted the book “The Wettest County in the World” which is “based on real life”, one can’t really ever believe that fully these days but whatever it still makes a great story.
What is interesting about Lawless is the film doesn’t really follow just one character, out of the three brothers the time is broken up between two of them. The intense leader of the group named Forest(Tom Hardy) who is so calm and brutal, every time he’s on screen you just know something is going down. We also follow the youngest brother Jack(Shia LaBeouf) who isn’t tough and doesn’t really enjoy violence, he is a kid wanting to play gangster. The third brother is more of a brute and a drunk, Howard(Jason Clarke) gets the lowest amount of screen time which is a shame because I like Clarke as an actor, he did great work on the short lived “Chicago Code” that ran on FOX for one season. The brothers story is very interesting because unlike other gangster movies this one isn’t very glamorous. Hillcoat does an amazing job of making the film feel like it was set in depression era Virginia.
The movie is decently violent at times but it feels rights here. Running moonshine would be very dangerous and especially out in the middle of the woods where anything can happen. The film really relies though on the performances. Jessica Chastain plays Maggie Beauford, a city woman who moved away from the craziness of the mob and falls in love with Forest. Hardy and Chastain work really well together and sadly the film pulls away from their connection. We spend a lot more time with Jack as he tries to date a pastor’s daughter. This is the main problem for the movie is it breaks up the stories too often and the flow never really feels right.
The films only real problem is Shia LaBeouf, he simply stands out here. Hardy and others do such stand out performances that seeing LaBeouf trying to be a tough guy almost takes you out of the movie. Now I’m not saying he’s terrible, he just doesn’t blend with the cast and he is the weakest point of the movie. The problem is he is essentially the lead. A performance that saves the entire movie is Guy Pearce who plays Rakes as such a nasty sucker you can’t help but smile every time he’s on screen.
Even with the faults the film is a nice treat for a summer filled with over the top CGI and fantastic action sequences. The action is this film feels so real. Towards the end of the film there is such a realistic shoot out where every bullet is dangerous and the men shooting do not want to get shot. Usually in action movies people unload not caring at all what happens. I’m hoping we see a lot more films from Hillcoat in the future because it’s obvious now that he has a lot of talent.
The movie is set in the early seventies, we follow the “Circus” division of MI6, when an agent remerges after what many believed was his defection, he has information claiming that a leading member of the Circus is a mole for the Soviet Union. George Smiley(Gary Oldman) an older agent that was pushed from the Circus after a botched mission, returns to find the mole. His old boss knew a Soviet spy was in the group and gave them each code names: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier and Spy.
This isn’t a spy movie that most audiences are used to, with Bond and Bourne leaping around and shooting people to the ground. This film is a very solid Cold War film. This movie is about information and weeding a mole out with real spy tactics. No jumping off roofs or giant explosions. Even though this film doesn’t have any of that, the tension is very high. Many should see this film just because I think people are starting to forget about the spy games against the Soviet Union.
This film was based off the book written by John Le Carre, it was adapted for the BBC and the character of George Smiley was played by the amazing Alec Guinness. So Gary Oldman had big shoes to fill and he really does a great job. The performance is a quiet one, Smiley is the anti-Bond/Bourne, he is older and not really charismatic. His marriage is falling apart as his wife has an affair with one of the men he is investigating. What is great about Oldman is that no matter what happens his character never really raises his voice.
The film is very adult, the pace is slow, that doesn’t mean it’s bad at all. The film feels very real, MI6 isn’t some glorious place, it’s a government building. Every moment of tension feels real. The film bounces between the mission and a flash back to a X-mas party before it was known about a mole in the group.
Now Oldman is great but other actors give very splendid performances. Mark Strong and Colin Firth deliver stand out performances. Tom Hardy plays Ricki Tarr the agent that connects a lot of the story. It’s crazy to think of the roles this man has been in this last year, you almost forget it’s him while watching the movie.
If you enjoy stories about the Cold War or simply enjoy well paced films you’ll enjoy yourself. If you’re expecting a shoot out type film or an action film with a high body count, you’ll be let down. For me the movie was a breath of fresh air. The performances alone are worth the ticket price.
Two estranged brothers played by Joel Edgerton and Tom Hardy, find themselves facing off in a winner takes all(that being $5 million dollars) MMA match. Their past was torn apart by a drunk father who after years finally got sober and is determined to win back his two boys. This film has kind of had the wrong banner placed on it that it’s some sort of ground breaking MMA film. Now frankly movies involving MMA have been horrible but Warrior goes beyond all that. The story isn’t about the fights it’s about the two men fighting. One is smaller and wins by taking fights to the ground. The other is a monster who beats his opponents to a pulp.
The fight themselves are very well filmed and I think the different fighting styles spices things up so we never get bored. The truth is though the fighting doesn’t matter that much. Joel Edgerton’s character is a family man, two little girls, a beautiful wife. He shelved his fighting career after going to the hospital and promising his wife he’d stop. Becoming a teacher the only reason he gets into fighting is because the bank plans to foreclose his house. Tom Hardy who plays the brother is a mess. Hates his father for being a drunk and making his mom leave town. He also was in Iraq, saved a soldier from drowning, he also lost a close friend. All of these left him bitter and angry and he entered the fights with a rage that could barely be controlled.
Both actors along with Nolte are really strong here but for me Tom Hardy is a serious stand out. Not only is he built huge for this performance but he plays the balance between being heroic and having serious demons. Every time he’s on screen it is a treat. Edgerton is also very good and plays things so well and it’s clear he’ll be a super star soon. The film itself flows very fast and is not just a gritty drama but I film that could be a crowd pleaser as well. It’s not the revolutionary MMA movie some were trying to label it as… It’s better much better than that.
As Nolan prepares to make his third and final film of his Batman franchise, rumors are flying around epically. What we know is that Anne Hathaway is playing Selina Kyle and possibly Catwoman. We know Tom Hardy is going to play Bane. That is perfect in my eyes really and I’m glad they will do a dark and serious Bane. The last time we saw that character on screen was in Batman and Robin where he was basically a giant monster that could only say one word occasionally like “Bomb!”. Now though a range of characters are being mentioned and names attached to those characters are flying. First we have a rumor that Ra’s Al Ghul daughter and the League of Shadows will return. Then it was reported that Joseph Gordon Levitt would play Alberto Falcone which would set up a number of story lines from the comics. Then suddenly the report was shot down and the rumor is that Levitt will play Hugo Strange. That is funny because before Nolan confirmed it, many believed Tom Hardy was going to play Strange.
The real question now the Levitt is confirmed to be in the film one possibility is that he could play the Joker. He could work really well as that character. There might not be enough room for the Joker in the third film. Frankly his story line in the Nolan universe is pretty much over. Batman did ruin his ultimate plan and proved humanity can win even in the face of absolute chaos. Joker lead to Dent becoming Two Face and then Batman took the blame. That story line is over. Now this is about Batman redeeming himself and most likely trying to protect his identity. It’s almost a shame Levitt is in the Dark Knight Rises because you know even after Nolan there will be more Batman films and I think Levitt would be a good Joker for the future.
It’s been slow in movie news (besides Superman) so I decided to put the debate in place that is it possible Tom Hardy’s Bane and Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman can impress audiences after Heath Ledger’s Joker? Now to be clear it hasn’t been confirmed Hathaway will actually be Catwoman. She’s playing Selina Kyle officially. Now with Nolan behind the camera I have total faith. Batman Begins in my opinion had great villains. Scarecrow was done very well in the most realistic way possible and I loved Liam Neeson’s Ras Al Guhl. Heath Ledger’s Joker though in the Dark Knight scared the shit out of people. He was something everyone feared, a man who first off doesn’t care about his own life, yet all he wants to do is kill and create chaos. His character was everything that scares us about terrorism. Ledger’s performance was a home run and the ending was perfect between him and Batman.
Tom Hardy is a great actor, most audiences know him from his charming character in Inception. Go rent or buy the film Bronson and see what this guy can do. He is perfect for Bane. A lot of people rolled their eyes at the thought of Bane being in the movie but that’s because they remember the character from Batman and Robin. They portrayed him as a one note monster, just repeating lines and sounding like Frankenstein. In the comics Bane was a beast but also very smart and had a boner to hunt down Batman. In the comics he broke Batman’s freaking back! With Hardy and a true version of the character, Bane should be a stand out villain for the franchise.
Anne Hathaway is just one of the best actresses out there hands down. A brilliant female villain is just necessary for the franchise. Rachel Dawes was the only female character in the first two films. Sure she was more important to the plot in the second movie, but over all her character did not have a lot of screen time. Selina Kyle is a fantastic character and Catwoman is a balancing force for Batman. Nolan could make this work. I still feel like Catwoman won’t show up in The Dark Knight Rises, I think it’s a fake, but will see.
Comparing these characters to the Joker is pointless. His character is hard not to enjoy, a villain who doesn’t care and just does whatever he wants is just plain fun to watch. Bane and Catwoman are not like this. They are not about chaos. Bane is about power. Catwoman is straight about sex and lust. I feel bad for Hardy and Hathaway because they will be judged by Ledger’s performance. The comparison will be unfair and unavoidable though. I feel like Nolan picked these villains for a reason. They are the exact opposite of the Joker. Many thought the next baddie would be the Riddler. That character is just too similar to the Joker, as our many bad guys. Also the Joker is not a physical match for Batman, in the film he needed hostages, henchmen and dogs to even slow Batman down. Bane is stronger and better than Batman in every way. This isn’t about fighting random chaos his is about stopping fury that is coming right at you. So sure will people say “Not as good as the Joker”, you bet they will. Still look at the villain choices through the three films and what they will represent and I think most will be very impressed and satisfied.
So Anne Hathaway is Selina Kyle and possibly Catwoman. Tom Hardy is Bane. The main question now is will the villains from the previous movies return? That would make things a little crowded and I believe after Spider-man 3, studios will try and avoid over crowding a movie with characters. The real question is will the Joker or Two Face show up? Well Heath Ledger passed away and in no way would they recast him to play a small part in the third film. Problem is that Nolan’s original idea for the third film involved the Joker. His character and Ledger’s performance made The Dark Knight a huge box office monster. Still his return as a character is doubtful, he’ll probably be mentioned by someone in the film but that’s about it.
Two Face is another story. Sure we in a way see Dent die. Batman tackles him off a roof and fails to catch him. Still though Dent could still be alive. His funeral at the end of The Dark Knight could be a fake. Maybe to help Gotham not fall apart Batman takes the blame and is chased by the police. While Dent is placed in prison or Akrham Asylum for his own safety. This could work and be great for nerds to have Dent back. Another characters that could return is possibly another Ras Al Guhl or Scarecrow from Batman Begins. Either way expect these types of discussions to continue on about villains until the movie comes out in theaters.
Warner Brothers came out and made the announcement that Anne Hathaway has been cast as Selina Kyle and Tom Hardy has been cast as Bane. This has created a stir online, since many wrote off Bane as a possible villain for the film. The sequel to the mega hit The Dark Knight is one of the most anticipated films and many fans have their point of view of how the films should be done. Anne Hathaway is a very interesting choice for Selina Kyle, now many of course will expect that Catwoman will follow but this has not been confirmed. Her character alone could be a huge fake to the audience but will see. Hathaway in my opinion is one of the best actresses out there so landing her is just great. Selina Kyle is a necessary character in Batman, this doesn’t mean for sure that Catwoman will be involved, if she is then expect a crazy ride. Tom Hardy was cast very early but even though he’s not well known, his talent is huge and him playing Bane is just brilliant. Many Batman fans who don’t read comics will only remember the character from the film Batman and Robin. There he was shown as a mindless monster who barely had any lines and was a simple henchman. In the comics Bane was very smart and was one of Batman’s biggest villains in the rogue gallery. I mean the dude straight broke Batman’s back in the comics. So I’m very interested in seeing how Christian Bale will play off Hardy on screen and how great this thing could be. So write me down as pumped because I believe Nolan will deliver of us another great Batman film. Also this will be his last, so one would imagine he plans to leave the franchise on a good note.
So Nolan finally confirmed he would direct Batman 3. This of course is good news all around since The Dark Knight was one of the best comic book movies ever made. Now news that Tom Hardy has been cast for a major role in the movie. Many believe this mean he will play a villain. Hardy gave an impressive performance in Inception being the suave British man. So he is a fine choice as an actor over all. Now who will he play is becoming a huge topic, for me this could be a move to just get people talking. Hardy might not play a villain he could be a detective or politician. If he is a baddie though who would he play? The Riddler is an obvious choice since that character would work in Nolan’s Gotham. Still I want to believe Nolan has some tricks up his sleeve to have a villain the comic book audience could be impressed by. I personally believe the villains in BM3 should be Black Mask or Hush… Won’t go into details but I’d follow the comic book format. Hardy could easily do Mask. At this point Nolan’s third Batman film will break the bank no matter who the villain is so go crazy. We all are expecting the Riddler… Throw us a curve ball!