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Saturday, December 22, 2007

Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead


Latest movie by 83-year-old Sidney Lumet that tells a classical Lumet story about those things that go wrong, very wrong. Like a Greek tragedy the story explores the human relationships between members of one damaged family.

Not an easy movie to watch as it becomes a very disturbing film thanks to great performances, outstanding script and a director that knows how to construct a non-linear narrative that even if you feel like stop watching the movie, you wont and you will stay enduring the unexpected developing situations until the end.

The film tells about two brothers that plan the robbery of their parent’s jewelry store and everything and I mean everything goes wrong. Even when the story is totally different after I saw the movie it remind me of Lumet’s Dog Day Afternoon, where also everything went as wrong as possible; but this one is a lot more complex and a lot more disturbing.

I believe that the non-linear narrative with outstanding editing –that makes it more disturbing and you will feel very uncomfortable with the chapter changing technique- makes this movie outstanding for a crime drama. But Kelly Masterson script is brilliant as she managed to create extremely well developed characters that will trigger viewer’s emotions very easily and most emotions are not of the positive kind.

This is hardly a movie to enjoy but is a great movie to admire, as it is truly ferocious with outstanding performances, outstanding director, outstanding editing and outstanding first time scriptwriter. The award winner ensemble cast includes A-list actors: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ethan Hawke, Marisa Tomei, and Albert Finney.

The movie already won several awards and has many nominations; I feel this movie could win major awards in the original screenplay category, as it truly deserves it.

I recommend this movie only to those that are able to admire an amazing movie even when the story is very disturbing and emotionally wrenching.

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