Saturday, 10 September 2016
REVIEW: HELL OR HIGH WATER
No Country For Old Banks.
102 Mins. Starring: Jeff Bridges, Chris Pine, Ben Foster, Katy Mixon & Gil Birmingham. Director: David Mackenzie.
Come 'Hell Or High Water' you'll see the best picture this year. Mark my words. Parlayed between the 'Captain America-Civil War' and 'Suicide Squad' Summer blockbusters and the Oscar season 'Gold' and 'Sully' fall bait comes a film just as exciting and emotive as the elements those two polar times for mainstream movies each evoke. Take a marshalling law-man with crazy grit, but a true heart and pair him with a Comanche partner. And you have the perfect 'Starskey and Hutch' dynamic duo to go after the 'Bonnie and Clyde' one two-punch of two outlaws that really are top draw, bank-rolling the car-door sprayed amazing action. One man whose been outside the law for many a set-piece and one former pretty boy turned Floyd. Desperate with measures the same. Add some script seasoning from 'Sicario' scribe Taylor Sheridan who laid down the best film of last year in that Benicio Del Toro gangland border thriller with Emily Blunt and Josh Brolin. The call of a stirring singer/songwriter Nick Cave's strongest soundtrack since he went 'Lawless' with Tom Hardy and Shia LaBeouf and you have the perfect direction for David Mackenzie whose known for getting 'Money Monster' Jack O'Connell 'Starred Up' for his time in prison. Behind these bars you can now see the best neo-western since the Cohen Brothers took Cormac McCarthy's novel idea that this America was no land for retired folk. And come a high water time and tide were movies like 'Free State Of Jones' and 'The Magnificent Seven' Washington equalizer remake are taking these United States back to their roots, this modern classic of today's Texas still stuck in the spurred bolts and chaps of the Wild West really catches hell.
Burning like brimstone in the fires of this native land, the look of Dante gives us an omen of the inferno that's about to come. Because the only thing more dangerous than a downtrodden, revenge ravaged man out for his own brand of justice, with nothing to lose but everything for his family to gain is a brotherhood of them. And boy Ben Foster is the craziest man to hit this town since Ben Affleck called Jeremy Renner his best friend. Foster's approach to movies is casino chips down, all in dedicated. And behind that maverick moustache is a recognisable face of the Hollywoodland household that is known for being more than a supporting character actor, but an acclaimed actor ready for the Academy. From '3:10 To Yuma' and 'Aint Them Bodies Saints' he knows all about classic and nostalgic westerns akin. And from 'Contraband' to his leading man breakout Lance Armstrong 'Program' portrayal he knows all about true crime and the like too. But right now this may be the forthcoming Tom Hanks 'Inferno' actor that is in everything's best work in a Springsteen jean and bootcut hard worn career. Alongside this chameleons greatest shade and side is his dual 2016, co-star Chris Pine's 'Finest Hour' too. The charming, charismatic captain of many a vessell goes beyond 'Star Trek' for his finest year even. As his drawn out descent into darkness shows just how much range he really has in the South. It's a good look being Wonder Woman's boyfriend right now in this Dawn Of Justice. Sure his moustache and slicked back long-hair may put him in the same league of looking like Colin Farrell in 'True Detective', but just like that Irish man made good, he shows he really can act too. And this Jack Ryan of all trades, fangirls favourite, forever young Pine can bring the eye-ring weathered look of a milleniaal that looks like he's lived nine more lives than the men on his trail and tail as he chases after a line of credit, come heist or high rates. Evolving from a pretty duckling to a Gosling. The sign of this star looks headed towards Leo.
Unless the Rooster gets him. Cocked and loaded with Cogburn's soul for justice whichever way it comes, this may be the best of Bridges from the Freeman rivalling voice of Jeff that you would even listen to reading the phone book...let alone your rights. Now you know you have to hear this dudes solo album. Sure he may be a little weathered for the futures of 'Tron', but his legacy doesn't reside in the past but today's legend of the old west. This may just be better than 'True Grit' and 'Crazy Heart' combined...and to think he got an Oscar nod for one. Well get ready to tip your stetson once more, because he may just add another one to his Academy. Bigger than Lebowski, Jeff and the West go together like good music and Austin, or Mavericks and Dallas. This jester of a footsoldier in this tragedy offset by comedy is an equal measure of restrained passion in a rawly puncuated performance. We just hope the king of the rocking chair will always have one hunt left in him. Because Beau's brother needs no partner. But he has one whether his mild 'Dirty Harry' off-color remarks actually like it or not. And Gil Birmingham gives him the perfect bantering one just west of Alabama for a performance rooted in a strong soul, masked by a mild-mannered demeanour that never wavers. As stoic but sound as his regulation issue starched shirt and tie and the soul shielded aviators. Birmingham will be known for more now than just being a face in 'Twilight'. By the dawn of this deep South picture he will have found his place on the map. Just like 'H.O.H.W'. This heaven sent new depth with a side of 'Mike and Molly's' Katy Mixon's waitress sass that is just the tip. The smartest, biggest film of 2016. Ready for Friday or February. Turns out Hollywood does still make films like it used to. Hell! TIM DAVID HARVEY.