Sunday, September 02, 2012

Sidney Lumet: Before the Devil Knows You're Dead

There have been lots of raves about this movie, but I managed to see it only last night on Finnish TV. And indeed it turned out to be worth of the raves: a noir thriller worthy of the best Gil Brewers, Harry Whittingtons and every other working-class noir novel of the fifties and early sixties. It's great to see veteran director Lumet working at the top of his form.

Philip Seymour Hoffman and Ethan Hawke are very good as Lumet's laymen who desperately need money for various reasons. They plan to rob the jewellery store of their parents. Of course everything goes terribly wrong. The family relations rise to front and the father, played by the great Albert Finney, gets suspicious. The ending is ironic and cruel and also plausible in every way.

If you like your noir believable and about ordinary people and not about sick, traumatized psychos, check this film out. If you like your noir without empty pastiche or knowing winks to the classics of the genre, check this film out.

1 comment:

pattinase (abbott) said...

Truly a terrific movie.