Written by James Reilly – Student Pages Entertainment Journalist/Film Critic
This film has been getting rave reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, so it was safe to say I was very excited for this film. The trailers were great, Daniel Craig looked incredible and the director certainly had credibility in this genre. Everything pointed towards this film being truly great and sadly it was just meh.
The plot is very simple, two brothers (played by Channing Tatum and Adam Driver) attempt to pull of a heist during a NASCAR race in North Carolina. The pull of this film is that they are ‘hillbillys’, called in the film the ‘hillbilly heist’ or ‘Oceans 7/11’ (slightly funny as the director also directed the Ocean series). That is kinda the only joke here – they are hillbillys. Laughing yet? Well sort of, because this does create some really special character moments especially Adam Driver and Daniel Craigs characters. Channing Tatum also gives a good performance, but is overshadowed by the two standouts by Craig and Driver.
Daniel Craig and Adam Driver steal the show here, their characters having the standout moments in the film. When these two are not on screen Tatum is still watchable, but its hardly as fun or engaging – in fact it borders on slow. Very slow. The length of the film is only 1hr 59mins yet it still feels a bit long and slow in places, and in a film like this it really shows. I would have preferred this film be a solid 1hr 30min thrill-ride of non-stop humour and fun rather than 30 mins of exposition, 45 minutes of execution and about 25 minutes of wrap-up. Once the film gets going its fun enough and it builds along at a good enough pace, although in my eyes not as strong as it would need to be to save the entire film.
I enjoyed this film although I think it might have been a case of expectations ruining a film as I expected just so much more from this film. There was some excellent moments and truly memorable characters, but they cannot salvage a by the books heist film that brings nothing new or fresh to the table.
Follow James at @JamesisGinger