“The Town” Is Goin’ In My Rear View

by Nicholas Robinson


There are over 300 bank robberies in Boston every year. And most of the professionals live in a one-square-mile neighborhood called Charlestown. One of them is Doug MacRay (Ben Affleck), but he is not cut from the same cloth as his fellow thieves. Unlike them, Doug had a chance at success, a chance to escape following in his father’s criminal footsteps. Instead, he became the leader of a crew of ruthless bank robbers, who pride themselves on taking what they want and getting out clean. The only family Doug has are his partners in crime, especially Jem (Jeremy Renner), who, despite his dangerous, hair-trigger temper, is the closest thing Doug ever had to a brother. However, everything changed on the gang’s last job when Jem briefly took a hostage: bank manager Claire Keesey (Rebecca Hall). When they discover Claire lives in Charlestown, Jem gets nervous and wants to check out what she might have seen. Knowing what Jem is capable of, Doug takes charge. He seeks out Claire, who has no idea that their encounter is not by chance or that this charming stranger is one of the men who terrorized her only days before. As his relationship with Claire deepens into a passionate romance, Doug wants out of this life and the town. But with the Feds closing in and Jem questioning his loyalty, Doug realizes that getting out will not be easy and, worse, may put Claire in the line of fire. Any choices he once had had boiled down to one: betray his friends or lose the woman he loves. – MovieWeb.com

Now, as everyone knows, Christmas is this Saturday.  However, another important thing is coming up exactly one week after that and that is the new year.  Now, I didn’t do this last year but this year I am releasing a Best of 2010 list.  As this is the case the next 9 or so days will be a rush to watch as many of this year’s movies that I can..  Here is the 1st of many.  I have wanted to watch this movie ever since I saw the 1st trailer.  Now I am not much of a Ben Affleck fan but after I heard people raving about Gone Baby Gone I just had to watch this movie.  However, I was kind of disappointed with it.  The story was all right, the acting was ok, the directing was great and the robberies were good.

The story in this movie was original (so to speak as it was based on a book) but still a bit generic.  It’s basically a man who is involved in crime and wants to get out because he fell in love.  Like most original yet generic stories the details, characters and ending were all changed but the big picture remains the same.  It was fun to go through the story but I just have to say ‘meh’ to it.

Overall the acting was OK.  I admit, I find it cool that certain people were in it like Chris Cooper (Conklin from The Bourne Identity, and Col. Frank Fitts from American Beauty) and Pete Postlethwaite (Kobayashi from The Usual Suspects) even though they barely got any screen time.  The only bright spark in this movie was Jeremy Renner as James ‘Jem’ Coughlin.  As usual Jeremy Renner put 110% into his role and came out brilliant. He deserves his nomination for Best Supporting Actor at the Golden Globes and I would love for him to win (even though he has some stiff competition) as he just turns out performance after performance that just blows me away.

I am definitely not a Ben Affleck fan.  However,, I have to admit, this movie has proved to me (because I haven’t seen Gone Baby Gone) that this man was destined to be behind the camera instead of in front of it.  I mean I’m not saying he’s a bad actor, I’m just saying that he is average.  However, this man made magic with the camera in this movie.  Every shot was done in such a way as to keep you interested.  As I said, the story was average but the way it was shot would just keep you looking and interested.

My favourite parts of this movie were the actual robberies.  Every one of them was well thought out and executed well.  It provided the movie with some well needed action.  One of my favourite parts is the shootout near the end during the last robbery in the movie (trying not to spoil anything).  Like Agent Frewley (Jon Hamm) says in the movie “This is the not-fucking-around crew” and they did not fuck around.  Every step in the robbery was planned and I liked that.

Overall, it was an average movie that disappointed me in terms of story and acting.  Still worth the rent though.

IMDB says 7.8/10

RT says 94%

I say 6.5/10

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~ by sputnikreviews on December 22, 2010.

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