Friday, October 15, 2010

The Town

Director: Ben Affleck

Starring: Ben Affleck, Pete Postlethwaite, Jeremy Renner, Rebecca Hall and Jon Hamm.

This is a tense, intelligent crime thriller set in Boston and based on the Chuck Hogan novel Prince of Thieves. Ben Affleck plays Doug MacRay, a working-class career criminal confronted with various moral dilemmas. He is the leader of a gang of armed bank robbers based in the Charlestown district of Boston. His love interest is junkie, Krista (Blake Lively), sister of his best friend, Jimmy Coughlin (Jeremy Renner). The latter is a psychopath. After the bank robbery Jem takes the bank manager, Claire Keesey (Rebecca Hall), hostage but later releases her unharmed. Keen to tie up loose ends and frustrate the FBI investigation Jem decides to kill Claire but Doug has another plan. He starts a relationship and soon falls head over heels in love with her and decides to make a break from his life of crime. The news gets to neighbourhood crime boss, Fergie (Pete Postlethwaite) who insists the gang pull off one more heist. Claire begins to realize her new lover’s dark secret as the FBI investigation led by Adam Frawley (Jon Hamm) closes in. Despite the unconvincing ending this is a reasonably good movie with a chilling (and all too short) portrayal by Pete Postlethwaite as the top villain. Good support performances from Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker), Rebecca Hall (Frost/Nixon) and Jon Hamm (Mad Men). The movie is long at 125 minutes.

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