Tag Archives: Adam Driver

Marriage Story (2019) Movie Review By Gianni Damaia

 

Marriage Story Review

Director: Noah Baumbach
Writer: Noah Baumbach
Stars: Adam Driver, Scarlett Johansson, Julia Greer

As with all of Baumbach’s narratives, Marriage Story excels in the bravely earnest penmanship of the helmer. Marriage Story is not just a excellent drama with creative displays of tragedy layered with comedic sincerity that punctuates each moment with a relatable thread. It’s also a story about Baumbach’s own struggle with failure which is likely why it feels so resonant. Only an author so honest with his own reality could craft a story so authentic, so real. It’s a simple narrative, one that could easily veer into familiar territory that would render it too simple. But that is a critique best saved for films written with less voice. Baumbach bares his entire soul on the page. Am I sounding too dramatic? No? BAUMBACH BARES HIS SOUL! Better? The performances in this film are exquisite (there’s much to unpack in this statement, but I will unravel it slowly).

The problem with Marriage Story, a problem that is easy to overlook in a film that is crafted to jar you with its agile perspective, is that I believe it sides with one character. It tries so hard not to, you can see that plain as day when you watch Johansson’s monologue lamenting about her complicit reaction to her husband’s peacefully domineering presence in her life. But ultimately it is Adam Driver’s Charlie that leaves the lasting impression. I won’t dive into spoiler territory, but I feel very strongly that Nicole’s voice is relegated to the perspective Baumbach (and by extension, Charlie) has on her actions. What’s so interesting about this debate that I’m currently having with myself about this is that this is the only film I can think of in a long while that could even have this type of criticism.

It intentionally bends perspective, and aligning yourself with one side as I wilfully have, is Baumbach entire creative point. You as the viewer are saddled with a choice to fight for something. And the genius of this narrative is that it limits complicity. I think about Marriage Story often and contemplate if I would relate stronger to Nicole if I were a woman. It’s a question I’ll never really have perspective on, but I’m so excited to continually look for it. I’m rambling now. Marriage Story is incredible. It has lovely performances, some of which may be misguided in an attempt to convey a certain perspective, but nevertheless wonderful. The supporting cast too, my god! When has Ray Liotta been this good? Or Alan Alda? Or the constant force that is Laura Dern? Marriage Story is worthy of the conversation it inevitably creates. 9/10

Star Wars IX : The Rise Of Skywalker (2019) Movie Review By Philip Henry

The Rise Of Skywalker Review

Director: JJ Abrams
Screenwriters: JJ Arbrams, Chris Terrio
Stars: Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, John Boyega, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Richard E Grant

JJ Abrams is tasked with the unenviable task of trying to bring the most beloved franchise in history to a conclusion and satisfy the millions of fans worldwide. Of course that’s impossible. You only have to look at individual ‘rank the Star Wars films in order of greatness’ lists online to see that everyone has very different ideas about what makes a great Star Wars film. From what I can glean, how you rate these films has a lot to do with which film introduced you to the magic of George Lucas’s galaxy. Believe it or not, there is great love for even the worst of the prequels out there from people who walked into a movie theatre for the first time in 1999 and never wanted to leave.

So this film isn’t going to please everyone. That’s a given. But I saw it at the midnight screening with a bunch of hardcore fans and heard nothing but excited praise as I left the cinema. We all loved it. And that ranged from golden oldies to kids who should’ve been in bed, but would probably always thank their parents for making this exception.

I’m not going to get into the specifics of the story, because I don’t want to spoil anything for genuine fans who are excited for this movie, so I’ll only touch on things that the trailer has already revealed and try to address some of the dumber criticisms I’ve seen in the negative reviews.

So the Emperor is back, or to be more precise, he never really went away, and it’s up to our heroes to end the Sith leader once and for all before his latest deadly plan for mass destruction comes to fruition. This film hits the ground running and barely pauses for breath the whole way through. It’s a race against time and there’s a lot of ground to cover.

In short, a lot of stuff happens during this film and it’s a lot to unpack after you’ve seen it. If I have one criticism it’s that this film tries to cram two films into one, but I believe, for the most part, it succeeds in doing just that. The reason it needs to do this is the old elephant in the room… The Last Jedi.

TLJ has its supporters, but I’m firmly in the camp that thinks it’s a complete disaster – a square peg trying to fit into a round hole – and Rian Johnson’s refusal to pick up the story strands laid down by Lawrence Kasdan and JJ Abrams in The Force Awakens is the reason TRoS has to spend a certain amount of time setting things straight again.

JJ and Co. are towing the party line at the minute while doing press saying what a ‘great job’ Rian Johnson did, but you only have to look at how much backtracking there is in this movie to see that Mr Abrams was not happy with the direction of Episode VIII. In fact I’d go so far as to say there are several occasions in TRoS where JJ raises a very definite middle finger to some of the terrible ideas Rian Johnson had.

So if it seems rushed in places, blame Johnson for not running with ideas like The Knights of Ren. Kylo’s hand-picked henchmen are in this movie, but I can’t help thinking if they’d been established in Ep8 like they were supposed to be, their presence would have much more weight. We also see Rey training in the trailer – this is something else that should’ve happened in Ep8 if Johnson hadn’t made some awful decisions about changing Luke’s character.

The Last Jedi really does stick out like the haemorrhoid I always believed it to be after seeing TRoS. It’s just terribly written. You notice the great friendship and banter between Finn and Poe in Ep7, and then it disappears in Ep8, and then it’s back in Ep9. These inconsistencies are what really bother me about Rian Johnson’s attempt at a SW film. The defence I always hear is that he ‘tried something different’. Where? All he did was insert misjudged humour, ignore the personalities of already established characters, and craft a film that spends two and a half hours treading water; there’s no character arcs and the story barely moves – everyone’s in exactly the same place at the end of the movie as they are at the beginning. It’s a pointless film, and after seeing Ep9 I think it’s safe to say that if you watch the whole saga now, and skip Ep8, you haven’t missed anything important to the story. I will eternally love Ep9 for giving me that.

Ep9 takes more chances and has more twists than TLJ ever did. There are some genuine jaw-dropping moments that side-swiped me and the rest of the hardcore fans I was watching with. There are of course moments of fan-service that hail back to the other films, but I didn’t mind these at all, and given the looks of glee on the faces all around me, no one else did either. It’s fan service, but it’s fan service done properly.

I’ve read some of the spoiler-heavy negative reviews out there and I disagree with most of them. People who say this or that doesn’t make sense, either don’t know Star Wars very well, or they just know their YouTube video will get more clicks if they say something nasty. It’s a sad state of affairs that SW bashing has become the norm online. I could answer every single criticism I’ve seen online and tear their argument to shreds, so I don’t take any of these negative reviews too seriously. They’re obviously written by very casual viewers (no, I’m not even going to call them fans). I hope the box office will tell a different story because this is a thrill-packed ending to the Skywalker saga and will please any real fans of this galaxy far, far away…

If The Last Jedi destroyed your faith in Star Wars, come back and see The Rise of Skywalker and give it a chance to make you a believer again. Our heroes have all got their personalities back and the worst decisions of TLJ are backtracked and glossed over. It makes TLJ a pretty inconsequential film now.

Will it please everyone? Of course not, but I for one I’m glad this film exists and I think Abrams and Terrio did an excellent job pulling this sequel trilogy back from the brink. While not every plot strand or character arc is resolved to satisfaction, they concentrate on the main thrust of the story and follow it through brilliantly. As a writer myself, I know there just isn’t enough time to walk us through everyone’s epilogue – there’s just too many characters. You would end up with the 15 endings everyone complained about in Return of the King.

This is Star Wars back to how it should be; fun, exciting and full of drama and emotion. The final battle is on a scale never seen before and the twists and turns will slap a smile on the face of real fans that it will be hard to shift. Given the drag factor of TLJ, it’s as good an ending as we could’ve hoped for, and one I will rewatch many more times.

The force will be with me, always.

The Dead Don’t Die (2019) Movie Review By Peter Pluymers

The Dead Don’t Die Review

Director: Jim Jarmusch
Writer: Jim Jarmusch
Stars: Bill Murray, Adam Driver, Tom Waits

This isn’t gonna end well.

Life is full of surprises. First of all, the location where I saw this film. I thought it was a unique experience. I watched “The dead don’t die” outdoors in Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. And yes, this is something I don’t do too often. To be honest it’s the second time that I watch a film under a starry sky.

The first time, however, I guess the budget was a slight problem. The screen wasn’t exactly resistant to the wind. The result was that in “Racer and the Jailbird“, Matthias Schoenaerts looked unwillingly comical every time the wind rose. In Ljubljana, however, in addition to the perfect location namely Ljubljanski Grad (The Castle of Ljubljana), they also provided professional equipment. In short, a perfect image and sound (even with a gust of wind).

Next, I was surprised by the film itself. I’m not a fan of a mixture of comedy and horror. But, I recently saw the movie “Monster Party“. And I must say I also liked that movie. Perhaps I should, therefore, revise my opinion on this latest statement regarding humor and horror. Maybe it was also because of the type of humor that was used in “The dead don’t die“. Such a repetitive, bone-dry, absurd Monty Python-like humor. The kind of humor I’m a huge fan off. Already in the 80s, I watched TV shows such as “Monty Python’s Flying Circus“, “The Young Ones“, “Not the Nine O’Clock News” and to a lesser extent “The Muppet Show“. I’m sure there are people who don’t appreciate the “Theme song” joke. And others will be bored when a third person makes the same remark about the possibility that some wild animal had something to do with the victims in a diner. Well, that’s the humor I love.

However, if you expect a purebred zombie movie, then the disappointment will be even greater. Because this flick won’t scare you at all. Even the attempt to introduce some gore didn’t really help. The reason why the dead left their graves en masse can be called original. Perhaps it’s even a subtle environmental message for Governments. In any case, natural gas fracking causes incomprehensible phenomena to manifest themselves worldwide. For example, the movement of the earth appears to be disrupted, so the sunset is no longer correct (apparently it has something to do with the rotation of the earth). Pets and livestock suddenly disappear. And mobile phones and digital clocks no longer work. The behavior of the resurrected fellow human beings also deviates from the standard zombie behavior. This time no mindless non-living whose desire for blood and flesh is uncontrollable. No, these creatures stumble through the streets in search of Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Xanax, and Snickers. Probably what occupied them just before they kicked the bucket.

It’s kind of normal and understandable to see actors such as Bill Murray and Steve Buscemi showing up in such an absurd horror-comedy. Bill Murray has such a natural appearance of a man who can’t be profoundly disturbed and who apparently always reacts soberly to situations that make average persons hyperventilate. And Buscemi’s appearance is extremely suitable for this kind of crazy movies. Bill Murray apparently also has a taste for zombie movies now. Hence his collaboration on the film “Zombieland: Double Tap“.

But I didn’t expect actors such as Adam Driver (Jedi Kylo Ren in Star Wars) and Tilda Swinton (Mason from “Snowpiercer” and The Ancient One in “Avengers: Endgame“) in this film. And yet they proved to fit perfectly one way or another. Adam Driver is a person with a neutral facial expression who looks at the situation in a relaxed manner. And Tilda Swinton took care of the most hilarious role as the mortician Zelda, who speaks with a Scottish accent and dangerously swings around with her Samurai sword just like Uma Thurman did in “Kill Bill“. And last but not least you can admire the infamous Iggy Pop. The people from the make-up department didn’t have much work on him, I guess.

Although I had lots of fun watching this film, I had to conclude that the film didn’t have a definite goal in mind. The whole is fairly frivolous and absurd. The denouement manages to surpass the absurdity in this film. I’m still surprised this was the opening film at the festival of Cannes. I think Jim Jarmusch had a very different target audience in mind. Certainly not an audience consisting of gentlemen in tuxedos and coquettish ladies dressed in evening dresses. I’m sure those who were there in Cannes will speak about “The dead don’t die” for years to come. There’s one person who benefits enormously from this grotesque film. And that is Sturgill Simpson whose song “The dead don’t die” can be heard several times. Good for him.

The Man Who Killed Don Quixote (2018) Blu-Ray Review By D.M. Anderson

The Man Who Killed Don Quixote ReviewThe tumultuous production was even the subject of a feature-length documentary…in 2002.

Director: Terry Gilliam
Writers: Terry Gilliam, Tony Grisoni
Starring Adam Driver, Jonathan Pryce, Joana Ribeiro, Olga Kurylenjo, Stellan Skarsgard, Jordi Molia, Oscar Jaenada

The Man Who Killed Don Quixote was finally released in 2018, a minor miracle unto itself. Director Terry Gilliam had been trying to get the damn thing made for 25 years, only to be continually thwarted by development hell, false starts, budget problems, legal issues, natural disasters, cast changes and no-small-amount of his own obsessiveness. The tumultuous production was even the subject of a feature-length documentary…in 2002.

Though he kept busy making many films in the interim, Gilliam is probably glad to finally scratch this particular itch…if nothing else, just to spite everyone who turned his labor of love into a decades-long debacle. Some of you reading this might be asking if it was worth the all the trouble, which isn’t really a fair question. The Man Who Killed Don Quixote will probably never fully escape the shadow of its production history, and that’s a shame because – baggage notwithstanding – this is ultimately a very good film. Even great in parts.

It helps, of course, if the viewer is already in tune with Gilliam’s quirkier tendencies, since this modern day variation of Cervantes’ novel is a strange, surreal and often funny journey. Anyone familiar with the director is also aware he can be pretty self-indulgent, unconcerned whether or not others are on-board. Because of their unique aesthetic, narrative approach and abundance of dark humor, Terry Gilliam films could be considered their own little genre. Viewed in that context, this is his best work since 12 Monkeys.

That’s not to say The Man Who Killed Don Quixote isn’t without its issues, the main one being that it’s overlong. The story also gets off to a shaky start, with commercial director Tobi Grisoni (Adam Driver) embodying just about every burned-out-genius cliché we’ve ever seen. In fact, these early scenes don’t even feel like they belong in a Gilliam film. However, once Tobi visits the village where he once made a student film about Don Quixote, the film really takes off, both visually and narratively. He’s reacquainted with the elderly cobbler he cast in the lead (Jonathan Price), who has since become convinced he is Quixote and thinks Tobi is Sancho Panza. Several amusing circumstances have the two of them ending up on an episodic series of bizarre adventures, which eventually includes trying to rescue the young girl he once cast in the same film, Angelica (Joana Jaenada), now working as an escort working for a vicious Russian magnate.

That’s the nuts & bolts plot, but what makes it memorable is Gilliam’s penchant for blurring the line between fantasy and reality. Lavishly-produced, the film is alternately dark and whimsical, bolstered by interesting characters and some wonderful moments that unexpectedly transition into the surreal. Most importantly, the journey ends up being lot of fun, something this writer hasn’t been able to say about a Terry Gilliam film in a long time.

Ironically, for a movie with such a torrid past, this Blu-ray features no substantial bonus features covering its history. Perhaps that’s intentional, since enough has already been written and said about it. Besides, The Man Who Killed Don Quixote deserves to be enjoyed on its own merits. It may not rank among Terry Gilliam’s best work, but it’s a fine reminder that he’s got some juice left in the tank.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) Movie Review by John Walsh

THE LAST JEDI

Director: Rian Johnson
Writers: Rian Johnson, George Lucas (based on characters created by)
Stars: Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson

Well it has to be said, its been two extremely quick years following the release of ‘The Force Awakens’ and now Rian Johnson’s take on the Star Wars saga is out in theatres. It would be fair to say that not everyone is a overly enamoured with his vision. There has been a very vocal minority of Star Wars fandom that have taken to aggressively bashing it; even going as far as creating bots to negatively impact the Rotten Tomatoes viewer score.

This doesn’t mean that every detractor of the film is doing this or is wrong to be airing their grievances. They aren’t. Films are a highly subjective matter at the best of times. Now, combine that with a much beloved franchise and characters that have been a part of pop culture for nigh on 40 years and you’ve got yourself a recipe for some heated disagreements.

But enough of that hysteria. What did I make of it all? Well, if you’ve been listening to our podcasts then we did actually do a review last week but laying out your thoughts mere hours after leaving the cinema can make for tricky business. Things can be missed. Hence why I’m doing a written version after another viewing in an attempt to do a more ‘in depth’ review.

First of all, I’ve been a Star Wars fan for as long as I can remember. I recall playing with a Sand People figure when I was about four or five years of age and being absolutely fascinated with that galaxy far, far away. My credentials in that department are undeniable, and as a complete nobody, I can’t be accused of being a Disney shill. I absolutely loved this film. It’s not good enough to trouble the original three but it’s a damn good film and I’m genuinely perplexed at the vitriol coming from some quarters.

It begs the question. Just what were people expecting? A three and half hour long film that answered every single theory just as they’d painstakingly thought out?

Rian Johnson has a reputation for going dark, for his excellent writing ability and for just being a great director period. He’s also been a Star Wars fan from the age of four. What better credentials could you ask for? And what he’s given us is a fabulously entertaining film, that develops the newer characters well, offers a satisfying progression for the older characters, but more importantly expands and shakes up a mythology and galaxy that quite frankly had become static and in danger of repeating itself ad infinitum.

He tied up the two major loose ends JJ left from ‘The Force Awakens’ and did it well. Was it exactly what I wanted? Nope. Did I enjoy the direction he took? Yup. Rey’s parents? Yeah, they were unimportant nobodies. She wasn’t a Skywalker but instead a naturally gifted random. Fair enough. Snoke? He wasn’t Darth Plagueis. He was just some bushy eyed, deformed looking weirdo with a frankly incredible connection to the force, that had a fetish for gold and was cut down in spectacular fashion.

Luke Skywalker is by far my favourite Star Wars character. His arc seems to be causing the biggest amount of anguish amongst the films detractors. Again, Rian Johnson did not go down the path I personally would have liked to have seen come to fruition. He didn’t cut down the Knights of Ren in an epic lightsaber battle, didn’t slap down Kylo and he didn’t even leave that bloody island. But man, did I enjoy Luke in this film. The way he takes his nephew to school at the end, playing on his clear penchant for impulsiveness was a joy to behold.

The sight of him walking out to face the might of the First Order was a standout moment. Everything about it was perfect. From ‘The Spark’ theme (Williams best in this film) to the visuals, it had my personal favourite wide shot in the film too.

Mark Hamill is utterly brilliant in ‘The Last Jedi’. It’s arguably his best performance in the character of Luke. Hell, it’s arguably one of his best live action performances period. He’s been through some shit and it’s changed his character in the thirty year gap. He’s experienced unimaginable hardship, loss and learned some incredibly cool force abilities. He’s a tad grouchy and he’s taken to drinking green milk from the udder of a hideous alien. He also lost some weight and looks fantastic for it.

Princess Leia is handled very well too. The late Carrie Fisher was much improved here, giving a very good showing, following her practically mute role in ‘The Force Awakens’. The infamous space scene wasn’t as bad as some have made out. I thought the scoring and visuals were on point during it and it finally showed us Leia using the force. What’s not to like? I was also incredibly pleased to see her have a moment with Luke. It would have been criminal for either of those two to go out without sharing a scene together. It was a genuine lump in the throat moment.

Visually, I thought the film was stunning. It’s the most stylish to date and some of the action, aided by lovely wide shots, was jaw dropping. The opening shot where the camera rushes down was exhilarating, the Canto Bight stuff popped despite being superfluous, the scene when General Holdo (Laura Dern) sends the Resistance cruiser zooming through Snoke’s Supremacy was ridiculously cool and that lightsaber battle in the throne room is up there for me. There was a plethora of visually incredible moments in this film and sadly I can’t possibly list them all which is annoying.

Speaking of Canto Bight. Finn and Rose’s side plot was unnecessary, disrupted the pacing, was off in terms of tone and felt like a rather convoluted way to setup the showdown on Crait. Benicio Del Toro’s character was poor and don’t even get me started on the druggy stutter. It felt superfluous to the main plot and conjured up memories of the prequels whilst also featuring some real corny dialogue. That along with some poorly worked comedic moments and the slightly underwhelming walkers at the end was the only real let down for me.

In terms of Rey and Kylo. I actually loved the whole dynamic of their relationship in this one. The force ‘FaceTiming’ as I called it wasn’t that off putting, was explained well and again opened up new possibilities. Rey is obviously struggling to find her role in things, trying to coax Luke into training her whilst Kylo is really on the end of a prolonged bout of bullying at the hands of Snoke and equally questioning his role. Which is why I was delighted when he ended him. It was deserved and Kylo is fast becoming my favourite of the newer characters.

Adam Driver is a brilliant actor and he’s really showing up Hayden Christiansen in the how to play a conflicted character stakes. I see now why JJ hand picked him for this role. By the end, it’s pretty clear that he’s went full big bad however which is a shame because even now I want him redeemed. He’s clearly the last thread of Skywalker heritage in this saga that can realistically continue and for that reason alone I want him to survive. It’ll be very interesting to see where he goes from this.

Daisy Ridley has been criticised in some circles for her so called wooden delivery of certain lines. I must have been watching a different film though because I missed these completely. Perhaps I was too busy just enjoying the story and action instead of looking for reasons to throw the toys out the pram. She was absolutely fine for me and I felt they reigned in her ‘overpowered’ abilities, making her more vulnerable, particularly during the throne room sequences to appease the ‘Mary Sue’ brigade.

I can’t discuss this film without mentioning Poe and General Hux. Oscar Isaac is a talented actor and I’m delighted he was given a chunkier role. He learnt a valuable lesson in this and it looks like he’s taking control of the Resistance going forward. Hux was often used as comedic levity and for the most part it worked. His little smirk at Kylo upon leaving the throne room and general slyness was oddly enjoyable. Domhnall Gleeson owns the character.

Musically, John Williams returns to score this and it’s brilliance from the man as ever. There’s not many new themes in there but that’s probably because there’s not many new characters worthy of them. What he does do is reintroduce many classics to delightful effect. The Leia theme has a delicate moment in the space scene whilst Yoda’s adds an emotional edge to the return of that particular character. It just isn’t Star Wars without the great mans involvement.

Incidentally, the Yoda scene was absolutely fantastic. The puppet looked great and they nailed the mannerisms and the eccentric personality we all loved from the Original trilogy.

This is a divisive film and much of the hate appears to stem from two main issues. Firstly, predetermined fan theories not coming true, and secondly, the apparent callous way in which established mythology and characters have been dealt with. As I said earlier, I’m delighted that the mythology has been freshened up. This misconception that you must be from famous lineage to be a Jedi is just that. I think the older characters were handled competently. It’s all subjective though.

Overall. I think the positives more than outweigh the negatives in ‘The Last Jedi’. It’s not perfect by any means but it’s a brilliant addition to the Star Wars saga and opens up so many possibilities going forward. It’s added freshness to the franchise, Luke still very much has a role to play and the fate of the Resistance hangs on a knife edge. I look forward to Episode 9 now and Rian Johnson’s trilogy and I highly recommend this one to the majority of fans. Most will already have seen it mind, but if you haven’t, then what the hell are you waiting for?

Rating: 4.5/5

Logan Lucky (2017) Movie Review by Stephen McLaughlin

LOGAN LUCKY

Director: Steven Soderbergh
Writer: Rebecca Blunt
Stars: Channing Tatum, Adam Driver, Daniel Craig, Katie Holmes

Sometimes you go into a movie not expecting too much from it. This is not a dig at the plot, the Director or the Cast. Just sometimes this happens and surprisingly it turns out to be one of your favourite movies of the year. Yes, Logan Lucky (or as I keep calling it Lucky Logan?) is about two brothers Jimmy and Clyde Logan who attempt to pull off a heist during a NASCAR race in North Carolina.

Jimmy Logan is played by Channing Tatum, who was a football player and star from his small town in West Virginia, his ambitions of joining the NFL were cut short by a knee injury that unfortunately also has effected his chances of work due to health and safety laws. (He is laid off at the beginning of the movie) It appears that everyone in the Logan family is cursed and this is mentioned a few times throughout the movie. His brother Clyde (Adam Driver) lost an arm (or the forearm and hand as he points out to people) serving his country and is now working in a bar for the local neanderthals to make fun off.

Tatum and Driver although some might say to look at definitely aren’t brothers but both actors appear to have a brotherly connection throughout and there are scenes dotted throughout where Jimmy shows his love for his brother. Both appear to be at the end of their tether and even more so Jimmy who has just found out that his ex-wife Bobbie Jo (Katie Holmes) is moving across state with her new husband and Bobbie and Jimmy’s daughter Sadie played by an impressive young actress called Farrah Mackenzie.

At this point in the movie, things for both brothers have to change and this is where Jimmy’s plan is put in place to channel the cash from the arena that is pouring in from a NASCAR race event using the vacuum tubes that lay in the foundations of the arena that Jimmy knows from working in the mines and also knows that there is a secure vault within those foundations that all the cash is vacuumed into. This is also the point in the movie that I think a lot of people have a problem with. The sheer scale of precision and accuracy in the plan, mostly Jimmy’s plan is unbelievable, but hey, what the heck just enjoy the craziness of the plot and don’t worry too much about that. The movie is clearly made for entertainment value (aren’t all movies like this?) and that is what makes this movie a silly but really enjoyable film.

Tatum and Driver are certainly the leads in this movie but they are also backed up by Daniel Craig playing Joe Bang the explosives expert. Craig is a stand out in his performance and I can only imagine Director Steven Soderbergh giving the British actor free reigns as Craig really lets loose in the role and his southern accent is incredibly convincing for someone who is from Cheshire, England. Bang’s expertise is required for the heist and with only one snag (being in prison) the Logan boys have to figure out a way of getting their man in on the action.

With Craig in a superb supporting role I can’t say much the same for the very under used Seth MacFarlane as Max Chilblain who I thought was a great character but perhaps I can accept Soderbergh understating this role as Chilblain dominates the screen in his scenes to be fair. Again the same can be said for Sebastian Stan’s Dayton White, not quite a cameo, nor a supporting role. The biggest of them all and what took me by surprise was the appearance near the very end of the movie of Hilary Swank as Special Agent Sarah Grayson. Perhaps this is being set up for a sequel I don’t know. Swank’s role is very limited and kind of bizarre that someone of her acting calibre is used in a role that could have gone to anyone. Playing the Special Agent in the investigation of the heist was a throw away set up. It certainly wasn’t the FBI on a hot pursuit to catch the criminals but more of a way for the story to explain that the authorities are on this and to be honest it looks like it may have been a last minute decision to include Hilary Swank in the role.

Overall the Direction of Soderbergh is more in line with “Ocean’s” series of film rather than his “Che” movie making style. It’s slick and funny and again shouldn’t be taken too seriously as “Logan Lucky” is an enjoyable film with a great cast. Highly Recommend.